Fix Windows 10 Doesn't Recognize or Detect Second Hard Drive Error

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Tracy King updated on Aug 13, 2021 to Computer Instruction | How-to Articles

Quick Fix for Second Hard Drive Not Detected In Windows 10:

  1. 1. Go to Search, type device manager, and press Enter.
  2. 2. Expand Disk drives, find the second disk drive, right-click on it, and go to Update driver software.
  3. 3. Follow further updates instructions and your hard disk drive will be updated.
  4. 4. You can also go to Settings > Update and check if overall updates offer something for your hard drive.

To fix the Windows 10 doesn't recognize or detecting the second hard drive problem, click the four quick accesses below to start.

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Phrase 1. Check the hard drive in BIOS Restart PC and press F2 to enter BIOS.  Enter Boot Menu to check if the second hard drive is detected...Full steps
Phrase 2. Check the hard drive's state Enter the Device Manager, expand "Disk drivers". Locate and check the second hard drive. Right-click...Full steps
Phrase 3. Scan and restore saved data If you've saved important data in the second hard drive, you need to extract saved data in advance...Full steps
Phrase 4. Check the hard drive in DM Check the second hard drive in Disk Management on your computer and make it detectable. Different state...Full steps

Note that those fixes also work to fix hard drive not recognized issue in Windows 8.1/8/7, and even older Windows OS. 

My Second Hard Drive Doesn't Show up in Windows 10

"Hi guys, does anyone of you know how to make the second hard drive to show up in Windows? I added a second hard drive to my computer about a month ago, and my computer became much faster. Everything went so well until this morning.  

I started my computer, but the second hard drive didn't show up in File Explorer. Then I checked the Disk Management. Still, nothing was there. I saved a lot of important data on the second hard drive. How can I make it to show up? If you happen to have a solution, please let me know."

To resolve this issue, you'll need to diagnose the exact reason that causes your second hard drive undetectable. Follow this page, you'll find reliable methods and tools to effectively fix a hard drive or second hard drive that's not showing up in Windows error on your own.

Diagnose and Fix Unrecognized Second Hard Drive in Windows 10

This part is intended to help you diagnose the causes of undetectable second hard drive and offer you solutions to make it show up again.

Quick Fix: Reconnect and Re-install the 2nd Hard Drive

When your hard drive is disappeared from File Explorer or Disk Management, check on the hard drive power cable and SATA cable first.

Step 1: Take out the hard drive from your computer with a screwdriver.

Step 2: Check if the hard drive connection is loosened. 

If yes, unplug and re-plug the hard drive from the computer case. If the cables are damaged, change the SATA/ATA cable and the power wire, reconnect the drive to the PC.

Reconnect hard drive

Step 3: Put the computer case back on and restart the PC, check if your hard drive shows up. 

If Windows detects the second drive, you can stop here. You may also interested in How to Partition a Hard Drive

But if the disk still not shows up in Windows File Explorer nor Disk Management, continue with the following phrases.

Phase 1. Check and Make Second Hard Drive Detectable in BIOS

Applies to: Fix Windows not recognizing hard drive in BIOS error.

Step 1: Restart PC and press F2 to enter BIOS.

Step 2: Enter Boot Menu to check if the second hard drive is detected.

Check second hard drive in BIOS.

Step 3: Try the below tips if the second hard drive doesn't show up:

First, enter the Setup section, under System Setup, check the state of the second hard drive.

Next, if the System Setup option is Off, turn it ON. Save the changes.

Remember to restart the PC each time to check if the second disk shows in BIOS. If the hard drive still doesn't show up, it's probably having a physical issue. The best way is to take to a local after-sales service center of the hard drive manufacturer or a device repair center to ask for device repair assistance.

If the second hard drive shows up in BIOS as the following image, move on to the next guide check the state of the problematic hard drive in Disk Management.

Second hard drive shows up in BIOS.

Phase 2. Check the State of Second Hard Drive and Update Driver in Device Manager

Works to: Fix Windows 10 doesn't recognize the second hard drive issue due to outdated drive driver. 

Step 1: Go to Search, type device manager, and press Enter.

Step 2: Click Device Manager and expand "Disk drives".

Step 3: Locate and check the state of the second hard drive.

If it's covered by a yellow exclamation mark as shown below, update the disk driver.

Check Second hard drive driver state in Device Manager.

Step 3: Right-click the second hard drive that is not detectable and select "Update driver".

Update hard drive driver.

Step 4: Click "Automatically search for driver software online" and wait for the process to complete.

When the process finishes, restart your PC and check the disk again in the Device Manager. It will display as a normal disk by then and now you can move to Phase 3 continue fixing this issue.

