How to Detect New Hard Drive on Windows 10: 4 Ways to Do It

Apply our detailed procedures right away

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Key notes

  • If your internal hard drive is not showing up, it might be because it is not initialized or it needs formatting.
  • Make sure your disk is properly connected to the motherboard with the SATA cable.
  • Your HDD might also not be visible in Windows 10 due to some BIOS settings.
  • Updating the hardware drivers will solve the internal drive not showing up on Windows 10.
how to detect new hard drive Windows 10

There’s a chance that you might encounter specific problems when installing a new hard drive on your computer.

Perhaps the most common issue with a new HDD in Windows 10 is that the system doesn’t show them for some reason. But before we solve this problem, let us discuss some possible triggers.

Why is my new HDD not being detected?

From what we gathered from multiple users, any of the following elements may make Windows 10 not to discover your HDD:

  • Driver problem – Drivers are essential in connecting software and hardware. If they are corrupted or outdated, you may expect some issues.
  • Network connection problem – Some users with network connection issues may also have this error.
  • Incorrect BIOS settings – The BIOS may play a key role and, if not correctly configured, may stop the OS from noticing a new HDD.
  • Wire connections – Another cause could be a connection problem due to a malfunctioning USB port or a frayed or damaged USB cable.

Note that these causes can result in other common problems, such as:

  • Internal hard drive not showing up in Windows 10, in Disk Management – If your hard drive isn’t showing in Windows at all, it’s possible that it’s not connected correctly. To fix that, enter BIOS and make sure that the drive appears.
  • Can’t see the hard drive in Windows 10 – If you can’t see your hard drive in Windows 10, it’s possible that your hard drive isn’t properly initialized and formatted. However, you can fix that with ease using Disk Management.
  • External hard drive not showing up – This issue can also appear with external hard drives, and we already covered how to fix problems with an external hard drive on your PC in one of our previous articles.
  • Hard drive won’t appear in BIOS, on PC, or in File Explorer – In some cases, the hard drive won’t appear in BIOS. Your configuration usually causes this in BIOS or by connection issues with your hard drive.
  • Internal hard drive not showing up on Windows 11 – If you are using Windows 11 and you get this error, you can still apply the solutions below but tweak them a bit.

Also, you should take a peek at our post on what to do if Windows 10/11 thinks the hard drive is removable and solve this problem for good.

Let’s jump into the solutions to the hard drive errors mentioned above without further ado. Follow along!

How do I detect hard drive on Windows 10?

First, before you go into any of these solutions, you must:

  • Ensure your hard drive is correctly connected to your motherboard and power supply.
  • Also, it would be best if you tried connecting the hard drive to a different port or using a different cable.

1. Update your drivers

  1. Press the Windows Key + S, type device manager, and click the Device Manager option.
    how to detect new hard drive Windows 10
  2. In the Device Manager, select the device you wish to update, right-click on it, then select Update driver.
    how to detect new hard drive Windows 10
  3. Repeat for all the devices you want to update.

You may have a driver issue if your hard drive won’t show up in Windows. To fix the problem, ensure your drivers are up to date.

This goes for your motherboard and chipset drivers, so visit the manufacturer’s websites and download the latest ones for your motherboard.

2. Initialize the disk

  1. Press Windows Key + X and choose Disk Management from the list.
    Hard drive won't show up on PC
  2. You’ll see all connected hard drives listed when the Disk Management window opens. Look at the list, and find a drive listed as Disk 1, or Disk 10 (other names are possible, as well).
  3. You’ll recognize this drive because it is not initialized and is listed as Unknown, and unallocated.
    how to detect new hard drive Windows 10
  4. Right-click on that partition, and select Initialize Disk from the right-click context menu.
  5. Once you initiate the process, it will ask you to choose between a Master Boot Record (MBR) or a GUID Partition Table (GPT). We advise you to choose a GPT. Click OK.
  6. Once you do this, you’ll get back to the main window, where your new drive will be listed as Basic and Online, but it will still have unallocated space.
  7. To fix that, right-click on the stripped box, and select New simple volume
  8. Click Next, and assign a drive letter.
  9. Now you need to format your new drive. For the best results, choose the NTFS file system, and Perform a quick format, then hit Next.
    how to detect new hard drive Windows 10
  10. Finish the process.

There you go; This is a simple way to detect a new hard drive on Windows 10. If you’re not too fond of Disk Management, you can use any third-party disk management software.

In most cases, you need to initialize your new hard drive, after which the HDD will show up on your PC normally.

3. Use diskpart command to clean your drive

  1. Press Windows Key + X and choose Command Prompt (Admin) or Powershell (Admin) from the menu.
    External hard drive not showing up
  2. When Command Prompt opens, enter the following command and press Enter:
    Internal hard drive not showing up Windows 10
  3. After diskpart starts, input the script below and hit Enter:
    list disk
    • You should now see a list of all hard drives on your PC.
    • You must select the correct hard drive. If you select the wrong hard disk, you’ll wipe all your files and lose them, so be extra cautious.
    • Check the size of each drive to find the hard drive that is giving you trouble. Select the problematic drive by entering select disk X.
    • In our example, we used select disk 0, but you’ll likely need to use a different number on your PC.
  4. After you select the hard drive, double-check everything and make sure that the problematic drive is selected.
  5. Now enter the script below and hit Enter:
    Can't see hard drive Windows 10

If your internal hard drive doesn’t show up, it might not be properly configured. Sometimes, you need to use a single command to completely wipe your hard drive and initialize it again.

Before we start, we have to mention that this solution will delete all files and partitions from the selected drive, so it’s best to use it with a new hard drive that doesn’t have any files.

If your hard drive has some files, it would be best to back them up to removable storage or a different drive.

After a few moments, your hard drive will be wiped, and all your files will be removed. Now go back to the Disk Management tool and initialize your hard drive.

Then, create a new partition, and assign a letter to it, as we showed you in one of our previous solutions.

Alternatively, you can initialize and format your hard drive right from disk part. Just start Command Prompt as an admin and run the following commands:

select disk 1 (make sure to and select the disk that you just cleaned)
attributes disk clear readonly
online disk
select disk 1 (make sure to and select the disk that you just cleaned)
convert gpt
create partition primary
format quick fs=ntfs label="data" unit=64k
assign letter=“E"

4. Check if your hard drive appears in BIOS

  1. Keep pressing F2 or Del while your system boots to enter BIOS. Sometimes it might be a different keyboard key, so if you’re unsure, check your motherboard’s manual.
  2. Once you enter BIOS, look for your hard drive.

Many users reported that their internal hard drive won’t appear in Windows, and various issues can cause this. However, you can always check if your hard drive shows in BIOS.

If your hard drive appears in BIOS, it’s connected and working correctly, so Windows cause the issue.

On the other hand, if the hard drive doesn’t show in BIOS, it’s likely not properly connected.

If you’re finding it hard to access your BIOS, take a closer look at our dedicated guide that will teach you how to do it quickly.

That’s about it. If you did not know how to detect a new hard drive in Windows 10, this should have helped. In most cases, you need to initialize it, and we sincerely hope this action will be the only one required.

If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions, let us know in the comments section below.

More about the topics: Fix Hard Drive issues