SD Card

How to Recover Data from an XD Picture Memory Card on Windows

5 min read

Reading Time: 5 minutesUnlike mishaps involving SD cards for which there is a ton of information available online, xD card data recovery isn’t as common of an issue. This isn’t surprising, considering xD-picture cards are now obsolete tech.

But though modern cameras are no longer compatible with these memory cards, it doesn’t mean nobody uses them anymore. So if you’re in a pinch and need to recover photos from an xD card, this article is for you. We’ll guide you through xD picture card recovery so you can restore your files in no time.

What are xD Memory Cards?

An EXtreme Digital Picture card is an older type of flash memory card that is typically used to store photos, audio, video, and other digital file formats. Also called xD cards and xD-picture cards, this type of storage used to be popular in the digital camera community because it offered what was, at the height of its popularity, considered a significant amount of storage — typically up to 512MB.

Now, 512MB is a paltry sum by today’s standards. But back in 2002 when Fujifilm and Olympus xD picture cards were first introduced, this was a highly attractive offering.

At the time, it also came with the smallest physical footprint available on a flash memory card on the market. Add the fact that it provided data-transfer speeds of up to 5 MB/s, it’s no surprise why these camera manufacturers had no qualms about introducing camera models that used xD cards as their primary storage device.

Needless to say, xD cards are now considered old tech — archaic, even — knowing how 8GB micro SD cards are deemed entry-level memory cards at present. Nonetheless, many people still own them and look for information on how to recover photos from their xD cards.

Is it Possible to Recover Data from an xD Card?

Short answer: yes, it is possible to recover data from xD cards.

Again, because an xD card is a form of flash memory card, it doesn’t immediately get rid of deleted files. Instead, the data physically remains on the card, but with the possibility of being overwritten if new files are saved to memory.

If you need to recover deleted files from your xD card, stop using it right away to avoid overwriting data and potentially losing lost or deleted files permanently.

But what if the files are missing not because they were deleted, but because the memory card has been corrupted?

Well, the good news is, it’s possible to recover photos from corrupted xD cards. Recovering data from corrupted “regular” SD cards can be done with the use of data recovery software, and the same thing applies to xD Picture cards.

It’s important to point out that as is the case with modern memory cards, severe physical corruption typically comes with irreversible data loss as a consequence. But at the end of the day, giving data recovery a shot wouldn’t hurt, especially if you’re using a tool that lets you recover files up to a certain limit without charging any money. In the next section, we’ll show you how to do just that.

Tip: It is impossible to recover data after a full format, so always perform data recovery before formatting a corrupted xD card.

How to Recover Data from xD Cards

Recover lost or deleted files from an xD card with the help of free xD card recovery software. In this article, we’ll use Disk Drill, which works well in this scenario because it can recover a wide array of file types — including older formats that may have been saved in obsolete flash memory devices like the xD card.

Disk Drill recovers up to 500 MB of data for free. Beyond that, a PRO version is available for unlimited data recovery.

Here’s how to perform xD card data recovery:

  1. Download Disk Drill for Windows on your computer.Disk Drill download page for Windows
  2. Launch the executable file and initiate installation.
  3. After successful installation, launch the Disk Drill app.
  4. Connect the xD Picture card you wish to recover to your computer.

    Note: You can use a card reader specifically designed to accommodate xD cards. But if you don’t have one, it’s worth noting that all-in-one external card readers are much easier to find on the market these days.

  5. Look for your xD card on the list of disks and devices displayed by Disk Drill. Select it and click Search for lost data.Scan data for xd picture card recovery
  6. Wait for the scan to finish, then hit Review found items on the upper-right corner of the Disk Drill interface.
  7. Select the files you want Disk Drill to files for XD card data recovery

    Hint: Click on the eye icon beside any of the found files to launch the preview panel. This allows you to preview media before recovering them.

  8. Click Recover.
  9. Assign a new location for the recovered xD card data.
    Save the recovered photos to a new location

    Tip: It is best to choose a location outside the memory card, such as your computer’s local drive.

  10. Wait for Disk Drill to complete the xD card data recovery process.XD Picture card pictures successfully recovered


Extreme Digital or xD Picture cards may no longer be the trailblazing storage devices they once were, but they’re still very much in use, especially by people who continue to use older digital cameras.

Whether you’re trying to recover photos from a corrupted xD card or simply wanting to restore accidentally deleted media files, it’s important that you stop using the memory card and commence the data recovery process right away. That being said, free xD card recovery software like Disk Drill can help you recover data before you format or repair your card — thereby helping you avoid suffering the consequences of irreversible data loss.