How to fix/repair Seagate external hard drive not recognized on Mac?

By Juno | Posted to Mac Data Recovery on November 21st, 2017 |

Summary: Feel very upset when finding your Seagate external hard drive not recognized/detected on Mac? Have no data backup? Now download free external hard drive data recovery software for Mac - iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery to recover data from the not recognized Seagate external hard drive.

"I have a MacBook Pro with macOS El Capitain. My WD hard drives are recognized, but my new Seagate 1T drive is invisible. The light on the drive works, which tells me that it is drawing power from the computer. But the computer does not recognize the drive. Any one knows how to fix Seagate external hard drive not recognized, showing up, or detected on Mac or at least recover files from the drive?"

Just similar to the case above, many Mac users have reported that their Seagate external hard drives' lights were on but the drive is not recognized by Mac. Once your external hard drive is not recognized, not detected, not showing up or not working on your Mac, you can't even access the drive, let alone opening the files stored on it. Don't worry. In this article, you can find out the full solutions about how to fix the unrecognized Seagate external hard drive and also recover data from the unrecognized hard drive.

Table of contents
1. Why does the Seagate external hard drive not recognized on Mac?
2. Common scenarios that Seagate external hard drive not recognizable on Mac and solutions.

Part I: Why does the Seagate external hard drive not recognized on Mac?

The Seagate external hard drive, as well as other external storage devices, is often used as backup media to store important files, or to transfer data among computers. However, it is prone to be damaged or corrupted logically or even physically. So it's quite common for a Seagate external hard drive to become unrecognized by your Mac all of a sudden and leave you all at sea. Usually, the reasons behind this problem could be varied.

1. Bad USB port.
2. macOS update issue.
3. System failure.
4. File system corruption.
5. Motherboard issue.
6. Virus infection.
7. External drive damage or corruption, etc.

Part II: Solutions to fix the Seagate external hard drive not recognized on Mac error

To fix the unrecognized Seagate external hard drive on Mac, the very first thing is to check whether it's the USB port's issue. Plug in the drive to another USB port or a different computer, and check if the drive can be recognized, detected or show up on Mac. If yes, congratulations. Both the external hard drive and the data on it are secure. Contrarily, you need to move forward to try out the solutions according to your situations so as to fix the Seagate external hard drive not recognized on Mac issue.

Can the Seagate external hard drive be found in Disk Utility?

For many Mac users, when they say the Seagate external hard drive is not recognized on Mac, they usually mean their drives can't show up in Finder. But actually, most of the time even if a Seagate external hard drive doesn't show up in Finder, it still can be found in Disk Utility. So please check whether the drive is showing up in Disk Utility, and fix the error in different conditions.

Scenario 1: The Seagate external hard drive is recognized but not mounted in Disk Utility

If you can see the Seagate external hard drive show up in Disk Utility but greyed out, it means at least the drive is recognized by your Mac. Now you have two options.

1. If the Seagate external hard drive is not mounted in Disk Utility, you can simply click the Mount icon near it or the Mount button on the top of the window. You can successfully access your files if it can be mounted.

2. However, if you can't mount it or the Mount icon is greyed out, the file system or the partition table of the Seagate external hard drive may be corrupted or have some errors, which prevents your Mac to recognize/detect the drive correctly.

Solution: Fix the unmountable Seagate external hard drive by reformatting.

Reformatting is the feasible method to fix the corrupted file system or partition table of the unmounted Seagate external hard drive. However, it will also erase all data stored on it. So, to avoid unnecessary data loss on the not mounted Seagate external hard drive, you should firstly recover data, and then reformat it in Disk Utility.

iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery is free Mac data recovery software which can recover data from not recognized Seagate external hard drives, not readable Seagate Backup Plus drive, recover deleted files emptied from Mac Trash, recover data from formatted, unmountable, inaccessible, unreadable or corrupted hard drives, external hard drives, USB flash drives, SD cards, memory cards, etc.

Step 1: Launch iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery.

Step 2: Select the Seagate external hard drive and click "Next" button to scan for all the lost data.

Recover data from not recognized Seagate external hard drive on Mac

Step 3: Preview the searching results, choose files you need, and click "Recover" to get them back.

Step 4: Have a check to ensure you have got all the lost data back.

After recovering data from the unmounted Seagate external hard drive, you can now reformat the drive in Disk Utility without worrying about data loss.

Step 5: Go to Disk Utility.

Step 6: Select the Seagate external hard drive from the sidebar and click Erase on the top of Disk Utility window.

Step 7: Complete the required information for erasure, including Name, Format, and Scheme. Then click Erase to go.

Step 8: Wait until the erasure process ends and click Done.

iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery is compatible with macOS Mojave 10.14/High Sierra 10.13/10.12 Sierra and Mac OS X 10.11/10.10/10.9/10.8/10.7.

Scenario 2: The Seagate external hard drive isn't showing up in Finder/on the desktop

If your Seagate external hard drive can show up and mount in Disk Utility, the drive is still working. You can't see it showing up in Finder or on the desktop is usually because you haven't setup your Mac to do so.

1.Show Seagate external hard drive in Finder

Step 1: Go to Finder > Preferences > Sidebar tab.

Step 2: Select "External disks" under "Locations", and then your Seagate external hard drive will show up in Finder.

Show Seagate external hard drive in Finder

2. Show Seagate external hard drive on the desktop

Step 1: Go to Finder > Preferences > General tab.

Step 2: Tick "External disks" to show the Seagate external hard drive on the desktop.

Show Seagate external hard drive on the desktop

Scenario 3: The Seagate external hard drive can't show up in Disk Utility

If your Seagate external hard drive can't be listed in Disk Utility, it is probably the drive has some hardware problems and can't be fixed by software. Under that condition, you need to seek help from a local data recovery service.

Conclusion:

Sometimes, the Seagate external hard drive not recognized on Mac problem is just that Seagate external hard drive not showing up in Finder, not showing up on the desktop, not mounted in Disk Utility, which can be easily solved. However, your any attempts to fix the unrecognized Seagate external hard drive may write new data to the drive and overwrite the original one. Thus, if you're facing such kind of problems, you should firstly recover data from the Seagate external hard drive. iBoysoft Mac Data Recovery is the powerful and easy-to-use Mac data recovery software that you can always trust.

Juno

Juno is a technical expert @iBoysoft. She has over 5-year experience in data recovery/repair technology. She loves to write data recovery tips and tutorials.

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