How to assign permanent letters to drives on Windows 10
You can assign drive letters manually, and in this guide, we show you how on Windows 10.
On Windows 10, when connecting a removable storage device or an internal hard drive, the system detects and assigns a drive letter automatically to make it usable. However, when reconnecting an external drive (such as a USB flash drive or SD or microSD cards), the system can end up assigning a different letter, which can be annoying.
If you want to see the same drive letter on a particular device, you can manually assign a permanent letter to any drive connected to your computer, and on Windows 10 , you can do this in at least three different ways, using Disk Management, Command Prompt, or PowerShell.
Using this approach will prevent Windows 10 from assigning a new letter or trying to set a letter already in use, which can cause conflicts. Also, it helps to select a drive letter that makes more sense to you.
In this Windows 10 guide, we walk you through several methods to manually assign a permanent letter to a drive, as long as you're connecting the drive to the same device and the letter isn't already in use.
How to assign a drive letter using Disk Management
How to assign a drive letter using command prompt, how to assign a drive letter using powershell.
To manage drive letters with the Disk Management tool, use these steps:
- Open Start .
- Search for Create and format hard disk partitions and click the top result to open the Disk Management experience.
- Right-click the drive and select the Change Drive Letter and Paths option.
- Click the Change button.
- Select the Assign the following drive letter option.
- Use the drop-down menu to assign a new drive letter. Quick tip: To avoid the system trying to assign the same letter to another drive, it's a good idea to start adding letters in backward order. For instance, instead of using D, E or F, it better to start with Z, Y or X when assigning a new letter.
- Click the OK button.
- Click the OK button again.
Once you complete these steps, the drive will permanently retain the assigned letter, even after reconnecting it. However, if you connect the drive to another device, it may receive a different letter.
While the easiest way to assign a new drive letter is to use Disk Management, you can also use DiskPart in Command Prompt to perform the same task.
To assign a drive letter using Command Prompt, use these steps:
- Search for Command Prompt , right-click the result, and then select the Run as administrator option.
- Type the following command to start DiskPart and press Enter : diskpart
- Type the following command to list all the available volumes and press Enter : list volume
- Type the following command to select the volume (drive) to assign a new letter and press Enter: select volume 3 In the command, make sure to change "3" to the number that represents the drive on your device.
- Type the following command to assign a new drive letter, and press Enter : assign letter=Z The command assigns the letter "Z" to the drive assuming it's available. However, you need to make sure to change the letter for the one that you want to use.
After completing these steps, similar to Disk Management, every time you reconnect the storage to the same device, Windows 10 should assign the same letter automatically.
Alternatively, you can also use PowerShell to change a drive letter on Windows 10 using these steps:
- Search for PowerShell , right-click the result, and then select the Run as administrator option.
- Type the following command to list the available drives and press Enter : Get-Disk
- Type the following command to assign a permanent letter to the drive and press Enter : Get-Partition -DiskNumber 1 | Set-Partition -NewDriveLetter Z In the command, make sure to change "1" to the number that represents the drive that you want to modify, and change "Z" for the new letter that you want to use.
Once you complete the steps, the drive will be accessible through File Explorer using the letter that you assigned, and Windows 10 won't try to change it.
Updated March 7, 2019: We revised this guide to make sure it's current with the latest version of Windows 10.
More Windows 10 resources
For more helpful articles, coverage, and answers to common questions about Windows 10, visit the following resources:
- Windows 10 on Windows Central – All you need to know
- Windows 10 help, tips, and tricks
- Windows 10 forums on Windows Central
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Mauro Huculak is technical writer for WindowsCentral.com. His primary focus is to write comprehensive how-tos to help users get the most out of Windows 10 and its many related technologies. He has an IT background with professional certifications from Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA, and he's a recognized member of the Microsoft MVP community.
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How to assign a drive letter in Windows 10
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Step-by-step instructions for assigning a specific drive letter to an external drive, SD card, or hard drive partition in Windows 10.
When you connect a new drive to your PC, Windows automatically assigns the next available letter after C, which is normally used for your system drive. So an external hard drive or USB thumb drive could end up as D, E, F, or whatever, depending on how many drive letters are already being used.
This is all well and good, but what if you want to assign the drive a letter? Maybe you want to use M for your music files or X for your top-secret X-Files. Here’s how in Windows 10.
- Ensure that the drive you’re relettering isn’t in use and that no files from that drive are open.
- Right-click on the Start button.
- Click Disk Management to open the Disk Management console.
- Right-click the volume that has the drive letter you want to change.
- Click Change Drive Letter And Paths.
- Click the Change button.
- Choose from a list of available drive letters. (Don’t use A or B, which have historically been reserved for floppy drives and can sometime confuse older software.)
- Click Yes if a popup windows appears asking if you really want to do this.
- Close the Disk Management console.
You may need to restart your machine for the change to take effect, but once you do the drive will use the new letter.
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How to Change a Drive Letter
Don't like the letters assigned to your drives in Windows? Change them!
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What to Know
- Open Disk Management. Locate the drive you want to change. Right-click and choose Change Drive Letter and Paths > Change .
- Select the drive letter you want to assign from Assign the following drive letter . Then select OK and choose Yes .
The letters assigned to your hard drives, optical drives, and USB drives in Windows are not fixed. Use the Disk Management tool in Windows to change drive letters. These steps apply to Windows XP and newer versions of Windows .
How to Change Drive Letters in Windows
Follow these steps to change the driver letters in any version of Windows.
You can't change the drive letter of the partition that Windows is installed onto. On most computers, this is usually the C drive.
Open Disk Management , the tool in Windows that lets you manage drive letters, among [many] other things.
In Windows 11/10/8, Disk Management is also available from the Power User Menu ( WIN + X keyboard shortcut) and is probably the quickest way to open it. You can also start Disk Management from the Command Prompt in any version of Windows, but starting it via Computer Management is probably best for most of you.
Locate from the list at the top, or from the map at the bottom, the drive you want to change the drive letter of.
If you're not sure that the drive you're looking at is really the one you want to change the drive letter for, you can right-click or tap-and-hold the drive and then choose Explore . If you need to, look through the folders to see if that's the right drive.
Right-click or tap-and-hold the drive and choose Change Drive Letter and Paths .
Select Change .
If you've selected the primary drive by accident, some versions of Windows will display a message that reads Windows cannot modify the drive letter of your system volume or boot volume.
Choose the drive letter you want Windows to assign to this storage device by selecting it from the Assign the following drive letter drop-down box.
You don't need to worry if the drive letter is already being used by another drive because Windows hides any letters you can't use.
Select OK .
Choose Yes to the Some programs that rely on drive letters might not run correctly. Do you want to continue? question.
