6 Tips to Fix External Hard Drive that Keeps Disconnecting

  • External hard drives are an excellent way to expand your PC’s storage space without opening it up and replacing the internal hard drive.
  • These external hard drives don’t necessarily have to be the HDD type, as external SSDs exist and are just as fast as their internal variants.
  • By taking a few simple steps, you should resolve the problems of these drives automatically disconnecting from your PC.


To fix various PC problems, we recommend Restoro PC Repair Tool:
This software will repair common computer errors, protect you from file loss, malware, hardware failure and optimize your PC for maximum performance. Fix PC issues and remove viruses now in 3 easy steps:

  1. Download Restoro PC Repair Tool that comes with Patented Technologies (patent available here).
  2. Click Start Scan to find Windows issues that could be causing PC problems.
  3. Click Repair All to fix issues affecting your computer’s security and performance
  • Restoro has been downloaded by 0 readers this month.

Windows is a great OS, but annoying Windows 10 and 11 issues carry on, and external hard drive owners are affected. We report the problems and try to bring some solutions, as well.

We have just finished talking about the WiFi that is getting disconnected frequently in Windows, and now users have been reporting problems related to their external hard drives:

So, I installed Windows 8.1 x64 from the Windows Store yesterday and now my QB-35US3 Hard-drives keep randomly disconnecting and connecting again. I had no problems before the upgrade. The bay is connected via USB 3.0.

This is what one frustrated user is saying. Also, the problem seems to be similar with USB hubs – from what we’ve read; the errors are the same as with external hard drives.

Why does my external hard drive malfunctioning?

Many factors may trigger malfunctions in your USB. Some of them include:

  • An outdated OS – Your computer needs to be updated for problems that could conflict with Windows and a USB external hard drive.
  • Corrupted drivers – If the USB driver that is currently installed has degraded or become faulty, you can expect some problems.
  • Bad USB controllers – Your USB controllers may have deteriorated or become unstable.
  • Hardware issues – Windows can be lacking other crucial updates or have hardware or software problems. and this will trigger the problem.

While this is not an exhaustive list, it makes up the chuck of triggers for USB malfunctions.

Why does my external drive keep disconnecting?

Many problems can occur with your external hard drive, and in this article, we will address why your external drive keeps disconnecting. While there could be many triggers, users have experienced this error in the following variations:

  • External hard drive disconnects when transferring or copying – This can be an annoying problem, but you should be able to fix it using one of our solutions.
  • External hard drive keeps disconnecting and reconnecting randomly – This can be a big problem since your hard drive can disconnect during the file transfer.
  • External hard drive You don’t currently have permission; you need permission to perform this action; Access denied – You might get an error message regarding licenses while accessing your administrator-restricted files.
  • The external hard drive, you need to format the disk – Sometimes, you might get this error message while accessing your hard drive. In most cases, you’ll need to reformat your hard drive if you want to use it again.
  • The external hard drive is not accessible, not showing up, not working, not recognized, not accessible, not initialized – You can fix this and other issues using one of our solutions.
  • External hard drive keeps loading or freezing – The computer configuration likely causes this, but it can be easily fixed.
  • External hard drives are very slow – If your hard drive is slow, connect it to a USB 3.0 port and update all your drivers.
  • Internal hard drive keeps disconnecting in Windows 10, Mac – Turn off the Mass Storage Device in order to stop affecting the internal hard drive.
  • External hard drive keeps disconnecting on Windows 11 – First, note that the same thing triggers this error in Windows 10 and 11. This means that the solutions that worked in Windows 10, those listed in this guide, are still relevant on the latter OS.
  • My external hard drive keeps disconnecting from my PS4, PS5, Xbox (One, Series X), TV – Use a different USB port as the current one might be broken.

Without further ado, let’s just jump right in!

How do I fix my external hard drive connection?

In this article

1. Connect your hard drive to a different USB port

Many users reported that the external hard drive keeps disconnecting on their Windows 10 PC. However, you might be able to fix this issue simply by connecting your drive to a different USB port.

According to users, this issue occurs when the drive is connected to a specific USB port. Therefore, the problem should be resolved after you connect it to a different USB port.

If you have both USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports, you might want to try connecting your hard drive to a USB 2.0 port and see if that helps.

Some devices have USB 3.0, but you can avoid most USB 3.0 problems by connecting your device to a USB 2.0 port. Remember that you’ll experience a slower transfer speed while using USB 2.0, but your hard drive shouldn’t disconnect.

2. Turn off the USB selective suspend

The solution below describes you the method that will help you fix the disconnecting external hard drive. Follow the next steps to change your power-saving settings and disable the USB selective suspend feature.

1. Press Windows Key + S, type control panel and select Control Panel from the results list.

External hard drive you need to format the disk

2. When Control Panel opens, go to Power Options.

External hard drive is not accessible

3. The power Options window will now open.

4. Locate your power plan and click on Change plan settings.

External hard drive disconnects when transferring

Some PC issues are hard to tackle, especially when it comes to corrupted repositories or missing Windows files. If you are having troubles fixing an error, your system may be partially broken.
We recommend installing Restoro, a tool that will scan your machine and identify what the fault is.
Click here to download and start repairing.