If Windows doesn't find a new driver for your hard drive, you can try to find one on the device manufacturer's website and let them help you complete the driver update process.

Phase 3. Scan and Restore Saved Data from the Second Hard Drive

Mainly for: Data protection on a problematic hard drive that is not correctly recognized by Windows. 

If your second hard drive is a new device, you can skip this phase and move to Phase 4 to make it detectable again.

However, if you saved important data in the second hard drive, you're highly recommended to extract saved data in advance. Professional hard drive recovery software like EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard will fully scan the second hard drive and find all saved data for you.

You can follow the guidelines below to restore all saved data from the hard drive with ease now:

Step 1. Select a location and start scanning

Launch EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard, hover on the location where you lost data, then click "Scan".

select a location and click scan

Step 2. Preview and select the files

Wait until the scanning completes. You can use Filter or search bar to find lost files.

Choose files to recover

Step 3. Recover lost data

Then choose a location to save the recovered data, and click "OK". You should store the data in another place instead of the original one.

Recover lost data

Remember to save the data to another secure device, an external hard drive is preferable. Now, you can move to the last phrase and get rid of this issue from your device, making the hard drive detectable and working again.

Phase 4. Check the State of Second Hard Drive in Disk Management and Make It Detectable

Applies to: Fix Windows 10 not detecting second hard drive due to logical errors, such as RAW, unallocated, no media, etc.

If your disk shows up properly in BIOS and Device Manager, but Windows cannot detect or recognize it properly, it's highly possible with the following four errors: 

  • RAW error
  • Device not initialized or shows unallocated 
  • The second hard drive shows No Media

Open the Windows Disk Management and check the display state of the second hard drive. Then you can follow the right fix below to make the second hard drive show up.

# 1. Hard Drive Shows RAW - Format RAW Drive to NTFS

Second hard drive shows as RAW.

If the hard drive shows as Online, but the partition display as RAW, you can format the partition to NTFS.

Step 1: Right-click on This PC/My Computer, select "Manage".

Step 2: Click "Disk Management", locate and right-click the RAW partition of the not recognizing hard drive, then choose "Format".

Step 3: Select NTFS as the file system for the partition and click "OK" to confirm.

format the sd card to ntfs with the build in tool

# 2. Hard Drive Shows Not Initialized + Unallocated

If the hard drive shows as a not initialized or unknown drive, don't worry. 

Fix second hard drive don't show up in Windows 10 error.

You can directly apply Windows partition manager software - EaseUS Partition Master with its Initialize to MBR or Initialize to GPT feature to make the hard drive show up now:

Step 1: Launch EaseUS Partition Master on your PC.

Step 2: Right-click the target hard drive and select "Initialize to MBR" or "Initialize to GPT" accordingly.

Step 1. Open EaseUS Partition Master. Connect the hard drive or SSD to PC.

Right-click the target HDD or SSD and select "Initialize to MBR" or "Initialize to GPT" accordingly.

Step 2. A pending operation of initializing disk to MBR or GPT disk will be added. Execute the operation and click "Apply".

0:00-0:22 Initialize to MBR; 0:23-0:49 Initialize to GPT;

Repeat the partition creation process (from Step 4 to Step 6) if you plan to create more than one partition on the second hard drive. 

After following the whole process, now you can make use of the second hard drive in Windows 10 to save data again.

# 3. Hard Drive Displays as NO Media - Update Driver, Take It to Device Repair Center

If the second hard drive shows as "No Media" in Disk Management, you'll have two choices:

Second hard drive shows as no media.

  • 1st. Go back to Phrase 2 and update the device driver.
  • 2nd. Take the hard drive out of your computer, and send it to a local device repair center for repair.

Wrapping UP

On this page, we presented the complete process of how to check and fix a not detecting hard drive on Windows 10. These methods can be applied to fix Windows not detecting or not recognizing hard drive or second hard drive on all Windows OS. 

Generally, your hard drive is not detected in Windows 10 is probably because of a driver issue, connection issue, or faulty BIOS settings. Connection issues can be from a faulty USB port a cable, it might be outdated. And incorrect BIOS settings mean the new hard drive is disabled in BIOS. 

To make the hard drive or the second hard drive detectable. Here are some tips for you to follow:

  1. 1. Make sure the hard drive is correctly connected to PC via its power cable and SATA cable.
  2. 2. Make sure the second hard drive is Enabled or turned on in BIOS.
  3. 3. Regularly update the hard drive driver, especially when you install a new hard drive on Windows PC. 
  4. 4. Partition or create partitions on the hard drive with a recognizable or supported file system - NTFS.

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