how to recover data from hard disk which is not detecting

How to Recover Data from Hard Disk Which Is Not Detecting

1. Launch EaseUS Data Recovery software on your computer, select the external hard disk not detected to get started.

2. The hard drive recovery will start scanning the disk to searching your lost data and files. 

3. After the scanning, you can check all recovered files. Preview and click the "Recover" button to recover files from external hard drive not detected. 

When and Why the External Hard Drive Not Detected or Recognized

An external hard drive is definitely helpful for data backup or data transfer. But sometimes it also brings trouble when it is not recognized or detected by the computer. This usually happens with some error messages like:

  1. "The drive is not formatted"
  2. "The drive cannot be accessed"
  3. "RAW drive is not initialized" etc.

When the drive is corrupted due to improper usage or simply because the disk has been used for too many times, how to fix this error? Usually, there are three major reasons that Windows cannot recognize your hard drive: 

  • A hardware issue with your computer's USB port
  • A driver problem with your Windows computer
  • The drive becomes dead

So, first, connect your external hard drive to another computer and test if it is the USB port problem. If it works on another computer, you should fix the USB port. Otherwise, you need to try the following methods to fix external drive not recognized issues and retrieve data.

If your hard drive cannot be detected in Disk Management or My computer, EaseUS EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard won't work. Make sure you have solved the Not Detected Problem before doing data recovery.

Case 1. Hard Disk Is Not Detecting in My Computer or Disk Management

Sometimes, the external hard drive doesn't appear in your Computer window but list in the Disk Management window because it doesn't contain any partitions.

So, first press "Windows Key + R", type diskmgmt.msc into the Run dialog and press "Enter" to check if the drive shows up in Disk Management.

open disk management

If you do see the drive here, you can first perform external hard drive recovery to restore data from the disk by using EaseUS data recovery software and then format it properly. So Windows or your other devices can access and recognize it.

If the drive doesn't show up in Disk Management after you've tried another computer, you may try the Device Manager. To do it, you need to press "Windows Key + R", type devmgmt.msc into the Run dialog, and press "Enter".

open device manager

Look under Disk drives and check for any devices with a yellow exclamation mark next to them. If there was a yellow mark, it can be sure the drive has a driver problem. Right-click the device and select "Properties", and look at the error message. This error message can help you fix the problem.

Case 2. Hard Disk Becomes RAW and Not Detected

First, DO NOT do as Windows requires. If you did so, all data in the drive would be lost. You should take immediate action to get those important data out from the inaccessible hard drive and then format it. A disk data recovery tool will be a good helper to recover data from the RAW drive. EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard is the best tool to make hard disk recovery and recover data from any data loss situations. It can help you get lost data back with simple clicks.

 Download for Win Recovery Rate 99.7%
 Download for Mac Trustpilot Rating 4.7

Step 1. Select and scan the RAW partition

If the RAW partition contains a partition label, you can directly select it from drives list and click "Scan" to look for the lost files. If the RAW partition lost its label, it will be recognized as "Lost Partition", just select the "Lost Partition" and click "Scan" to initiate an overall scan on the RAW drive.

select RAW partition and click scan

Step 2. Preview found data from the scan result

After the scan is completed, all available files in the RAW hard drive will be displayed. View these files and find the files you want to recover. You can sort the scanned data by file format or search directly in the "Search files or folders" box. 

scan the lost partition to find desired data

Step 3. Recover data from RAW partition

Select all files and click "Recover" to get all the data back. Select another internal or external hard drive to save the recovered data and click "OK" to start RAW drive recovery.

recover all found data from RAW partition

After data recovery, you can format the RAW external hard drive to the proper file system to make it detected.

Step 1: Connect the external hard drive to PC > right-click on "This PC" > "Manage" > "Disk Management".

Step 2: Find and right-click on the external hard drive > select "Format".

Step 3: Reset the external hard drive letter and system file (NTFS) and save all changes.

format the not recognized external hard drive

After this, reboot your PC and reconnect the external hard drive to the PC. You should be able to reuse it.

Case 3. There Is Something Wrong with Device Driver

If your external hard drive still cannot be recognized, you can update the driver to fix it. o update hard drive drivers for your computer storage controller follow the steps below.

Step 1: Click the Start button > type Device Manager and hit Enter.

Step 2: Select "Device Manager", expand categories to find the name of your hard drive, and right-click it.

Step 3: Select "Update Driver" > Select "Search automatically for updated driver software".

update device driver

If Windows doesn't find a new driver for your drive, try to find the latest one on the device manufacturer's website.

Case 4. The Hard Disk Is Not Detected Because It's Dead

The dead hard drive eventually affects all computer users. But you can still fix it.

Step 1: If it is recognized as Online Disk and the partition or disk space is displayed properly. Then you can recover data from it using EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard WinPE Edition.

hdd shows as online

Step 2: If your dead HDD or external hard drive is not showing as "Online", you can still fix it by following this guide: How to Recover Data from a Dead Hard Drive. It provides you with tried and true solutions to fix a dead HDD.

How to Recover Data from Hard Disk Which Is Not Detecting FAQs

Here are a few more questions related to how to recover files from external hard drive not detected. Check the answers if you have the same problems. 

How do you recover hard disk data when it is not detected?

how to recover data from hard disk which is not detecting? Or how to recover data from external hard disk which is not detecting? Here are the solutions by using a file recovery tool.

1. Launch EaseUS Data Recovery software on your computer, select the internal hard drive or external hard disk to get started.

2. The hard drive recovery will start scanning the disk to searching your lost data and files.

3. After the scanning, you can preview and restore any file you want.

Why is my hard disk not detected?

There are six main reasons why your hard disk will not detect. Here is a list of them.   

  • Hard drive not enabled in the BIOS
  • Serial ATA drivers are not properly installed
  • Faulty or unplugged data cable, the BIOS will not detect a hard disk if the data cable is damaged or the connection is incorrect
  • The drive is not working
  • Incorrect jumper settings on the drive
  • Faulty hard drive aged or the connection is incorrect.

How do I recover files from a hard drive that won't mount?

EaseUS data recovery software can often detect and recover files from bad disks that are not detected by the operating system and that refuse to mount. 

1. Download and install EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard on your computer.

2. Connect the unmounted hard drive to the computer via USB hard drive adapter or USB cable.

3. Run EaseUS data recovery software and perform a full scan of the failed drive to recover any data that is on the drive.

4. Store the recovered data on removable media or another storage device.

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Updated by Cedric

Cedric Grantham is one of the senior editors and data recovery specialists of EaseUS who lives and works in Chengdu, China. He mainly writes articles and how-to tips about data recovery tutorials on PC and Mac. He has handled 10,000+ data recovery cases and is mainly good at data recovery of NTFS, FAT (FAT32 and ExFAT) file systems, and RAID structure reorganization of RAID 0, 5, and 10.

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Approved by Evan Galasso

Evan Galasso is a digital forensics and data recovery engineer with over 10 years of experience in the field. He presents opinions on the current state of storage media, reverse engineering of storage systems and firmware, and electro-mechanical systems of SSDs and HDDs.

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