If you have software installed to this drive, it might stop working properly after changing the drive letter. See details on this in the section below.
Once the drive letter change is complete, which usually only takes a second or two, you're welcome to close any open Disk Management or other windows.
The drive letter is different from the volume label. You can change the volume label using similar steps .
If You Have Programs Not on the Main Drive
Changing drive letter assignments for drives that have software installed to them may cause the software to stop working. This isn't quite as common with newer programs and apps but if you have an old program, especially if you're still using Windows XP or Windows Vista, this is likely to be a problem.
Fortunately, most of us don't have software installed to drives other than the primary drive (typically the C drive), but if you do, consider this your warning that you might need to reinstall the software after changing the drive letter.
No Changes for the Operating System Drive
You cannot change the drive letter of the drive that the Windows operating system is installed on. If you'd like Windows to exist on a drive other than C , or whatever it happens to be now, you can make that happen but you'll have to complete a clean install of Windows to do it. Unless you have a pressing need to have Windows exist on a different drive letter, we don't recommend going through all that trouble.
Change, Don't Switch
There's no built-in way to switch drive letters between two drives in Windows. Instead, use a drive letter that you don't plan on using as a temporary "holding" letter during the drive letter change process.
For example, let's say you'd like to swap Drive A for Drive B . Start by changing Drive A's letter to one that you don't plan on using (like X ), then Drive B's letter to Drive A's original one, and finally Drive A's letter to Drive B's original one.
Using the Command Prompt
You can also change the drive letter from Command Prompt . It's not as easy as using Disk Management and you can't see right away which letters are available to choose, but it is completely doable with the diskpart command.
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Change a drive letter
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Applies To: Windows 11, Windows 10, Windows Server 2022, Windows Server 2019, and Windows Server 2016
If you want to change a drive letter assigned to a drive, or you have a drive that doesn't yet have a drive letter, use Disk Management to change it. You can also mount the drive in an empty folder so that it appears as a folder. For more information, see Mount a drive in a folder .
If you change the drive letter of a drive that already contains Windows or apps, apps might have trouble running or finding the drive. We suggest not changing the drive letter of a drive that already contains Windows or apps.
The following steps show how to change the drive letter.
Open Disk Management with administrator permissions.
In Disk Management, select and hold (or right-click) the volume on which you want to change or add a drive letter and select Change Drive Letter and Paths .
If you don't see the Change Drive Letter and Paths option or it's grayed out, the volume either isn't ready to receive a drive letter or it's unallocated and needs to be initialized . It might also be that the drive isn't accessible, which is the case with EFI system partitions and recovery partitions. If you've confirmed that your volume is formatted with a drive letter that you can access but you're still unable to change it, that's beyond the scope of this article. We suggest contacting Microsoft Support or the manufacturer of your PC for more help.
To change the drive letter, select Change . To add a drive letter if the drive doesn't already have one, select Add .
Select the new drive letter and choose OK . Then select Yes when prompted about how programs that rely on the drive letter might not run correctly.
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Three Easy Ways to Change USB Drive Letter in Windows 11, 10, 8 or 7
Top three ways about how to change USB drive letter are listed in this post. You can pick the one that you like.
The reasons for changing drive letter for USB device
You may want to change USB drive letter in Windows 11, 10, 8, or 7 under the following conditions:
☞ The USB device, like external hard drive is not recognized in Window Explorer out of drive letter conflict. To resolve the problem, you can reassign drive ☞ letter to the USB drive. ☞ T he USB drive letter keeps changing every time it was connected to your PC. You can assign a permanent drive letter to the USB drive . ☞ You just don’t like the drive letter that has been assigned automatically to the USB drive and want to change it .
How to: Change USB drive letter in Windows 11/10/8/7 easily
Next, there are three ways about how to change drive letter for USB flash drive, USB external hard drive, etc. will be displayed. Pick up one way as you like.
Method 1. Change USB drive letter via Disk Management
Method 2. change usb drive letter using cmd, method 3. change usb drive letter with a free 3rd party gui tool.
Disk Management is a Windows built-in tool, allowing you to manage disk and partitions conveniently. Follow the steps given below to change drive letter of USB drive in Disk Management.
Step 1. Press Windows + R in Windows 11/10/8/7, input “ d iskmgmt.msc ” and hit Enter key to open Disk Management.
Step 2. Right-click the USB partition that you want to change the drive letter and choose Change Drive Letter and Paths... .
Step 3. In the pop-up window, click Change… . If your USB drive is not showing up in drive out of drive letter missing, you can click Add to assign a drive letter to it.
Step 4. Choose a new drive letter from the list and click OK .
Note: If the USB drive is formatted with a file system incompatible with Windows OS, like Ext4 or is write-protected, you can find that “ Change Drive Letter and Paths ” option greyed out.
To resolve the problem, you can format your USB drive with a file system recognized by Windows 10 /11 or remove write protection at first. Or you can try Method 2 or Method 3 to change the drive letter for your USB drive.
You can also change drive letter for USB drive from Command Prompt through the following steps:
Step 1. Pres s Windows + R simultaneously, input cmd, and click OK .
Step 2 . Type diskpart and hit Enter .
Step 3. Run commands listed below in order.
▪ list volume ▪ select volume n ▪ assign letter= m ▪ exit ▪ exit
If you find out Change Drive Letter and Paths greyed out and are unfamiliar with Command Prompt, you can try a 3 rd party partition manager for Windows PC, AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard. It can change drive letter for USB drive even when it is write-protected or not formatted with NTFS or FAT file system. Now, free download it and take a closer look at how it works.
Step 1. Install and run the partition manager. In the home interface, right-click the partition whose drive letter needs to be changed and go to Advanced > Change Drive Letter .
Step 2. In the pop-up window, choose a new drive letter for your USB drive and click OK .
Step 3. You’ll go back to the main interface automatically. Click Apply and Proceed to commit the operation.
✍ Notes: ✌ You can get more functions, like quick partition, partition recovery, etc., if you upgrade to AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional . ✌ To more easily identify USB drive, like external hard drive, you can also choose to change name of USB drive.
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How Do I Assign A Drive Letter To An External Hard Drive
Welcome to the world of external hard drives! These handy devices provide an easy and convenient way to store and backup your data. However, when you connect an external hard drive to your computer, you might find that it doesn’t automatically get assigned a drive letter. In this article, we will explore the process of assigning a drive letter to an external hard drive, whether you are using a Windows or Mac operating system.
Before we dive into the details, let’s first understand what a drive letter is and why it’s important. In simple terms, a drive letter is a single alphabetic character that is assigned to a specific storage device, such as a hard drive or a USB flash drive. It allows the operating system to identify and access the storage device easily. Without a drive letter, the external hard drive remains inaccessible, making it impossible to view or manage the files stored on it.
