External hard disk is not recognized
What can I do?

  • If you have a hard disk that is not recognized and you do not know what to do, then read on.
  • We have researched and developed the ACIR process, where we can complete a proper Analysis of your hard drive, temporarily Correct the fault, Image the hard drive and lasty Recover the data from from a hard drive that is not recognized.
  • We offer a free Standard Analysis of your hard drive, so you know what your data recovery will cost.
  • Please read on to learn more about Gefund-IT Datenrettung.

When your external hard drive is not recognized there is a lot of information on the internet about what to do.  Sadly we have read where you are told to reformat your hard drive.  If you have data on your hard drive, formatting your hard drive is not what you want to do, unless you do not need your data anymore.

There are many problems which could cause your external hard drive not to be recognized.  Here we will talk about a few things that you can do to help yourself!

External Hard Drive is not recognized
External Hard Drive is not recognized

"External hard drive not recognized" is one of the most common errors that can occur with an external hard disk. If you have an external hard disk but cannot transfer data because of this error, you can find a solution to your problem in this article. Don't worry, the solutions are simple and even laymen can manage to get the data on the external hard drive to be recognized.

Why can the error "External hard disk is not recognized" occur?

There are some things that can cause the "External hard disk is not recognized" error. We have listed the three most common ones here.

USB connection defective

The simplest and most common error why an external hard drive is not detected is that you used the wrong USB port or a USB port that is defective.

This error can be easily corrected by trying to connect your external hard drive to another USB slot. If your hard drive is now detected, the USB port you used before is defective. If your external hard drive is still not recognized, you will have to find another solution to your problem.

No power

Some external hard drives require their own power supply. Make sure that you always connect such a hard disk to the power supply, otherwise it will not work. If you don't know if your hard disk needs its own power supply, you can easily find out in the manual.

If the hard drive is connected to the power and still doesn't work, the problem may be with the power cable. In this case you should try another cable.

Use Disk Management

Windows has a feature that allows users to see if a connected external hard drive is recognized by the computer. This function is called Disk Management. If the error "external hard disk is not displayed", Disk Management can be a solution.

Search for Disk Management in the settings of your computer and open it. Now click on the sub-item "Disk partitions". There you will find a list of the attached drives and their partitions. You can identify your external hard disk by its storage capacity. If your external hard disk is not displayed in the Disk Management, there is a connection problem between the computer and the hard disk.

However, if your external hard disk is displayed but still does not work, you can see what the problem is in Disk Management. In the status display of the hard disk you can see which error there is.

Assign Drive Letters

If no letter is assigned to your external hard disk in Disk Management, Windows cannot identify your hard disk. You can manually assign a letter to your external hard disk by right-clicking on the primary partition of the hard disk, which is marked blue, and selecting the "Drive Letters" option. Assign a letter and see if you still get the error "external hard disk is not recognized".

Initialize Disk

Before using your external hard disk for the first time, you may need to initialize the disk. You can also do this using volume management. To do this, simply right-click on your hard disk and select the "Initialize Disk" option. Now select the default partition style. Now your disk should be recognized.



If your hard disk drive has fallen to the floor or has been knocked over or accidentally knocked over, do not follow the following suggestions under any circumstances but contact a professional directly; otherwise it may result in the destruction of the surfaces of the disks or read/write heads, resulting in the total loss of data.  The professionals are in possession of special data recovery equipment.   

If the "chkdsk" or "defrag" commands are used, or if data recovery software is used improperly, all lost data may be overwritten.  Once data is overwritten, it cannot be recovered.

1. what to do in case of data loss?

Several errors can cause data loss on your data carrier (hard disks, USB sticks, etc.). Data recovery from your defective hard disk requires technical understanding and practical know-how. In case of improper rescue attempts, your data may be lost forever. 

We will gladly assist you in the rescue of your data. All you have to do is the following: 

  • Please contact us, gladly by telephone, and describe your problem
  • Then fill out the contact form on our website and let us know your preferences
  • Send us the defective data carrier by mail or bring it personally to our laboratory 

2. We can help you - Our services and prices at a glance

a) Initial analysis 

The speed of the initial analysis depends on the fare booked (basic or express analysis).

If you are not in such a hurry, then book the "Basic Analysis" when filling out the contact form and we will carry out the initial analysis for you free of charge within 5 working days. At this point we will only charge you the postage costs for the return of your data medium. 

If you are interested in a faster presentation of the first analysis results and a clear idea of the data recovery effort based on these results, we recommend booking the "Express Analysis" for 100 EUR per device. Then you will usually have a clear idea of the data recovery options available the next working day. 

b) Data recovery

After the first analysis we present you the result in writing and an estimate of the expected data recovery effort. You always remain the master of the procedure and decide whether you want to have the data recovery carried out or have your defective data medium returned.  

The costs of the data recovery itself depend on the effort of the data recovery. We distinguish between the three service types "Standard" (349 EUR), "Clean Room" (650 EUR) and "Clean Room Plus" (950 EUR). Details can be found in the diagram below. Usually this step will be completed within 3 working days. Deviations from this may occur in times of high workload. 

If you additionally book our express service for data recovery, we will devote our full attention to your request. For a surcharge of 50 percent of the offer price we will immediately start the data recovery on your devices and send you an overview of the recovered data as soon as possible, usually on the next working day. 


Premium Data Recovery

The professional data recovery of affected hard disks is in many cases the only way to recover damaged or deleted data. This requires appropriate tools and above all years of experience and "know-how".

If you are looking for professional help to rescue your important data and files, then contact us!

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