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How to fix external hard drive not recognized on Mac?

I have a macbook air 2017 and it's perfectly working until it just stopped recognizing my toshiba external hard drive. It can recognize usb flash drives but it cannot recognize external hard drive. Any one with the same problem?

Best Answered by

iBoysoft author Eudora Liu

Eudora Liu

Answered on Wednesday, November 22, 2023

To fix this issue, you need to know why is your Mac not recognizing the external hard drive first. Here are some common reasons that may cause your external hard drive cannot be recognized on Mac.

  • The external hard drive isn't properly connected for data transfer and power supply.
  • The drive is connected to Mac with a faulty cable.
  • Your Mac isn't set to display external drives on the Finder and desktop.
  • Mac can't read and recognize the partition information of this hard drive.
  • Mac can't recognize the file system of the drive successfully.

Now, you can try to take the following methods to fix your external hard drive cannot be recognized on Mac.

  • Check the connections
  • Check Finder settings
  • Check your external hard drive in System Information
  • Check its file system
  • Check its partition

You can follow the below steps to use iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac to verify whether the external hard drive is detected on Mac or not. 

Step 1: Download, install, and launch iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac on your MacBook.

Step 2: Connect the unrecognized external drive to your Mac.

Step 3: Wait a few seconds, and check if the drive is detected, and shows up in this software.

If iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac can detect your external hard drive, the drive's partition table is the root cause for Mac not reading the external hard drive. You should send the external hard drive to a local disk repair service for help.

But if you can find your external hard drive in iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac, it means the partition table of your external drive is only slightly damaged, and you can fix it by running First Aid in Disk Utility.

If First Aid failed to repair your external hard drive, the disk might be corrupted too seriously, and you need to format the external hard drive on Mac. You should back up your important data before you format it.

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