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Showing Error While Formatting External Hard Drive or Formatting Fails

Deepa Pandey | Modified: December 6th, 2021 | data recovery | 5 Minutes Reading

The process of deleting the old data from the hard drive is called formatting. Its main motive is to free or repair the storage space for reading and writing new data or files. In other words, it means making space available for the new files. As a user format, the hard drive the operating system deletes all bookkeeping details from the disk.

After formatting the hard drive in Windows, an operating system makes sure that all sectors are reliable or not and looks for the bad sectors also. There can be various reasons due to which one needs to format a hard drive.

For example, installing a new Windows, to avoid any virus or malware attack, or if a user is giving the system to some other or dumping it. For all these situations it is necessary to format a hard disk in Windows. However, there are some situations when a user is trying to format the hard disk, formatting fails while formatting an external hard drive in Windows. It becomes a most irritating problem for a user as he/ she is not able to figure out what to do. Thus, the main focus of this blog is on its causes and various troubleshooting ways to fix hard disk formatting issues.


Formatting Fails or Showing Error While Formatting External Hard Drive – Fix Issue

“From the last few days, I am facing an issue while formatting a hard disk in Windows. The situation is that I want to do a clean and successful installation of Windows 7 on my laptop. But, whenever I tried to format the hard disk, receives an error, “Windows could not format a partition on the disk. This is the error that occurs every time I tried to format the complete hard disk. I do not know what is happening with the hard disk partition in windows 10 in my hard drive. Therefore, looking for a solution to fix this formatting hard drive issue.”

Note: If you format your hard drive and you lost your data from hard disk. Then, you can use SysTools hard disk data recovery software. It recovers all types of data such as: photos, videos, audios, and multimedia files and folders. You can download this utility on Windows OS. It supports to Recover Deleted Files from Seagate’s External Hard Drive.

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Possible Causes External Hard Drive Showing not Formatted

While performing the formatting process in Windows, an error encounters always or the formatting process completes unsuccessfully. There can many reasons behind this and are mentioned below:

  • One of the possible reasons is that the hard drive is not configured properly in the BIOS due to which the BIOS & Windows detect the drive wrongly.
  • The built-in utility is the Windows such as format utility is also conflicted by the viruses or spyware programs.
  • If there is corruption in the hard drive, that will make Windows stop the process and display an error message.
  • The other most possible reason is system is not having the latest BIOS, hardware drivers, installed and no latest service pack
  • installed on the operating system or Windows does not address or identify the parameters of the drive properly.
  • A user is trying to format the larger partition than 32GB as a FAT32 in Microsoft Windows 2000 / XP/ 2003.
  • The data cable or hard drive is damaged or defective physically.

These are all the possible causes of showing errors while formatting an external hard drive on a Windows Operating system.

Tips & Tricks to Troubleshoot Hard Disk Formatting Issue

To resolve the “cannot format hard drive in Windows” issue, one can use various troubleshooting tips and tricks discussed below:

Make sure that one must have the latest BIOS installed on the computer system, motherboard, and PC controller card. One can get BIOS updates from the manufacturers of the computer system. Apart from this, the BIOS must be set up to Auto-Detect the hard drive.

  • Make sure that the latest drivers are installed in the system for the hardware. One can look for the latest drivers from hardware manufacturers.
  • The most important always to keep the computer system free from viruses or spyware.
  • Sometimes data cable is the cause of formatting problems so, it is suggested to be replaced with Serial ATA or IDE Ribbon cable.
  • Moreover, make sure that these cables are not longer than 18 inches.
  • One can also try Quick Format instead of Full Format when the Full Format is not completed successfully.

Also read:- External Hard Drive not Ejected Properly

Final Word

There can be various reasons to format the hard drive in Windows but when it fails to complete, it creates trouble for the user. It becomes really difficult for a user to detect the exact reason behind the showing error while formatting the external hard drive or unable to format the disk in Windows problem. Thus, after understanding the main causes behind the formatting fails or an error is shown while formatting a hard drive in Windows issue various troubleshooting ways are discussed. One can use them based on the cause and resolve the hard disk problem while formatting in Windows.

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