Quick Format vs. Normal Format? Which one should I choose?

Format Disk Window
Format Disk Window

This is a common question in which a quick Google search returned vast many results. However, I don’t usually like new information being shove into my face like a thick slice of cake so I decided to make a list describing what are the key differences of the two methods of formatting an external storage.

Basically the need to reformat things arose because my budget Android phone is excessively notifying me about numerous mounts and unexpected unmounts of my SD card which is kinda weird if you ask me since the SD card slot is located underneath the battery compartment and is not loose. After some searches I have found over Google, I have discovered that it is a pretty common problem amongst Android users and a quick fix is to reformat the SD card. However, after numerous retries of reformatting the SD card (I have tried using Windows and the built-in format feature of Android phones), the problem still persists. So I dug deeper. Turns out I should have unticked the Quick Format option in Windows whenever I have to reformat the SD card. But why? Well these are different answers I have found over the internet:

Quick Format, what does it do?

  • Fast formatting
  • Format removes files from the partition, but does not scan the disk for bad sectors
  • File recovery program could recover lost files
  • Its like taking the table of contents out of the book. The information stays there until the pages (old data) is replaced by a different page (new data)
  • Could take 3-5 minutes

Normal Format

  • Full and slower formatting
  • Files are removed from the volume that you are formatting and the hard disk is scanned for bad sectors
  • Does everything a Quick Format do and on recent versions (Windows Vista, 7), they perform a rewrite pass over the entire drive which adds a level of security and gives your drive a fresh start for new data
  • Could take hours

Basically what I really need is for Windows to repair the bad sectors of the SD card. I am not quite sure if this will work since the card is still formatting (I know its taking too long. Arrgh). ***I will update this post later!

In conclusion, I advise that whenever you are going to reuse a card or you have a card that is malfunctioning, you should do a normal format on it instead of a quick format. Though it take longer, it will repair the bad sectors which could be the culprit of corrupted data on your cards. However if you wanted to use your brand new card and is convinced that it won’t have any bad sectors on it (since its brand new), you should use quick format instead.

References:

 

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