By Cherry / Last Updated March 30, 2018

Can’t recognize GPT HDD in Windows Explorer

“I’ve had a Windows 7 computer with a 500GB hard drive for a long time. Recently, I want to add a HDD (hard disk drive) as a second drive for storing data. And I configured a new WD HDD on my Windows 10 computer as GPT partition style. However, when I connected this hard drive to Windows 7 computer, it can’t be recognized in Windows Explorer, so I can’t access any info on this GPT hard drive. When I open the Disk Management, I found it just one partition shown as unallocated space, when I try to assign a drive letter to it in Disk Management, the option greyed out. So here is my question: why the GPT partition not recognized in Windows 7? how to read GPT partition in Windows 7 successfully?”

Actually, there are many reasons would cause the GPT partition not recognized in Windows.

Why GPT partition not recognized in Windows 7?

Here we take an example of the Scenario we mentioned above, the user’s GPT HDD not recognized in Windows Explorer but shows in BIOS and Windows Disk Management, and the GPT partition is shown as unallocated space. If you find this problem, and you need to know that it may because of there is no drive letter for the GPT partition, and that’s why it can’t be recognized in Windows 7 File Explorer.

Another situation is the GPT partition not showing up in the BIOS. Well, you need to know that the GPT partition style is not recognized by all previous versions of Windows 7. It is recommended for disks larger than 2TB, or disks used on Itanium-based computers. When you try to boot your Windows 7 from a GPT drive, you must be using 64 bit Windows 7 and have a UEFI motherboard. If you are not booting from the GPT partition, there may be something wrong with the enclosure or the drive.

How to fix the problem that GPT partition not recognized in Windows 7?

So here we will give you some advice to fix the problem that GPT partition not recognized in Windows 7.

1. Create partition to the GPT partition

If the GPT partition not recognized in Windows 7 File Explorer, get into Windows Disk Management by right-clicking My Computer -> Manager -> Disk Management, right click the GPT partition that not recognized in Windows, select New Simple Volume... and assign a drive letter to it, it should be recognized after the operation.

New Simple Volume

If you met the problem that we mentioned in the Scenario that all options are greyed out, you can try to use third party software like AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard, which can help you create partition successful and it is free. Besides, it is the best partition manager that worth to have. You can upgrade to its Professional edition to unlock more features.

Step 1. Free download this free partition manager, install it to your Windows 7 and launch it, it will show you all disks on your computer. Right click the GPT partition, select Create Partition.

Create Partition

Step 2. It will pop up a dialog box where you can choose the drive letter to assign to the unallocated space. Select one and click OK.

Select Drive Letter

Step 3. Here you can see that the GPT partition has been assigned a drive letter. Click Apply to submit.


Wait till the proceed reaches 100%. after that, the GPT partition should be recognized in Windows 7.

2. Update storage drivers to the latest version

If there is no problem with the GPT partition’s drive letter, but the GPT partition not recognized in Windows 7, you should check whether the storage drivers installed for Windows is the latest version. If it is not, you need to update to the latest storage drivers in Windows 7. And you can update the drivers manually via Device Manager as the following steps:

1) . On your desktop, right click Computer, select Manage to open Device Manager.

2) . Click Device Manager in left pane.

3) . Double click the device name that you wish to update the driver to expand the list of this device.

4) . Right-click the device name and select Update Driver Software...

Update Drive Software

3. Run CHKDSK.exe to check this GPT disk

Also, you cannot deny there is no problem with your GPT partition. Thus, you can run CHKDSK.exe to check and fix this GPT partition. To do so, you can follow these instructions:

1>. Right-click on the Start icon.

2>. Click Open Windows Explorer.

3>. On the left side of the window, click Computer.

4>. At the Hard Disk Drives section, right-click on the volume you want check for errors.

5>. Click Properties.

6>. Go to the Tools tab, click Check now.


You can now run the check disk utility: select Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors to let the utility attempt to repair any hard drive errors found.

4. Run Windows Memory Diagnostics

Many users have met the problem that when they connect their 4TB GPT hard drive to the Windows 7, the 4TB GPT hard drive not recognized in Windows 7. it see the drive in the BIOS and it can see the drive in Disk Management but shows it as 2 partitions, one 2048GB partition as GPT and another 1678GB unallocated partition, and Disk Management has all options grayed out and the only option is to take the drive offline. If you have meet the similar problem, you can run Windows Memory Diagnostics to check your system for memory problem.

1>. Click Start, type mdsched.exe in the Search box, and then, right click the program, select Run as Administrator.

2>. Choose whether to restart the computer and run the tool immediately or schedule the tool to run at the next restart.

Windows Memory Dignostic

3>. Windows Memory Diagnostics runs automatically after the computer restarts and performs a standard memory test automatically. If you want to perform fewer or more tests, press F1, use the Up and Down arrow keys to set the Test Mix as Basic, Standard, or Extended, and then press F10 to apply the desired settings and resume testing.

4>· When testing is completed, the computer restarts automatically. You’ll see the test results when you log on.

5>. After the system rebooted, all my drives where correctly listed and accessible with none of the file missing or damaged on the original drive.

Hope those methods can help you solve the problem of GPT partition not recognized in Windows 7.