If you use a WD external hard drive, data loss is always a possibility. For a variety of reasons, you can suddenly lose an important file or folder at the most inopportune time.
Fortunately, in most cases, it’s relatively easy to recover lost data. We’re going to show you how to recover data from a Western Digital external hard drive using modern data recovery software. Most of the time, recovery from a WD hard drive is similar to performing a recovery on any other type of storage device.
We’ll provide a step-by-step guide that demonstrates how easy it is to retrieve lost files from your Western Digital hard drive with dedicated software. Before proceeding, you’ll need to check a couple of things to ensure that you can attempt a Western Digital data recovery.
- 🔌 Make sure the hard drive is connected to your computer before starting the recovery. A faulty connection or bad cable needs to be addressed before you begin the process.
- 🔎 Check the drive for physical damage. If the drive has experienced damage that prevents it from being recognized by your computer’s operating system, you won’t be able to perform a WD recovery with software.
Recover Data From a WD External Hard Drive with a Software Solution
We are now going to look at the most reliable way to recover lost data from an external WD hard drive. Most of the time, Western Digital hard drive recovery is essentially the same as performing a restore for any other type of storage device. One instance where this may be different is with Western Digital My Passport recovery. We suggest you take look at the detailed guide pointed to by the previous link before attempting the procedure.
Let’s look at the steps you can use to perform a Western Digital data recovery using Disk Drill data recovery software.
- Download and install Disk Drill on your computer. Download the Windows or Mac version based on your machine’s operating system.
- Make sure the WD external hard drive is connected to the computer.
- Launch Disk Drill and select the external Western Digital drive from the list of available storage devices.
- Click the Search for lost data button. This instructs Disk Drill to scan the storage device and search for recoverable data. As the scan proceeds, the names of recoverable files will be stored in folders titled Pictures, Video, Audio, Documents, Archives, and Other for easy identification. The scan can be paused and restarted at a later time.
- Preview the recoverable files to determine if you want to recover them. Files can be previewed for recovery while the scan is executing.
- Select the files that you want to recover and click the Recover button. You will be prompted to provide a safe storage location where the recovered files will be saved. Don’t use the external WD drive as you might overwrite the data you are trying to recover.
- Click OK after providing the storage location and let the program recover your lost files.
Why We Chose Disk Drill
We selected Disk Drill for Western Digital data recovery for multiple reasons. Following are some of the features of Disk Drill that make it one of the best external hard drive data recovery solutions on the market.
- 🔍 Superior scanning and data recovery capabilities can retrieve hard-to-find files on all types of disk-based storage devices, including WD external hard drives.
- 💸 Windows users can recover up to 500MB for free with the tool’s evaluation version. Mac and Windows users can see what data the software can recover before making a purchase.
- 🧰 The software provides free data management and protection tools that include the ability to create a byte-level backup of a failing hard drive, a duplicate file finder, and a secure data shredder.
- 📊 Disk Drill 5.0 includes a recovery chance prediction feature that lets you know if the data you want to recover has a high, medium, or low chance of a successful recovery.
- 🗃️ The new version of Disk Drill also supports recovering data from Windows and Linux software RAID arrays.
Complex Western Digital Data Recovery Scenarios
Some recovery scenarios may be more complex than others. Examples of a complicated recovery include:
- 🧹 A WD external drive that has had one or more partitions formatted;
- 📄 Trying to recover a specific file from a large hard drive with many files;
- 🗃️ Recovering data from a RAID array.
Disk Drill 5.0 can handle Windows software RAID arrays and may be able to get your files back. In some cases, you may need to engage a data recovery service to retrieve the lost data.
What to Do When Your WD External Hard Drive Won’t Show Up
If your WD external hard drive is not showing up and is not recognized by your operating system, you should try the following measures.
Change the Drive Letter
You might need to change the drive letter on the device. Here’s how to do that on a Windows system:
- Open Disk Manager.
- Locate the WD external hard drive.
- Right-click on the device and choose Change Drive Letter and Paths.
- Select a new letter and click OK.
Engaging a Data Recovery Service
If you cannot get your operating system to recognize the WD hard drive, it may be broken and need the attention of a professional data recovery service. The best hard drive data recovery services will only charge you if they can retrieve your lost data.
Use this link to find a recovery service near you and get in touch with them today. A recovery service offers your best chance of recovering files from a physically damaged hard drive.
Reason for Data Loss on a Western Digital External Hard Drive
Western Digital external hard drives are repeated throughout the computing industry and offer users a reliable method of providing additional storage space. As with all other types of storage devices, there is always a risk of unexpected data loss. This is why backing up your valuable data is considered a best practice for all computer users.
The following are the most common reasons for data loss on your WD external hard drive.
- 😰 User error can result in files being accidentally deleted from the storage device.
- 🚫 A corrupted filesystem may have been caused by a sudden system crash and resulted in missing files.
- 🧹 Inadvertently formatting the hard drive or its partitions can lead to extensive data loss.
- ⚠️ Loss of power or shutting down the computer during a file transfer can result in lost and corrupted files.
- 📛 A drive may experience mechanical failure or degradation that leads to inconsistent performance and lost data.
- 👾 A cyberattack that delivers a virus or malware to your computer can lead to data loss on your internal and external storage devices.
The best way to minimize the chances of data loss is to perform comprehensive monitoring to identify potential threats and performance issues that may point to a failing hard drive. If you suspect that a drive is beginning to fail or acting strangely, you should create a byte-level backup as soon as possible that can be used to recover its data in the event of a total failure. As previously mentioned, it is very important that you back up your storage devices regularly as additional protection against data loss.