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USB not recognised after formatting with car?

leisurelee

Member
Sep 26, 2018
46
29
San Diego, CA
I have a USB drive that I use for my dashcam, and a short time ago I got a notice that the drive was almost full. Having no incidents that I needed footage for, I used the in-car operation to format the drive, and then went about my merry way.

Fast forward a couple weeks, and my car was dinged in a parking garage hard enough to dent the door and for me to get a car alarm notice on the app. However when I pulled the drive and went to review the footage on my computer, I found the drive is formatted but completely blank.

WTF? Has anyone had this happen? Obviously now the car won't have any footage from the incident, and I'm a bit concerned about how secure I should feel about the car's sentry features if the dashcam drive isn't going to record anything.
 

sduck

Mr. Duck
Nov 6, 2017
1,530
1,509
Nashville TN
My car did that the one time i tried formatting the drive in the car. That was 6 or more months ago though, right after they introduced the format in car feature. Did the format, but forgot to add the TeslaCam folder. Weird. It was easy enough to add it on my computer, and i've been using it ever since then with no issues.
 

Dolemite

is my name
Sep 19, 2019
1,342
1,638
Seattle, WA
I've been having a ton of problems with this damn thing lately - not acknowledging the drive, phantom sentry messages that I'm unable to clear, etc.
 

Joey T

2018 Model S 75D, 2021 Model Y LR, 2018 Equinox
Jul 26, 2021
21
22
New
I kept getting error messages like "drive speed is insufficient" or "check format of USB drive." even though I had a good quality USB stick. Since the cameras are important, and cold winters and hot summers are bad for USB sticks, and there is so much rewriting, I have been using a Samsung solid state drive for 2 years. No problems since.

 

MikeyC

Member
Aug 19, 2019
404
562
Florida
I too have had intermittent problems with various flash drives including the Tesla flash drive that came with my Model 3. Sometimes it'd say no USB drive present. Other times it'd see it but videos would have artifacts or would cut off midstream. I finally bit the bullet and went the Samsung T7 route and have not had any problems since doing that. Seems like the Samsung SSD drives are the only ones that are truly reliable (and fast) enough to do the job consistently. I still get the occasional video artifact but nothing like when I was using the flash drives.

Mike
 

android04

Member
Apr 1, 2016
448
453
Crete, Nebraska
The times I've used the FORMAT button on the car settings, I've usually had to format twice. I would press FORMAT once, and the dashcam icon would not show up. I would have to press FORMAT a 2nd time for it to show up and everything would work normally.
 
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EVRider-FL

Member
Aug 18, 2015
668
383
South Florida
If the incident generated a Sentry Mode Alarm event (where you get notified by the app), the video is recorded in the onboard memory, so you can view and download that video to a USB. See the manual for details if you need them.
 

leisurelee

Member
Sep 26, 2018
46
29
San Diego, CA
If the incident generated a Sentry Mode Alarm event (where you get notified by the app), the video is recorded in the onboard memory, so you can view and download that video to a USB. See the manual for details if you need them.
Oh, this is worth looking up! I did get a notification through the app. However I have a 2018 M3, so I'm not sure I have onboard memory...
 

leisurelee

Member
Sep 26, 2018
46
29
San Diego, CA
I stand corrected. Just had to have a properly-formatted USB drive plugged in to get the viewer.

Unfortunately, an idiot on an overly-loud motorcycle had set the alarm off a second time later in the morning, so the footage of someone hitting my car was overwritten. Seems onboard memory only saves one event. Sigh.
 

Transplant

Member
Jan 31, 2018
12
10
Massachusetts
My car did that the one time i tried formatting the drive in the car. That was 6 or more months ago though, right after they introduced the format in car feature. Did the format, but forgot to add the TeslaCam folder. Weird. It was easy enough to add it on my computer, and i've been using it ever since then with no issues.
Large USB devices have that problem. The format button formats the drive but doesn’t create the TeslaCam folder. You have to add the folder using your computer, as you discovered
 

NedH

Member
Feb 27, 2019
128
132
GA
Large USB devices have that problem. The format button formats the drive but doesn’t create the TeslaCam folder. You have to add the folder using your computer, as you discovered
What do you mean by "Large USB devices"? The format button on my car formats 128GB drives and creates the TeslaCam folder.
 

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