How to Use Full 4TB Hard Drive on Windows 10?

Does Windows 10 support 4TB hard drive? How to solve solve 4TB hard drive only shows 2TB in Windows 10? How do I install Windows 10 on a 4TB hard drive? All answers can be found right on this page.


By Emily / Updated on May 16, 2024

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Does Windows 10 support 4TB hard drive?

With the development of technology, hard drive storage becomes larger and larger. 4TB hard drive, like Seagate 4TB HDD, is widely used in Windows. Does Windows 10 support installing and fully utilizing 4TB hard drive? The answer depends.

In other words, 4TB HDD can be used in Windows in some conditions. According to Microsoft, to make an operating system fully support storage devices that have 2TB+ storage space, the device must be initialized by using GUID partition table (GPT). For a bootable system volume, the system firmware must use UEFI. That is to say, UEFI boot is needed to boot from a disk that is greater than 2TB and GPT is required for partitions larger than 2TB. You don’t need UEFI to have a non-bootable drive larger than 2TB, only GPT.

After learning the relationship between Windows 10 and 4TB hard drive, you may want to know how to let Windows 10 fully use 4TB hard drive. The following part discusses several common seen situations that may occur when you install 4TB hard drive on Windows 10.

Fix Windows 10 4TB hard drive issues

When installing 4TB disk on Windows 10, you may come across disk not detecting or 4TB only shows 2TB. When installing Windows 10 on a 4TB HDD, you may find it did not partition correctly. What should you do to solve these issues?

Section 1. Windows 10 not recognizing 4TB hard drive

This is a question that you need to solve in the first place because you need Windows 10 to detect it first. If Windows 10 cannot recognize 4TB disk, it could be explained by the following reasons.

▶You BIOS is not up to date. You need to update it to the latest version.

▶You 4TB hard drive does not connect properly. Disconnect it and try again. Ensure that the hard drive is properly connected to your computer. Check the SATA or USB cable connection and power supply.

▶Your external HDD enclosure or USB-to-SATA cable for 4TB hard drive cannot be detected. You may want to connect the 4TB disk through another media.

If the large hard drive has been initialized to GPT and can be detected by BIOS and Disk Management but not Windows, you can assign a drive letter to its partitions, or update Windows 10 to the latest version and try again. Or, you can update device drivers in "Device Manager".

Section 2. 4TB hard drive only shows 2TB in Windows 10

One of the most common issues is Windows 10 recognizes 4TB or 3TB hard drive, yet it only shows up 2TB in the device manager. The unused space beyond 2TB shows up as unallocated space, which can be neither used for new simple volumes nor allocated to other partitions.

As covered before, to use a spacious hard drive that is larger than 2TB in Windows 10 as a non-bootable drive, GPT partition table is required. To convert MBR to GPT in Windows 10, you have two choices. One is a Windows built-in tool and the other is third-party converting software.

Note: The "Convert to GPT Disk" option in Disk Management or "convert gpt" order in Diskpart only works when the disk is empty. Thus, you may need to clean 4TB hard drive before converting, which easily causes data loss.

▸Way 1. To convert MBR to GPT in Disk Management

1. Right-click This PC and select Manage and then Disk Management.

2. Right-click the 4TB hard drive and select Convert to GPT. If it is grayed out, you need to delete all volumes first.

Dm Convert Gpt 4tb

▸Way 2. To convert 4 TB disk to GPT via Diskpart

1. Press Windows key and R key combination to open Run. Type diskpart and hit Enter. Run as administrator.

2. Type following commands in order: list disk > select disk n (where n is the 4TB hard drive) > clean > convert gpt > exit.

Diskpart Convert Gpt 4tb

Tips: After cleaning the disk, you can initialize the disk to GPT in Disk Management directly.

▸Way 3. Convert 4 TB hard drive to GPT without data loss in Windows 10

However, you have another choice to convert MBR to GPT in Windows 10 without losing data. Take a look at AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional, which can help you convert data and system disk from MBR to GPT without deleting any existing partitions.  By the way, Windows 11 only supports GPT disk as boot drive, if you are interested in Windows 11, converting MBR to GPT is first step. You can free download the demo version to have a try.

Download Free Demo Win 11/10/8.1/8/7
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1. To convert 4TB hard drive, install and run AOMEI Partition Assistant your Windows 10. Right-click the mass storage device at main interface and select Convert to GPT.

Convert to GPT

2. It will pop out a confirmation dialogue. Click OK to confirm.


3. Preview the result, click Apply to start converting.


4. After converting, you can create new partition on that disk or add unallocated space to the existing partition by using the same software.

Section 3. How to install Windows 10 on a 4TB hard drive

Some users reported that Windows 10 cannot be installed on 4TB hard drive and get an error message saying: Windows cannot be installed on this disk. The selected disk has an MBR partition table. On EFI systems, Windows can only installed on GPT disks. Clear as it is, it is asking GPT partition table if your hard drive is bigger than 2TB (2.2TB actually). Then, how do you change MBR partition scheme to GPT during Windows 10 installation?

1. Insert Windows installation disc and follow the wizard to Where do you want to install Windows page. Press Shift + F10 key combinations to bring out Command Prompt.

Open Command Prompt

2. Type following commands in order: list disk > select disk n (where n is the 4TB hard drive) > clean > convert gpt > exit. The exact commands you have seen before.

3. After exiting the Command Prompt, you should be able to see full 4TB hard drive in Windows 10 installation and install successfully.

1. If the hard drive is less than 2TB and you get the aforementioned prompts, it is suggested to disable EFI in BIOS by restart computer > press F10 to enter BIOS > navigate to Storage > Boot Order > and then disable the EFI Boot Sources.
2. If you convert 4TB hard drive to GPT in other places and find it back to MBR partition table during installation, it could be the problem of your USB installation drive, viz. it is MBR. You may want to download Windows 10 from their official website and make a bootable USB there.
3. In whatever situation you convert MBR-formatted system disk to GPT, remember to change Legacy to UEFI in BIOS for a successful boot.

To let Windows 10 use full 4TB hard drive, make sure you do it in the right way. Some users convert basic disk to dynamic to fully utilize 4TB disk. Nevertheless, basic is what is needed for Windows operating system. Dynamic disks break virtually every disk utility such as disk imaging, partition resizing, offline disk editing, offline password reset, etc.


So, now you should get necessary info about 4TB hard drive in Windows 10. The mentioned AOMEI Partition Assistant software can help solve many disk partition issues. For example, it can help migrate only OS from one disk to another one, move free space from one partition to another, clone MBR/GPT hard drive without boot issues, convert FAT32 to exFAT without data loss, etc.

Emily · Staff Editor
Emily is an English editor of AOMEI Technology; she has a great passion for providing easy solutions for people to tackle with all disk or partition management problems. In addition to writing articles about disk/partition management, she also edits great tutorials on how to back up and restore disk for data security. In her spare time, she loves to learn computer skill to improve herself or stay with her family to enjoy a good day.