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How to initialize new hard drive?

May 2016


I connected a 1Terabite external hard drive to my computer via the USB port. Unfortunately, I cannot access the hard drive because there is no Icon, or any means to do so. Right click does not help, going to “My computer” in the start menu does not help and going to “Control Panel” does not help also. The computer / add hardware wizard indicates the hard drive is installed and working properly. What do I do? Please help!


To initialize new disks
Open Computer Management (Local).
In the console tree, click Disk Management.
  • Computer Management (Local)
  • Storage
  • Disk Management

Right-click the disk you want to initialize, and then click Initialize Disk.
In the Initialize Disk dialog box, select the disk(s) to initialize.
If you are running Windows XP 64-Bit Edition, you can select whether to use the master boot record (MBR) or GUID partition table (GPT) partition style.

The disk is initialized as a basic disk.


To open Computer Management, click Start, and then click Control Panel. Click Performance and Maintenance, click Administrative Tools, and then double-click Computer Management.

You must be logged on as an administrator or a member of the Administrators group in order to complete this procedure. If your computer is connected to a network, network policy settings might also prevent you from completing this procedure.

New disks appear as Not Initialized. Before you can use a disk, you must first initialize it. If you start Disk Management after adding a disk, the Initialize Disk Wizard appears so you can initialize the disk.


Thanks to sharpman for this tip on the forum.

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