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External USB hard drive not recognized

by altezza / March 21, 2004 2:02 PM PST

I have an IOGEAR 160GB External USB Hard Drive (GHD135C160) and it is not being fully recognized.

I have a WinME system, 512M, P3. When the drive is connected via USB and turned on, the removable disk icon(unplug or eject hardware) shows up on the lower right corner of my screen, it does show up under "Device Manager" -> under disk drives, but when opening "My Computer" it is not recognized there.

There are no drivers for this drive for WinMe, IOGEAR web page does not indicate any for this OS, it says "plug and play"

Please help me in offering suggestions to get my external drive recognized.


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Re:External USB hard drive not recognized
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 21, 2004 7:52 PM PST

My unit does something very similar on the USB 1.1 ports that are on my motherboard. Plug the drive into my USB 2.0 card and it works. I don't have the IOGEAR, but something else.


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Re:Re:External USB hard drive not recognized
by altezza / March 21, 2004 11:49 PM PST

Oops, sorry, I forgot to mention that yes, it is plugged into the USB1.1 port, I don't have a USB2.0 card yet.
Any suggestions on how I could get it to work using USB1.1?

Thanks! Happy

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Re:Re:Re:External USB hard drive not recognized
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 22, 2004 6:42 AM PST

Yes. Install the USB 2.0 PCI card and try again. may have some notes about USB 2.0 and Windows ME, but from memory it just works if the motherboard drivers are current.

The card is 11 dollars, so not a great expense around here.


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Re:External USB hard drive not recognized
by altezza / March 22, 2004 2:05 PM PST

Ok, I went to Fry's and got a USB2.0 card, installed the drivers, plugged in the external HD ... still is not recognized. I didn't find anything that could help on, my motherboard(Supermicro 370SSM) drivers seem to be current. This is getting frustrating. Any other suggestions folks?

(Thanks for your help so far Bob)

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Re:External USB hard drive not recognized
by altezza / March 22, 2004 2:57 PM PST

I should add that the USB2.0 card is recognized in the Device Manager. With the External HD plugged into that, it is still not recognized in the exact same way as when it was plugged into the USB1.1.

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Have you FDISKed the drive yet?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 22, 2004 9:12 PM PST

The drive usually needs partitioning and formatting. This is not automatic and with external USB units, the procedure varies too much for me to tell you how they implemented it.

As to motherboard drivers, they MUST be current and you can't use that "Update Driver" button. You didn't write how you know such are current.

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Re:Have you FDISKed the drive yet?
by altezza / March 23, 2004 12:57 PM PST

Ok, finally was able to figure out how to map this external drive. In System Properties -> Disk Drives -> WDCxxx ... Selected that drive, clicked on Properties -> Settings, -> Put a checkmark in the "Removable" box, then it enabled the pulldown to select which letter to map it to. Then finally it showed up under "My Computer" Formatted the drive then did a Scan Disk. Voila!

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Re:Have you FDISKed the drive yet?
by cuevasnod3 / November 10, 2004 12:54 PM PST

I'm having the same problem only with Win XP... after researching it just on google, it seems to be a common occurance, and yet I can't find an answer. My problem is exactly the same as yours, but I don't know how to map mine, please help.

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Explain "map".
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 10, 2004 9:32 PM PST

It's not a common term when partitioning and formatting a drive.

As such, I can see why you would have trouble.


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Re: Explain "map".
by cuevasnod3 / November 11, 2004 3:52 AM PST
In reply to: Explain "map".

The reason I used the term map was because it had been used in an earlier post to explain what I was trying to find out. But I figured out the problem. I had to change the default setting (optimize for quick removal) to the other option (optimize for performance) before there was even an option to format the disk. So I simply changed it and formatted, and it worked fine.

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Re:External USB hard drive not recognized
by cquality1 / December 14, 2004 7:02 AM PST

Another solution that I used to solve the problem:
I have a 120 mb Western Digital External hard disk drive listed by device manager under 'Disk Drives' but not recognized as a drive letter in 'my computer'.

1. Right click on 'my computer' select manage, select disk drives. Be sure to maximize window or you will not see the sub-window you need to see.
2. Position cursor in Disk 0 sub-window (identify the disk by the size you are expecting). Right click, select properties, select a drive letter, and then proceed to format.

