Laptop cannot see my External Hard Drive, but other devices

Hello All,

As the title says, I cannot see my external hard drive, a WD Elements Portable Hard Drive - 1 TB, on my Laptop. When I connect it to my main PC, or even my Windows Bootcamped Mac, it can view the device.

I've already Googled and tried the following solutions:

1) In Disk Management, uninstall driver. (I cannot do this as I cannot see the hard drive in there)
2) In Device Manager, view hidden devices and uninstall all greyed out devices. (This does not work when I plug the device back in.

Anyone have ideas on how to fix this?

Post was last edited on December 17, 2017 1:02 PM PST

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Clarification Request
Need help..

My Seagate 1 TB hard drive is not working only my lap... It works perfectly fine with other laps... It works well even on my tv.. I think there's something wrong in my lap... Tried everything. Please help...

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Re: need help

Start with answering the three questions in my post from December 17, 2017 1:04 PM below.

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Re: can't see external hard drive

- Does that same USB-port see a USB-stick?
- Does the laptop see that disk if you connect it to a powered hub?
- Does the laptop see that disk if you connect the laptop to a power adapter in stead of running from the battery?

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Re: can't see external hard drive

1) Yes. If I plug my mouse into it, it works perfectly fine. If I plug other storage (usb) devices in, it can also see it.

2) What do you mean by a powered hub? Like an external USB splitter? If so, I don't own one of those.

3) No, it does not see it if it is on battery or plugged in.

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Used to work

As much as I appreciate the help, I don't think the power is the problem.

I had a FileHistory backup set up on the drive before, around a month ago. A month ago, I was able to see the external drive under my computer. Unless an update has changed power requirements?

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Re: used to work

I you don't believe it's hardware, go back to your latest image backup that still worked or to factory conditions.

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Stuff happens

The only way you can figure it out is to try things.

You seem to be looking for a 'click on this' answer.

Good luck.

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Yeah I understand.

After speaking to Western Digital, I've isolated the problem down to my Laptop. The external hard drive works on other operating systems and computers, including Windows 7, 8.1 and 10. All ports on the laptop work with other USB 2/3.0 Devices. So it must be a setting or internal problem...

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SmartWare on it?
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No on all

No password protection, no SmartWare, and I can see the device on Windows 7, 8.1 and other Windows 10 devices. The problem appears to be isolated to my computer alone. It's not a hardware issue as other USB 3.0 devices work on this laptop.

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Does this drive run on USB power alone?

If so, maybe your laptop USB port isn't supplying enough. Have you tried this with your laptop on wall power too? Have another cable you can try with it?

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The laptop is

The laptop is on power right now. And no, I do not have another cable.

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when you touch it

Can you feel the drive inside spinning, a humming, or some indication the drive is in motion?

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I can feel the drive spinning yes.

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All I can suggest at this point

Is to install the SmartWare program from WD and maybe it will then give you whatever driver your laptop is missing that won't let the drive be seen.

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Did you try the power Y cable?

I carry one in my PC medic bag to test for such issues. I like it to sniff out if the laptop has developer some USB power issue.

Also worth checking.
1. Boot to Safe Mode, log in, then reboot normally. Try again.
2. Be sure the laptop is not on battery power, use the mains.
3. Change the drive letter. See if the USB shows in Drive/Disk Management. Change the letter up a few.

Post was last edited on December 19, 2017 8:57 AM PST

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Okay, I will try... boot in safe mode. I cannot see my drive in disk management, so renaming drive letters is not an option. Additionally, my laptop is usually on power from the wall.

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The test #1 is not to see that drive.

It's more of the do this, reboot and then look. You should have rebooted by the time you get to idea 3.

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Fix for all drives external USB media centres etc. Solved

Open up ur start menu mate type in CMD open ur command prompt and follow these steps exactly as goes if ur drive isn't full off things u need

Open CMD in Admin Mode.
Type diskpart and press Enter.
Type list disk to display all the storage media connected to your system.
Type select disk X where X is the number of the disk you want to format.
Type clean and press enter to erase all the data on the drive.
Now, you have to create a new partition on the drive. Type the following and press enter:
create partition primary
Now format the newly created partition using the following command:
format fs=ntfs
It’ll take some time for the system to format the partition according to file system specified.
You can also use fat32 in place of ntfs but the latter is recommended for a hard drive repair with larger capacity.
Also, if you want to perform a quick format instead of full format, add quick attribute to the command.
format fs=ntfs quick
You can add a name to the partition bexiy adding the label attribute in the same command:
format fs=ntfs quick label=MyDrive
After the format process completes, assign a letter to the drive:
assign letter=G
Use exit command to quit the diskpart utility and another exit to quit CMD.
Repaired 3 externals and 10 usbs using this method on PC. Pretty sure if u don't won't to lose u data just type in diskpart . select disk and assign it disk like end of previous process Happy

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