WD Black2 Dual Drive & Windows 10

I bought this drive last year for my HP Pavilion laptop. I’m finally getting around to install it. I upgraded this pc to win8 and then win10 prior to changing drive. I tried connecting WD SSD/HD with supplied cable and could not get it to work, kept getting no WD drive connected. I borrowed Acronis Sata Wire kit and tried to clone that way. I must have tried 12 times and program kept freezing near completion. I thought there was something wrong with the WD SSD/HD so I borrowed a 256 GB Samsung SSD and was able to clone first try. I installed(loosely) the Samsung SSD into my laptop, fired it up and all worked great. I assumed I had a dud WD SSD/HD. The next day I had a thought to see if I could clone the Samsung drive to the WD SSD/HD. Guess what, cloned perfectly first try???, to my surprise. So I installed the WD SSD/HD into my laptop and booted it up, worked perfectly. But when I try to use the WD Installation software to activate the 1TB HD part of drive I get the “No WD drive installed.” message again. Does anyone have an idea of what I can do next to get this to work?
Thanks in advance, Andy

In this thread, if the link works because I can’t figure out this forum software, is a post by me and how I got Win 10 installed on my Black2 and to this day it’s still working fine after some big Windows updates since December.

Thanks, but I was hoping to keep the SSD and the HD as separate partitions. I used Acronis and it only saw the SSD drive and not the HD. I’m running off the SSD drive right now. Trying to figure out how to turn the HD part of drive on and usable. Otherwise I’ve got a very expensive 110 gb SSD here.

You’ll have to connect it to another PC to do this. Use Windows disk manager and remove all partitions. Then use Acronis to partition the drive. 1st partition should be 111GB that’s the SSD. Install/clone the OS to it then install the drive and if it doesn’t boot use the Windows Install disk to repair the boot issue. Once booted into Windows use disk manager to create the 1TB partition. I’m pretty sure the 1st partition is always going to include the SSD even if you make it 1TB and that most likely will cause issues so they have to be separated.

Disk manager or Acronis do not see the 1tb hdd. Tried dos also.

It is ONE drive but the partitioning of it is what creates a C: and a D: drive. You have to make the 1st partition a size that is a little smaller than the 120GB as that is the memory/SSD part of the drive. If you make it too big it will lap the memory over to the actual hard drive’s size and that will cause possible problems at some point in time if you use it that way. This is why you use 111GB as the size of the first partition as partitioning software sees it ALL as ONE drive.

If it isn’t there you need to create it…

In this picture is a drive I have (it is not a Black2 but a 200GB drive In RED box) partitioned to 108GB with the remaining ~77GB showing as “Unallocated”. If you have removed ALL the partitions on the Black2 and then create one that is 111GB using Acronis you should then have an “Unallocated” space of ~1TB when you look at it with Windows Disk Management. You have to do all this on a PC that has windows already installed and connect the Black2 with the USB adapter that came with it.

If you’ve done all this and it still doesn’t show then it’s beyond me as to what the problem is.

In this picture ALL partitions have been removed from the drive.

In this picture ONE partition has been allocated and the remaining space is shown as unallocated.

Thanks for all your help, I think it’s a hardware issue as I don’t get the “Unallocated” display. I tried to do a screen print, but my screen print isn’t working for some strange reason. I could take a photo but at this point I don’t think that will help anyway. I emailed WD and started a claim so will see what they have to say.
Thanks again for all the effort :).

Andy Kowalski

Andy Kowalski

Well if Disk 0 is the Black², the 1TB may not show correctly until you remove those partitions, just guessing at this and I’m not sure. I just know what worked for me and my Black² and it’s still working fine. Sorry you’re not having the same good luck :frowning:

If that was mine, I would delete both those partitions, open Acronis and make a new 111GB partition 1st and see what happens.

Good luck with WD!

First things first, what version of Acronis Disk Director are you using? I would advise you against using version 11. Use version 12 and the latest build. Older versions have several issues with Windows 10. But in general, whenever possible, and especially in this kind of situation, use the default disk manager software that comes with the system. In this case, use Disk Management.

Let me try to sum this up first, this is too confusing.

OS upgrade path: Win X to Win 8 to Win 10.
Clone path A: OEM HDD to Black2
Clone path B: OEM HDD to Samsung SSD
Clone path C: Samsung SSD to OEM HDD

Next, what tools are you using? I read between the lines that you’re using Acronis Disk Director. Is this correct? Or this some other Acronis product? As I said, don’t trust Acronis Disk Director. I know how good that software is, I have 4 licenses for that alone, plus the True Image software. But I also know that it has some problems with Windows 10. So I stay away from it at the moment. I suggest you do the same. Use Disk Manager in Windows.

You also mentioned Acronis Sata Wire Kit. I looked it up. This is a SATA to USB active adapter. Well if you borrowed this, then what was it you used before this? Did you also use some kind of cloning software that came with Black2? What cloning software did you use? Did you use True Image maybe?

