WD external hard drive not seen on computer


Jan 5, 2017
Hi. I can't see my WD 1TB external drive on mycomputer. The device manager can detect it. The disk manager shows it as Disk1(unknown and not initialized, don't see the ribbon there like I see it for Disk0). Is there a way to fix this problem? Would greatly appreciate your help.
Welcome to the community, @hari_19!

Is this a brand new WD external drive or do you already have data stored on it? If you have data on it and it's listed as 'Not Initialized', it means that it has lost its file system. If that is the case, I'd definitely consider contacting a professional data recovery company for assistance. You could also try plugging the HDD to another working PC/laptop around you and see how it will pop up there.

If the WD 1 TB external drive is brand new, then you basically need to follow the steps to making it accessible through the File explorer (This PC/My Computer). I'd advise you to follow the tutorials from our knowledge base and make sure you execute the procedures properly:
Step 1: How to initialize your HDD
Step 2: How to partition & format it

I hope these help you. If you encounter any difficulties, let me know! :)
Good luck!


Jul 1, 2016
It may be perfectly fine, but the WD interface is broken.
I have a My Book that got knocked off a desk, with the result that the HDD could not be read. As I had nothing to loose I opened up the case, took out the drive and tested it in a port on my desktop, clearly the drive had had it. I got out another spare drive out of my NAS array, formatted it with NTFS, as is required with the WD interface and tried that out. No luck WD reported 0 bytes.
Further investigation led me to a program that sits on the HDD and acts as a driver interface. If this gets corrupted then your drive can be fine, but is reported as having 0 bytes of data.In my case I had neglected to install it.
This all depends on whether you use a desktop PC or are stuck with a laptop, as a drive bay is required. You can buy external drive bays, so that is an option.
Remove the HDD from the case and connect to a sata port on the PC or external bay. I built my PC, so it has an external HDD drive slot on the top.
Check the drive out with Disk Management, or any third party disk checking software. This makes it easier to recover your sensitive data yourself, or in fact do any number of non destructive operations yourself.

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