The Disk in Drive Is Not Formatted Error – Resolved!


The article explains about the most common error The Drive is Not Formatted, which frequently occurs on External drives, USB and SD card when connected to Windows computer. If you are facing a hitch related to the above mentioned error, you are on the right track.  Follow the write-up to know more on fixing the error drive is not formatted.

Drive is not formatted

Quick Navigation:

What does disk is not formatted error mean?

What causes the error disk in drive is not formatted?

How to fix the drive not formatted error?

What to do when drive turns RAW and display the error drive is not formatted?

Reformat the Drive showing disk is not formatted

What does Disk is not formatted mean?

The Error “Disk is not formatted” occurs when the disk is not ready to be used by OS. The data cannot be read by the OS and disk needed to be formatted with the particular file system to be used. Generally, the message is encountered when you are trying to access a RAW drive.

Reasons behind the error Drive is not formatted

A few common reasons that cause the error The disk in drive D is not formatted. Do you want to format it now? are:

Bad sectors on the drive or corruption in the hard drives, virus attack and power surge.

When your drive is affected with any of the above mentioned reasons, the error message pops up stating, the drive is not formatted and prevents you from accessing data from any external drives by asking you to format the disk in drive.

Without wasting any more time, let’s move on to the effective methods that help you fix the error external hard drive not formatted.

How Do I Fix A Disk That Is Not Formatted?

Before trying out any of the below mentioned methods its recommended to perform few basic workarounds such as:

  1.     Verifying the cable connected between the computer and the disks
  2.     Try connecting your disk to any other working computer
  3.     Run antivirus and check for the error

If the above mentioned methods fail to fix the error disk in drive not formatted. Move on to the next section.

Check your External drives, USB drive for errors

Step 1: Right click on Start button, select Command Prompt as Administrator

Step 2: Type chkdsk *:/f in the Command Prompt window

CHKDSK to fix the error Disk is not formatted

Note:  Replace the letter * with the External or USB drive letter.

Step 3: Press Enter key and it will start repairing damaged or corrupt files on the drive you selected.

Without any hindrance if chkdsk runs the process, your external drive can be opened without the error. All you need to do is restart the computer and get back your access on all the files on the drive.

What to do when your drive has turned RAW?

There are chances when CHKDSK fails to repair the disk on the drives and displays the message: The type of file system is RAW. CHKDSK is not available for raw drives.

In such situations fixing or recovering data from RAW drives becomes complex. The only way to fix the USB drive not formatted is to reformat the drive but reformatting the drive will wipe off all the data present on the drive.

You are here because you don’t want to lose your precious data stored on the drive by formatting the disk. Do not worry! Your data is safe. You can easily restore data from the formatted drive without any hassle. If you are wondering how, here is the answer.

Using SFWare hard drive recovery tool, you can recover the re-formatted data from any drive. The software scans every sector of your drive to find the formatted files from RAW drives, inaccessible or corrupt drives to get your data back safe. Download now to recover data from the reformatted drive.

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Reformat the drive to fix the error

Fix the error when drive turns RAW

Reformatting the drive involves changing the drive file system. Follow the below given steps to perform reformatting.

Step 1: Connect your external drive and open Windows Explorer

Step 2: Right-click the drive and Select Format. Select the file system you want to format your drive

Step 3: Provide your drive a name under Volume label and make sure the Quick Format box is checked.

Step 4: Click on the Start button and the computer will reformat your drive.

When you have completed the process, you can open the external drive on your computer without any drive not formatted error.

After the completion of the reformatting process, all you have to do is recover your important data from the formatted drive using SFWare External hard drive recovery tool.


Disk in the drive not formatted are usually encountered on external drives connected to Windows computers. You can rely on chkdsk to fix the error if caused due to minor corruption and file system error on the drive. But there are issues with chkdsk if the drive turns RAW. Henceforth the most recommended method is to recover data from the drive and reformat it.

If you were able to fix the error and recover formatted data from the drive, please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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