5. Click on Change advanced power settings.

6. Navigate to USB settings / USB selective suspend setting and set it to Disabled, then click on Apply and OK to save changes.

Seagate external hard drive disconnects

If your external hard drive keeps disconnecting, the problem might be the power-saving feature. For example, your PC might be configured to turn off USB devices after a while to save power.

After that, your PC won’t turn off your USB devices to save power, and problems with your external hard drive will be resolved. Many users reported that this solution worked for them, so we suggest you try it out.

3. Install USB 3.0 controller drivers

If your external hard drive keeps disconnecting, the problem might be related to your drivers. However, you can fix this problem simply by installing new drivers for your USB 3.0 controller.

The best way to do that is to visit your motherboard manufacturer’s website and download the latest chipset drivers for your motherboard. Alternatively, you can update this driver manually.

We also strongly recommend using third-party software to download all the outdated drivers on your PC automatically. This tool will keep your system safe as you can manually download and install the wrong driver version.

Most of the time, the generic drivers for your PC’s hardware and peripherals are not properly updated by the system. There are key differences between a generic driver and a manufacturer’s driver.Searching for the right driver version for each of your hardware components can become tedious. That’s why an automated assistant can help you find and update your system with the correct drivers every time, and we strongly recommend DriverFix. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Download and install DriverFix.
  2. Launch the software.
  3. Wait for the detection of all your faulty drivers.
  4. DriverFix will now show you all the drivers that have issues, and you just need to select the ones you’d liked fixed.
  5. Wait for the app to download and install the newest drivers.
  6. Restart your PC for the changes to take effect.


Keep your PC components drivers working perfectly without putting your PC at risk.

Disclaimer: this program needs to be upgraded from the free version in order to perform some specific actions.

4. Stop your PC from turning off Mass Storage Device

  1. Connect your external hard drive to your PC.
  2. Press Windows Key + X and choose Device Manager from the list.
  3. Navigate to Universal Serial Bus Controller section and double-click on USB Mass Storage Device (Remember that your external hard drive might have a different name on your PC).
  4. Navigate to the Power Management tab and uncheck Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power checkbox, then finally, click the OK button to save changes.
    disable allow the computer to turn off this device to save power

If your hard drive keeps disconnecting, you can fix the problem simply by preventing the PC from turning off Mass Storage Device. Instead, your PC will automatically turn off various devices to save power, and sometimes it can turn off your external hard drive.

To prevent this, you must change a few Device Manager settings. After that, your PC won’t turn off your external hard drive, and the problem won’t appear anymore.

5. Disable USB legacy support in BIOS

  1. Press Windows Key + X and choose Device Manager from the list.
  2. Navigate to Universal Serial Bus Controller section and double-click on your USB Mass Storage Device
  3. Navigate to the Policies tab and check Better performance and Enable write caching on this device options, then click OK to save changes.
    set the USB device Removal Policy to Better Performance
  4. Lastly, locate Intel USB 3.0 extension driver in Device Manager and uninstall it.

If you have USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 ports on your PC, you might be able to fix this problem by disabling USB legacy support in BIOS. To see how to do that, we strongly advise you to check your motherboard manual for detailed instructions.

Several users claim that you must perform a few extra steps to fix this problem. To fix the issue, you need to make several changes in Device Manager. After that, restart your PC, and the situation should be resolved entirely.

6. Use KeepAliveHD

Several users reported that their external hard drive keeps disconnecting due to inactivity. This is normal behavior for external hard drives, but if you want to stop this from happening, you might want to try using this tool.

KeepAliveHD is a small and freeware application that will write a small file to your external hard drive and prevent it from going to sleep. In addition, the application allows you to set a timer so it will write a small file to your hard drive periodically.

This is a simple solution, and if you don’t want to change your system’s configuration, be sure to try this tool.

How do I reconnect an external hard drive?

If it isn’t already connected, connect one end of the USB cable to the external hard drive. The opposite end of the USB cable should be inserted into a PC’s USB port. Your PC’s OS should detect the external hard disk after being connected.

That’s about it from us. So if your External hard drive keeps disconnecting, we hope you have been able to resolve this problem by now.

These solutions are not in any particular order, so you can pick and choose what works best for you. For more troubleshooting steps, check out what to do if Windows 10 external hard drive keeps disconnecting.

If you have any other questions, feel free to drop them in the comments section below, and we’ll be sure to check them out.

Still having issues? Fix them with this tool:


If the advices above haven’t solved your issue, your PC may experience deeper Windows problems. We recommend downloading this PC Repair tool (rated Great on to easily address them. After installation, simply click the Start Scan button and then press on Repair All.

Publicaciones relacionadas

Deja una respuesta

Tu dirección de correo electrónico no será publicada. Los campos obligatorios están marcados con *

Botón volver arriba