How to Fix an External Hard Drive that is Not Showing Up on Windows 10

An external hard drive is a portable storage device that can come in handy when you need to make a file mobile without the complexity of taking your computer system along.

It is also very useful for transferring data from one computer to another via the use of USB cable. So, you don’t need to over clog your computer storage space.

But, like any other computer hardware. Your external hard drive may not behave as it is supposed to.

Usually, when you plug an external hard drive into your computer, you can locate it from the file explorer. Where you can then transfer files between your computer and the hard drive.

But this is not always the case as you must have discovered that your external hard drive does not display in the windows file explorer.

While this is worrying, you can always fix the problem by trying the fixes in this guide.

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Check if the USB Port and Cable are Working Fine

To check if your computer’s USB port is the culprit. You should insert the drive into another port on your computer.

If it still won’t show up, you should insert it into another computer. You should also change the USB cord to detect if the problem is from the cord.

If your Hard Drive still won’t show, you may try other fixes.

Create a New Partition

To create a New partition, you first need to see if the Hard Drive shows in the Windows Disk management.

You should place your cursor on the Start button, right-click on it and select “Disk Management”.

Here, you should see all the Hard Disk connected to, and recognized by your computer.

If your External Hard Disk is listed on the Disk Management window but not showing in the File Explorer window. You should initialize it by clicking on the first section of the Disk as highlighted below.

Next, click “Ok” from the dialogue box that appears.

There will be unallocated space. You have to create a new partition on it, to allow Windows to use it.

Right-click on the unallocated space and choose “New Simple Volume”.

This displays the New simple volume wizard which can help you to create a new partition on your Drive.

Once done, reconnect the device and it should start working normally.

Assign a New Drive Letter

Both internal and external hard drives are assigned unique letters. But if there are conflicts, your hard drive may not show in the Drive’s list. To resolve this, you need to change the Drive letter.

Following the procedures in the previous steps, you should open the Disk Management window to locate your Drive.

Next, right-click on the allocated space of the Drive and select “Change Drive Letter and Path”.

Next, click on the “Change” button on the dialogue box to continue. You can also select the “Add” button if the device doesn’t have a letter.

Next, select a new letter and hit the “Ok” button to continue.

This should fix the external Hard Drive not showing up on Windows 10 issue. You may also be interested in SysPrep was unable to validate Windows installation.

I hope you find this guide helpful. Kindly leave a comment if you have any questions.

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