Assigning a drive letter to an external hard drive is crucial for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it provides a way to access and manage the files stored on the drive. Once a drive letter is assigned, you can open the drive through the operating system’s file explorer and perform various tasks like copying, deleting, or transferring files. Secondly, assigning a drive letter ensures that the external hard drive is recognized consistently every time you connect it to your computer. This is especially important if you have multiple storage devices connected, as it allows you to easily differentiate between them.
Now that we understand the importance of assigning a drive letter, let’s move on to the next step: checking the available drive letters on your system. Every computer has a set of available drive letters, ranging from A to Z, excluding letters that are already assigned to other drives. The process of assigning a drive letter involves choosing an available letter and associating it with the external hard drive. In the following sections, we will explore how to assign a drive letter on both Windows and Mac operating systems.
What is a drive letter?
A drive letter is a single alphabetic character that is assigned to a specific storage device, such as a hard drive or a USB flash drive. It acts as an identifier that allows the operating system to locate and access the storage device. Drive letters are commonly used in Windows and Mac operating systems to represent different storage devices connected to the computer.
In Windows, each storage device, whether it’s an internal hard drive, external hard drive, or USB drive, is assigned a unique drive letter. The drive letters range from A to Z, excluding letters that are already assigned to other drives or network resources. For example, the primary hard drive is typically assigned the letter C, while subsequent drives receive the letters D, E, and so on. When a new external hard drive is connected, it is automatically assigned the next available drive letter.
Similarly, in Mac operating systems, storage devices are represented by mount points in the file system. While Macs do not use traditional drive letters like Windows, they follow a similar concept. Each device is given a mount point, which appears as an icon on the desktop or in the Finder sidebar. When an external hard drive is connected, it is mounted to a specific directory, such as /Volumes/drive_name. This allows the user to access and manage the files stored on the device.
The assignment of drive letters or mount points serves two primary purposes. First, it provides a way for users to easily identify and access their storage devices. By assigning a unique letter or mount point to each device, users can quickly locate and manage the files stored on the specific drive. Second, drive letters and mount points enable applications and the operating system to reference and interact with the storage device. Whether it’s saving a file, accessing a program, or performing any system operations, the drive letter or mount point helps the operating system and applications accurately locate the desired storage device.
Overall, drive letters or mount points play a crucial role in organizing and managing storage devices in both Windows and Mac operating systems. They simplify the process of accessing and manipulating files on external hard drives and other storage devices, ensuring a seamless user experience.
Why assign a drive letter to an external hard drive?
Assigning a drive letter to an external hard drive is essential for several reasons. Let’s explore why this step is necessary when working with external storage devices.
First and foremost, assigning a drive letter provides a straightforward way to access and manage the files stored on the external hard drive. Once a drive letter is assigned, you can open the drive through the operating system’s file explorer or Finder and perform various tasks like copying, deleting, or transferring files. Without a drive letter, the external hard drive remains inaccessible, making it impossible to view or manage the files.
Furthermore, assigning a drive letter ensures consistency and convenience when using the external hard drive. Each time you connect the device to your computer, it will be recognized and associated with the assigned drive letter. This is especially important if you have multiple external hard drives or other storage devices connected. With a designated drive letter, you can easily differentiate between the various drives and access the specific files stored on each device without confusion or hassle.
Assigning a drive letter also facilitates the organization of your computer’s file system. By assigning a specific letter to an external hard drive, you can create structured folders and subfolders within the drive to keep your files organized. This makes it easier to locate and retrieve files when needed, enhancing productivity and efficiency.
In addition, assigning a drive letter allows for seamless integration with third-party applications and software. Many programs rely on the use of drive letters to locate specific files or folders on external devices. By assigning a drive letter to your external hard drive, you ensure that these applications can easily access the necessary files, preventing any compatibility issues.
Another advantage of assigning a drive letter is the ability to create shortcuts and bookmarks for quick access. With a specific drive letter assigned, you can create desktop shortcuts or bookmark the drive for easy access in the future. This eliminates the need to search for the external hard drive manually, saving you time and effort.
Overall, assigning a drive letter to an external hard drive is crucial for accessing, managing, and organizing your data effectively. It simplifies the process of working with external storage devices, ensuring consistent recognition and convenient access to your files.
Checking available drive letters
Before assigning a drive letter to an external hard drive, it’s important to check the available drive letters on your system. By doing so, you can choose an unused letter and assign it to the external hard drive. Here’s how you can check the available drive letters on both Windows and Mac operating systems:
In Windows, you can easily check the available drive letters using the Disk Management tool. To access Disk Management, right-click the “Start” button and select “Disk Management” from the context menu.
Once in Disk Management, you will see a list of all the drives connected to your computer. The drive letters will be displayed next to each drive. Take note of the drive letters that are already assigned to other drives and identify any available letters. The available letters will not be associated with any drives or partitions.
In Mac operating systems, checking the available drive letters is slightly different as Macs do not use traditional drive letters like Windows. Instead, each storage device is represented by mount points in the file system. However, you can still check the available mount points using the Disk Utility application.
To access Disk Utility, go to the “Applications” folder, then open the “Utilities” folder, and launch “Disk Utility.” In Disk Utility, you will see a list of all the storage devices connected to your Mac. Each device will have a mount point listed next to it. Take note of any available mount points that are not currently assigned to any drives.
By checking the available drive letters or mount points, you can ensure that you choose an unused letter or point for assigning to your external hard drive. This helps prevent conflicts with existing drives and ensures a smooth and seamless integration of the external hard drive into your system.
Assigning a drive letter using Disk Management (Windows)
If you’re using a Windows operating system, you can assign a drive letter to an external hard drive using the Disk Management tool. Disk Management allows you to manage and configure drives and partitions on your computer. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to assign a drive letter using Disk Management:
- Connect your external hard drive to your computer using the appropriate cable. Ensure that the drive is properly powered on.
- Right-click the “Start” button and select “Disk Management” from the context menu. This will open the Disk Management window.
- In the lower section of the Disk Management window, you will see a list of all the drives connected to your computer. Locate your external hard drive in the list. Identify the drive by its capacity and make sure it is labeled as “Offline” or “Not Initialized.”
- Right-click on the drive and select “Initialize Disk.” Choose the appropriate disk initialization method (MBR or GPT) and click “OK” to proceed.
- Once the disk is initialized, right-click on the unallocated space of the drive and select “New Simple Volume.” This will open the New Simple Volume Wizard.
