SD card is not accessible by Windows 10 with Octopi flashed via Etcher

I burned 2018-11-13-octopi-stretch-lite-0.16.0.img to an SD card via Etcher. When I re-inserted the card to modify the wifi settings I was presented with the format option which I cancelled but was then presented an error that the drive was not accessible. I can't open the drive as I'm presented that error when I try and nothing happens. In device manager I see 'Unknown USB Device ( Device Descriptor Request Failed)'.

I'm on Windows 10 64bit

I do not have a screen for my raspberry pi 3 so I can't set it up on there.

I've searched for this problem but can't find any reference to it.

Hope someone can help.



The first thing that comes to my mind is that Windows can not read cards formatted in Ext4, which is the typical Linux format nowadays.

The second is that if you want to work with octoprint, you need to have linux as a desktop, so I suggest you install for example, ubuntu 18.04 lts, along with the windows you already have.
So when there is a problem, you can do the reboot in linux and look at what really happens.

There is also the possibility that the SD card is damaged, but without a linux to test it I can not say more.


Thank you for the detailed response MaX that's very helpful. I ordered a screen for the raspberry so I can setup wifi directly on it but I'll also install Linux to read the cards in the future. Appreciate the help, thanks again!

I'm sorry @maxlinux2000 but you are completely wrong. When Etcher properly creates the SD card there are two partitions on the card. One is FAT32 and the other is Ext4. The /boot directory with all the files necessary are accessible from Windows, Linux, and MacOS.

After using Etcher to write the SD card, you may have to remove the card from the SD writer and reinsert it. Use Windows "Safely Remove Hardware and Eject Media". This should force Windows to re-examine the partition table on the card and the partition with the boot files should be mounted. If you are asked to format the SD card, then the partition table wasn't recognized by Windows. You may need to write it again with Etcher.

Here's what my SD looks like (from the RPi side. I can't pull it out and plug it into Windows as I have a 9 hour print running).

Disk /dev/mmcblk0: 29.7 GiB, 31914983424 bytes, 62333952 sectors
Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disklabel type: dos
Disk identifier: 0x0b43bf4d

Device         Boot Start      End  Sectors  Size Id Type
/dev/mmcblk0p1       8192    93486    85295 41.7M  c W95 FAT32 (LBA)
/dev/mmcblk0p2      94208 62333951 62239744 29.7G 83 Linux

I have never used Etcher, and I did not know that he creates 2 partitions, one of them fat32, as b-morgan tells us.
So you can keep using Windows, but since Armbian is a Linux mini distribution, why not have a full linux distribution on your main desktop?

I don't think one Linux system (the RPi) is sufficient cause to install a full Linux distribution on a main desktop. Linux and Windows play very nicely with one another and Windows 10 has Windows Subsystem for Linux which is a very capable (and getting better) option if you want access to some Linux features.

There are, however, other reasons to have a full Linux distribution available but that's another discussion topic.

In case you do not know, remember that you can connect to your *Pi using a serial connection to USB.

For example, in OrangePi it is possible to connect to the console, without a dedicated monitor. You just have to buy a ttl-> usb adapter and connect 3 wires to the pins.
watch this:

consider that a ttl-usb adapter costs 3 or 4 $ and is valid for all orangepi demo boards

If you have a raspberry demo board, instead you have to use the serial port as explained here:

Look for the brand and model of your demo -board, and see what is the method to connect to the console without a monitor connected to the video output.

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I actually read about that before but what I read said windows will identify the Linux partition and give up before it sees the one it can read which doesn't really help. Going to install Linux.

I can not help you in windows, why I stopped with windowsNT4 in 1998 or 1999 I think, I do not remember.

Anyway there are tutorials on youtube in all the languages that explain it and I remember that ubuntu 18.04 LTS is able to resize the windows partition automatically during the installation, to make enough space for linux.
And this has been happening for many years.

Once install linux, to boot in windows, when you turn on the computer, press the shift key until the menu appears, where you can choose which operating system will start. it is simple.

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There's a good chance I will need it in the future. I'm not unfamiliar with dual-boot systems so I don't see it being too much of an issue.

This is good to know, thank you.

You really don't need to. Either a Windows-based computer or a macOS-based computer can read the first partition on the microSD card which is where you'd be doing the editing.

And if you really did need to edit anything on the second partition, you still wouldn't need to install Linux. Try using the Live Boot version of Ubuntu. It won't install anything and will give you a live/working version of Ubuntu Linux temporarily so that you could edit, say, /etc/hostname directly perhaps.

Can't you just attach a monitor, keyboard and mouse to the pi ?

Or am I missing something ?

If I insert card in Physical Reader "L:" Win 10 64 pro reports drive L must be formatted... Examining drive list reveals "L:" with issue, and "D:" (?)
For reasons beyond my comprehension the card is accessible as "D:"
your mileage may be different.
BD FF49 (Motorola MC6800)

I ended up connecting the pi by ethernet and SSH in to change the WiFi settings. Problem solved!

I thought octopi doesn't come with a desktop environment? I received the screen I ordered for it but when I plugged it in nothing happened, wasn't sure if that was because I hadn't installed the drivers but just SSH'd in to skip all this.

It doesn't come stock with a desktop environment, but it does have Command Line Interface, which is the same thing you'd get from SSH

I you try to use one of those 3.5 or 7 inch screens you'll have to mess with drivers first, so...

Note that when I said "monitor" I meant plug in an HDMI cable to a regular monitor, or most standard "TV's" come with HDMI inputs

This is the expected behavior. There are two partitions on the disk so there are two drive letters assigned. One Windows can read/write (D:) and one Windows can't (L:)

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OctoPi doesn't come with a desktop environment "installed" but there's a comment when you log in via SSH that says to execute ~/scripts/install-desktop if you want one.

As for the screen you ordered, either it came with instructions or you should be able to find instructions on the web that will detail what software steps are needed to make the hardware work. I don't believe it is "Plug and Play". If it connects via HDMI, then its close.

Logical. Much obliged.