How To Fix Steam Deck SD Card Format Error?

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Last Updated on January 26, 2024

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If you are facing the following Steam Deck SD card format error message. Then, chances are you are seeing this as a result of a bug or a glitch within the system corrupting the SD card. Moreover, the error occurs or shows up when a user tries to launch a game from the SD card or at times save the progress on their SD card. 

Hence, it can be assumed that the following Steam Deck SD card format error mainly shows up, when the SD card inside your Steam Deck may have been bricked, preventing you from launching the game from your micro SD card successfully.

How To Fix Steam Deck SD card format error?

We have gone through a number of discussion threads and forums online, and have come across some really helpful solutions provided by users themselves who had faced the issue and were able to solve it, which are as shown here below:

Fix 1: Format with FAT32

The user in the screenshot above has found formatting the SD card in a FAT32 format to be helpful in fixing the SD card format issue for himself. 

Hence, you can follow the steps as shown below, and try the same for yourself.

  • Firstly, switch to the Desktop mode from: Menu > Power > Switch to Desktop.
  • Then, in the Desktop mode, head down to the left bottom corner of the screen and launch Konsole from: Application Launcher > System > Konsole.
  • Once inside Konsole, type in the following commands and hit Enter button after each command line:
    • $ sudo parted /dev/sdb – -script – – mklabel msdos
    • $ sudo parted /dev/sdb – -script – – mkpart primary fat32 1MiB 100%
    • $ sudo mkfs.vfat -F32 /dev/sdb1 
  • Let the operation take place and your SD card should be formatted in FAT32 format.
  • Once that is completed. Next, run the following command to set up the partition on your SD card successfully:
    • $ sudo parted /dev/sdb – -script print
  • After the operation is successful, go back to your SteamOS built in format tool and format the SD card from there once again.
  • If everything is done correctly, it should successfully format your SD card and should fix the error as well. 

Fix 2: Remove blocks from konsole using lsblk command

Another method is also quite similar to the one shown above, would be by removing blocks from the console using the lsblk command.

This method helps remove any kind of card blocks which may be occurring with your SD card, and are to be done using the steps as shown below:

  • Firstly, switch to your Desktop mode.
  • There, start the konsole terminal app and run the following command: $sudo lsblk and hit Enter
  • Then, on the next line type the following command: fsck.ext4 /dev/mmcblk0p1 and hit Enter.
  • For all the questions prompted on the command line screen, type y and hit Enter each time. 
  • At last, type in: $sudo run and hit the Enter button. 
  • Remove and re-insert the SD card, and check to see if the error has been resolved.

Fix 3: Format using KDE manager

The other way is a bit more easy and can be tried directly using the KDE manager, as shown below:

  • Switch to Desktop mode on your Steam Deck device.
  • Then, head to System and launch the KDE Partition Manager app.
  • Go to the Partition menu, select the Unmount SD card option and choose the Remove all partitions from there. 
  • Next, click on the New Partition Table and choose the MS-Dos option from there.
  • Hit on the Apply button to complete the operation and save the changes. 
  • Then, go back to SteamOS mode and under Settings > System, select the Format SD Card option and click on the Format option.
Steam Deck SD Card Format Error

You can also try physically removing and reinserting your SD card from the device before running the Format operation for the last step. This simple removal and reinsertion of the SD card might be helpful in solving the issue, if simply following the above mentioned steps do not completely fix the problem. 

Steam Deck SD Card Format Error

The following method seemed to have worked for many users out there facing the same issue, as can be seen from the feedback of the users in the screenshot below. 

Steam Deck SD Card Format Error

FAQs | Frequently Asked Questions

When does the Steam Deck SD card format error occur?

The Steam Deck SD card format error occurs when the SD card on the Steam Deck device gets corrupted or cannot be read.

What happens because of the Steam Deck SD card format error?

The Steam Deck SD card format error prevents users from launching apps from the microSD card mounted inside the Steam Deck console..

What are the troubleshooting steps to fix Steam Deck SD card format error?

You can try fixing the Steam Deck SD card format error by: formatting the SD card with FAT32, removing blocks using konsole terminal using lsblk command and formatting the SD card using the KDE manager.

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Rahul Choudhary is a technology and troubleshooting expert. He gives his expert opinion on different technology trends and provides troubleshooting guides for different apps, websites, & consumer hardware products. He graduated in BA English Honours from the University Of Delhi, and later he learned HTML and WordPress. He also did a certificate course in Hardware and Network Troubleshooting , and a certificate course in Computer Architecture.