After that, I am good to go.

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AC Electromagnet used to restore UBS HD recognition
by orion1111 / March 14, 2006 11:12 PM PST

After trying everything I could think of or read about to get my cptr to re-recognize an external UBS Maxtor One-Touch-II 200GB, password protected, hard drive, I tried to erase the inacessible data files and old home videos with an old AC electromaget I bought years ago to mass-erase old VHS cassettes. Not only were the files not erased, but - voila! - the hard drive was rendered recognizable again on my Dimension XPS Dell Cptr running on Win XP. Thus, I was able to save all 100+ GB of nearly-lost files and home movies on to another HD and DVDs! Can anyone explain how the 60 cps electromagnet Rx was able to fix the problem that all other efforts failed to correct??

Very Curious.

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Re:External USB hard drive not recognized
by goodomens11 / September 9, 2006 2:50 AM PDT

I maximized the page but still can't find ''disk drives''. where is it located exactly?


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I gone through that myself
by onebione / December 20, 2004 2:35 PM PST

the problem was the FORMAT of the hard drive. I had formatted it in NTFS under WinXP. WinME does NOT recognize NTFS. it only supports FAT. so you can
1. reformat it to FAT which works with everything or
2. buy software that will act with a connection between your WinXP and your external HD.

I suggest the first method.

~I got mine external enclosure from

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No drive shows up in My Computer
by senlinlai / January 9, 2005 4:17 AM PST

I plug the external hard drive under XP and it seems that the compter can detect a new hard device in the beginning and "USB mass external drive" do pop up in Device Manager. However, it disappeared after 5 seconds. The external drive was never seen in My Computer. I'm curious if the problem comes from the hard drive without partition. If not, how to solve the problem? Thanks for your help.

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For sen...
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 9, 2005 4:44 AM PST

You added your reply in the middle of a discussion and apparently did not read the entire discussion.

This is evident by you leaving out the details that we already went through.


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Thanks Guys!!
by trishdom / February 8, 2005 9:29 AM PST
In reply to: For sen...

I had this same problem with Win XP using an IDE to USB adapter to plug in a hard drive as an external drive. You guys hit the nail on the head with the disk manager. Problem solved! Just wanted to say thanks!

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Re: No drive shows up in My Computer
by dtbutler / March 4, 2007 1:40 PM PST

I am having this same problem. I have read this whole thread and don't see a solution.

I have a western digital drive in a penr35 enclosure that is usb connected. I just changed computers. The drive works fine under Win XP SP2 on the old computer. It showed up a couple of times on the new computer (WIN XP SP2) and then disappeared.

I'm at my wits end.


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This discussion is not applicable.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 5, 2007 12:15 AM PST

Your issue looks to be drivers or USB ports. If I wanted to make it work I'd install a new USB 2.0 PCI card and connect it there. Then again it may work on a REAR USB port, but I can't tell from your post.

Sorry but I won't respond further IN THIS discussion because it's down off on page 2. Feel free to make a new post if the PCI CARD and REAR PORTS don't work out.


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My solution
by zakpack / June 19, 2008 6:42 AM PDT

Had same problem in computer A - connect USB hard drive - USB connection tone and "safely remove hardware" icon would appear in system tray - but no drive/letter would appear in my computer or windows explorer. Solved problem by restarting computer with USB connected. It acted like a non USB device - no hot booting. In computer B had same problem but the restart solution wouldn't work. Tried the disk manager set to auto suggestion in this thread - no help. Knew it wasn't a problem with the hard drive as it worked on another computer. Also, wasn't interested in reformatting it and losing the data. Tried a flash drive in the same USB socket and it was recognized (WIN XP/SP 1). For some reason this "reset" the system and now the original USB hard drive works normally. So try a different USB storage device, it may "reset" your system.

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by zakpack / June 25, 2008 8:52 AM PDT
In reply to: My solution

external hard drive again became unrecognized, possibly due to plugging it in while it was spinning up? Neither of my prior solutions worked. Also had same symptoms on 2 other computers. Finally resorted to taking the drive out of the case and trying to hook up the IDE cable to an old computer. Spent hours trying all combinations of master/slave/cable select on this drive and the internal drive trying all four slots on 2 cables but couldn't get the computer to recognize it. Decided to connect it back in the case, but couldn't remember how it was slaved. Selected master. Now it works again on all of the computers with the USB cable. Either having the other computer try to read it directly from the IDE cable or changing the jumpers somehow "reset" it so now it reads normally with no lost data. Immediately copied all data onto another external drive that hasn't acted up yet. Will now stop yanking out the USB cable prior to using the "safely disconnect" icon.

