How to convert RAW to NTFS without formatting?

Do you want to learn the safest procedure to convert RAW to NTFS without formatting or losing data? Go through this article. Here we have discussed the step-by-step process to convert RAW format drive to NTFS file system in a secure way.

You may encounter a situation when you are unable to access your external hard drive with a popup message saying, “The drive is not formatted” and asking, “Do you want to format it now?” While encountering this RAW drive format error, you will click on the “Format disk” to continue using the drive. But formatting it will erase your data. So, do not format the drive before fixing the issue.

In this article, we will discuss the ways to convert RAW to NTFS. Let’s get started.

How to convert RAW to NTFS?

Here are multiple methods you can use to convert RAW to NTFS without formatting or losing data.

Method 1_ Restart your system

Sometimes, Windows can’t load the drivers of the external drive and restrict your access to it. Windows will reload the driver by restarting your system and make your external hard drive accessible.

Method 2_ Update the drivers for the external hard drive

There might be a chance that your external hard drive may come with software that is incompatible with the latest operating system. Update the drivers to the latest version and check if it fixes the issue.

Follow these steps to update the driver.

  • Step 01_ Right click on My Computer in Windows Explorer.
  • Step 02_ Click on the Manage and then Device Manager.
  • Step 03_ Find the external hard drive in Device Manager and right-click on it. Then select the “Update Driver Software“.

Access your external hard drive once the update has been completed and check if this has fixed the RAW drive problem.

Method 03_ Convert RAW to NTFS using CMD

Chkdsk is a utility for Windows transforming and checking the integrity of different file system errors on storage devices.

Here are the steps to convert RAW to NTFS using the command prompt without formatting.

  • Step 01_ Type “cmd” in the search bar.
  • Step 02_ Right-click on the cmd.exe and select “Run as Administrator” to execute the command prompt.
  • Step 03_ Type “chkdsk driveletter: /f” after seeing the cmd window and press enter.

Chkdsk will examine and repair the errors in the file system on the RAW partition. You can access the drive once the chkdsk command resolves the RAW partition error.

Method 04_ Convert RAW to NTFS using Partition Recovery Software

The volume boot sector and the partition table are the two places that store the partition information. Once these get corrupted, Windows can’t read this disk and reports as a RAW file system. In this scenario, you need to do the partition recovery. iBoysoft Data Recovery for Windows upgrades with powerful file system repair tool. It can repair RAW issues that cant be fixed by chkdsk command. Then you can access your files and get them back successfully.

Follow these steps to convert RAW to NTFS using iBoysoft Data Recovery

Note: Do not format the RAW drive. Otherwise, you’ll lose your data.

  • Step 01_ Download, install and launch the software on your system.
  • Step 02_ Select RAW Drive Recovery mode after launching the tool.
  • Step 03_ Select RAW drive format from the drive list.
  • Step 04_ Click “Next” to scan data from the RAW drive.
  • Step 05_ Preview and check files in the drive.
  • Step 06_ Click the “Fix Drive” for converting RAW to NTFS without formatting.

Method 05_ Convert RAW to NTFS using Data Recovery Software

If your hard drive has become a RAW file system due to improper operation, virus attack, or a power outage, you need to reformat it. However, doing so will erase your data. The first thing should be data recovery if you want to prevent unexpected data loss while converting RAW to NTFS.

Follow these steps to recover data from the RAW drive.

  • Step 01_ Download, install and launch iBoysoft data recovery recovery software on your system.
  • Step 02_ Select the data recovery module.
  • Step 03_ Choose the RAW drive and click Next to scan data.
  • Step 04_ Preview and check the detected files.
  • Step 05_ Select files you want and click Recover to start the recovery process.


An external hard drive can turn into a RAW drive without any prior indication. Various reasons can cause corruption and turn a drive into RAW format. Never format a drive when it turns RAW, especially if it contains important data. Instead, fix the issue using the fixes mentioned in the article. And if all the fixes fail, send your hard drive to a local specialist for data recovery or replace your drive.