FIX: Windows Server 2016 could not find any drives

Vladimir Popescu
by Vladimir Popescu
Windows & Software Expert
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Windows Server 2016 could not find any drives - laptop on desk

A number of users have reported that when they try to install Windows Server 2016, the installation can not find any drives.

This obviously stops you from finishing the installation process and has caused people a lot of stress.

The specific solution for this issue will depend on the version of BIOS that your PC is using, the BIOS settings, and what type of drive you’re using (SSD or HDD).

Even though the variables for this issue will make the solutions vary a lot as well, in this list, we compiled some of the best methods for you to try out. Read on to find out the details.


How to troubleshoot the Windows Server 2016 not finding drives issue

1. Make sure your drive boot priority is set correctly in BIOS

laptop on desk - Windows Server 2016 could not find any drives
Depending on the specific BIOS version your PC is using, the exact steps will vary.

To try this method out, please follow these steps:

  1. Restart your PC and press the required key to enter the BIOS.
  2. Navigate the BIOS menu and find the BIOS Boot Priority option.
  3. Make sure the drive you’re trying to use to install Windows Server 2016 is set correctly.
  4. Save the settings and exit BIOS.
  5. This will restart your PC, and now the boot should be performed from the drive you selected.
  6. If this didn’t solve your issue, please try the next method.

2. Deactivate the secure boot option from BIOS

laptop with cd drive - Windows Server 2016 could not find any drives

  1. Restart your PC and open BIOS by following the first steps of the first method.
  2. Find the option called Secure Boot.
  3. Deactivate the option.
  4. Save the settings and exit BIOS.
  5. Your PC will automatically restart.
  6. Check to see if the issue persists. If it does, you can try out the next possible solution.

Windows Server doesn’t boot up? Try these methods


3. Reset your BIOS to default settings

laptop with notepad - Windows Server 2016 could not find any drives
Resetting your BIOS to its default configuration will allow you to fix any corruption produced during the time you used it.

You can reset BIOS either by activating this option from the settings, or by removing the CMOS battery.

Here are the steps you need to take:

Using BIOS:

  1. Restart your PC and boot into BIOS.
  2. Find the Setup Defaults option.
  3. Search for an option called Reset to Default (or a similar name).
  4. Select the Load Setup Defaults and press Enter to initiate it.
  5. The process of resetting your BIOS will start immediately.
  6. Save the changes and exit BIOS.

Removing the CMOS battery:

  1. Completely turn off your PC and unplug the power cord.
  2. If you’re using a laptop it is recommended that you remove the battery as well.
  3. Touch a piece of metal that has no paint on it to discharge any static electricity.
  4. Open up your PC.
  5. Identify the location of the CMOS battery and remove it by pressing the clip.
  6. Wait for a few minutes and then plug it back in.

Conclusion

In today’s article, we explored some of the best solutions for the problem caused by your Windows Server 2016 not finding your drives.

Let us know if this guide was helpful by using the comment section below.

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