What to Know
- From the desktop: CTRL+Click the SD card on your desktop, and select Eject.
- Using Trash: Click and drag the SD card toward your dock, and drop it on the Eject icon.
- Using Finder: Open Finder, and click the Eject icon next to the SD card in Locations.
This article explains how to remove an SD card from a MacBook.
In addition to the methods outlined below, you can add an eject button to the menu bar to easily remove SD cards and other removable media.
How to Safely Remove an SD Card From a MacBook
There are three ways to safely remove an SD card from a MacBook. They all accomplish the same task, which is to unmount the drive before you physically remove it. This is called ejecting, although it’s different from physically ejecting the card. You need to eject the card through macOS before you can physically remove or eject it from your card reader.
The simplest way to safely remove an SD card from a MacBook is directly from the desktop:
Locate the SD card on your desktop, press and hold control, and then click the SD card's icon.
When the SD card no longer appears on your desktop, you can safely remove it from your card reader.
How to Remove an SD Card From a MacBook Using the Trash
Another easy way to unmount an SD card from your MacBook is to use the Trash icon on your dock. While this method uses the Trash icon, it doesn’t actually destroy any of your files. The SD card is unmounted instead, and you can remove it safely.
Here’s how to remove an SD card from a MacBook using Trash.
Click and hold the SD card on your desktop.
Drag the SD card to your dock.
Drop the SD card on the Eject icon. When the eject icon changes back to a trash icon, you can remove your SD card.
The Trash icon changes into an Eject icon when you drag an SD card or any other mounted device toward it.
How to Remove an SD Card From a MacBook Using Finder
You can also eject an SD card through Finder. This method can take a little more effort compared to the others, but it’s handy if you already have Finder open or SD cards don’t appear on your desktop when they’re mounted.
Here’s how to eject an SD card from a MacBook through Finder:
Locate the SD card under Locations in the Sidebar, and click the Eject icon.
When the SD card disappears from Locations, you can safely remove it from your MacBook.
Why Do You Need to Eject an SD Card Before Removing From a MacBook?
When you eject the SD card using one of the methods described above, it ensures your MacBook isn’t trying to read or write to the SD card when you physically remove it.
You can physically remove an SD card from your MacBook without ejecting it, but you run the risk of corrupting the files on the SD card. Even if it’s been a while since you used any files on the card, macOS may have data waiting in a buffer that it still needs to write to the card. Removing the card before that process finishes will result in losing that data and can also corrupt files on the card.
- How do I format my SD card on my Mac?
- Do all MacBooks have SD card slots?
No. MacBooks made between 2016-2020 do not have any ports. Newer models, however, may include an SD card slot, although some only have USB-C slots. You can get an adapter or hub to add more ports to your MacBook.
- Why is my MacBook not reading my SD card?
If you can't access the SD card on your Mac, make sure the card doesn't have a physical lock switch that enables write protection. If the card doesn't show up on your Mac, the SD card slot might be defective, you could have a virus, or the card could be corrupted.