I have my portable drive encrypted with Bitlocker.

However, every time I connect with computer it doesn't appear a window to type in password to unlock rather than a recovery key. Unfortunately, I lost my recovery key so I can not solve this problem

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2 Answers 2


I understand that you still know your password, but are not prompted to enter it. You can use a command for that.

Open cmd window with admin rights. First let's verify which keys exist. Type

manage-bde -protectors -get F:

This results in a list of 'keys' for your drive. It obviously list their ID not their actual content. This list could contain:

  • Numerical password, which refers to the recovery key.
  • Password explains itself.
  • External key, which is usually a key file on an usb drive.

If your system responds as expected, you can try the following unlock command:

manage-bde -unlock -Password

After you pressed enter it asks to enter the password in the cmd window. (Type with care.)

Side note: I read here it might be the case that it is mandatory to enter your recovery key because you use your portable drive with different computers. I am guessing that if your drive was perceived as a Bitlocker fixed drive instead of a Bitlocker-to-go drive, this protection mechanism might have been triggered. I have not been able to validate this difference between To Go en Fixed Bitlocker drives. My own system (also) 'mislabled' my drives in Win 8.1. This might be something to keep in mind.


What's your OS version? If it is Windows 8 or later, try to find the recovery key follow the steps in the link below BitLocker recovery keys: FAQ | windows.microsoft.com If it is Windows 7, if you might have saved a copy of the BitLocker recovery key to a file, a USB flash drive, or printed a hard copy. If we couldn't get the recovery key, I'm afraid that you need to format F drive to use.

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