Unable to recognize External USB Drive

By TwinkyNZ ·

I have recently purchased an External Hard Drive. During a copy from my laptop to the external drive, I accidently unplugged the external USB drive.

Now when I try to use my External USB drive, it is not recognized by my Laptop.
I have tried re-installing drivers but to no avail.

How do I format or fix this so I can continue to use my External USB drive.
Any help appreciated.



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All Answers

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Depends on what happens when you plug in the USB Drive

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Unable to recognize Exter ...

If the computer recognises that you have a USB device present go into the Computer Management Drives and format the USB Drive.

However if nothing at all comes up on the system when you plug in the device it's likely to have been destroyed and is no longer usable.


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Very Annoying

by TwinkyNZ In reply to Depends on what happens w ...

The drive is only 1 day old.
I went out and bought a 2.5" > 3.5" convertor today. The drive appeared and I formatted the drive.
After installing it back into the USB enclosure, it still was not recognised.
I then installed it back into my PC and formatted it as a Dynamic Disk.
Now my PC crashes whenever the 2.5" is plugged in and it still does not work with the external enclosure.

Is this a common problem? Should I be using a different method for backup instead of a USB enslosure?



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No this isn't at all common

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Very Annoying

I've never seen something like this happen previously and if you look at the fuzzy picture here it shows what a 2.5 inch drive should look like at the connection


All I can think of is that there is a jumper on the drive causing the problems as when you use a USB Caddy for a 2.5 inch drive you should never have a jumper fitted.

But for backup this really depends on how important your data is and if you carry the HDD around as I've seen quite a few fail one business who I do work for was using this method daily to do generational backups and they destroyed every HDD because of a faulty USB Port and I had to take the most recent to a Data Recovery House and have the data recovered off the drive. Cost about 46K AU and that was because I have a deal with this particular company as the cost should have been much more.

If you are not moving the 2.5 inch drive and always chose the Safely remove the USB device it will work fairly well but if you get any strange noises stop using the drive immediately as you could have a faulty USB Port that isn't supplying enough power. In that particular case it not only destroyed the HDD's but also the USB Enclosures so now they have a powered USB Hub to work from and only ever use that to plug into. Still not the best idea but it works for them. But they are also using a powered 3.5 Inch USB Enclosure and that is far more robust and far less likely to break, It's also much cheaper for more storage space as well but it is much more bulky to work with so it gets placed into the safe and leads a very gentle life.


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Did you re-partition as well?

by 1bn0 In reply to Very Annoying

If the drive is not damaged completely.

I would try to re-partition the drive and then re-format again. If the format was corrupted I would expect the MBR etc. to be as well.

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Dynamic Disk?

by balge In reply to Very Annoying

don't think you should be using dynamic disks for this -


I would try reformatting as a basic disk

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What if the drive works on one computer

by DJBlight In reply to Depends on what happens w ...

My personal external hard drive, which is one of the maxtor one touch 4 portables, will work on my desktop running Windows 7 ultimate, but every other computer no matter what the operating system will not recognize the drive as being plugged in at all. There is power going to the drive as the light comes on and the drive spins, but no luck in recognizing the drive.

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BIOS Setup

by shkeat In reply to Unable to recognize Exter ...

Very likely your bios settings got changed. Got to your bios setup page and look for USB option. reenable it back and everything will be back to normal. Don't have to format anything at all.

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Did you try?

by paul In reply to Unable to recognize Exter ...

Hi! Did you try to attach your ext hdd on other pc? If it's works on other pc, that means your laptop encountered a low power on usb port. If it real then you don't have choice to use your ext hdd on your laptop otherwise you can try to change another ext case

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Water under the bridge

by TwinkyNZ In reply to Did you try?

Thanks everyone.

I installed the hard drive into a laptop and used a PE disk to boot.
It is reconigsed but unable to format.
So I gave up and forked out $100 for another 2.5" drive.

Problem resolved

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try this

by explorehalkidiki In reply to Unable to recognize Exter ...

are you sure you connected the usb no1 and not no2

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