When was the last time you checked the data integrity on your SD cards? Whether you use this resource at home or for your work, portable storage can take a lot of abuse.

If you pull an SD card out of a camera or computer too quickly, it can develop bad sectors that create errors. This process makes it more difficult to access files on your preferred device.

This issue can get corrected quickly when you have the best SD card data recovery for Windows tool to use at home. These software options can restore access, retrieve delete items, and provide more essential services for your storage.

What Are the Different SD Card Types?

Although we refer to SD cards as a singular storage product, there are three different types that you could be using right now.

  • Standard SD Card
  • SD High Capacity, or SDHC™
  • SD Extended Capacity, or SDXC™

The smaller memory cards that come with smartphones and other devices today are often called microSD (mSD), which creates a fourth classification for some consideration.

When you have a standard SD card, the capacity ranges from 128 MB to 2 GB. If you use SDHC, the capacity range is 4 GB to 32 GB, while the SDXC product goes from 64 GB to 2 TB.

Each one uses a different default format.

If you have a standard SD card, it uses the FAT16 format. SDHC cards use FAT32, while the SDXC requires exFAT.

You can tell if your SD card data recovery tool for Windows is compatible with your storage based on this information.

Top SD Card Data Recovery Tools to Download

Although most software tools that offer file recovery services will work with SD cards, you must look at the formatting options when reviewing each product.

If it says that it is compatible with FAT 16 only, it will only read the standard SD card. When you see that it works with FAT16, FAT32, and exFAT, every SanDisk® product is usable with that download.

These are the top choices that are 100% manually tested and verified to work.

1. Disk Drill SD Card Recovery

recover deleted files from an SD card

Disk Drill for Windows provides a comprehensive solution for SD card recovery. With its unique Quick Look function, you can discover if files are available to salvage based on what you see in the preview pane.

Once you’re ready to initiate the recovery, you just click the appropriate button to activate the scanning mechanism. It contains a Vault Recovery function for FAT formatting, which includes SD cards, to create the best chance for a positive outcome.

Top Features of Disk Drill for Windows

  • It finds specific file types to group them in particular ways for easier storage and management. Once you locate what you want to recover, you can take the restored file to your preferred folder.
  • The software allows you to pause and save scans so that you can recover SD cards on a schedule that works for your needs.
  • You can mount the results as a virtual disk. 
  • The user interface is intuitive and helpful, using the standard search and folder structures to manage your navigational needs.
  • If you select the data protection feature, you’ll see the current configuration of the Recovery vault to make more changes as needed.
  • If your USB disk is starting to fail, this tool can pull the files for you to send them to safer locations.

Cons of Disk Drill for Windows

  • It offers limited recovery options with the free version.
  • Some users may get lost in the sheer number of available tools if they only need to recover a couple of files.

You can recover up to 500MB of information with the Windows version of Disk Drill for free. If you decide that you like the product, upgrading it to the PRO version is $89. 

Disk Drill offers compatibility with Windows 10, all Windows 8, and Windows 7 operating systems.

You can download Disk Drill for Windows at this URL: https://www.cleverfiles.com/data-recovery-software.html.

2. CardRecovery


If you select CardRecovery to find lost files on your SD cards, you’ll be using a product that performs read-only operations on the storage device. That means it won’t modify, move, or delete information that could cause additional damage.

Top Features of CardRecovery

  • You can recover files from SD, SDHC, and mSD cards.
  • It includes compact flash (CF) card recovery, including Type I, Type II, and MicroDrive.
  • You can find and recover data from XQD and MMC cards.
  • USB flash drive restoration is possible with this software on your Windows computer.
  • It supports all common picture, video, and audio formats.
  • RAW image formats from today’s top DSLR brands are included.

Cons of CardRecovery

  • The platform feels outdated with its oversized thumbnails and check boxes.
  • Clicking precision is necessary for individual files.

CardRecovery currently works on all operating systems from Windows 98 and newer. You’ll need at least 256 MB of space available to store your recovered photos.

You’ll need a memory card reader for your Windows device if your camera or SD product doesn’t appear as a drive letter on your desktop or laptop.

You can try CardRecovery for free. The full version is currently priced at $39.95. 

