You need to format the disk in drive before you can use it

I have a 4 year old "WDC My passport Utra"  2 TB external hard drive that I use for archiving my files. When I plug in my PC last night, I get the message "You need to format the disk before you can use it". I've tried inserting it into another PC and getting the same result. Is it possible to recover and restore data in it?

Disk management says: ROW, Healthy (Primary Partition). Screenshot: https://1drv.ms/u/s!AkUoRLnQ86B_hGbSGxlKY5HVBH1a


I found dozens of similar questions in this forum with different situations, but I did not really understand the long discussions to get the answer I needed.

Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Regards,

Hasan

Before doing anything extreme try the following.
There have been issues with usb hardware for some devices out there because of the following updates.
- KB4074588
- KB4077675
- KB4058258

Check to see if any of these are installed and uninstall them all and see if that works.

https://www.howtogeek.com/206271/how-to-roll-ba...

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Hi HasanHalim,

I am so sorry to hear that you are having these problems with your external hard drive. Preventing data loss in this situation honestly is tricky. My best recommendation would be to run a CHKDSK from the command prompt. Here are some steps for you:

1. Press Windows Key + X button to bring up the power users menu.
2. In the power users menu, select the Command Prompt (Admin) option.
3. Click Yes when you are presented with a UAC window requesting permission to launch the Command Prompt as Administrator.
4. In the new Command Prompt window, type chkdsk E: /f /r /x. Here you should replace E with your drive letter.

This option will run chkdsk to check and repair disk errors in Windows 10. The "/f" parameter tells CHKDSK to fix any errors it finds; "/r" tells it to locate the bad sectors on the drive and recover readable information; "/x" forces the drive to dismount before the process starts.

I cannot guarantee this will work or that you wont loose any data but its worth a shot, before reformatting.

Please let me know if this does help at all!

Have a great day,

Danielle

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Hi Hasan. I'm Greg, an installation specialist and 8 year Windows MVP, here to help you.

First of all try plugging the drive into another PC, as this PC may be suffering from problems caused by Windows Updates problems lately. If it's read then immediately back up all files to the desktop.

If not then see if you see the files and copy them out from the Command Line including the bootable Windows 10 Recovery or installation Media using this method: http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/wiki...

If it also reads RAW there see the fixes here:
https://html5.litten.com/updated-how-to-fix-ext...
https://www.tenforums.com/drivers-hardware/2530...


As you'll learn from the above links, this can mean the partition table has gone bad, so the options are to try to repair it using one of the tools or methods in the links above (we used free Partition Wizard Partition Recovery Wizard thousands of times in Windows 7 but it is no longer free) , or copy out the data in which case you can save time by just reformatting the hard drive.

I would also test the hard drive with Seatools bootable long test to know it's condition for sure: http://blog.nowherelan.com/2013/04/04/boot-seat...


If the drive works fine in another PC, then on the problem PC check which Updates were installed right before the problem began, and uninstall them from Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > Installed Update History.

You can also try to roll back using System Restore to a point before this began: http://home.bt.com/tech-gadgets/computing/how-t...

Then if the Update installs and causes the same problem again uninstall or roll it back again, then immediately hide it using the Hide Updates tool from Method Two here: https://www.askvg.com/fixing-windows-10-automat...

Try also uninstalling the External Disk driver and USB drivers in Device manager, then restart PC to reinstall them. To do the restart, first program the power button to shut down at Settings > System > Power & Sleep > Additional Power Settings > Choose what Power buttons do.

I hope this helps. Feel free to ask back any questions and let us know how it goes. I will keep working with you until it's resolved.
_________________

Windows MVP 2010-20

Millions helped via my tutorials and personally in forums for 12 years. Now an Independent Advisor.

I do not quit for those who are polite and cooperative.

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Press Windows key + X
Click Device Manager
Expand Disk drives
Right click the external drive
Click uninstall

Restart then see if the drive starts working...

1. Plug in your SD card, USB drive, external hard drive or other devices to PC.
2. Go to the Start menu, type in "cmd" in a search bar, hit Enter key.
3. Right-click "cmd.exe" to open Command Prompt window.
4. Type "chkdsk D: /f" (here D: is the drive letter of your external USB device) into the command line and press Enter key.

Open Windows Defender Security Center
Click Virus & threat protection
Click Virus & threat protection settings

Scroll down to Controlled folder access
Toggle it off

Also in Windows Defender Security Center

Open App & browser control
Set 'Check apps & files' to off

See if you can then access the drive.
Best,
Andre
Windows Insider MVP
MVP-Windows and Devices for IT
twitter/adacosta
groovypost.com

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Download and run HDTune .

http://www.hdtune.com/

Make screenshots of the following
the health
the error scan
the benchmark
Post back the screenshots.
Sumit
Volunteer Moderator- Microsoft Community

Mark the reply as helpful or answered to help others if your query is resolved

https://www.yourwindowsguide.com

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Last updated April 19, 2021 Views 2,440 Applies to: