Today, after I restarted my computer, I realise that I have a missing drive in My Computer screen. Although I don't access it all the time, I remember very clearly that there is a Recovery (D:) drive on the My Computer screen all the time, but after the restart, the drive has mysteriously gone missing. I'm now left with only the C: drive.

It appears as though the volume has never existed. When I list the files in diskpart, it appears that the Recovery volume is still around, but it doesn't have a drive letter assigned to it, and probably also the reason why it didn't appear in the My Computer screen(?):

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I believe the missing volume was a partition one that came with the factory installation of Windows.

What has gone wrong and how did the partition volume go missing? How can I get it back?

My running on Windows 7.

  • Are you referring to a missing disk or a missing volume? If the latter, it won't show up under list disk but will show up under list volume. Try running list volume in diskpart and tell us what you see. – joeqwerty Apr 12 '14 at 15:40
  • @joeqwerty This should be a case of missing volume. Thanks for clarifying. I have only one harddisk, but partitioned into 2 volume. I didn't do the partition. I believe it was the factory installation of Windows 7 that did the partition for me. I have done a list volume and updated my question accordingly. Thanks. – xenon Apr 12 '14 at 15:52
  • It will become really hard to answer this question because you have a problem where you're not even sure it was like that. Normally the RECOVERY partition comes with the OS and is seen everywhere. It is a partition/volume, so just looking at the list of disks won't do it. The question is: Is your primary partition the same size as the disk, if yes, there's no recovery partition. if no, it probably still exists but is hidden somewhere. You can have a volume with no drive letters attached to it, so you won't see it. Try looking into computer management->disk management. – LPChip Apr 12 '14 at 15:54

I see the Recovery partition in your list volume output.

Recovery partitions aren't assigned drive letters because they're Recovery partitions and not meant to be accessed in Windows Explorer as data volumes. It looks perfectly normal to me.

In addition, one of your DVD drives has been assigned the D drive letter, so unless you manually assigned D to the DVD drive it's unlikely that your Recovery partition had that drive letter assigned, if it in fact did have a drive letter assigned to it.

  • Normally a recovery partition can have a drive letter and if that's the case the DVD will automatically get a different letter, such as E. – LPChip Apr 12 '14 at 15:58
  • 1. I've never seen a Recovery partition with a drive letter. 2. Logic tells me that even if the Recovery partition did have a drive letter it wouldn't have been the D drive as that has been assigned to one of the DVD drives. The only way the DVD drive could have the D drive letter, assuming that the Recovery partition used to have the D drive letter is if the OP manually assigned it after the original D drive went missing, which seems unlikely. Windows doesn't automatically reassign drive letters for CD, DVD or HDD drives. – joeqwerty Apr 12 '14 at 16:02
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    I have. On HP machines we had to manually hide the letters until a certain release. Its really up to the manufacturer to do it right in their image. But indeed, windows will not reassign a driveletter. – LPChip Apr 12 '14 at 16:15
  • But I remember seeing the Recovery volume on My Computer screen for a long time before it recently disappears. Now that I know it doesn't really affect my day-to-day usage, I feel less worried. Still, I'm quite curious why I was seeing it when I shouldn't have had and then it went hiding recently. – xenon Apr 12 '14 at 16:17

Your edit tells me enough to tell you that it is not missing. There simply is no drive letter attached to it (and therefor it does not show up in explorer), which is not needed anyway. The recovery partition is only used when you boot into recovery mode. Depending on your brand and model it can be a variety of keys. For example, with HP it usually is F11, and Asus has ALT-X if my memory serves me right.

Either way, the keycombo for that is shown during the boot. You do not need to see it in order for it to work.

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