How to fix access denied external hard drive?

If you’ve encountered an access denied error when trying to access files on your external hard drive, don’t panic! This issue can be frustrating, but there are several methods you can try to resolve it. In this article, we will outline step-by-step solutions to fix access denied external hard drive errors and regain control over your files.

Reasons behind External Hard Drive Access Denied

Before diving into the solutions, it’s important to understand the potential reasons behind an access denied error on your external hard drive. Here are a few common causes:

1. Permissions Issue: The most common reason for an access denied error is insufficient permissions to access the files. This situation can occur if your user account doesn’t have the necessary privileges.

2. File System Errors: Corruption in the file system of the external hard drive can lead to access denied errors. This can happen due to improper ejection or sudden power loss.

3. Virus or Malware Infection: In some cases, a virus or malware infection on your external hard drive can lead to access denied errors as a security measure.

Now let’s move on to the solutions to fix the access denied external hard drive error.

Solutions to Fix Access Denied External Hard Drive

1. Take Ownership of the Drive: Overcoming the permissions issue can be achieved by taking ownership of the external hard drive. To do this, follow these steps:
– Right-click on the drive and select “Properties.”
– Navigate to the “Security” tab and click on “Advanced.”
– In the “Owner” tab, click on “Edit” and then select your user account.
– Check the box that says “Replace owner on subcontainers and objects” and click “Apply” to save the changes.

2. Grant Full Control Permissions: If taking ownership doesn’t resolve the issue, you may need to grant yourself full control permissions. Here’s how:
– Again, right-click on the drive and select “Properties.”
– Go to the “Security” tab and click on “Edit.”
– Select your user account and check the box for “Full Control.”
– Click “Apply” and “OK” to save the changes.

3. Check File System Errors: If the access denied error is due to file system corruption, you can use the Windows built-in tool called “chkdsk” to scan and repair errors.
– Open the Command Prompt as an administrator.
– Type “chkdsk X: /f /r” (replace “X” with the drive letter assigned to your external hard drive) and hit Enter.
– Wait for the process to complete and then try accessing the drive.

4. Disable Security Software: Temporarily disabling your antivirus or security software can help determine if they are preventing access to your external hard drive. If you can access the drive after disabling the software, consider adding the necessary exceptions or configuring the software accordingly.

5. Format the Drive: If none of the above solutions work, formatting the external hard drive may be the only option. Keep in mind that formatting will erase all data on the drive, so it’s crucial to back up your files before proceeding.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. How can I recover data from an access denied external hard drive?

To recover data from an access denied external hard drive, you can use professional data recovery software or seek assistance from a data recovery service.

2. Why does my external hard drive show access denied on Mac?

Access denied errors can occur on macOS due to permission issues, file system errors, or incompatible formats. Fixing the issue may require adjusting permissions or formatting the drive to a compatible file system.

3. Can a corrupted external hard drive be fixed?

In some cases, a corrupted external hard drive can be fixed using chkdsk on Windows or Disk Utility on Mac. However, severe corruption may require professional help.

4. How do I gain permission to access a hard drive in Windows 10?

To gain permission to access a hard drive in Windows 10, follow the steps mentioned in the first solution of this article, i.e., taking ownership of the drive.

5. What should I do if my external hard drive is not showing up in Windows Explorer?

If your external hard drive is not showing up in Windows Explorer, try connecting it to a different USB port, checking disk management, updating drivers, or using a different USB cable.

6. Can a failed external hard drive be fixed?

Depending on the cause of the failure, a professional data recovery service might be able to fix a failed external hard drive and recover your data.

7. Will formatting an external hard drive remove viruses?

Formatting an external hard drive will remove viruses that reside on the drive itself. However, it won’t protect against future infections. Always scan files with reliable antivirus software before transferring them to your drive.

8. How can I change the file system of an external hard drive?

Changing the file system of an external hard drive requires reformatting. You can do this by right-clicking on the drive, selecting “Format,” choosing the desired file system, and following the on-screen instructions.

9. Why is my external hard drive write-protected?

An external hard drive may become write-protected due to a physical switch on the drive, a corrupted file system, or registry errors. You can remove write protection by adjusting the switch or modifying the registry.

10. Can I fix an access denied error without formatting the external hard drive?

Yes, you can try the solutions mentioned earlier in this article before resorting to formatting. Formatting should only be considered as a last resort when all other options have failed.

11. How can I prevent access denied errors on my external hard drive?

To prevent access denied errors, always safely eject your external hard drive, keep your antivirus software up to date, regularly scan for malware, and avoid sudden power loss during file transfers.

12. Is it possible to recover files from a formatted external hard drive?

Yes, it’s possible to recover files from a formatted external hard drive using data recovery software. However, the success of the recovery depends on various factors, including the extent of formatting and data overwriting.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top