How to Unlock an Internal Hard Disk Drive

by TS Jordan

A "locked" internal drive is one that has been write-protected, preventing data from being written to the drive or modified while the write protection is in place. Reversing this on an internal drive will require a bit of hardware work "under the hood" of your computer. Your goal will be to reset the "jumper" on the back of the hard drive to the non-write-protect setting, which can be done in about 20 minutes.


Turn off your computer and unplug it from the wall.


Remove the two screws located at the right-rear of the machine and slide off the side panel.


Locate your hard drive, which will be in the bay near the bottom of the front side of your case.


Remove the hard drive jumper from the "write protection" position and place it in the "writable" position. Consult your operating manual to find the correct position for your particular drive.

Items you will need

About the Author

TS Jordan is an Ohio licensed attorney living and practicing out of the Cleveland area. In addition to his Juris Doctorate, he holds a Bachelors' Degree in Information Systems. He has been writing professionally for less than a year.