How to Recover Data from an Uninitialized Disk

The problem of uninitialized disk happens to all Windows systems users. This includes those who upgraded the latest, more advanced Windows 10. While Windows 10 offers several advanced features that former systems didn’t have, users still encounter what normally shows up as “disk unknown not initialized and unallocated”. Hence, “uninitialized disk” is a common issue that affects even the removable external hard drives. The same case applies to the internal hard drives of both desktop computers and laptops.

Part 1: How to Recover Data from Uninitialized Disk

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First of all: To recover data from uninitialized disk, please do not format or initialize your disk when you see the error messages like “RAW drive is not initialized”, “Format Drive” or “Drive cannot be accessed” on your computer. This is very important to avoid data being overwritten on your hard drive.

Now let’s start the data recovery on Windows computer.

Step 1 Select the type of files you want to recover

Launch Wondershare Hard Disk Data Recovery for Windows on your computer, you can select "All File Type" option or select the specific file type and Next.

recover data from hard disk

Step 2 Select your Uninitialized Hard Drive

Now, you need to select your hard drive on the "External Removable Device" section and click “Start” to scan partitions on it.

uninitialized disk data recovery

Step 3 Recover Data from the Uninitialized Disk

A quick scan will start first, you can simply preview the recovered files once it completed. If you can't find any files, go to scan agian with "Deep Scan". After the deep scan, all recoverable files on your uninitialized disk will be shown in the window. You can check how many files on that disk can be recovered by the file names.

In the end, you just need to select the data you need and click “Recover” to save them onto your computer.

hard disk recovery

Regardless of whether you are using an external hard drive or an internal hard drive, you can experience a serious data loss. As for your unallocated portable drive, keep it unused prior to performing a data recovery exercise. Choose another computer storage gadget to save your restored data. Using the same drive will not be okay because you can lose the saved data. Always keep data backups. This is a very wise way to prepare for an impending data loss. Furthermore, you should never use your unsafe external hard drive on an insecure computer. This is a computer that might have crashed due to malware or viral attack. As well, remember to detect bad sectors on your external hard drive. These can trigger hard drive data loss. Even a corrupted computer file system and logically corrupted drive file system should be avoided. This can be done only by proper maintenance of a computer machine and proper handling.

Part 2: How to Initialize the Hard Drive

In Windows 10, the disk space shows unallocated space in Disk Management. In other situations, where the disk not initialized issue occurs, disk space is not shown in Disk Management. An external hard drive will mostly appear as uninitialized in Disk Management. This can occur due to viral attacks, a corrupted Master Boot Record, a partition loss or deletion, bad drive sectors and computer file system corruption. To always know what’s going on, open your Disk Management area and locate the uninitialized disk.

If it indicates disk capacity, know that your Windows OS has recognized the uninitialized disk. But due to some reasons, a partition may be missing or perhaps the Master Boot Record (MBR) is corrupted. Software can be used to repair a faulty MBR or to fix a partition. If the uninitialized disk does not show disk capacity, there could be a major disk issue. So take it to a professional

hard drive not initialized

Solving the case of an uninitialized disk is not very difficult. The first thing you should do is to initialize this particular hard disk. The process is as easy as right-clicking My Computer and then choosing Manage. This will help you run Disk Management. Alternatively, click Win+R keys and type compmgmt.msc. This will run this partition management tool. If you don’t have files saved on this external hard disk, go on and initialize it in MBR or GPT partition. This is a direct solution for those using Windows 10.

Note: A disk initialization process can delete all your data and trigger a serious hard drive data loss. Hence, if you have kept a lot of data on your external hard disk, don’t try to initialize it as data will be lost.


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