Disk is Write-Protected - 4 Steps to Remove Write Protect SD card or USB Drive


We will try to remove write-protect memory device from software level to physical by following the steps mentioned below to remove write protected SD Card or USB from software level to physical lock switches.

Companies manufacture different types of write-protect switch to disable features like transferring data or formatting the write protect memory.

It is safety measure followed by every company to avoid unauthorized data access or deletion and so memory devices are provided with a write protect option which can be turned on or off.

In the following content, we will discuss about 4 methods to remove write protect from different memory devices like SD cards or USB drives. You can easily remove write protect from your SD card or USB drive using the below mentioned steps.

Comment section is available after the whole content where you can leave your views or problems while performing the mentioned steps to remove write protect SD card issue.

4 Steps to Remove Write Protected Micro SD Card/USB Drive

disk is write-protected error

Step 1 : Use Antivirus to scan write protected SD Card/USB

  1. There are a lot of virus spread across the whole internet and are somehow present on almost every computer without antivirus or with it. So, there's a possibility that may be a virus is doing it to keep you away from copying/formatting/delete a file from your write protected SD Card/USB.
  2. I would suggest you to get a antivirus if you're currently not having one and start scanning your write protected SD CARD/USB. Remove all the virus and other potential Trojans or worms from your computer and the SD card/USB and try to perform the action like copying/formatting/deleting the files and folder on your write protected SD card or a USB drive.
  3. If you are still facing the write protected issue, it means there's nothing like a virus or Trojan causing write protected SD card/USB problem and follow the next step.

Step 2 : Use Regedit.exe to Remove Write Protect SD Card/USB in Windows OS

regedit guide to add storagedevicepolicies

1. Use command prompt (cmd) to open "regedit.exe" which is called Registry Editor or you can simply goto Start > Run > regedit.exe.

Windows 8/8.1/10 users can simply start typing regedit at the windows home screen itself where the applications appear in tiles.

2. Explore the tree structures folders on your left in registry editor window following the below mentioned directory.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHIN \ SYSTEM \ CurrentControlSet \ Control \ StorageDevicePolicies

3. If you don't find the StoreDevicePolicies in the above directory then you can create it too. Stay in the directory HKEY_LOCAL_MACHIN \ SYSTEM \ CurrentControlSet \ Control

4. Right click on "Control" folder under "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHIN \ SYSTEM \ CurrentControlSet \ Control \ " and select New > Key > Rename it to StorageDevicePolicies.

5. Click and select StorageDevicePolicies, right click > New > DWORD(32-bit) or QWORD(64-bit) value according to your system configuration > Name the new value to WriteProtect and set its value to "0" and save.

6. Restart your computer and check if now your write protect SD card/USB is working and you are able to copy/format/delete files or folders on your SD card/USB.

7. If not, try to set the value of WriteProtect key that we've just created to "1" and save. Restart again and check your write protect SD card/USB.

8. If this doesn't works out as well then follow the next step to remove write protect SD card/USB problem.

Step 3 : Use Diskpart Utility in Windows OS using  to remove Write Protect Memory Card/USB

diskpart cmd steps by step guide to remove write protect sd card or usb

  1. Start cmd > type "diskpart" > hit Enter.
  2. Now type > "list disk" > hit Enter.
  3. A list will appear showing different disks of different size attached to your computer.
  4. Identify your SD card or the USB drive by carefully checking the storage size mentioned on the right of each disk. Selecting the wrong disk will leave you with total data destruction.
  5. Type "select disk #"  : "#" is the corresponding value in your case like "select disk 0" or "select disk 1" etc.
  6. Now to remove write protect from your USB drive or a SD card, type "attributes disk clear readonly" and press Enter.
  7. You're done and now you can simply close the cmd or type > exit > press Enter to exit.
  8. Check your SD card or USB drive to see if now you are able to format the write protect SD card or the USB or copy or do any other read/write operations. If not, then follow the next step.

Step 4: Turn off SD Card or USB Lock to Unlock

sd card lock button

  • This is the last step to follow as hardly any SD card or a USB has a lock switch to make it write protect memory card.
  • Generally, SD card reader has a sliding switch to turn write protect mode on/off. Just in case if your SD card or USB drive has such switch to turn memory write protect on or off, then must try to unlock your SD card or USB drive to remove write protect from a SD card or USB drive.
  • There would be labels to let you understand in which direction the lock is needed to be slide to get your memory card write protect removed.