Prompts of RAW Partition
Sometimes in Windows OS, when you open My Computer or Windows Explorer and try to access a particular partition (take partition G: for example) as usual, you fail. If you observe carefully you will discover that there are something different: the partition bar disappears along with the description of space usage. And Windows gives you a prompt saying: You need to format drive G: before you can use it. Do you want to format it?
If you refuse, you will see another warning: G: is not accessible. The volume doesn’t contain a recognized file system. Please make sure that all required file system drivers are loaded and that the volume is not corrupted.
Then, you may head for “chkdsk” for some inspiration, only to find the same prompt immediately after you input the drive letter.
The Local Disk Properties show you nothing or RAW at the position of the file system.
Disk Management tells more: drive letter, partition capacity, file system, partition state and partition type.
In short, all these errors or prompt indicate one thing: the file system of partition G has turned to RAW. Then what is RAW partition and what caused RAW partition?
Further Reading: What Is RAW Partition
By definition, RAW means unprocessed, and an RAW partition means a partition that has not been formatted with the file system FAT16/FAT32/NFTS or etc., and cannot be recognized by the operating system. An RAW partition can be caused by various reasons, such as various attack, formatting error, bad tracks, DPT damage, power outages and so on.
How to Deal with RAW Partition
Although Windows cannot get access to the RAW partition, there are still a few ways that can be used to cope with this issue. Here are four feasible solutions.
Method 1: Delete RAW partition and then recreate.
Run “compmgmt.msc” and choose Disk Management, then you can see the RAW partition. Right click the RAW partition and choose “Delete volume”. After that, you can recreate a partition and execute “Format”.
Method 2: Only for RAW partition which is originally in NTFS format.
Run “control folders”, and uncheck “Use simple file sharing”. In this way, the Raw partition regains the “Security Option”. Last but not least, reset the user permission.
Method 3: Rebuild Partition Table.
Use Windows Built-in Disk Management to check whether there is something wrong with the partition table. If YES, rebuild MBR. Or Use Partition Magic or Partition Wizard to recover the RAW partition to FAT32 or NTFS.
Method 4: Format RAW partition and then recreate.
The most direct way to deal with RAW partition is by formatting it into FAT32 or NTFS. Usually, NTFS gains more popularity than FAT32 in storing large files. Run “compmgmt.msc” and choose Disk Management, then you can see the RAW partition. You need to right click on it to choose “Format”, and select another file system like NTFS to apply your change. Last but not least, you can run an antivirus program to have a full disk scan to remove all traces of the virus.
Recover Data from RAW Partition before Formatting
Formatting is effective, but will lead to data loss. Thus, before you execute formatting, you should recover data in RAW partition in the first place. Since Windows cannot get access to RAW partition, you should take a professional data recovery software into account. MiniTool Power Data Recovery is such a professional data recovery software that can help recover data in RAW partition.
The whole operation is rather easy to grasp. You should download and launch this software, and then choose Damaged Partition Recovery.
Select the RAW partition and choose “Full Scan“.
When the scanning is finished, you will see a list of your files in that RAW partition. And remember you should tick “All RAW Files“. If you can identify which files are needed, you can pick them out. Or you just select the whole partition and click “Save” button.
After that, a smaller window will pop-up, requiring you to select a destination folder to store these necessary files. After you have selected the target location, MiniTool Power Data Recovery will finish the recovery quickly.
Note: The free edition has 1GB data restoration limit. If you have a large amount of data in the RAW partition, you can upgrade the free edition to an advanced one after MiniTool has scanned your needed data successfully.