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External HDD Crash Help Needed!

 
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WhiteWing
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Joined: 26 Sep 2007
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Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 7:21 pm    Post subject: External HDD Crash Help Needed! Reply with quote

A few days ago my external hdd crashed and now I cant get access to it.
In *My Computer* I cant see the hdd but,
I can find it in the drives and printers.
From there I can see the hdd but cant open it
too see what files are on it like I can with my 2nd external hdd.
I tryied a recovering software that was recomended on other forums
but it couldnt find the hdd either.

Anyone here got any ideas what to do?
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Jeroen
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Joined: 07 Aug 2004
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a longshot but perhaps hooking it up onto another computer and see if that computer lets you reach it helps?

I know law enforcement professionals use some very advanced stuff to solve problems like this. If you could somehow get your hands on their software, that might help. Another longshot, I know, but it's the only thing I can think of, given the fact you already tried some recovering software...

Goodluck - this must be frustrating!
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trucker2000
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 9:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I can find it in the drives and printers.

It should be in drives only. Try unplugging it, restarting your computer without it, then shut down and plug it back in. (at least that's what I did when mine did that.)
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AWM Mars
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If it is a USB device and comes with its own drivers, try uninstalling them, then reinstalling them. Sometimes, as useful as it may seem, Windows update functioning can overwrite manufacturers drivers with old MS released versions. USB devices are the worst, albeit other forms of connections can also suffer.

I suspect its a USB device as its showing up in the printers section, which of course it should not. It may also be that you have to remount the drive in Services, which you can find in the Control Panel, under Administrative Tools, look in Computer Management/Storage section (Vista and Win7). This is important if a SATA device.
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stumcd
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If all else fails and you really need the data, try this.

Buy the same drive, open both up and take off the controller panels. Put the new one on the old one.

That's what these places that charge mega bucks to recover lost data do and actually what the "standard" law enforcements do (I know someone who works for them).

I've never tried it with an external drive, but should be the same.
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Jeroen
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 8:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

stumcd wrote:
If all else fails and you really need the data, try this.

Buy the same drive, open both up and take off the controller panels. Put the new one on the old one.

That's what these places that charge mega bucks to recover lost data do and actually what the "standard" law enforcements do (I know someone who works for them).

I've never tried it with an external drive, but should be the same.


Shocked It would be great if that worked! I'm not a hardware kinda guy so I would never have thought of that. Laughing
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MadMikeAU
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Joined: 18 Apr 2011
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Location: West Sydney, NSW, Australia

PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2011 2:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

An external hard drive is just a regular hard drive in a case, with a USB controller. So you could take the controller out of the equation and either put the HDD into a new case...or plug it into your PC directly.
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AWM Mars
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2011 1:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One 'Solution' that occurred to me... Is the drive being powered? If not, often USB devices will be seen as being slave devices, powered by the internal 5volt rail, which can power the LED's, giving the impression it's mains fed.
Check that you have live power to the drive, it is plugged in and turned on (won't be the first time for this fault Laughing or the last) and that the power supply is good.

The swapping of the HDD controller panels is one I've done several times, the trick is to get the exact same HDD, close will not be close enough I can assure you.
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John
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PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2011 12:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you're truly desperate you could hook the drive up to a linux box and install a module (or even recompile it into the kernel) that will mount windows partitions (FAT or NTFS). I've done that before with Fedora, Red Hat, and Slackware- although not with a screwed up drive. It's a long shot. If you don't have a linux box, get a decent size flash drive and run linux off the flash drive.
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chrisu
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PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2011 8:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

John wrote:
If you're truly desperate you could hook the drive up to a linux box and install a module (or even recompile it into the kernel) that will mount windows partitions (FAT or NTFS). I've done that before with Fedora, Red Hat, and Slackware- although not with a screwed up drive. It's a long shot. If you don't have a linux box, get a decent size flash drive and run linux off the flash drive.

You don't have to add drivers for FAT or NTFS - they are already built into all actual Linux distris. So you just have to download a Linux live-distri (like Ubuntu, Knoppix, ...) and mount the drive as read-only(!!).

Btw., opening a HD privately is never a good idea! Depending on how far you go you'll definitely need a clean-air-environment like data-recovery-companies have. They further have all spare-parts of various HDs in their repository which they usually need for such cases. Just swapping the controller might render your drive totally useless as the controllers are (may, depending on the manufacturer) bound to their counterparts (the disks) in various ways.
So, if the data is really really important on that drive you might consider paying for that kind of service as it's not that expensive at all anymore and they know what they are doing. (Usually ~300 )
Finally, keep in mind that regardless what's your actual problem with the drive you should reduce the use of the regarding drive to an absolute minimum, and that already means just plugging it to power might raise your risk to loose much more or even all of the data.

I hope I could help you with those kinda chaoticly ordered advices - it's kinda early and I'm tired. After all, my thoughts are not just random thoughts - I know such cases as I'm ... let's say quite familiar with this field.

Cheers,
Chrisu.
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WhiteWing
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Joined: 26 Sep 2007
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PostPosted: Sun May 29, 2011 12:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you guys for all the help.

I ended up paying a company to get my info back from the HDD.
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