Old working hard drive unallocated space

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PCHF Member
PCHF Member
Jan 13, 2020
First post, so sorry if it’s not in the right category. I’ve had a hard drive sitting in a cupboard for quite a few years and recently have put it into my computer to check what data is on it. It was previously used in a home computer, however on Hard drive Manager (Win10) it appears only as ‘Unallocated space’ is there a way to recover this data? Thanks Lachy


Forum Regular
Support Team
PCHF Member
Oct 8, 2017
Yeppoon, QLD, Australia.
unallocated means that before your PC can read from it, it needs to be formatted, and therein lies the problem.

one avenue may be to do a Quick Format, that'll renew the MBR portion of the drive and leave the files alone - sort of.
access to the files will be lost as the tables containing that info will also be wiped. but the file data will still be there.
a recovery program like Recuva may help from there.
it certainly won't get everything and it may very well take hours to scan but there's a chance.

another concern is I'm assuming the drive was OK when it was shelved, so the rhetorical question is what has made it unallocated?


Autonomous Admin
Support Team
Sep 9, 2016
Thread closed due to lack of any feedback from the OP.
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