You can find CardRecovery available for download from the publisher’s home page: https://www.cardrecovery.com/.

3. Acronis Revive

Acronis Revive

When you choose Acronis Revive as your preferred SD card recovery tool, you’ll get those files back through a simple three-step process. The software lets you locate the information, estimate its recovery chances, and restore your access.

Top Features of Acronis Revive

  • It provides compatibility for standard SD cards and SDHC storage.
  • The software recognizes localized file names for better data restoration.
  • You can preview the media files you want to recover on your portable storage card.
  • It creates a new image file to make the undelete process more effective.
  • The wizard-style interface is intuitive and easy to learn for most users. 
  • It provides a visual display of the scanning operation.
  • You’ll get a log of your SD card recoveries and failures with this tool.

Cons of Acronis Revive

  • There isn’t any support for advanced SD card products.
  • Scanning speeds get much slower as the storage size increases.

Acronis Revive is currently available for $49.99. It works with most Windows operating systems, starting with Windows 2003. It does work with Windows 10.

You’ll need at least 256 MB of available memory dedicated to running this SD card recovery tool. It moves the files to your preferred hard drive, which means it must have sufficient space for the information.

Acronis Revive is available for download at this URL: https://store.acronis.com/882/purl-consumer-standard-US.

4. Puran Data Recovery

Puran Data Recovery

This underrated SD card data recovery tool provides an excellent resource when you need to find missing files. It works with damaged products to locate, restore, and offer ongoing access to your photos, songs, and more. You can even use it to work with optical drive needs.

Top Features of Puran Data Recovery

  • If you have bad sectors on your SD card, the software skips them automatically during the file recovery process.
  • You can add partitions to your storage products using the tool’s unique drag-and-drop mechanism.
  • It offers the capability of copying an entire SD card to your preferred secondary storage during the restoration process.
  • If you can see a file list on your SD card, this software can recover it for you.
  • Different speed levels come with the download to maximize its versatility.
  • You can use different speeds to balance copying requirements and data recovery.

Cons of Puran Data Recovery

  • It receives fewer updates than other products you might use for data recovery. 
  • If your computer doesn’t recognize the SD card with a reader, your files might remain inaccessible.

Puran Data Recovery offers native support for 64-bit Windows versions. It is currently compatible with Windows XP, 2003, Vista, 2008, 7, 8, 8.1, and 10.

You can download Puran Software today at this URL: http://www.puransoftware.com/Data-Recovery.html.

5. Orion File Recovery Software

Orion File Recovery Software

If your SD card has Windows-compatible formatting, you can take care of your restoration needs with this helpful tool. It comes with exclusive features that include a secure delete option to make information unobtainable to others if you want files gone for good.

Top Features of Orion File Recovery Software

  • It provides users with a recovery wizard that guides everyone through the SD card restoration process.
  • You can specify specific scanning locations to save time on your file management needs.
  • The search results offer the file type, name, and folder.
  • It allows you to scrub files from the system to ensure safety and privacy.
  • The scanning speed is above average compared to most tools, although it is slower than Disk Drill.

Cons of Orion File Recovery Software

  • The light-based system for file recoverability is distracting.
  • Even if you get a green light, there isn’t a guarantee that your file is recoverable.

You can download Orion File Recovery Software at this URL: https://www.nchsoftware.com/data-recovery/index.html.

It is currently compatible with Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, and 10. A free trial is available. If you select the Home version, the cost is $12.999. You can also buy a commercial license for $14.99.

A subscription plan is available for $1.11 per month.

Additional Resources for SD Card File Recovery

These additional resources can help you take the next step on your quest to restore file access.

What Is the Bottom Line?

Although the best SD card data recovery tools can make fast work of your missing files, it isn’t always easy to solve complicated situations.

The one benefit that you have with SD cards compared to internal SSD storage is that the portable product doesn’t use the TRIM optimization protocol. That means you aren’t dealing with an instant delete.

Even though your camera, phone, or computer may have errors, your SD, SDHC, or SDXC memory card might still provide file access. When you download one of these top SD card data recovery for Windows tools, you’ll know if those pictures and more are available.