By Emily / Last Updated February 4, 2021

"Need to recover data from GPT Protective Partition”

“I have a hard drive that works all the time. But when I connect it to another computer with a different operating system, it shows up as a GPT protective partition (Healthy) with no drive letter. I can’t access data on it. What should I do to recover data from GPT Protective partition? All suggestions are appreciated in advance!”

Gpt Protective Partition

What causes GPT Protective Partition?

Sometimes, you might see your newly connected hard disk is not showing up in your Windows File Explorer. Open Disk Management, and it shows as GPT Protective Partition and you cannot access data inside. So, what is or what causes GPT Protective Partition?Briefly, it is a issue between your operating system and the hard disk partition stlye, namely they are not compatible and the Windows OS fails to detect your hard disk drive and its partitions correctly.

You should know that GPT standars for the GUID Partition Table and it offers a more flexible partition styling mechanism for hard disk drives than MBR (Master Boot Record). Although the GPT nowadays is universally applied on most Windows operating systems, excluding the 32-bit Windows OS. So, when you connect a GPT disk to a Windows XP (or newer), 32-bit operating system Windows computer, the OS will see it as a protected drive, and as a result, the data becomes inaccessible.

PS.: Check this table below to learn GPT compatibility

Gpt Os Compatibility

How to recover data from GPT Protective Partition?

To access or recover data from the GPT protective partition on a 32-bit Windows XP, you can use a powerful conversion tool to convert the GPT disk to MBR, thus you can access the data on it. Here AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional is recommended. Unlike Disk Management or DiskPart Command Line, it can convert disk between MBR and GPT without deleting partitions in all editions of Windows 10/8/7, Windows XP as well as Windows Vista (either 32-bit and 64-bit).

You can download its demo version and check out the following steps to finish the conversion from GPT to MBR.

Try Free Demo Win 10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Step 1.Install and run AOMEI Partition Assistant. The basic information of your partition will display on the main interface. Find the disk that holds GPT Protective Partition and right click it to select “Convert to MBR Disk”.

Convert System Disk To Mbr

Step 2. In the pop-up window, click “OK” to continue.

Ok To Mbr System Disk

Step 3. After that, is will back to the main interface, click “Apply” > “Proceed” to complete the operation.

Apply To Mbr System Disk

Wait the operation to finish and you can access the data on the MBR disk. If the operating system of your computer is 32-bit Windows Server 2003 and you get the “GPT Protective Partition”, you should turn to AOMEI Partition Assistant Server to complete this operation.

Note: If the hard disk is connected to a 64-bit system and you still see the GPT Protective Partition, that’s might because the partition table on the hard drive is corrupted or damaged. In such a case, you might need data recovery software to recover data from the GPT Protective Partition.


After converting GPT to MBR via the AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional, you can access and recover data from the GPT Protective Partition again. Besides converting to MBR disk, it also provides you many other powerful functions such as cloning partition, cloning hard disk, rebuilding MBR, transfering OS to SSD, aligning SSD partitions, allocating free space from one partition to another and so on.