Hard Drive is not Accessible

Hello Everyone,

I would appreciate anyone who can help me as I need your assistance in resolving my hard drives issues. I am using two laptops one with Windows 10 and the other 11. I have three WD hard drives with the following problems:

HD#1: when I connect the HD to each laptop nothing happens, not showing up in disk management but laptop can’t see the HD to assign a drive for it.

HD#2: when I connect the HD to each laptop nothing happens, it shows up in disk management but the laptop can’t see the HD to assign a drive for it. I can’t access it.

HD#3: when I connect the HD to each laptop, I receive this message “drive is not accessible. The parameter is incorrect.” The disk management suggest to format.

How can I access each HD and recover my data?

Thank you for your guidance.

Hi @perse,

Have you opened a Support Case? If not opened, for more information, please contact the WD Technical Support team for the best assistance and troubleshooting:

I would like to answer your queries. Please find below.
Case 1: When your Hard Drive is not showing up in disk management.

Method 1: See if HDD is showing up inside your BIOS

A lot of users have managed to get the issue resolved after discovering that they were, in fact, dealing with a hardware issue. If the SATA cable connecting your new HDD to your motherboard is partially broken, it might not pass your os requirements, so Windows will not show it inside the Disk Management Utility.

The same goes for a partially broken SATA port. A quick test to see if this scenario might hold true in your case is to access your BIOS settings and see if the new HDD is showing inside your BIOS settings.

Method 2: Deleting all ATA channel drivers with Device Manager

A couple of users encountering this particular issue have managed to fix it entirely after using Device Manager to delete all ATA channels from the IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers menu. This supposedly forces the Windows to search for all connected ATA devices again and re-configure them from scratch at the next system startup.

Method 3: Deleting the storage space that is using the HDD

As per various user reports, this particular issue can also occur if you used the HDD to create a common storage space. Some affected users have managed to resolve the issue after they deleted any storage space that was using the HDD from the Storage Spaces utility.

Storage Spaces are virtual drives that will appear inside your File Explorer as normal local drives. This feature works with ATA, SATA, SAS and USB drives and was introduced with Windows 7. It essentially allows you to group different types of drives.

Importing the foreign disk from Disk Management

The disk might not appear as a viewable partition inside My Computer or Disk Management because it is seen as a foreign dynamic disk by the system. Some users encountering the same issue have been able to easily rectify this by importing the foreign disk.

Format The Drive

Even if the drive appears to be partitioned, you are unable to access it. It’s likely using a different file system. * Disk Management is a program that lets you manage your hard drive.

  • Select the drive, then right-click and choose “Format” from the menu.
  • Choose FAT32 as your formatting option.
  • You can choose your drive label, and you can uncheck the “Perform a fast format” option if you like.
  • All data on your hard drive will be erased if you reformat it.

Case 3: When drive is not accessible.
Sometimes hard drives, external storage, and USB flash drives can be affected by viruses or power failures, rendering them inaccessible by Windows. If the disk has become corrupted in any way, reformatting the partition can be a quick fix. However, all data on that partition will be erased during the reformatting, which is a problem if you want to recover the data.
As the “Drive is not Accessible” error doesn’t allow you to open any files on the disk, you are not able to back up the data stored there. So, you’ll want to hold off reformatting the partition until your files are safe.

Should you have already reformatted your drive and lost the data, you still may be able to get the files back. When you delete something on a PC, the files aren’t actually destroyed, but the space they occupy on the disk is made available to the system so it can write over them. it’s very important then that you don’t use your PC at all, as writing anything to the disk could overwrite your files. Instead, download some data recovery software and use it to recover formatted partition data.
Usually, when your external hard drive shows the “Drive is not accessible. Access is denied” error message, it is because you don’t have the right privilege settings in Windows. So, to fix the issue, you have to take ownership of the drive.
Here’s how to do it:

Right-click on the inaccessible hard drive, select Properties. Go to the Security tab, hitAdvanced, then click the Edit button. On the Owner tab, modify the ownership of the specified account.
It’s also possible to add a new user so that anyone with access to the PC will be able to read the drive. This “Everyone” setting is definitely convenient, but it does increase the risk of exposing your computer to anyone who knows the password to your PC.

Usually, when your external hard drive shows the “Drive is not accessible. Access is denied” error message, it suggests that you don’t have the privilege of accessing the disk partition. So, to fix the issue, you have to take ownership to get permission.

Step 1. Right-click on the inaccessible hard drive, select “Properties”. Switch to the “Security” tab, where you should see the reason why you aren’t able to open the drive with the info saying “You must have Read permissions to view the properties of this object. Click Advanced to continue”. Then click “Advanced” as told.

Step 2. Click “Change” to attempt the operation with administrative permissions.

Step 3. When asked to select User or Group, choose the “Advanced” option first. In the Common Queries, select “Find Now”, which will give a list of search results of user names.

Generally, Windows adds four user groups to the Security, including Authenticated users, Administrators, Users, and systems. If you add just Administrators and System, you’ll disallow to access the disk and even read its properties such as the used & free space. That’s why you need to add the User’s account into the Security.

Scroll down to find the “Authenticated Users”, by clicking “OK” to add it.

Step 4. Confirm saving the changes you’ve made. Return to the Explorer, and now my drive E shows normal again. I can open it without receiving any further error messages.

This may help you,
Rachel Gomez