I am using an external western digital. I plug it into the PC and I hear it spinning but I can't see it in My Computer. Disk Manager reports it is OK, but it doesn't assign a name nor a letter. I cannot assign a letter by hand because all options when I right click are greyed out apart form Delete volume which I obviously DON'T want to do.

Disk manager view

Also there should be two partitions but there is only one detected (of 930GB in size). Also Hard Disk Sentinel reports the disk is perfect.

Hard disk sentinel

The data on the disk should be recovered at any cost, but If possible I wouldn't give the disk to a data recovery company.

  • This seems to me to be subtly asking for recommendations for copy programs, but I'm not sure enough to vote to close it.
    – Xavierjazz
    Aug 20, 2016 at 18:06
  • Check the Disk Management Console (diskmgmt.msc) and see if you can do something from there. Aug 20, 2016 at 18:08
  • I included a screen from (diskmgmt.msc), all options when I right click are greyed out apart form Delete volume which I obviously DONT want to do. @Xavierjazz what do you mean sorry
    – user11230
    Aug 20, 2016 at 18:12
  • Where is the drive from? Whats on it?
    – Cosco Tech
    Aug 20, 2016 at 18:14
  • This is the drive: amazon.co.uk/Western-Digital-Elements-External-Drive/dp/… On it there are family photos and videos from VHS no longer usable
    – user11230
    Aug 20, 2016 at 18:25

2 Answers 2


I'm so sorry to hear about what happened with the external, mate - I know this could be an extremely unpleasant experience, especially since there are so valuable data stored on it...

At this situation, since the drive is still spinning, you can try to boot with Linux Live CD and see if you can salvage the data. You can follow these steps if you want:

  • Download/burn the ISO image to a CD or USB.
  • Change the boot order to the media you burned the Linux on.
  • Once it loads, you could try and mount the drive (or if Linux can read it, it will mount by itself) and see if it shows up. In case it is - transfer the data.

Hopefully it will help, but in case it doesn't then IMO it will be best to contact a data recovery company and see if your information can be retrieved from the drive. Lastly, do have in mind that the more you use the drive and try to repair it, the worse the damage and the extraction of files may become.Here's a link with few data recovery partners of WD:



you need to assign a drive letter to the drive, which is appearing in the Disk Management without a drive letter. Then. restart your system to check whether it is visible on My Computer or not.

Kindly acknowledge me the further status.

  • Hi, as you can see the option to assign a letter is not clickable.
    – user11230
    Aug 23, 2016 at 14:30
  • @user11230 I couldn't see that because you hid this information in a comment. Hardly anybody reads all the comments. I have edited your question for you. This relevant information should be there in the first place. Aug 30, 2016 at 21:55
  • Well somebody else edited the question removing that part. This issue is dead anyway.
    – user11230
    Aug 31, 2016 at 18:47

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