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Cannot initialize, format, or wipe external HD

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by xl_The_Jackal_lx, Dec 13, 2011.

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  1. xl_The_Jackal_lx

    xl_The_Jackal_lx Thread Starter

    Dec 13, 2011
    My old Toshiba laptop went kaput (the screen went out, not the hard- drive, I could still access the hard drive when it was in the computer), so I removed the hard drive and put it in an external HD enclosure. The problem is now that I cannot wipe, format, partition, or initialize the disk at all.

    I tried using Windows disk manager, but it fails to initialize "due to an I/O error." I went into Event Viewer and the error message that was logged reads "VDS fails to write boot code on a disk during clean operation. Error code: [email protected]". I tried blanking the disk with DBAN, and while it worked at first, it goes REALLY slow and then went to a black screen about 1/3rd of the way through (which took about 24 hours) and I was forced to reboot.

    I tried using Killdisk, WinHex, SwissKnife, and TestDisk with no success either. Killdisk would not wipe it at all, and WinHex could read it but could not wipe it either, it just gives me some generic "Unpartitioned space not wiped" message. SwissKnife gives me "Read/Write error" when attempting to format. Any action under TestDisk returns read/write error messages. Note that all of these programs can locate the disk and read its size, but can do nothing further.

    I know it's not the HD enclosure because I used it successfully with another HD I pulled from another broken laptop and that worked flawlessly -- super fast, wiped and formatted just fine, no sweat. As I mentioned the hard-drive itself should be good, because when my laptop screen went out I was still able to access the hard-drive.

    I'm at a complete loss as to what the problem is and multiple Google searches have been of no help. Is this a lost cause? I'd hate to have to just throw the thing away if I can use it. The HD in question is a Hitachi 160GB SATA and I am running Windows 7.

    I'll also add that at another's suggestion I ran a disk diagnostic program called HDDScan. These two values had yellow warning signs on the report, all others were green:

    Reallocation Sector Count 100 100 0000000000-0001 005
    Reallocation Event Count 100 100 0000000000-0001 000

    Is the disk toast?
  2. win2kpro


    Jul 19, 2005
    Go to the drive manufacturers site and most have diagnostic utilities you can download and burn to a CD to test the drive. Burn a disc and test the drive.
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