I am trying to get the NOOBS to automatically boot to Recovery mode on every startup (as I'm having troubles holding shift with my gaming keyboard connected to my pi).

So, I've taken out my SD card (with NOOBS already pre-flashed to it) and put it into my mac to edit the file.

My Macbook won't recognise the SD card, for some reason I can't read it.

How can I get my Macbook to recognise my SD Card so I can edit a file that NOOBS uses?

  • 1
    This is not a question about the Pi. OS X should be able to read the 2 FAT partitions on the card (but not the ext4). If you can't see any of these ask on a Mac Forum. (You could try an external SD Card reader.)
    – Milliways
    Sep 6, 2014 at 1:01
  • The card is one from ModMyPi with NOOBS preloaded onto it. Does that make a difference? Sep 9, 2014 at 10:24

4 Answers 4


You didn't mention what version of mac you are using. There are certain issues with specific mac versions, especially Maverick OS X and SD cards.

Anyways, try these steps to identify where is the fault:

  1. Put a known to be good SD card, in the slot. Do you see the card? If yes, the NOOBS SD card is faulty/corrupted, go to step 7.

  2. Keep the SD card in the card reader and then boot your mac. If you see it then try "resetting SMC" as shown here.

  3. Clean the SD card slot with an air blower and try again.

  4. Update your mac os with latest patches and try again.

  5. If all steps above fails, download a live linux ISO like knoppix or ubuntu and burn it into CD/DVD or a USB device and then check, if you can see the SD card in that OS. If so,its a mac os or driver issue.Use another OS for SD cards or look for a bug fix in mac os KBs.

  6. Put the SD card in another laptop/PC which is known to read other SD cards properly and verify if you can see your SD card. If yes, then your card reader is faulty. Replace the card reader.

  7. Format and install noobs as per instructions here into the SD card, using a PC where you can see the SD card and try again.

Let us know what worked for you.

  • Managed to format it and reinstall NOOBS via a PC, my card reader is not faulty on my Mac as other SD cards work. I am running Mavericks and it is a 2010 Macbook Pro Sep 28, 2014 at 12:00

If your card will not boot on your Pi and is not recognized by your mac, it is most likely your SD Card is bad. Replace your SD card.

  • There is nothing to indicate that the pi doesn't boot or that the card is broken.
    – Bex
    Sep 21, 2014 at 18:18
  • The indication is it that The Pi will not boot and can't be read on the Mac
    – PhillyNJ
    Sep 21, 2014 at 19:49
  • Card works on my raspberry pi, just my MacBook won't read it Sep 28, 2014 at 11:59

Can you see the SD-Card in the Disk Utility? Search for Disk Utility in Spotlight, open it up and look in the right column. Now you should see the SD-Card with 2 or 4 partitions. Now can you mount the partitions manually? If not, you probably have to format the whole SD-Card.

  • It doesn't appear in Disk Utility Sep 28, 2014 at 11:58
  • Do other Cards work?
    – SimMac
    Sep 28, 2014 at 12:00

There is possibility that the sdcard is not recognized by the sdcard slot in MAC due to inappropriate insertion.

Check out the video, it might help you out.

  • It is inserted correctly as I can't push it in any more Sep 28, 2014 at 11:58

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