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Old May 25th, 2011, 11:17 PM   #1
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How can I delete SD card files without reformatting the card?

The last video project I did was for a client who came over from Switzerland and knew exactly what he wanted. It was a compliment that I'd been recommended to him but he seemed to know more than me when it came to the technical stuff, which isn't a surprise being that I'm a very late starter when it comes to professional equipment.

I needed to free up some SD card space for this project and I didn't know if I should delete the MTS files or the CIF files or just delete every file and sub file on the card once it had been backed up. In the end I just bought a new one, but obviously I can't keep doing that each time a new job comes along, I have to face this stuff, even if I feel a bit silly posting a question among my international peers which will be second nature to probably each and every one of you.

Anyway, all worked out fine, he paid instantly, was happy with my shots and will use me again. Thing is I have 4 SD cards now, which is sufficient.

As always your help is appreciated.
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Old May 26th, 2011, 12:16 AM   #2
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Re: How can I delete SD card files without reformatting the card?

Once I have my files copied over to AT LEAST 2 external hard drives, I put the card back in the camera and reformat it.

Merely deleting them can lead to trouble with some cards, your media "format" is no longer as "ordered" as it was when the card was freshly formatted. With many "bargain" brand cards this can lead to lost data, corrupted files, and buffer overrun in the camera. Poor cards will show this fairly early on but even some of the best can eventually not work quite right.

Formatting instead of deleting tends to avoid all this.

But don't do anything until you have verified the files are in two different locations and can be viewed.
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Old May 26th, 2011, 01:06 AM   #3
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Re: How can I delete SD card files without reformatting the card?

Thanks Bruce, the files are already backed up once on an ext terrabyte and i'll back them up again in my old laptop. The client also has two backups.

Instructions on how to format the card are on page 32 of my Panasonic AG-HMC 152 manual. Not sure how it will work on the GoPro camera.



A quick battery question while I'm here (to save starting a new thread) - if you have a video job coming up and your last one was a couple of weeks back yet you still have plenty of battery power remaining, say 60%, should you:

A. Continue to use it until it runs out?

B. Top it up until it is full?

or

C. Leave your camera on overnight to exhaust the battery and then give it a full charge?
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Old May 26th, 2011, 01:16 AM   #4
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Re: How can I delete SD card files without reformatting the card?

Hi Cameron

Unless you have a very old model..most cams use Li-Ion batteries now so you can top them up at any time without the issues that NiCad's used to have.

After I shoot a wedding the batteries are charged.. end of story...that way I always have a full set for the event!!

Also like Bruce (good to see you again Bruce) I transfer to HDD and then ONLY format the card in camera. Transfer all the files then you can simply disregard the ones you don't want!! Most cameras have a "delete this clip" function in playback mode but it's hardly worth using just in case you delete the wrong clip!! Have a nice bank of SD cards available and there is no need to delete. I use 8 x 16GB cards in a Pelican SD card case and use them in rotation...I will also never run out of card!! If you are shooting something that could take 10 mins or MIGHT take 20 mins ...rather change the card than take a chance that the 15 mins left on the card will be enough!! (I think Bruce told me too...never use your card right up to capacity!!)

Chris
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Old May 26th, 2011, 01:54 AM   #5
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Re: How can I delete SD card files without reformatting the card?

I agree with Bruce it is always good to re-format the card in the camera or device it is going to be used with before each recording, this re-initialises the root directory and will cut down on any problems using the card.

Just deleting files will update the directory structure but may not take into account any errors or bad sectors when writing or adding new files to the card.
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Old May 26th, 2011, 02:05 AM   #6
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Re: How can I delete SD card files without reformatting the card?

I agree with others who say always format the cards properly in the camera after copying to at least 2 locations.

I think 4 cards is not quite enough (regardless of capacity). Plenty of spare cards means you'll be equipped to deal with any sort of card error, temporary archiving challenges, multicam shoots or all-day shoots, etc, etc.
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Old May 26th, 2011, 09:45 AM   #7
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Re: How can I delete SD card files without reformatting the card?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
Hi Cameron

Unless you have a very old model..most cams use Li-Ion batteries now so you can top them up at any time without the issues that NiCad's used to have.

After I shoot a wedding the batteries are charged.. end of story...that way I always have a full set for the event!!

Also like Bruce (good to see you again Bruce) I transfer to HDD and then ONLY format the card in camera. Transfer all the files then you can simply disregard the ones you don't want!! Most cameras have a "delete this clip" function in playback mode but it's hardly worth using just in case you delete the wrong clip!! Have a nice bank of SD cards available and there is no need to delete. I use 8 x 16GB cards in a Pelican SD card case and use them in rotation...I will also never run out of card!! If you are shooting something that could take 10 mins or MIGHT take 20 mins ...rather change the card than take a chance that the 15 mins left on the card will be enough!! (I think Bruce told me too...never use your card right up to capacity!!)

Chris
Thanks Chris, (and the others) - I'll just top up then before my shoot next week and I might get a 5th card. I have 2 x 32GB and 2 x 16GB, one of which I use solely for the GoPro.

What's this Pelican SD card case??? I'm gonna Google Imgae that right now, I've been looking for some kind of case for a while now, at the moment I keep them in a CD envelope or leave them in the camera, which apparently isn't a good idea for very long periods of time.
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Old May 28th, 2011, 06:34 PM   #8
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Re: How can I delete SD card files without reformatting the card?

The Pelican SD card case holds 8 SD/SDHC cards, has a place on one end you can slip a lanyard through to fasten it to your camera case so you don't lose it.

The case closes good to form what is supposed to be a waterproof seal (not for very deep but will handle falling in a sink, wading pool etc.

Here's a link to amazon.com listing on it. I just ordered another for myself.

http://www.amazon.com/Pelican-0910-010-110-Secure-Digital-Memory/dp/B001MT8J4W/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1306625397&sr=8-2
They also make a version that holds 4 CF cards.
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Old June 4th, 2011, 12:57 AM   #9
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Re: How can I delete SD card files without reformatting the card?

Cheers Bruce, I have never used Amazon before but I will do for this, it's unlikely to be a huge purchase. I was surprised I didn't find one here as Bangkok has a couple of huge IT malls.
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