How to Recover Data from Hard Drive Not Detected?

Learn to recover data from hard drive not detected via six efficient solutions after figuring out for undetected hard drives on this page. And you can get a data loss prevention tool.


By Penny / Updated on April 2, 2024

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Can you recover data from a hard drive that is not recognized?


Help! Although I can find my hard drive in the Disk Management utility, I cannot find it in my Windows File Explorer. And I want to recover partial data from this drive. So is it possible to recover data from hard drive not detected? 

Please don’t worry because there exists a possibility to recover data from hard drive not detected. If you’re bothered by this issue, please read further.

What causes a hard drive not to be detected?

Before beginning hard disk data recovery, let’s have a closer look at the possible reasons for undetected hard drives below.

  • A lack of drive letters
  • Outdated/corrupted device driver
  • Bad sectors or corrupted file systems on your hard drive
  • Incompatible file systems with your Windows OS
  • Sudden interruption
  • Power failure

6 ways to recover data from hard drive not detected

When it comes to problems regarding how to recover data from inaccessible hard drives, there’re six feasible solutions for your reference.

1. Recover deleted files from hard drives via data recovery software

Suppose your Windows OS has recognized your hard drive, and you’re eager to recover deleted files from hard drives.

At the moment, there’ll be no more better way than using one of the best Windows data recovery software like MyRecover to retrieve data.

  • If a valuable backup saves your needed data, you can restore your desired files from backups directly.
  • For a higher data recovery rate, please avoid newly written performances after data loss.
  • After recovery, please remember to save these retrieved files in another path.
  • To recover a large number of deleted & missing files from your internal or external hard drive, please consider upgrading MyRecover to the Professional or Technician edition.   
Powerful features & friendly design of MyRecover:
Powerful features: Recover deleted & lost Word, Excel, PPT, folders, compressed files, photos, songs, videos, audio, websites, and other 200+ file types from internal/external hard drives.
Easy-to-find: During Quick Scan and Deep Scan, you can quickly locate your desired files by Filename, Path, Date, Size, etc.
Convenient: Retain the original Path, Filename, and Format for the deleted files.   
Excellent compatibility: Support NTFS, FAT32, exFAT, and ReFS file systems.

Don’t hesitate to install MyRecover on your Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, or Windows Server PC now!

Download Software Windows 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Step 1. After running MyRecover, hover the mouse over the hard drive that includes your desired data. Then click Scan.


Step 2. Filter your needed data according to Name, Date, Document Type, or Path.

  • Name: Type the filenames of your desired files to narrow the search area.
  • Date modified: Set the date according to your situation (today, yesterday, the last 7/30 days, etc).
  • Size: Filter the file size based on your needs (<128KB, 128KB~1MB, 1MB~ 512MB, etc).


Step 3. Go to the Deleted Files/Recycle Bin/Other Missing Files folder and select the files you want. Then click “Recover x files” to start Windows data recovery.


2. Assign a new drive letter to your undetected hard drive

If you’ve run into a similar dilemma like the above user, you can make your hard drive be recognized by the Windows operating system by assigning a new drive to your undetected hard drive.


Let’s perform how to recover data from inaccessible hard drives with Disk Management because only this advanced storage Windows utility can address your issues.

Step 1. Press “Win + R” and type “diskmgmt.msc” in the Run box. Then press “OK” or hit “Enter” to open the Disk Management utility.


Step 2. Right-click on your hard drive and choose the “Change Drive Letter and Paths” option.


Step 3. Select “Add” to assign a new drive letter to your chosen hard drive. 

Step 4. Select the “Assign the following drive letter” option. Please ensure the newly selected drive letter is different from all the existing drive letters.


3. Update/reinstall your device driver via Device Manager

In addition, outdated or corrupted device drivers also can prevent users from accessing and writing data to their internal and external hard drives. Please try to update/reinstall your device driver via Device Manager.

Step 1. Press “Win+ X” and select the “Device Manager” option to open it.


Step 2. Locate “Disk Drives” and expand it.

Step 3. Right-click on your targeted hard drive and select Uninstall device/Update driver.



Step 4. Restart your Windows PC and the operating system will reinstall the hard drive automatically. Or you can also click the “Browse my computers for drivers” button.


After that, please remember to click the “OK” button.

4. Check & fix corrupted file systems via CHKDSK

As stated earlier, corrupted file systems or bad sectors are blamed for undetected disks. To solve this issue, please run the CHKDSK command to check & repair corrupted file systems and bad sectors on your hard drives.

Step 1. Type “cmd” in the search bar and click “Run as administrator” to open the command prompt window.


Step 2. Type “chkdsk” in the window.


Step 3. Type “chkdsk d: /f” or “chkdsk d: /r” as you need.


5. Format your hard drive & make it become compatible with the current Windows OS

If the file system of your hard drive is not compatible with your current Windows OS, you’re supposed to format this hard drive and set up a suitable file system. Please refer to the following steps.

Step 1. Type “Disk Management” in the search bar on your PC and open it.

Step 2. Right-click on your unrecognized hard drive and select the “Format” option.


Step 3. Select a file system that works with your current Windows OS. Then click “OK” to save these changes.


6. Run hardware and devices troubleshooter

How to recover data from hard drive not detected? In some cases, it might be something wrong with your hard drives. At the moment, running the hardware and devices troubleshooter is an efficient solution for users to find and fix errors on your hardware.

This way also applies to solving this device cannot start code 10. Please refer to the following steps.

Step 1. Press “Win + I” to open Windows Settings and go to Update & Security.


Step 2. Click “Troubleshoot” on the left. Under the “Hardware and Devices” tab, click the “Run the troubleshooter” button.


In the end

When it comes to problems regarding how to recover data from hard drive not detected, there’re six feasible fixes for your reference.

In brief, if you’ve deleted files from hard drives, you also need to restore your desired files from your backups or use MyRecover to get them back.

To protect your data, please consider using this free backup software for Windows, AOMEI Backupper to back up files, folders, partitions, disks, or systems.

Penny · Editor
Penny works as an editor at AOMEI Technology, while she's a tester and editor for AOMEI Data Recovery Tools. She enjoys helping users with data recovery issues on Windows and iPhones using simple and practical solutions. Outside of work, she has a strong affection for pets, particularly giant pandas.