You do realize that a cloning operation copies the content of a HDD or SSD exactly as it is? It copies everything! Not just the things you see inside Explorer. It does a sector by sector cloning operation. All data structures, file systems, boot sectors, everything is copied as is! This is not ideal thing to do in many situations. The exact disk layout that works well for one disk may not work as well on another. You have things like sector size to consider, or over provisioning, in case of Samsung SSD disks.

I strongly advise against doing what you did. Just doing some cloning on the fly, to the left and right, as if it were nothing. Go to the bottom of the original problem until you have it working, and only use the original software and tools that were provided with the Black2 drive. I understand that you want to get it working and get it done. But you have to think it through. Don’t force it. If it has been waiting that long, you can give your self some more time and do it right.

What also complicates things in your case is the simple fact is that it’s two drives in one. This sort of thing adds additional level of abstraction. This is evident when you want to troubleshoot a drive like that. It’s confusing both to the system and to the user. For instance, why would you as a user have to think about how long the first partition should be, and take into account how big the SSD part is of your Black2? This might be a valid argument, but this adds a level of complexity and that’s never good.

I know its’ too late now, but if you ask me: get 1 SSD, and 1 HDD. Problem solved! And if you ever get a problem you can work with the drives much more easily to solve it, just by the simple fact that they are both exposed to you as user, and also to the computer. You should not need to do math to figure out how long your first partition should be… that’s just stupid if you ask me. I’m against hybrids like this one. I’m sure they have great performance and capacity, as long as they work as expected that is. User should be in control, not some advanced algorithms, structures and controllers inside the drive. Additional abstractions don’t help you as a user. Even a computer is having a hard time to figure out what you got there, as you have seen for yourself.

You mention some WD installation software. What’s that for? Would that be the cloning software?

Have you ever done a clean install of Windows? If you have not done that since Windows 8, or never at all, then this is the time to do it. If you have already activated Windows 10 there should be no problem to activate it again after a clean installation, because Microsoft activation servers will recognize your computer once it goes online and calls home to active.

If you do a clean installation, make sure to install it directly onto the WD Black2 drive. Have it connected and in place before you boot from the Windows installation media. I am sure Windows 10 will be able to properly recognize and configure your WD Black2 for you. But since you have already done one installation on it… you cloned another system onto it, you may need to reformat it first.

I don’t know how much time and effort you are ready to invest in this, or what your experience is. But the way I see it, you got two options.

Start over again:

  1. Disconnect and take out any drive you may have inside the PC.
  2. Put in and connect the old OEM HDD or whatever you had before.
  3. Make sure the PC boots off of it and all the files and everything else is where you left it.
  4. Connect the WD Black2 using the [name goes here] adapter.
  5. Use the [name goes here] cloning software to clone your OEM HDD to the WD Black2.
  6. Power off.
  7. Disconnect the WD Black2 form the adapter.
  8. Disconnect and take out the OEM HDD.
  9. Put in and connect the WD Black2.
  10. Power on.

Your PC should boot up with the WD Black2. Please don’t use alternative software unless you have to and unless you know what you’re doing. So if you encounter errors using the provided software, report back here or call up WD and ask them for help. Make sure you use the latest version of the software, as an older version may have problems with Windows 10. You can usually get the latest form the company website.

If the provided software doesn’t work, then try Acronis True Image or some other imaging tool. Also, only use the provided adapter to connect the WD Black2 and do the cloning operation. Replace “name goes here” with whatever software and adapter you’re using.

Do a clean install:

  1. Disconnect and take out any drive you may have inside the PC.
  2. Put in and connect the old OEM HDD or whatever you had before.
  3. Make sure the PC boots off of it and all the files and everything else is where you left it.
  4. Backup up your user files, or make a complete backup of your entire system. Acronis True Image is great for this.
  5. Create a bootable Windows 10 DVD or USB flash drive.
  6. Connect the WD Black2 using the [name goes here] adapter.
  7. Open Disk Manager.
  8. Delete all volumes on WD Black2.
  9. Power off.
    1. Disconnect the WD Black2 form the adapter.
  10. Disconnect and take out the OEM HDD.
  11. Put in and connect the WD Black2.
  12. Power on.
  13. Boot up from Windows installation media.
  14. Partition as you would like, and proceed with installation.
  15. Take out the Windows installation media when the PC auto reboots for the first time during the installation.
  16. Complete the installation.
  17. Log in.
  18. Voilá!

It’s a bit simplified, but still very detailed. It’s needless to say that there is a lot of information online on how to do each of these steps. Someone here will be able to help you with the details as well if you get stuck. But perhaps the best thing for you might be to take the first approach and try to do it right this time. I would personally prefer the clean install route. Simply because I am a perfectionist and I don’t like having OEM bloatware on my computer, and this is the way I have been installing Windows for the past two decades.

A clean install also gives you the best Windows experience you can get! Everything works just so much more smoothly without the OEM bloatware, and the very nature of doing a clean install ensures that Windows gets a chance to start over and formulate a working configuration for your computer, with the devices you currently use, as opposed to carrying on half-broken configs from previous Windows installations, two or three generations down the line from your past upgrades.

