How to Remove Write Protection on SD Card on Windows

You can remove write protection from an SD card by switching off the physical lock on the card, disabling the setting from the properties page, or using the Windows command line.

I’m Caleb, and I have experience using SD cards for years as a photographer, as well as with other devices such as phones. In this article, I’ll talk about removing write protection from an SD or MicroSD card, giving a few methods to do so.

If you’re frustrated because you can’t write anything on your SD card, or modify your files, keep reading to find out how to solve the problem.

Removing Write Protection on SD Card on Windows

There’s more than one way to get rid of the write protection from an SD card. Some of the methods are more straightforward than others, so I’ve listed the easiest one first.

Method 1: Check the Lock Switch on the SD Card

Most SD cards have a physical lock switch somewhere on the side. This switch, when enabled, places the SD card into a read-only state. It’s useful if you need to preserve data from accidental deletion, but can cause problems if you turn it on by accident.

The switch may or may not be labeled, which can make it confusing to figure out which direction turns the switch “on.” If you can’t write or modify data on your SD card, try flipping this switch to the opposite direction before placing it back in your computer.

If you’re suddenly able to write data again, that means the write protection was caused by this switch.

Method 2: Disable Write Protection from “Properties”

Depending on your SD card and system, you may be able to remove the write protection from the properties page. This doesn’t apply to every SD card, however, so it isn’t a guaranteed fix.

In fact, the SD card that I tested this method with doesn’t have an option to disable write protection from this page. Others, however, may have a checkbox on the properties screen labeled Read only, or another name along those lines.

In those cases, you can get rid of write protection by unchecking the box. To reach the properties page, you just have to right-click on the SD card from the file explorer page and choose the Properties option from the drop-down list of options.

Method 3: Use Diskpart Tool via Command Line

This solution is a bit more advanced, but might work if you have trouble with the others. You’ll have to do this method through the command line, so start by pressing the Windows key + R and typing in cmd to open it up.

Once you see the command line interface, use the diskpart command to bring up the tool, and the list disk command to show the available storage devices. Take note of which disk size matches your SD card, and check which number it’s been assigned.

Then, enter the command select disk, followed by the disk number. For example, if your SD card was disk 1, you would type select disk 1. The last command to enter is attributes disk clear readonly. This will get rid of the write protection on the selected storage device.


Here are some of the frequently asked questions about write protection and SD cards.

How Do You Remove Write Protection Using Cmd?

You can get rid of write protection with the command line by running the diskpart command, selecting the right storage device, or disk, and entering attributes disk clear readonly.

Why Does My SD Card Say It’s Write Protected When It’s Not?

In cases like these, your SD card may be write protected by the physical lock on the side. You should check to see if you’ve accidentally moved this lock to the on position.

How Do I Unlock a Write Protected SD Card?

If the write protection is caused by the lock on the side of the SD card, you can unlock the card and remove this protection by simply switching the lock to the opposite position.


In short, there’s more than one way to unlock an SD card or MicroSD card. You can disable the physical write protection lock, uncheck the read-only box in properties, or run a command from the command line that will get rid of an SD card’s read-only status.

Have any of these methods worked for you in removing the write protection from an SD card? Let us know in the comments!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • Mark Holden

    no it did not work. I purchaed this SD CARD from ebay and it is moulded with no lock tab. I have never seen this before. i did not know they did this. The lock tab is not missing or broken there is just not one on the dick and I cannot remove photos off the sd card.