CHDK and sd card formatting

I am trying to format my sd card so as to install CHDK. This is a third party software solution for Canon cameras. I have tried using Gparted but not having much luck. Here is a link to the CHDK page. Prepare your SD card | CHDK Wiki | Fandom

Any ideas.

Ubuntu 10.10 Toshiba Equium Dual core.

What problems are you having with Gparted ? … is it that the SD card isn’t recognised?, or is it that it won’t let you format the card?

If the card is recognised…

First make sure you have gparted and dosfstools installed:

sudo apt-get install gparted dosfstools


Fire up Gparted

  1. Select your SD card from the drop down menu (top right)… mine was /dev/sdb

  2. Right-click on any existing partitions, and select “Unmount” (make sure you have no open windows displaying the SD cards contents or it won’t let you unmount it)

  3. Right-click on any existing partitions, and select “Delete

  4. Right-click somewhere in the empty space and select “Add” and create a fat16 partition (of up to 4gb) starting at the beginning of the drive.

  5. If your card is bigger than 4gb, create a fat32 partition in the remainder of the free space.

  6. Click “Apply

  7. Close Gparted.

8.) Open a terminal, and run these commands

sudo su
echo -n BOOTDISK | dd bs=1 count=8 seek=64 of=/dev/sdb1

Be Aware - You may have to change the sdb1 part of the last command to whatever your fat16 partition is… if like mine the SD card was /dev/sdb, then sdb1 is correct, if on the other hand your card was /dev/sdc, then you will have to change the above command to have sdc1 at the end.
(if you’re unsure… fire gparted up again and have a look, the fat16 partition will show you)

Thanks Mark

I’ll give that a go.

First make sure you have dosfstools installed

sudo apt-get install dosfstools

or Gparted won’t let you create fat16 or fat32 partitions… I think it’s installed by default, but check anyway.

Added to above posting

Worked a treat.


And for anyone who’s interested… the next step for loading the CHDK firmware is…

Next, you need to find out the firmware version of your camera. Create two empty text files called ver.req and vers.reg and save them in the root of the FAT16 partition. Insert the card into your camera, and put the camera into the Playback mode. Press and hold the FUNC SET button, then press DISP to display the firmware version. Download the CHDK package for your camera model and firmware version, and unpack the contents of the downloaded archive into the root of the FAT16 partition. Lock the card (this is important!), insert it into your camera, press the Power On button, and you should see the CHDK splash screen.

Found here:

or more info and firmware here:

Thanks Mark