- Follow the instructions in the wizard to set the desired volume size, assign a drive letter, and specify the file system (usually NTFS). You can also choose to format the drive at this stage.
- After completing the wizard, Disk Management will assign the selected drive letter to your external hard drive. You can now access the drive through the file explorer or any other programs.
Remember to choose an available drive letter that is not already assigned to another drive or network resource. This ensures smooth and conflict-free integration of the external hard drive into your system.
Assigning a drive letter using Disk Management in Windows is a straightforward process that allows you to access and manage your external hard drive easily. With the assigned drive letter, you can conveniently perform tasks like copying, deleting, or transferring files, enhancing your productivity and data management efficiency.
Assigning a drive letter using Disk Utility (Mac)
If you are using a Mac operating system, you can assign a drive letter, or more accurately, a mount point, to an external hard drive using the Disk Utility application. Disk Utility is a built-in utility that allows you to manage and configure disks and volumes on your Mac. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to assign a mount point to an external hard drive using Disk Utility:
- Connect your external hard drive to your Mac using the appropriate cable. Ensure that the drive is properly powered on.
- Navigate to the “Applications” folder and open the “Utilities” folder. Launch the “Disk Utility” application.
- In the left sidebar of the Disk Utility window, you will see a list of all the disks and volumes connected to your Mac. Locate your external hard drive in the list. Identify the drive by its name and capacity.
- Select the external hard drive by clicking on it.
- In the toolbar at the top of the Disk Utility window, click on the “Mount” button. This will mount the drive and assign a mount point to it in the file system.
- The external hard drive will now appear on your desktop and in the Finder sidebar with the assigned mount point. You can access and manage the drive just like any other storage device on your Mac.
Assigning a mount point to your external hard drive using Disk Utility allows for seamless integration and easy access to the drive’s files and folders. The assigned mount point serves as an identifier for the drive within your Mac’s file system, making it recognizable and accessible through various applications and functions.
Remember that on Mac, the assigned mount point will not appear as a drive letter but will be represented as an icon on the desktop or in the Finder sidebar. By assigning a mount point, you ensure that the external hard drive is consistently recognized and easily accessible whenever you connect it to your Mac.
Assigning a mount point using Disk Utility is a simple and effective way to manage your external hard drive on a Mac. It allows for convenient file organization, data management, and seamless integration with various applications and software.
Troubleshooting common issues with assigning drive letters
While assigning a drive letter to an external hard drive is usually a straightforward process, you may encounter some common issues along the way. Here are a few troubleshooting tips for resolving common issues when assigning drive letters:
1. Drive letter already in use: If you receive an error message stating that the drive letter you want to assign is already in use, you will need to choose a different letter. Select an available drive letter that is not currently assigned to any drives or network resources.
2. Drive not appearing in Disk Management or Disk Utility: If your external hard drive is not showing up in Disk Management (Windows) or Disk Utility (Mac), there may be a connection or power issue. Make sure the drive is properly connected to your computer and powered on. Try using a different USB or Thunderbolt cable or connecting the drive to a different USB or Thunderbolt port.
3. Drive appearing as “Not Initialized” or “Unallocated”: If your external hard drive is showing up as “Not Initialized” or “Unallocated” in Disk Management (Windows) or Disk Utility (Mac), you will need to initialize or format the drive. Follow the prompts in the respective disk management tool to initialize the drive and assign a drive letter or mount point.
4. Drive not recognized on multiple computers: If your external hard drive is not recognized on multiple computers, it may indicate a hardware issue with the drive itself. Try connecting the drive to a different computer or using a different cable to rule out any connectivity issues. If the drive still doesn’t work, it may require professional help or data recovery services.
5. Drive letter or mount point not persisting: In some cases, the assigned drive letter or mount point may not persist after reconnecting the external hard drive. This could be due to conflicts with other devices or settings on your computer. To resolve this, you can try reassigning the drive letter or mount point, or consider changing the drive letter or mount point to a different one that is less likely to conflict.
If you encounter any of these issues or other unexpected behaviors when assigning drive letters to an external hard drive, it’s worth checking for software updates, ensuring proper connections, and seeking assistance from technical support if needed. Troubleshooting steps may vary depending on the specific operating system and hardware configuration.
By troubleshooting and resolving these common issues, you can ensure a smooth and successful process of assigning drive letters to your external hard drive, allowing for seamless access and management of your data.
Assigning a drive letter to an external hard drive is a crucial step in ensuring easy access and management of your files. Whether you are using Windows or Mac, the process allows you to define a unique identifier for the external hard drive, making it recognizable to the operating system and applications.
By assigning a drive letter or mount point to your external hard drive, you can effortlessly access and manage your files, create structured folders, and integrate the drive seamlessly into your computer’s file system. This simplifies tasks such as copying, deleting, and transferring files, enhancing your productivity and data management efficiency.
Throughout this article, we explored the importance of drive letters, checked available drive letters, and learned how to assign drive letters using Disk Management on Windows and Disk Utility on Mac. Additionally, we discussed common issues that may arise during the drive letter assignment process and provided troubleshooting tips to help resolve them.
Remember that assigning a drive letter or mount point is a necessary step to ensure consistent recognition and easy access to your external hard drive. It’s important to choose an available letter or mount point, avoiding conflicts with existing drives or network resources.
Whether you are using your external hard drive for backups, storing multimedia files, or transferring data between devices, assigning a drive letter or mount point is a fundamental step in making the process seamless and efficient.
Now that you have a clear understanding of how to assign a drive letter to an external hard drive, you can confidently manage your storage devices and enjoy quick and easy access to your important files.
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How to assign a persistent drive letter to a usb drive in windows.
If you use multiple USB drives, you've probably noticed that the drive letter can be different each time you plug one in.
If you use multiple USB drives, you've probably noticed that the drive letter can be different each time you plug one in. If you'd like to assign a static letter to a drive that's the same every time you plug it in, read on.
Windows assigns drive letters to whatever type of drive is available---floppies, internal hard disks, optical drives, SD cards, and external USB drives. This can be annoying---especially if you use backup tools or portable apps that prefer to have the same drive letter every time.
Related: What Is a "Portable" App, and Why Does It Matter?
To work with drive letters, you'll use the Disk Management tool built into Windows. In Windows 7, 8, or 10, click Start, type "create and format," and then click "Create and format hard disk partitions." Don't worry. You're not going to be formatting or creating anything. That's just the Start menu entry for the Disk Management tool. This procedure works the same in pretty much any version of Windows (though in Windows XP and Vista, you'd need to launch Disk Management through the Administrative Tools item in the Control Panel).
Windows will scan and then display all the drives connected to your PC in the Disk Management window. Right-click the USB drive to which you want to assign a persistent drive letter and then click "Change Drive Letter and Paths."
