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Do You Want to Format / Raw Format on External Drive

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Csonk45, Mar 4, 2014.

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  1. Csonk45

    Csonk45 Thread Starter

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    Hello All,

    I'm new to this forum seeking help for the issue below. I've searched for similar threads but all are either very old or not specific to my problem . . .

    I/O Magic External USB Hard Drive (2007)
    Seagate 250mb IDE
    Initial problems appeared as the unit began to operate slowly, taking a long time to boot up and for folder to appear in Windows Explorer. Eventually the unit stopped working completely and would freeze up the host computer. Once the external was powered down the host computer would “unfreeze” and resume normal operation.
    I attempted to determine if the external chassis might be the problem and removed the HD, mounting it as a slave in an older Dell running Windows XP (this unit had the correct IDE cabling). After correcting a “Don’t Have Permission to View Folder” error, I was able to see the drive. However, when attempting to open the drive in Windows Explorer, the drive at did not seem to respond at first. Eventually I got a pop up that said the “Drive is not formatted, do you want to Format Now?” I didn’t want to do this, so I ran Diagnostic Tools to try to Fix Disc Errors, and got the final message that the disc is in “Raw Format”, and that’s where I stopped.
    This drive was a backup to the primary HD in my HP, whose motherboard died just prior to the problems detailed above. It contains ordinary personal data, but also my entire digital collection of music which I’d like to recover. I would rate my level of tech expertise about 5 out of 10!! Any suggestions? Is do-it-yourself repair software a good idea, or am I looking at $$$ for a professional service . . . thanks!
     
  2. granthillsSA

    granthillsSA

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    Try doing a check disk on it.

    Firstly find the Drive Letter of that drive. Open My Computer and look there.
    Might be D: or E: or F:

    Click Start\Programs\Accessories.
    Find "cmd.exe". Right click on it and select Run as Administrator.
    In the black box type: chkdsk E: (Change this E: to your your drive letter)

    Hope this helps
    Grant
     
  3. Csonk45

    Csonk45 Thread Starter

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    Thanks so much for replying Grant - -

    I ran chkdsk E:, and got the following - "The type of the file system is FAT32”….”errors found”. . . . .”CHKDSK cannot continue in read-only mode.”

    Anything I can try next?
     
  4. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator

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    OK, first you need to understand that running chkdsk can often impede your ability to recover data from the drive.

    IF you have a backup or another copy of anything important on the drive, you can run chkdsk /r The /r tells chkdsk to repair or fix problems it finds. Again this often makes data recovery more difficult or impossible so be sure you have a current backup of anything important prior to running the repair.
     
  5. Csonk45

    Csonk45 Thread Starter

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    Well . . . . I won't try that again then. Unfortunately, this was my backup. I've read that a data recovery program like Zero Assumption Recovery may be helpful - any comments? I'm afraid I'm at the point of sending it out for professional recovery . . . thanks for your reply crjdriver
     
  6. DaveBurnett

    DaveBurnett Account Closed

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    Don't use CHKDSK /R on a FAT32 drive. It will corrupt it more often than not (or at least fail to fix errors)

    CHKDSK was design for NTFS not FAT.

    I have kept a copy of Win98SE and Norton Utilities just to maintain FAT disks/media. Defragmentation needs old utilities as well.
     
  7. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator

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  8. Csonk45

    Csonk45 Thread Starter

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    Too long of a story, but the original disk hadn't been used for some time and this external became the primary, etc. etc. Valuable original data remains on this disk. I downloaded and ran Test Disk which didn't give me any repair advice - I'm assuming it didn't find anything wrong with the partition tables, etc., and didn't give me a summary that explained the results of the scan . . . Off to Geek Squad I guess . . .
     
  9. DaveBurnett

    DaveBurnett Account Closed

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    That's strange. Testdisk is a real time program that opens a window and doesn't produce a report file unless you invoke it with a special parameter.
    If it didn't show anything, I suspect it didn't actually run or the disk wasn't recognised as a disk by the BIOS.
     
  10. Csonk45

    Csonk45 Thread Starter

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    Well, I went back to the TestDisk program and lo and behold, there was a log of the scan deposited in the folder . . . I don't understand a word of it, but perhaps you can decipher it and tell me if there is still hope for my hard drive? Thanks again!
     

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