Posted by: kurtsh | June 22, 2009

INFO: Using High Capacity 8GB+ Secure Digital memory cards (SDHC) in HP Compaq nc8430

image I was taking photos of our baby with a new 8GB High Capacity Secure Digital memory card in my new Casio digital camera.  When I took the card out of the camera and put it into the SD card slot of my rather modern & high end HP Compaq nc8430 laptop… Nothing.

I put it back into the camera and turned it on to verify that yes, the flash card worked fine.  But no matter what I did, the card wouldn’t show up as a hard drive on my PC. 

Of course, this kinda ticked me off. This is a very modern laptop and there’s no reason it shouldn’t be recognized by the reader.  The 8GB flash card read fine on both my Windows Mobile 6.1 phone and my Windows 7 Tablet PC but for some reason it didn’t work on my high end Windows Vista nc8430.  Of course I immediately thought:  This is either a firmware problem or a driver problem.  Gotta be.  So I searched for drivers and downloaded the newest ones… No joy.

Getting frustrated, I started searching the business support forums for an answer, and lo and behold, I saw the conversation thread below:

Q:  Can anyone help I have an nc6120 notebook with a built in card reader which works fine with normal SD cards XD etc but I cannot read SDHC cards – is there a fix?? I have installed the latest driver from the hp site and this has not worked.

A:  This registry trick may help:

  1. Backup your registry
  2. Run REGEDIT. The key you want to edit is located in:
    Original Key Value: SDParam = 16 (Decimal)
    New Key Value: SDParam = 1
  3. Reboot for new setting to take effect.


YES, this works.  A silly registry entry makes it possible for me to get the 8GB card recognized.  What I want to know from HP is, why do I need to do this to get my flash card working?  The average consumer isn’t going to know how to do this, and guess who’s gonna get blamed for this not working by the typical end user?  That’s right:  Microsoft.


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