EHD keeps giving me an error: format G drive

June 12, 2011 at 10:14:48
Specs: Windows 7
I have a verbatim external hard drive. It came in the FAT32 format. Before I started to use it, I formatted it to NTFS. Know, it keeps on giving me the error which states I need to format the G drive before I can use the hard drive. I have however saved a few of my goodies on the EHD and I am able to view it, but the error message keeps popping up.

Should I format the EHD back to FAT32 or maybe just format it and keep the NTFS format?

Please some help would be greatly appreciated!


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June 12, 2011 at 15:26:36
Every drive manufacturer has a drive test utility. Download and use it. It could be the drive is limited to FAT32. Without knowing the brand or model, I can't say for sure.
The test software will determine if the drive is marginal.

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June 13, 2011 at 00:07:19
Thank you, I will try this out :-)

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June 13, 2011 at 05:06:59
"I have a verbatim external hard drive"

Post the model & capacity. Is it a portable (strictly USB powered) or a desktop (separate power source plus USB connection)?

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June 18, 2011 at 10:04:35
Your problem has probably got nothing to do with you formatting the drive's partition(s) using the NTFS software partitioning (data organization method) rather than the FAT32 partitioning it came with.

You have not provided enough information .

As mickliq said,

"Post the model & capacity. Is it a portable (strictly USB powered) or a desktop (separate power source plus USB connection)?"

We also need:

- the make and model of the brand name computer, or the make and model of motherboard if you have a generic desktop system, that you are connecting the Verbatim external hard drive to. If you are connecting it to more than one computer, tell us which ones.

- are you connecting the Verbatim external hard drive directly to a USB port built into the laptop or netbook computer, or to a a USB port built into the desktop computer on the BACK of the case where most if not all of of the ports are,

- or - are you connecting the Verbatim external hard drive to a USB port in a USB hub that is externally connected to one directly connected to the mboard USB port,.or to a USB port on the front of a desktop case, or to a PCMCIA (PC Card) or ExpressCard USB adapter on a laptop or netbook ?

- were you ever able to access the data on the Verbatim external hard drive after you had used the NTFS formatting ? - it sounds like you could previously.

Your problem is very common.

I'm assuming you HAVE NOT dropped the external drive enclosure, or otherwise physically damaged it. if you HAVE, see near the end of this post.

There are several things that commonly cause Windows to "think" the drive has one or more partitions that are not formatted (using something Windows should recognize fine).

The external drive enclosure (it's circuitry) is not being recognized properly

- the drive is not getting enough current from the USB port it's plugged into
- the drive is plugged into a USB port that does not allow the external enclosure to be recognized properly for another reason

- much less likely - the USB cable you're using did not come with the drive and is inadequate, or there is a poor connection of the cable (e.g.too loose in the port).
- rarely - the USB port is physically damaged.

If the USB connection is able to supply enough current, and if the cable is plugged into a USB port it can work properly with, the external enclosure and the hard drive inside of it are probably being detected fine - you just can't access the data on it.


The most likely cause of that is....

The most frequent reason people can no longer access the data on a USB flash drive, USB External drive, or a memory card, is they unplugged it while Windows was running WITHOUT clicking on the Safely Remove Hardware icon in their taskbar lower right, and choosing to STOP accessing the drive.
(If you get a message you can't do that, then stop accessing it elsewhere - e.g. in My Computer or Windows Explorer, or in whatever you were accessing it with, e.g. change the drive letter, then you will be able to STOP it in Safely Remove Hardware.)
The Safely Remove Hardware icon may be hidden - if so, you have to click on < at the left end of the icons in the taskbar to reveal it.
It's a gray rectangle with a green arrow on it in XP, 2000, and ME, (and in 98 and 98SE, only if you have third party flash drive etc. drivers installed, or you have connected an external drive.)
In Vista, and probably Windows 7, it's a medium green small circle with a white checkmark on it.

If there is no Safely Remove Hardware icon, then there's something not right with the software that is supposed to make the icon appear (e.g.that sometimes happens in 98 and 98SE) - you could try rebooting, but if the icon still does not appear, then DO NOT unplug the device while Windows / the computer is running.

You can unplug the device at any time when Windows / the computer is NOT running. You can plug it in at any time.

If data was damaged by you NOT using the Safely Remove Hardware feature to STOP accessing the drive, the symptoms vary.


You may be able to see the partition(s) on the external hard drive, but
- not be able to access one or more files or folders on it,
- or - no files or folders are shown, or some of the folders or files are not listed, that you know should still be on the drive partition(s).

- or Windows may "think" the partition(s) is(are) not formatted

Programs you can use to repair the data damage.
See response 2:

Troubleshooting USB device problems including for flash drives, external drives, memory cards.
See Response 1:

Check that out first.

Rarely, not all the ports on the back of a desktop case may be able to supply 500ma each.

If you have a desktop computer, Note that I answered a Topic on this site where a guy had an external drive, which does require the full 500ma, connected to a port on the back of a desktop case - it would not work properly when a webcam was in the port next to it, but it worked fine when the webcam was unplugged. Ports on the back of a desktop case often have two ports connected to the same USB controller module that are ports one above the other - you could try connecting the cable to one of those and leaving the other un-used.

Examine the USB port and the plugs on the USB cable you're using to to see whether they're damaged.
E.g. Bent - such that the fit of the plug is loose - stretched outer metal shell in the port, squished metal outer shell on a plug; bent or loose contacts in the port or plug, the plastic blocking plug that prevents you from plugging in a USB plug upside down is loose or missing.

If you HAVE dropped the external drive enclosure, or otherwise physically damaged it.

Includes damaged external enclosure info and how to test the hard drive info.

External hard drive not recognized properly.

See response 8:

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