The "Change Drive Letter and Paths" window the selected drive's current drive letter. To change the drive letter, click "Change."
In the "Change Drive Letter or Path" window that opens, make sure the "Assign the following drive letter" option is selected and then use the drop-down menu to select a new drive letter. When you're done, click "OK."
NOTE: We suggest picking a drive letter between M and Z, because earlier drive letters may still get assigned to drives that don't always show up in File Explorer---like optical and removable card drives. M through Z are almost never used on most Windows systems.
Windows will display a warning letting you know that some apps might rely on drive letters to run properly. For the most part, you won't have to worry about this. But if you do have any apps in which you've specified another drive letter for this drive, you may need to change them. Click "Yes" to continue.
Back in the main Disk Management window, you should see the new drive letter assigned to the drive. You can now close the Disk Management window.
From now on, when you disconnect and reconnect the drive, that new drive letter should persist. You can also now use fixed paths for that drive in apps---such as back up apps---that may require them.
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cant assign drive letter to external hard drive
Report abuse, replies (8) .
Welcome to Microsoft Community Forum.
As per the description, I understand that you get “ The operation failed to complete because the Disk Management Console view is not up-to-date. Refresh the view by using the refresh task. If the problem persists close the Disk Management console, then restart Disk Management or restart the computer ” error message while trying to assign a drive letter to your external hard drive.
I would appreciate if you can provide us the following information to help us understand the issue better.
- Have you checked connecting and adding a drive letter to the external drive on any other computer? Do you get the same error message?
- Were there any significant software or hardware changes made prior to this issue?
Let’s try to assign the drive letter through Microsoft Diskpart utility. Follow the steps below to assign the drive letter through DiskPart.
- Click on start and then type cmd in the search box.
- Right click on the command prompt icon and select “ Run as administrator ”.
- In the Command Prompt, type diskpart and press Enter.
- Exit Command Prompt and check.
Hope this answers your question. Please let us know the results. Feel free to write us back for any further assistance, we’ll be glad to assist you.
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Thank you for your reply, appreciate the time taken by you in keeping us updated on the status of the issue.
You may type the following commands before assigning drive letter.
DISKPART> list Volume
DISKPART> Select volume #
Select the volume # number which you want to assign a drive letter.
and proceed with assigning drive letter.
Please reply with the results, we'll be glad to assist you.
Thank you for your reply.
I would have you run CHKDSK command to check for any hard disk errors.
To run CHKDSK command
Click the Start , type cmd , cmd.exe will be shown above - right click on cmd.exe and select Run as administrator .
OK the UAC prompt if shown. That will open an elevated command prompt. (It will show Administrator in the caption.)
Then enter the chkdsk command
chkdsk c: /f (or other drive letter if applicable) Confirm to run on next startup and reboot.
Computer can’t run a disk check while actively using Windows, but you can schedule it to start automatically the next time your computer is turned on.
When the disk check is finished, your computer will automatically reboot. The disk check will fix any problems it encounters in your hard
Important: While performing chkdsk on the hard drive if any bad sectors are found on the hard drive when chkdsk tries to repair that sector if any data available on that might be lost
Try assigning the drive letter once again to the target partition after the check disk through Disk Management and DISKPART command and check if that works.
Please reply with the results, we’ll be glad to assist you.
Sorry to hear that you were not provided with an option to run on next startup.
Please run this command-
chkdsk /r /f
Please let me know if this helps.
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Home » Tech Tips » Windows » How to Assign or Change Drive Letter in Windows 11?
How to Assign or Change Drive Letter in Windows 11?
Windows by default uses C drive (C:) for hosting system and application files. You can choose different drives like D: instead of C: while installing Windows on your computer. Similarly, it is also possible to manually change the installed app’s location , though generally users install apps on C: drive. Did you anytime think of changing the existing drive letters in your system? Here is how you can do that in Windows 11 PC.
Default Drive Name Assignments in Windows 11
Let us say, you have two partitions C: and D: volumes on your hard disk. Here is how the default drive letter assignment in Windows work:
- A: – floppy disk drive for IBM computers (obsolete)
- B: – floppy drive for MS-DOS and Windows computers (obsolete)
- C: – Windows and app installation files
- D: – storage space partition
- E: – the letter after your storage partition for CD drive (if CD/DVD drive is available)
- F: onwards – removable storage disks like USB and external hard disks
When you have more partitions on the hard drive, system will use the next drive letters like E: or F: when you insert an external drive. For example, when you have C: and D: drives on your hard disk and insert an USB drive , it will take the letter E: or later.
Changing Drive Letters in Windows 11
It is not necessary to live with the assigned drive letters forever on your system. You can either reduce / increase the drive’s space and assign new letters or simply change an existing drive’s letter. For example, you have 400GB D: drive which you can simply change to F: drive. Alternatively, you can divide it into 200GB + 200GB drives and name them as G: and H: drives.
Windows 11 makes it easy to change the drive letters from the Settings app without using registry or changing system files. However, you can also do the same from Computer Management as with the case in Windows 10 .
1. Change Drive Letter from Windows 11 Settings
If you want to change the assigned drive letters for any partition on your hard disk except C drive then this is the option you should proceed with.
- Press “Win + I” keys or use Windows Search to find Windows Settings app.
- Once you are in the Settings app, go to “System” tab and then click on “Storage” option.
- Go down to the bottom of the “Storage” settings section and click on “Advanced storage settings” available under “Storage management” section.
- This will expand the section and click on “Disks & volumes” option.
- The “Disks and volumes” section will show all your existing drives and click on the one you want to change the letter name. it will show two buttons – “Explore” and “Properties” and click on the “Properties” button.
- On the next screen, you can see the buttons for “Change label” and “Change drive letter”.
- Click “Change drive letter” button and select your favorite letter from the dropdown to assign.
The dropdown will show all letters except C: and the current volume. In the above example, we want to change the D: drive and the system shows A to Z letters except C and D. Since D is the current volume, it is not shown in the list. But C is not shown because it is a system volume partition and you cannot change the drive letter for C. You will not see “Change drive letter” button when selecting properties of C drive. However, you can assign A and B for drive letters which were once reserved only for floppy disks. Since floppy disk is obsolete Windows allows you to assign those reserved drive letters A and B also.
2. Change Drive Letter from Disk Management in Windows 11
Though changing drive letter is easy with Windows Settings, it does not allow changing C drive letter. You can use Disk Management app for changing any drive letter with additional features.
- Press “Win + R” keys to Run prompt .
- Type compmgmt.msc and press “OK” button.
- This will open Computer Management app and select “Disk Management” from the sidebar available under “Storage” section.
