Ubuntu – Read-only SD cards

card-readerfilesystemmountread-onlysd card

I've got an IcyBox USB hub/card reader combo in my computer, running Ubuntu 12.10.

It's got an issue with SD cards. It always mounts them read-only, regardless of the write-lock switch. This is observed across many SD cards that otherwise work, and crucially occurs for a microSD in an adapter, where the microSD was fine in the microSD slot in the reader.

Anyone got any ideas as to what's going on and how I can fix it?

Best Answer

It sounds to me to be a permissions issue. I've come across this myself with my Linux Mint 14 (Cinnamon) install, which I believe is based on Ubuntu 12.10.

First thing to do is to check the permissions on the hardware device mounting your card. You'll need to find the device name. To do this run the following command:

sudo fdisk -l

Your device will probably be something along the lines of /dev/sdb1, in my case the SD Reader was /dev/mmcblk0p1.

Next you need to get the permissions on this device:

sudo ls -l /dev/mmcblk0p1

Replace "/dev/mmcblk0p1" with your device location. The output will look something like this:

brw-rw---- 1 root disk 179, 1 Feb 3 21:58 /dev/mmcblk0p1

This tells us the device is owned by User 'root' and group 'disk' You need to be a member of group 'disk' to be able to write to the SD card. You can check which groups your a member of with

groups username

In my case I was not a member of the 'disk' group, I rectified this with

sudo usermod -G disk --append username

This adds the group 'disk' to your user's groups, which should allow you to now read & write to the SD card

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