External hard drive not detected

What prevents the hard drive from being detected? What can be done to prevent this problem?


The external hard drive is a hardware component that is connected to the system externally. The drive device can be considered as a better option for the purpose of data storage. Transferring of data from one system to another and the data back-up options are also provided with the help of an external hard drive. The external hard drives that are connected to the system sometimes may cause issues with the system like not being detected. The incompatibility of the device with the operating system may be the primary cause of this issue. The damaged or corrupt drive device also cannot be recognized by user computers. The presence of infections on the system is another cause of the issue. The issues with the USB ports on the system also cause problems with the external hard drive since the devices are inserted into the system through ports.


Below are the ways to resolve the issue of an external hard drive not being detected on a system:




  • Damaged devices should be replaced

  • Check the compatibility with the system

  • Remove infections from the system



Damaged devices should be replaced



The external hard drive devices that are corrupt or damaged cannot be detected on user computers. The devices should be checked by inserting them into other systems. If the hard drive works on other computers, then the issue will be different. Else the device should be replaced by the user for the purpose of troubleshooting. Dump the device and purchase a new one if the repair option cannot be done on the device.



Check the compatibility with the system



The compatibility determines the working condition of the various devices with the operating system. If any of the devices are incompatible with the operating system, then they cannot be detected by the system. The external hard drive should be verified for compatibility with the system by inserting the device on another computer running a different operating system. Either remove the operating system or replace the device in such cases.



Remove infections from the system


The presence of certain malware from the system prevents the user system from recognizing and running various external devices. The infections should be removed from the system if the drive cannot be recognized by the system even after troubleshooting various causes. The infections that are found on the drive are also responsible for the issues with the device. Formatting of the device is recommended after solving the issue.




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