Solid state drives have taken over as the primary way to store data on your computer and laptop. In the past, we would have used a hard disk drive (HDD) to store all of this information. But SSDs are more reliable and much faster at processing data.
Although they are more reliable, you may sometimes find that your SSD is not showing up in disk management or in your computer’s BIOS either. This can be a little bit frustrating, and is not unusual if you’re choosing to use SSD external storage.
This guide is primarily for computers that are using a SATA port to connect the SSD. So if your SSD is still not showing, what can you do to get your laptop/computer to read it properly? Here’s a few things you can try to get things working as they should.
SSD not showing up in disk management
If your SSD is not showing up, then you’ll want to check a few different things to be able to initialize it. Making sure the connection is good, rebooting your computer, installing a fresh version of Windows and even trying a different SATA port can all be straightforward fixes to this problem.
There’s also the potential that your drive may be conflicting with another drive that you’re using with your laptop or computer. If your hard drive and another drive has the same letter name, then it may not be able to see your new SSD. So, you can assign your SSD a new letter to see if this helps.
But this isn’t the only thing you can do to fix an SSD that’s not showing. We’re going to take a look at all of these solutions in more detail to give you an idea of how to get things sorted.
Can’t find SSD to initialize in disk management
When you purchase a new SSD for your laptop, you can’t just expect it to work straight away out of the box. Before you use it, you’ll need to actually initialize and partition the SSD to prepare it to be used.
In most cases, this is where you’ll need to go into your Disk Management. When you go into Disk Management, you’ll typically get a notification or a prompt that lets you know that the SSD hasn’t been initialized yet, and it’ll need to be before you go ahead and use it.
But sometimes, it may not even show up in Disk Management either. So, it can leave you without the ability to actually initialize your SSD at all, which is always the first step.
If this happens, then there are a few things that you can do that might get your SSD to show up. And if not, there are things you can do to work around the problem too.
Refresh your disk management
The first thing that you’ll want to try if your SSD is still not showing up in your disk management is for you to refresh it properly. Sometimes, even if you’ve connected your SSD up properly, it may not show up straight away.
You’ll also want to do this after making sure that there are no other drives connected to your computer. If you have many different storage devices linked up to your computer, then this may be confusing it.
Although you should probably try this last, as most people won’t want to disconnect their storage for no reason.
Uninstall Standard Controller
If you’re using a certain SSD drive, then you may be having an issue that many people have faced, where your SSD shows in BIOS but you can’t find it in your disk management. This seems typical of some Samsung models. If you do have this problem, then it’s actually quite a simple fix.
Firstly, you need to go click on the link to expand IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers. These controllers are a pretty common place where you can make some changes with formatting. From here, you’re going to want to click to uninstall the Standard SATA AHCI Controller.
This may have been preventing your SSD from showing in disk management. Then, reboot your computer and see if this has fixed the problem – often, it will.
Reboot & Reinstall
Like with many other computer issues, rebooting your computer could be all that you need to resolve the issue. Turn your computer off completely, and then connect your SSD drive to the SATA port. Then, you can go ahead and turn your computer back on.
In many instances, this will work and your SSD will show up in your disk management. If it doesn’t, then you could consider removing and reinstalling your entire Windows 10 operating system.
When you reinstall your new version of Windows, you may then be prompted to partition your SSD, or even assign it a drive letter. These are both common reasons why your storage may have not been showing up in your disk management panel beforehand.
Try a different port or cable connection
If you’re connecting your SSD to a desktop computer properly, then you’ll be using the SATA connector on your desktop to connect the two together. Unfortunately, sometimes you can have issues with the SATA cable on your SSD card.
SATA cables are relatively inexpensive, so if you can, try using a different cable to connect them up. As well as this, it also makes sense for you to try and connect your SSD up to a different SATA port too. Most motherboards have 4+ SATA ports, so it makes sense for you to use them.
After: Initializing your SSD
When you finally get your solid state drive up and running and you can see it in your Disk Management panel, then you’ll need to initialize it before you can actually use it properly.
You should actually get a prompt to do this, but if you don’t, then you can simply choose either Master Boot Record (MBT) or GUID Partition table (GPT) and proceed forward following what the installation guides you through.
You’ll probably need to give the SSD a name and assign it a volume, but aside from this, you should now be ready to use it as another form of storage.
All in all, it can be pretty frustrating if there’s no way that you can access or see your SSD in your Disk Management panels. It’s even more annoying if you can clearly see it in your device manager or your BIOS, but for some reason it won’t show up in Disk Management.
Whilst there are some simple potential fixes to the issue, there are a few things that you may need to delete for your computer to be able to read it properly. You may need to restart your computer after doing this to be able to see it in your panel.