- You will see all the drives available on your computer and select C or D or any drive that you want to assign a new letter.
- Go to “Action > All Tasks > Change Drive Letter and Paths…” menu.
- On the pop-up that appears, click on “Change…” button.
- Click on the dropdown against “Assign the following drive letter:” option.
- Select your favorite letter and click “OK” button.
Here you will see all the drive letters except D which is already assigned to another partition volume on the hard disk. Though it is possible to change drive letter for C, we do not recommend as it can affect the installed programs on your computer. Most programs by default install under “Program Files” section in C drive. Changing the drive letter may affect the installed programs and they may stop working. In such a case, you need to uninstall and reinstall the program on the new drive again. This will be a big task if multiple programs stopped working. Therefore, choose the system drive when you clean install Windows first time and stick with that. If you are using preinstalled Windows on C drive, then continue to use that without changing. You can change all other drives using Disk Management or Windows Settings app.
If you want to create parition, select the volume and right click on it. From the menu, select “Shrink Volume” option and select the reduced size for your volume. The remaining size will become unallocated for which you can assign a new label and letter as explained above. Learn more about how to create disk paritions in Windows computer .
Assigning Drive Letter to Removable Disks
As mentioned, Windows will assign the available drive letter for removable disks after the current partition volumes. The problem is when you have multiple removable disks, the assigned letters will change every time which may confuse you. The good part is that you can assign a drive letter as explained above for your removable USB or external hard disk. Windows will remember the assigned letter and use the same whenever you insert the external drive. However, make sure to use the letters clearly away from the current and CD/DVD drives. For example, you can use X or Y or even A or B which are generally not assigned.
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10 Quick Ways | Fix Hard Drive Spinning But Not Detected
Get 10 practical fixes to solve the external hard drive spinning but not detected error. There is also a quick way to recover deleted files from your internal or external hard drives.
By Lori / Updated on October 30, 2023
Fix 1. Check and Change Another USB port/Adapter
Fix 2. check and remove viruses via virus & threat protection, fix 3. run windows safe mode.
- Fix 4. Run Windows System Troubleshooter
Fix 5. Assign a Drive Letter to Undetected External Hard Drives
Fix 6. update the hard disk driver, fix 7. run the hardware and devices troubleshooter, fix 8. check the pc supports the hdd file format or not, fix 9. run clean command, fix 10. repair hdd's bad sectors via chkdsk.
HDD (Hard Disk Drive), is a fundamental component of computers. It serves as the primary data storage device, storing all your digital content such as documents, pictures, apps, and operating systems, and so on. They consist of spinning disks or platters, read/write heads, and an actuator arm, allowing data access through magnetic changes on the disk's surface.
But here comes the problem, some users have reported that their hard drive spinning but not detected by Windows. The external hard drive makes a lot of noise while spinning, but the PC cannot detect it.
“So why is my Seagate external hard drive not showing up? And how do I fix HDD spinning but not detected?”
Don’t worry, it is a very common problem. Luckily, we now have 10 of the efficient fixes for this problem. Using these techniques, you can certainly solve these problems in no time.
Why Is My External Hard Drive Spinning but Not Showing Up?
💥 Faulty connections: Loose or damaged cables or connectors between the hard drive and the motherboard can prevent detection.
🎇 Virus infection: If your computer gets infected when you click on a link or an unsafe web page, it may cause external hard drive spinning but not detected in Windows 10.
🧨 No drive letter: If you don't have a drive letter it won't be detected. Only disks with a specified assignment drive letter will be recognized by Windows OS.
🎊 Outdated drivers: Outdated, or incompatible storage drivers can hinder proper communication between the hard drive and the system.
🎡 Hardware issues: Physical damage to the hard drive, such as a malfunctioning motor or read/write heads, can cause it to spin but not be recognized.
🎑 Incompatible file systems: If the file system of the HDD is not NTFS or FAT32, two common systems recognized by most PCs, your Windows OS may display it as "RAW".
🎆 Bad sectors: Software and physical failures can cause unreadable bad sectors to form on a drive. Even a new hard drive can have bad sectors. So fixing bad sectors on external hard drives is essentially to resolve external hard drives not showing up.
🎐 Corrupted file systems: The file system of your drive may be corrupted or not supported by Windows.
Part 1. How to Fix Hard Drive Spinning But Not Detected? (10 Ways)
After understanding the reasons why your external hard drive is not showing up. Then, let’s perform how to fix the hard drive is spinning but not detected.
The first thing you need to do is check the hard drive connection. If your hard drive or cable connections are in good condition. Then, you need to restart your computer after unplugging the hard drive to confirm it.
If you still worry about the hard drive spins up but not detected, there may be another problem. Please follow the effective 10 fixes below.
The external hard drive spinning but not reading may be related to your disk, you can remove the hard drive from the adapter and try connecting it with another cable or a different USB port. Or you can reset BIOS settings related to your hard drive adapter to default.
If you find a problem, you can replace or install a new USB port or hard drive adapter.
Viruses or malware might infect the computer’s performance and prevent your hard drive from being detected. You can run a virus scan on your computer to troubleshoot problems and remove ransomware viruses .
Step 1. Go to Windows Settings > Update & Security > Windows Security and select Virus & threat protection .
Step 2. Click the Scan options under the Current Threats section.
Step 3. Choose the Full scan and click Scan now . It will start to scan and remove viruses currently on your hard drive.
To determine the source of this error, you can run your Windows in a safe mode because this mode only launches default settings and basic device drivers. Precisely, if the Windows operates smoothly in the safe mode, it indicates there is something wrong with your external HDD instead of your Windows.
If not, you could continue using the following methods to fix problems on your connected HDD. Follow the steps below to start your Windows in safe mode:
Step 1. Turn off your PC > power on > When you see the manufacturer’s logo, power off again. Repeat this cycle three times, and you can enter the Win + RE (Windows Recovery Environment).
Step 2. In the Choose an option screen, click Troubleshoot > Advanced options .
Step 3. Under the Startup Settings tab , click Restart first. After that, you can press F4/F5/F6 to start your PC in Safe Mode with Command Prompt.
Fix 4. Run Windows S ystem Troubleshooter
Hard disk spinning but not detected in BIOS may be caused by outdated Windows updates. Windows PCs have built-in troubleshooting tools that help you find and fix different Windows errors, especially Windows update issues. Now, please follow these steps to check and update the Windows operating system:
Step 1. Press the Win + I to open Settings, and choose Update and Security .
Step 2. Click Troubleshoot > Additional troubleshooters .
Step 3. Go to Windows Update and click Run the troubleshooter . It will automatically locate problems and fix them.
