4 Ways to Fix ‘Hard drive needs formatting error’

External hard drives are the most commonly used type of storage devices. Thanks to the large storage and low price, it is easily accessible to common folks like us.  As with any storage device, external hard drives are also subject to data loss and corruption.

Often times, you may encounter error messages like ‘You need to format the disk in drive E: before you can use it. Do you want to format it?’

HDD Needs Formatting

This issue mainly occurs if the file system in the external hard drive is not supported by the OS. Other reasons are the presence of bad sectors on the drive and file system corruption. Abrupt shutdown of the system during a write operation on the drive can severely damage the drive. To fix the error, please troubleshoot using steps below:

  1. Other USB ports

Plug in the external hard drive to a different port and check if the error persists.

  1. Re-install drivers
  • Right click on My Computer/This PC
  • Go to Manage > Device driver
  • Double click on disk drives > right click on your drive > Uninstall.
  • Once uninstalled, disconnect your card and restart your PC.
  • Connect your external hard drive and try again
  1. Chkdsk command
  • Connect your device to your PC.
  • Go to command prompt and enter Chkdsk, then your drive’s letter, followed by a colon and /f.
  • If your data is recovered, it will be saved in the directory lost.dir in the external drive’s folders
  1. Software Method

If you are unable to fix the error using methods above, you need a professional tool like Remo Recover to retrieve your data. If you format the drive when you are prompted to format, you will lose all data on that drive. Data can still be recovered in this case but is always better not to format. Please click on ‘No’ when you are prompted to format and continue with the steps as explained below:

  1. Connect external hard drive to your PC
  2. Download and install latest version of Remo Recover
  3. Select ‘Recover drives’ from the main screen and choose Partition Recovery
  4. Choose your external drive
  5. The tool scans the system and displays a list of partitions in the drive
  6. Select the partition you wish to recover
  7. Once scanning is completed, a list of files is displayed.
  8. Select the file/s you wish to recover and save

Note: Please purchase the software to save your file.

About Remo Recover

Remo Recover is software to recover data after quick formatted hard drives. It is designed to retrieve office files, audio, video, music files and much more. It is designed to recover around 300 types of files. It recovers files from all kinds of external hard drive like SATA, SCSI, IDE etc.

  • Supports various file systems like FAT16, FAT32, NTFS, NTFS5, ExFAT drives
  • Provides an option to ‘Save Recovery Session’ to save/resume recovery process anytime you wish
  • Provides a ‘Preview’ feature to preview files before recovery

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