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External Hard Disk drive not detected
by Gurjeet Singh Kaloti / February 21, 2010 8:56 PM PST

Please guide me. The details are :
Hitachi Travelstar
Model No. HTS541040G9AT00 5400RPM
P/N: 0A25392 S/N: X2D804M CT:*2896C023VS64Z9 MCL:DA1175
IEC: S/N: 2C9803JCS6VVB SPS: 380107-001 AS# :372774-001 Rev 8.03

I am try to diagonise this via Seatools too in XP 2, but nothing has turned furitful.

Email ID:
Mobile ; 9001740878

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Re: disc not detected
by Kees Bakker / February 21, 2010 9:13 PM PST

"I tried to diagnose this via Seatools".

- What happend when you tried?
- Seatools is from Seagate. That's not Hitacthi. Try the drive fitness test from
- What does XP's disc management say about the drive?


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Just a Thought!
by joemel1977 / April 11, 2010 6:46 PM PDT

Just a thought as I had a similiar problem and I changed the USB wire with a another from some other equopment and WALA! Everthing Worked!

I found a note about this on a website in the final closing sentence.

Sometimes we make issues too complex when the solution is simple. KISS principal!

I hope this helps!
Take care,

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A little help!
by joemel1977 / April 11, 2010 7:01 PM PDT

Please try changing the USB cable as I had a similar problem and that was the solution. KISS principle! Remember to PIF*!
Take care and enjoy the moments as they pass quickly,

*(pay it forward)

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External USB hard drive not recognized
by Activist--2008 / March 4, 2011 12:34 AM PST

I'm having the same problem. A USB hard drive is not being recognized. However, other USB hardware is performing OK. I defragmented the drive earlier (via Smart Defrag). However, I've done that before and never had this happen. I've ran System Mechanic and severl other (so called) repair programs at no avail.

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here is the solution for your unrecognized hard drive.
by calandriando / March 7, 2011 3:37 AM PST

right click "my computer" then choose "manage", and then a windows opens up and left click once "Disk management" , on the right hand of your window you gonna see Disk 0, Disk 1 ,you are gonna see all your drives and cd/dvd drives, choose the hard drive that you computers is not recongizing and right click the box with a blue stripe at the top and white on the botom for your unrecognized drive and a drop down is gonna open ,choose "Change Drive letter and Paths...", then choose "Add" and choose a drive letter that you want, and the hit "ok", and that should work.

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by dlock55a / April 3, 2011 8:55 PM PDT


I am having, and have been having, trouble with my New 320GB External Hard drive. I have read this entire documentation and have found no solution.

My Hard drive is a Verbatim 320GB, Model : 62872. It is only 3 months old and has worked before.

The problem is that when i plug the hard drive into my 2.0 USB Port, it does all the "Right" Things. A Green light flashes on the drive itself but it doesn't show in : "My Computer" , "Disk Management" or any of the other ways listed above. Again, it has worked before and it does occasionally show up in the explorer. It does not have an external power source and it was an auto install drive.Seconond to this it does occasionally give a series of loud "Beeps", when it does it will not works.

Any help on the topic will be of great help.

Thanks Dlock55a

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Re: hard disk
by Kees_B Forum moderator / April 3, 2011 9:02 PM PDT
In reply to: HELP NEEDED....

- Try on a few other PC's just to see of it works there.
- If possible, try with an external power source (adapter).
- Try with an Y-cable for better power.

Tell us the results of these experiments.


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Re : hard disk
by dlock55a / April 3, 2011 9:20 PM PDT
In reply to: Re: hard disk

@ Kees_B

Thanks for being so quick...

I have tried it on a few other computers with the same result. I am not to sure about what you mean with "if possible, try with an external power source adapter". or with a y cable it would be much appresiated if you could explain them in detail.. E.g. Where to get it , cost... function

Thanks... dlock55a

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