Be advised though that doing a clean install, especially on a laptop PC, may cause some of your devices not to work properly. It’s not something that can’t be fixed. But to fix it you should be made aware of what it is. What it is, is that Windows may not have all the right drivers for some of the system devices that are built into your computer. This may often includes network and audio chips. So be prepared by visiting your manufacturer’s (HP) website and downloading all the needed drivers for your computer model and target operating system that you will be installing.

Wayyyy…too much info but appreciate it.

The Black² comes with WD’s Acronis True Image, WD’s software for the installation of the Black² (which establishes the HDD 1TB partition AFTER you either Clone or do a fresh install out of the box and a USB to SATA adapter. In this case the WD Black² installtion software is NOT Win 10 compatable. WD will NOT support a Black² and Win 10. It will not even install on a Win 10 OS. If you read, I think, the OP wanted to install Win 10 on his Black². I supplied him with the method I used that was successfull and is still working fine since December.

Since the WD Black² Installation software will NOT run on Win 10, you have to partition the drive with something else as this is just about all it does anyway. He said he was familar with Acronis’s Software. Good or bad, wrong or right the end result for me was a working OS. Yes, I did use Acronis True Image to make the 111GB Partiton and to clone Win 10 from another drive. Once I cloned the Win 10 OS over and got it to boot up, I used Disk Management to set the 1TB partition. Works like it should, what can I say? Maybe I’ll have issues, maybe I won’t, we’ll see in a year from now if it’s still OK.

There are always several different ways to do things with a computer. If it works correctly when you get the job done, then you did it right. So no way is wrong or right, it just may not be as good as, or as easy as a different way. As long as it works…

I wouldn’t try this on a PC for use in the real world, but at home, for me, it did the J-O-B.

I know, I know… it was a way too long wall of text. However, all the basic info, and even some instructions are already there. I hope it can be used and reused for other similar problems.

But you’re right at one point: if it works, it works! :slightly_smiling: We don’t have to make a rocket science out of it. However, my personal experience is that all problems are easier to tackle with some more background information and knowledge. After all, that’s why we all gather around web forums such as this one, to exchange experience and knowledge with each other.

I’m not saying your approach is wrong. Not at all! It’s just not the way I personally function, and the way I would approach the problem. I would try to understand why it’s not working first before bashing it with commands… or a hammer! :smile:

According to the download page at WD website, version 6126, released 11/24/2015 is compatible with Windows 10. “Windows 10 - starting with Update 2 (build 6613)”


I started from scratch last night, formatted the SSD part of drive. Ran WD software to unlock HD part of drive and it still does not see the drive. Below is a link that shows the message I get.

Waiting for call from WD as I believe this is a hardware problem.

For anybody watching this thread I thought I would post an update. Just got off phone with WD support. They think it is a problem with using inVdia(?) drivers on my laptop. So I’m starting all over and will post result in case it may help someone else. Thanks to forum members for help.

Man - - keep us up to date on this I’m interested…

inVidia that couldn’t be Nvidia could it?

What WD is NOT supporting is the WD Black² INSTALLATION software. Seperate from the True Image software and gets installed AFTER you have the OS in place. Located HERE

Explained in this VIDEO

Yes Nvidia. So I did what WD suggested last night and still get the drive not recognized display. Will call then again tonight. Will keep posting updates till issue resolved as it may help someone else at some point.

Ah! I see! So the problem is that WD is not supporting the ONE program they SHOULD be supporting: namely their own program! A user can always switch to the full version of the bundled third party cloning program. In this case, that’s Acronis True Image 2013, which is now in its 2016 edition. But the user cannot do anything about the WD supplied, first party software tool that activates the HDD part of the product. Not if the product is EOL or WD decides for some other reason not to update the accompanying software tool.

What is it that this activation software does, that cannot be done manually from a command line? Will WD release the source for this software? I would be interested in updating it for them.

I quotes from the video:

At 5:22: “If your data is less than 120 GB, go ahead and click automatic [cloning]. If your data is larger than 120 GB, we strongly suggest that you do a clean installation of your OS to the WD Black2 drive, versus attempting to clone. If you’re an advanced user and choose to clone with more than 120 GB of data, you will need to manually exclude files and folders such as folders photos, music and videos in order to properly clone your original drive without filling up the WD Black2 SSD portion of the drive.”

From what I can tell, keep the cloned size under the 120 GB apparently has to do with performance. Not with incompatibility with the system or the WD installation software. It’s a well established notion in the geek/nerd/hacker community that system files are the ones that should be residing on the SSD. Because of currently limited capacity at low price range for SSD drives, we use mechanical HDD drives for storage. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to respect that 120 GB limit… does it? I don’t know… it would seem stupid to me. I prefer to use whatever partition size I want and do whatever I want with my drives. What is said in the video is more of a recommendation for the general populi.

They “strongly suggest” doing a clean installation of the OS. :slightly_smiling:

“If you proceed with the manual procedure and you encounter errors with the clone, we suggest doing a clean installation. This will correct most issues.”

There it is again! Clean install! :grinning: The silver bullet that solves all Microsoft and Windows related issues at once! But it’s not for the faint of heart.

Samirg, the SSD part is 120GB and the !,000GB is HD Platters. That is why you keep your clone to less than 120GB.