Smartmedia needs reformatting please help
Daughter put my smartmedia card in her RIO and it does not work on my camera just wondering how can I fix he problem. Thank You Rick..

Comments (11)

Rick:If you can reformat your smartmedia card in camera, you are home free. Your user manual should give specific instructions. It is possible that irreversible damage was done to the card. If so, it will have to be replaced. I don't think the maker of the card would consider inserting the card in another device as being something they would cover...

Comment #1

I read a while back that once the SmartMedia card has been formatted by Rio, there's no getting it back (for digital camera). In fact, the reason I remember this is because I purchased a 32 MB Smartmedia card from Rio a year ago or so and a lot of people were posting that IF you make the mistake of putting it into a RIO player, you wouldn't be able to use it in your camera.Good luck. Hopefully my memory is wrong...

Comment #2

I'm not sure about this, but recall seeing something a year or so ago when the RIO's came out about a program called "Dreaming of Brazil" that was supposed to be able to "fix" a smartmedia that had been formatted by a Rio. Try using the search function in this forum or a websearch and see what you come up with there are a couple posts that mention this if you search for "brazil" in this forum. A web search for RIO and "dreaming of brazil" would probably find it. Good Luck! If it works for you, why not post back to the forum and let others know what you found and where and how it worked?..

Comment #3

Try: did a little more digging, that's the link for the Dreaming of Brazil program's author. He has a current version and a new BETA version available that you can download from that page. READ the instructions! Good Luck!..

Comment #4

So how do you use the program if you don't have a RIO? I have an external USB SmartMedia reader, and I would like to reformat my 16MB card. It works fine in the PC, but my Olympus D-360L says 'Card Error!' everytime I insert it into the camera. I cannot access the menus to format the card inside the camera...

Comment #5

James, Actually, the "Brazil" program is a specific fix for the problem of the smartmedia being reformatted by/used in a RIO... as far as I know. Have you tried formatting your smartmedia in the reader? (right-click the drive and format should be on the menu) Or did that cause the problem? The camera could be having a problem, or it could be a formatting problem as you suspected. Does the camera work with any other smartmedia? I wish I had a more concrete answer for you, but more detail might help. Anyone else with a take on this?..

Comment #6

I had a SM card go partially bad similar to this. Sticking it in a card reader and running Windows Scandisk on it found some bad sectors and mapped them out. This let the camera at least recognize the card and take some pictures, but it still seemed to die whenever it got to the point where the bad memory was. (Eg, after 15 or so shots, it'd lock up again.) Still, I'd say Scandisk would be worth a try...

Comment #7

Sounds reasonable, Dave. I never tried Scandisk on one, but I did try a file recovery program once. It was "no dice", due I think, to the way smartmedia actually manages memory. I got the feeling that once you deleted something on a smartmedia card it was long gone. I believe at the hardware level they're erased in blocks, rather than just changing the first letter of a filename the way "DOS" handles things. If I wasn't such a lazy slug I'd go read the specs...

If the card is formatted well enough to handle OS file operations then it couldn't really be a "low level format" kind of problem, and I think the camera should be able to reformat it. I wouldn't lean that way, but someone else recently made the observation that most of the smartmedia problems were related to Olympus cameras... Now, I'm not finger pointing, I think Olympus makes very good stuff, but it could be a camera specific problem...

Comment #8

The thing is, the card works perfectly in Windows and DOS, as if it were a normal storage device. Using Scandisk (both Win and Norton) yields an error-free card, and copying files to and fro computers is no problem either. That's why I'm assuming that the card's internal formatting is no longer able to be recognized by the camera. Formatting the card (quick and full) does not work either. In any case, I thank you guys for all your help. I'll keep looking for a solution.

I could certainly spend the $30 and buy a new card, but it'd be nice to get this to work, since it seems fine otherwise...

Comment #9

Oh yes, one other thing. The camera works fine with the Olympus-brand 8MB card that came with it. The 16MB card is some generic brand that came in the package deal. I was downloading pictures from the 16MB (with the USB reader) and after I was finished, I simply shift-deleted the files off the card (via Windows). After re-inserting the card, the "card error!" comes up. I cannot even access the camera menus with the card inserted...

Comment #10

Well, it seems possible(likely?) that the shift-delete caused the problem... I've been advising people, for some time now, not to perform file maintenance of ANY kind in the readers... to merely copy the files in the reader and do everything else in the camera. I haven't had any troubles that have actually messed a card up to where the camera couldn't format it, but I did have some STRANGE things happen before I adopted the policy of doing nothing but copying in the reader. Since then I've had NO TROUBLE. My guess is that the low level formatting has been rendered incompatible with the camera's formatting routine, but somehow the card still works under Windows.(conjecture, but seemingly supported by the situation you describe) It's probably due to someone not adhering strictly enough to the smartmedia formatting specs, or the specs for deleting files, either in the firmware for the camera or in Windows.

To really get to the bottom of this would probably require a minor miracle of motivating several people to get off their butts and look into the problem. You have a situation where it could be the reader, Windows, the camera firmware, or some strange smartmedia problem. If you're really interested in finding out what happened, I'd write a letter detailing the whole situation in terms of the camera working with other cards and this happening after a shift-delete in the reader and send it off to the smartmedia manufacturer, the card reader manufacturer, the camera manufacturer, and Microsoft. Send it to the engineering departments. But, frankly, it's probably easier to get the dealer to send you a new card under warrantee and just never do anything but copy from the reader! If the dealer balks, then they should give you the name of the manufacturer and contact info..

Comment #11

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