How to Fix Disk Unknown Not Initialized Error?


Summary: This article will explain to you the practical ways to repair and fix the “Disk unknown not initialized” issue without losing your data. And what if you have already initialized the disk and found the data loss? Bitwar Data Recovery Software helps you!

Many people come across issues when dealing with storage devices. One such problem is when the external hard drive or any other storage media plugged into your computer prompts that the device is successfully connected; however, it does not show up on the computer. This can be frustrating as it will not only restrict access but also may lead to loss of data.

Disk Unknown Not Initialized

Disk unknown not initialized, unallocated

Hi, I have a problem with my Western Digital external hard drive. When I tried to plug it to my computer, it said that it’s successfully installed; however, I couldn’t find it in “my computer”. After that, I tried to enter to Disk Management, there also said the disk 1 is unknown, not initialized, unallocated and prompt a message like this: you must initialize a disk before logical disk manager can access it. Can you please help me to recover data as it contains all my pictures? Thanks.

The scenario mentioned above is known to be the case of “Disk unknown not initialized” error, which commonly occurs in Windows version 7, 8 and 10. But, do not worry! If you ever fall into the same situation as this article will serve you with the possible solutions to fix the problem without losing your precious data.

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What Causes the “Disk 1 is unknown, not initialized, unallocated” Issue?

There can be multiple reasons like partition loss and MBR (Master Boot Record) corruption associated with the prompt “disk unknown not initialized” issue. Some of the other factors are listed below:

  1. Viruses and Malware:
  2. Damaged/Corrupted file system:
  3. Presence of bad sectors
  4. Any kind of physical damage:
  5. Unsafe removal of the storage device

Various solutions can help in getting rid of “Disk unknown not initialized” issue, but there are chances of data loss when applying them to sort out the problem. Hence, at the onset, we will recover all the valuable data using Bitwar Data Recovery Software in the following contents.

Resolve “Disk unknown not initialized” issue by initializing the hard drive:

It is the simplest way to overcome the problem, all you need to do is to follow steps given below.

Step 1: Go to My Computer or This PC and right-click on it.

Step 2: Select Disk Management, then right-click on your hard drive and click on the Initialize Disk option.

Step 3: A dialogue box will appear, choose the disk to initiate followed by choosing MBR or GPT partition style.


To be concerned that initializing the drive will lead to loss of data, hence, if you do have vital files on the hard drive, follow below-given steps to restore data from your hard drive.

Recover Data

Step 1: Download Bitwar Data Recovery Software and install the software.

Step 2: Launch the recovery software and select the hard drive that initialized previously.

Step 3: Select the recovery mode and then choose the File types you to be recovered from the disk.

Seletect Types to recover

Step 4: After this, click on the Scan button to begin the scanning.

Step 5: After scanning, you can Preview all the selected data, and then click on the Recover button to start recovery.


After recovering the data you want, it’s time to fix the “disk unknown not initialized” using disk part.

How to Fix “Unallocated External Hard Disk Drive” using Diskpart?

Step 1: Locate the Command Prompt by typing CMD in the search box and then right-click on it, select Run as administrator. For Windows 7 users, you just need to find it on the Start Menu > Accessories.

Step 2: After opening the Command Prompt, type diskpart

Step 3: Now, followed by typing the below-given commands one-by-one (without double-quote)

“list volume”

“select volume x” (X is replaced to the volume number of your unallocated hard drive, if you are having no idea which one is, go to the Disk management to find out the exact one)

“delete volume” (You can follow below steps continually when the disk management tool can’t create the new volume on the affected drive)

“list volume”

“select volume x”

“delete volume”

“delete volume override”

Now, close the diskpart windows and then press Win Logo key + R and type Diskmgmt.msc to launch the Disk Management, after this,  follow with below steps to create the new volume and set the needed file system to get the error of “Disk unknown not initialized” fixed.

Steps to Convert the Disk to Accessible

Step 1. Find the needed hard drive and then right-click on it.

Step 2. Choose the new simple volume.

Step 3. Set numbers in simple volume size in MB

Step 4. Select a drive letter from Assign the following drive letter section.

Step 5. Format the drive with the selected file system, e.g. NTFS, and assign the new volume label as you like.

Step 6. Click finish.

This step will let you overcome finally the error of Disk unknown not initialized, go to My Computer or This PC to use it now.

Fix-It Now!

There are plenty of problems that a computer user comes across while performing day to day task. These problems occur mainly due to human mistakes or any kind of physical and logical disturbance with the system or device.

One of the common issues is “Disk unknown not initialized“, which can occur due to reasons like viruses, corrupted file system and unsafe removal of storage device, etc. We have listed the best solution to fix this problem and the most convenient way of restoring your data with the help of Bitwar Data Recovery Software.

Read More

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