Want to win a PS4? Go Premium and enter to win our High-Tech Treats giveaway. Enter to Win


Computer Won't Assign Drive Letter to IDE Hard Drive Enclosure

Posted on 2007-03-27
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2016-06-26
I have two hard drive enclosure devices (IDE) and a new Western Digital 160MB internal drive that I've tried to install in each.  When I connect the USB enclosure, Windows tells me that a USB mass storage device has been installed, and usually (but not always) I can see in Device Manager that it recognizes the device as containing a Western Digital drive.  However, I never get assigned a drive letter and can't access the drive through My Computer, so there's no way to put data on the device.  This is true for both USB enclosures.  A separate USB external drive (integrated, not a standard internal drive installed in a separate enclosure device)I own has no problem being recognized and assigned an additional drive letter.  Please help.
Question by:justasking
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
  • 3
  • 2
LVL 96

Accepted Solution

Lee W, MVP earned 500 total points
ID: 18801007
Have you gone to Computer Management/Disk Management and verified the drives are formatted?  And if so, assign them a drive letter there and/or format them.

Author Comment

ID: 18801528
My prior coment escaped before I finished it.  I did not format.  Can that be done while the drive is in the enclosure, or do I have to do it the way I would if I were formatting it as a replacement drive and open the computer?  I received no Windows messages telling me I had an unformatted drive.
LVL 63

Assisted Solution

SysExpert earned 300 total points
ID: 18802452
If it is not formatted, then it will not usually get a drive letter.

Try via disk manager, and if you can not do it there, then take it out of the case and do it via the  IDE interface.

I hope this helps !
LVL 96

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 18802874
Unformatted drives will usually get drive letters.  UNPARTITIONED drives will not.  Go to Disk Management and create a partition and then format it.

Author Comment

ID: 19127147
Thanks.  Disk management did the trick.

Author Comment

ID: 19127170
Increasing points to share
Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Is your phone running out of space to hold pictures?  This article will show you quick tips on how to solve this problem.
The business world is becoming increasingly integrated with tech. It’s not just for a select few anymore — but what about if you have a small business? It may be easier than you think to integrate technology into your small business, and it’s likely…
This video teaches viewers how to encrypt an external drive that requires a password to read and edit the drive. All tasks are done in Disk Utility. Plug in the external drive you wish to encrypt: Make sure all previous data on the drive has been …
This Micro Tutorial will teach you how to reformat your flash drive. Sometimes your flash drive may have issues carrying files so this will completely restore it to manufacturing settings. Make sure to backup all files before reformatting. This w…

604 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question