External Drive - Bitlocker Recovery Key and Password not working after I have formatted my Laptop Hard Disk and Reinstalled OS. RRS feed

  • Question

  • Correct bitlocker password & RecoveryKey Can't unlock my drive !

    I have an external drive encrypted by bitlocker, and works fine until........... I re-installed the OS One day.

    I am petty sure the password is correct, but always  give me error: THE PASSWORD ENTERED IS INCORRECT.

    I was trying to use my recovery key, But always says: The Key doesn't match this drive

    Sunday, July 2, 2017 6:26 AM

All replies

  • Hi Vinay,

    After reinstall system, try to install all updates then test again, look at this similar case, the op fixed his issue After install all windows 10 update patches

    Correct bitlocker password & RecoveryKey Can't unlock my drive

    Make sure your enter the correct 48-digit recovery key.


    Please remember to mark the replies as answers if they help.
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    Wednesday, July 5, 2017 6:56 AM
  • Right.

    I will quote myself from that very link:


    Win10 version 1511 introduces the new encryption method xts_aes which IS THE NEW DEFAULT!

    So if you now wonder why this is important: it is NOT BACKWARD COMPATIBLE!

    So take win10 1511, encrypt a drive or a usb thumb drive, encrypt it and then try to unlock it on win7/8.x/10 (pre v1511), what result will you get? Exactly: "The key does not match the drive" or "password incorrect", because the older windows with its older bitlocker is NOT EVEN AWARE of xts_aes and instead of something like "unknown encryption format", it prefers to say the key is wrong.

    So maybe your drive was encrypted on v1511? Because your command line screen shots show that while having problem, you were not on 1511 but on 10240.

    So what should we all learn? DON'T encrypt mobile drives with xts_aes if you plan to read them anywhere but on win10 1511 - just that.


    So the question is: what windows version did you reinstall with? Run the command


    and quote the output.

    Wednesday, July 5, 2017 9:38 AM
  • I have installed all the Microsoft patches but it didn't work.
    Sunday, August 6, 2017 3:32 AM
  • I have reinstalled with version 1703 (OS Build 15063.483). I don't know the earlier version I had.
    Sunday, August 6, 2017 3:35 AM
  • The recovery ID matches the ID that you have saved/printed?
    Monday, August 7, 2017 6:55 AM
  • No, it does not match now. The recovery ID got changed after the windows is re-installed.

    The recovery ID should not be changed for an external drive when OS is re-installed but it is weird that the recovery ID is changed.

    Monday, August 7, 2017 4:33 PM
  • The ID will not change if you reinstall the OS. It wiil only change when you decrypt and re-encrypt. 100% sure.
    Tuesday, August 8, 2017 6:01 AM
  • Correct. That's why I am very depressed why it got changed after a fresh Windows 10 OS installation.

    I am really upset with the way the bit-locker works. I have gone through this blog and noticed that the bit-locker has issues.

    But I am sure I have taken the print out the bit-locker key of my external HDD right before I went for re-installation of Windows 10 OS.

    I have also tried on a different Laptop and has the same issue with the bit-locker ID.

    Dont know how to get rid of the issue as I have 'very valuable data, all my memories. :-(

    Tuesday, August 8, 2017 4:52 PM
    Tuesday, August 8, 2017 4:54 PM
  • Same issue with me too, I had encrypted my external HDD & my laptop HDD got corrupted. I had installed new OS & now i am unable to unlock my external drive with same password. I have my recovery key but the recovery ID doesn't match. Please provide me a valid solution to overcome this situation

    Thursday, August 17, 2017 12:57 PM
  • You can also report the issue on an other thread.

     External Hard Disk Bitlocker Recovery Key not working after I reinstall the Windows 10 OS

    Saturday, August 19, 2017 3:15 AM