I'm designing a system with an ARMv7 processor. My host processor support SDIO protocol and I wish to use this unit to connect the host to a Memory card and a WiFi module that both are compliant with SDIO Card Specification Version 2.0

My question is, What is the difference between simplified and full version of SD Memory Card Specification and does simplified version adequate for the above case or I need to buy full SD Specification somewhere down the road.

Note: We are not going to sell this product so I don't have any concern about the legal issues.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Look in the docs of the parts you use, they often contain licenses to use that stuff and the fees are part of the price of that part. \$\endgroup\$
    – PlasmaHH
    Sep 29, 2017 at 17:30
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    \$\begingroup\$ You should concern just on the adopted file system. If using standard FAT, there is no problem, but enhanced versions are not free. \$\endgroup\$ Sep 29, 2017 at 19:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ @PlasmaHH, Thanks for your comment. Please note that I'm not asking about if I require licence from SD Assosiation or not but I'm asking if the simplified version of SD Specification is adequate for me in the design process?. Here is what I found in my parts datasheet. "The SD/SDIO controller is compatible with the standard SD Host Controller Specification Version 2.0 Part A2". which is refered to the document I don't have access to \$\endgroup\$
    – pazel1374
    Sep 29, 2017 at 21:02

1 Answer 1


I was able to design my own SD-card controller (SD/SDHC/SDXC) within FPGA reading some vendor specifications and documents freely available from the SD association. I think you will need to buy full spec if you want to manufacture SD-cards.


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