Step 4. After the process, you can restart your Windows PC and try to run Windows Update again.
Usually, Windows automatically assigns a drive letter to all connected storage drives. Sometimes your Seagate external hard drive spinning but not detected because of a lack of drive letter or missing drive letter.
In this case, you could assign a new drive letter via Disk Management to solve this problem. This way can also effectively solve the issue of secondary hard drive is not detected correctly. Please follow the steps:
Step 1. Press Win + X and select Disk Management to open this Windows built-in utility.
Step 2. Click on the hard drive and click Change Drive Letter and Paths .
Step 3. Choose the Add option to add a drive letter for the undetected hard drive.
Step 4. Click Assign the following drive letter to name the drive letter for the undetected hard drive.
Outdated drivers are also a reason for hard drives spinning but not detected. You could go further to Device Manager to update the hard disk driver. Here are the steps:
Step 1. Type Device Manager in the search bar on your computer and open it.
Step 2. Locate your hard drive and expand it.
Step 3. Right-click it, and select the Update Driver button.
Step 4. Click Search automatically for updated driver software.
The Hardware and Device troubleshooter in Windows is designed to detect and resolve hardware-related problems, including driver issues. If you are experiencing your Seagate external hard drive not showing up in Windows 10, follow the steps below to identify and fix hardware problems.
Step 1. Press Win + I to open Windows Settings > Update & Security .
Step 2. Click Troubleshoot on the left, then click Run the troubleshooter under the hardware and Devices tab.
Incorrect HDD file format or using HDD for the first time may also cause the external drive not showing up. So to initiate the hard drive into the right format, do this:
The formatting process will erase all data on your hard drive. If your external hard drive data is valuable and there is no backup, it is recommended that you use this free and reliable data backup software for Windows - AOMEI Backupper to back up your data before disk formatting.
Step 1. Connect your external HDD to the Windows > press Win + X and select Disk Management . Right-click the connected hard drive. Then, select Format .
Step 2. In the Format window, select NTFS file system and click OK .
Step 3. Then, you will see a warning message, saying the formatting process will erase all data on it. Click OK again.
Disk cleaning can let your PC work smoothly and eliminate some errors in your Windows. If incompatible file systems prevent your external hard drive from not showing up, here are the steps to run a clean command to solve this issue.
Step 1. Connect the external hard drive to your PC > press Win + R and type diskpart in the Run box. Then press Enter or click OK to open the Command Prompt window. Type list disk in the prompt and press Enter .
Step 2. Now, type the following command prompt one by one and press Enter after each one.
- select x (x refers to the disk number of your connected SD card.)
- clean (The clean command can wipe out all the data on your SD card.)
- create partition primary
- format fs=ntfs quick (or format fs=fat32 quick)
Bad sectors on your hard drive can cause data loss or even cause the hard drive to stop working. In this case, you can check and mark the bad sectors by executing the CHKDSK command and then repair the detected bad sectors.
- /f : Fix file system and directory issues, ensuring smooth operation.
- /r: Recover readable/recoverable data from corrupted parts of the physical hard drive (while also running chkdsk /f).
- /x : Dismounts a drive so that it can be checked and fixed (while also running chkdsk /f).
Many users have reported issues where CHKDSK deleted files while fixing bad sectors on external hard drives. To safeguard your data, it's advisable to recover data from hard drives with bad sectors before running CHKDSK. This precaution helps prevent potential data loss during the repair process.
Step 1. Connect the external hard drive to your PC > type cmd in the search bar > click Run as administrator to open the command prompt window.
Step 2. Type chkdsk *: /r and press Enter to scan and repair bad sectors. Replace *with the drive letter of your external hard drive.
Although the CHKDSK command is useful for detecting and repairing disk errors, it is not suitable for non-technical users. So why not try this free partition management software - AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard to check and fix errors on your external HDD?
Part 2. How to Recover Data from Hard Drives without backups
After going through the above 10 fixes, you might have solved the hard drive spins but not detected errors easily. Regardless of your situation, you may find that you have lost valuable files and want to recover deleted files from external hard drives. We recommend you use an efficient and leading external data recovery tool MyRecover to get your disk data back.
- Recover 200+ formats: It can recover deleted Microsoft Word , Excel, PPT, PDF, PPTX, JPG, PNG, MP4, MOV, MP3, CDA, 7Z, ZIP, MSG, EML, and more.
- Filter and recover disk data quickly without losing quality. You can also preview them before beginning data recovery.
- Support all brands of hard drives: Seagate, Acomdata, Asus, Buffalo, Hitachi, Maxtor, Toshiba, LaCie, SanDisk, Samsung, ADATA, Transcend, etc.
Let’s have a try. Please refer to the following steps to recover data via MyRecover!
Step 1. Download and run MyRecover on your Windows. Then, choose your not detected hard drive and click Start Scan .
Step 2. MyRecover will scan your hard drive automatically and thoroughly to locate all the found data. You can use the Search Box or the Filter feature to quickly locate the files you want.
Step 3. You will see a list of data that MyRecover found on your hard drive. Choose your desired files to recover and click Recover x files .
Step 4. Select a new location to save the recovered files and click Select Folder to confirm it. Then, you recover data from the hard drive.
Don’t worry about your hard drive spinning but not detected. You just need to follow the 10 fixes above to fix it. When you find data deleted or missing, you can also recover lost data simply by using reliable data recovery software like MyRecover. This recovery way has a high success rate and fast speed.
More importantly, don't forget to protect your data by regularly file backups created by this free AOMEI Backupper Standard. If you lose data, you can effortlessly and quickly restore your files.
Is there a way to tell if my hard drive failure is mechanical or logical?
What if my hard drive is under warranty, how do i recover data from a hard drive that won't spin.
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[6 Ways] How to Fix Hitachi External Hard Drive Not Recognized
A lot of people report that they have encountered the Hitachi external hard drive not recognized issue on their PCs. When this error occurs, the Hitachi external hard drive won’t appear in File Explorer, Disk Management, Device Manager, or some other location on the PC.
Have you also encountered the same error? What to do if the Hitachi external hard drive does not get recognized? This post lists the answers below. These solutions also work for these issues:
- Hitachi external hard drive not showing up
- Hitachi external hard drive not working
- Hitachi external hard drive not detected
Why Is Hitachi External Hard Drive Not Recognized
Why is Hitachi external hard drive not recognized? It could be triggered by multiple factors. The possible reasons are listed as follows:
- The connected USB port is not working.
- The device driver is corrupt or out of date.
- If the external hard drive is physically damaged by being dropped or exposed to extreme temperatures or humidity, it may become unreadable.
- Insufficient power supply.
- The file system of the Hitachi external hard drive is not compatible with the PC.
- There is no drive letter on the Hitachi external hard drive.
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Recover Data from Hitachi External Hard Drive Not Recognized
Before solving the Hitachi external hard drive not recognized issue, you’d better recover the data from the Hitachi external hard drive to avoid making data unrecoverable.
How to recover data safely and easily? Here I recommend you use MiniTool Partition Wizard. It is a professional and reliable data recovery tool that enables you to recover data from external hard drive .
Besides, it is also a comprehensive partition manager that contains a wide range of features. For instance, you can use this program to partition hard drive , convert MBR to GPT , clone a hard drive , and more.
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Here’s how to recover data with MiniTool Partition Wizard.
Step 1 : Download and install MiniTool Partition Wizard on your PC. Then launch it to get its main interface. Click on Data Recovery in the top toolbar.
Step 2 : In the Data Recovery window, go to the Devices tab, move your cursor to the target Hitachi external drive, and then click on the Scan button.
Step 3 : After that, you can see the program scanning your disk. While the scan is in progress, you can preview the scanned files and click the Pause or Stop icon to end it when you find all the necessary files.
Step 4 : Once the scanning is done, check the files you want to recover, and then click on Save .
Step 5 : In the pop-up window, choose a directory to store the selected files. You’d better choose a different drive to save these files. Or, the lost/deleted data could be overwritten.
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How to Fix Hitachi External Hard Drive Not Recognized
After you have recovered data from your Hitachi external hard drive, you can follow these solutions to fix the Hitachi external hard drive not showing up issue.
Solution 1. Check the USB Port/Cable
When faced with the Hitachi external hard drive not detected issue, the first thing you should do is to check the USB port/cable and USB connection. If the connection is loose, remove the external hard drive and reconnect it. If you notice any physical damage to the stock cable, replace it. If the USB port is not working , you can try other available USB ports on your computer.
Check if the Hitachi external hard drive not showing up problem disappears after plugging the cable into another USB port. If not, try the other methods in this article to resolve the error.
Solution 2. Initialize Hitachi External Hard Drive
If you are using a Hitachi external hard drive for the first time and encounter the problem of the Hitachi external hard drive not showing up, you need to check whether it has been initialized. If it has not been initialized before, you can try to initialize it and create a new partition to fix this error. Here’s how to do it:
Step 1 : Right-click on the Windows icon and select Disk Management .
Step 2 : Find the external drive that is not showing up. If it shows “ Not Initialized ”, right-click on the disk and select Initialize Disk .
Step 3 : In the pop-up window, choose a partition style based on your situation and click on OK .
Step 4 : Then right-click on the unallocated space and click on New Simple Volume .
Step 5 : Follow the on-screen instructions to assign the drive letter and format the volume.
Solution 3. Update Hitachi External Hard Drive Driver
The Hitachi external hard drive not working issue can also be caused by the outdated hard drive driver. So, you should update the driver.
Step 1 : Right-click on the Windows icon and select Device Manager .
Step 2 : In the Device Manager window, expand disk drivers and right-click on your device, select Update driver .
Step 3 : In the pop-up window, choose Search automatically for drivers . Then, your Windows will search your computer and the Internet for the latest driver software for your device. Just follow the on-screen instructions to update the driver to the latest version.
If updating the driver fails, try the next option Uninstall device .
Solution 4. Change the Drive Letter
Your Hitachi external hard drive does not get recognized if it doesn’t have a drive letter. To make it show, you need to assign a drive letter in Disk Management.
Step 1 : Open Disk Management again. Then find your external hard drive and right-click on it to choose Change Drive Letter and Path .
Step 2 : Assign the drive a new letter that doesn’t exist on your PC and click on OK to confirm.
Solution 5. Format the Hitachi External Hard Drive
Your Hitachi external hard drive does not get recognized if the file system is not compatible with your Windows PC. So, you should format it to a compatible file system.
How to format an external hard drive on Windows? Microsoft provides several built-in tools that you can use to format your hard drive, including Diskpart, Disk Management, and File Explorer. Here we take Diskpart as an example:
Step 1 : Press the Win + R key to open the Run dialog box, then type diskpart in the box and press Enter .
Step 2 : In the Diskpart window, type the following commands one by one and press the Enter key after each typing. After completing the following commands, your drive should be formatted as NTFS or FAT32.
- select disk * (replace * with the number of the drive you connected)
- list partition
- select partition 1 (1 represents the partition to be formatted)
- format fs=ntfs quick or format fs=fat32 quick
Step 3 : Then type assign letter=F (replace F with an unused letter) and press Enter to assign a specific drive letter for the newly created partition.
Diskpart helps you format your Hitachi external hard drive. However, sometimes you may encounter “ Diskpart has encountered an error incorrect function ” and “ Virtual Disk Service Error ” while using Diskpart. Additionally, this tool cannot help you format drives larger than 32GB to FAT32.
To format your drive quickly and safely, we recommend you use the MiniTool Partition Wizard. Compared with the tools that come with Windows, MiniTool Partition Wizard has made a great breakthrough in partition management. It helps you format large drives, change drive letters, change cluster size, and more.
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Using the MiniTool Partition Wizard:
Step 1 : Launch MiniTool Partition Wizard to enter its main interface. Then select the connected drive from the disk map and click on Format Partition in the left panel.
Step 2 : In the pop-up window, configure parameters like Partition Label , File System , and Cluster Size based on your needs. Then click on OK to save the changes you’ve made.
Step 3 : Click on Apply to perform the formatting operation.
Solution 6. Check Bad Sectors on External Hard Drive
If formatting the external hard drive to a compatible file system does not resolve the Hitachi external hard drive not detected issue, you can suspect bad sectors on the external hard drive. To check this, you can use the Surface Test feature of the MiniTool Partition Wizard.
Step 1 : Launch MiniTool Partition Wizard to enter its main interface. Then choose the Hitachi external hard drive, and then select Surface Test from the left panel.
Step 2 : In the pop-up window, click on the Start Now button to begin scanning bad sectors. If any blocks are marked red, it means there are bad sectors on the hard drive. Then you can follow this guide to fix these bad sectors.
I encountered the Hitachi external hard drive not recognized issue on my computer. This issue bothers me a lot. Luckily, MiniTool Partition Wizard provides some helpful solutions to help me solve it successfully. I’d like to share this post with you. Click to Tweet
How to solve the Hitachi external hard drive not recognized issue on Windows? Now, you may already get the solutions. This post explores possible reasons and efficient ways for this issue.
If you have any other useful solutions to this problem, you can share them with us in the following comment zone. If you encounter certain issues while using MiniTool Partition Wizard, you can send us an email via [email protected] to get a quick reply.
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