1. Computer problem? Tech Support Guy is completely free -- paid for by advertisers and donations. Click here to join today! If you're new to Tech Support Guy, we highly recommend that you visit our Guide for New Members.

External Hard Drive converting files randomly?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Master_Yoda77, Nov 15, 2008.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
Advertisement
  1. Master_Yoda77

    Master_Yoda77 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2008
    Messages:
    4
    I'm not sure if this is even an external hard drive problem, but it only seems to do it with it.

    Anyways, I am obviously having problems with it. And the thing is, I really don't even know how to describe the problem. My external hard drive does seem to crash if it stays on for long periods of time (Like a few days without being unplugged), and whenever I try to safely remove it, I get an message saying that the "Generic Volume" cannot be removed right now. I've done some research on this, and I thought I had my hard drive set to where I won't damage any of my files by simply unplugging it.

    But this isn't exactly the problem. My problem is that, occasionally, some of my files in my folders will convert to these random letters and symbols. The folder would be perfectly fine one day, then the next day it simply transforms. This might sound absurd, but it is pretty much the only way I can describe it. I took a screen of the folder, just to future explain the problem.

    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v296/Master_Yoda77/XHDDProblem.jpg

    Anyways, my external hard drive is a Western Digital MyBook Essential 2.0 500GB. If you need any more information about my computer I'd be more then happy to tell you.

    Thanks again.
     
  2. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2000
    Messages:
    9,049
    Be sure your OS is capable of 48-bit addressing, which means it can address drives larger that 137 Gigabytes. Once that is confirmed, the next thing I would do it remove the drive from its enclosure and connect it directly to the computer, internally. See if the problem repeats. If it does, then it's the drive. If not, I would suspect the enclosure's circuitry.

    You don't mention your OS. If it's XP service pack two or higher, it is 48-bit capable. If it's Win 2000, it will have to be service pack 3 or higher and then requires a manual registry edit after SP3 or higher is installed. Windows 98 can not be made 48-bit-capable.
     
  3. Master_Yoda77

    Master_Yoda77 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2008
    Messages:
    4
    I do use Windows XP so I'm sure that isn't the problem. I've tried running diagnostic reports and my drive passes. I'm just thinking about getting a new one for Christmas anyways...a better one.

    What would you guys recommened?
     
  4. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2000
    Messages:
    9,049
    It's got to be service pack two.
     
  5. Master_Yoda77

    Master_Yoda77 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2008
    Messages:
    4
  6. aly369

    aly369

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2008
    Messages:
    90
    try sp3
     
  7. Rich-M

    Rich-M

    Joined:
    May 3, 2006
    Messages:
    22,443
    Please don't do SP3, it has nothing to do with the issue and could really screw things up.
    Once the files get corrupted, do they ever come back as normal? If you move the drive to another pc, are they normal?
    Is this a branded pc or home build as it sounds like psu could be the issue on an older pc.
     
  8. Noyb

    Noyb Trusted Advisor

    Joined:
    May 25, 2005
    Messages:
    20,800
    I'm assuming you mean an External HD .. And not a computer.
    I prefer to build my own .. So I can get to the HD ... Or change the enclosure.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817173040
    and install something like ...
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136073

    An other advantage .. This has a front panel power switch
    I'm wondering about heat in the external.

    Do you feel comfortable installing or changing HDs ??
     
  9. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2000
    Messages:
    9,049
    Another advantage in shopping for your own hard disk is that you can choose one with a 3- or even 5-year warranty if you like. You can't get this kind of warranty when you let the manufacturer assemble an external drive or computer.
     
  10. Noyb

    Noyb Trusted Advisor

    Joined:
    May 25, 2005
    Messages:
    20,800
    So far .. It's been my experience that the HDs are much more reliable than the enclosure its in.
    So .. I usually get two - then I have hardware backup.
    If I have to ... I can move the HD to another enclosure .. Till it can be replaced.

    There's even more advantages to a "build your own" .. with this combination ...
    If your computer uses SATA hard drives .. and you feel comfortable changing HDs

    Most of the pre-assembleds I've seen ... use older/slower HDs .. than the one I pointed to.
     
  11. Rich-M

    Rich-M

    Joined:
    May 3, 2006
    Messages:
    22,443
    I stopped making my own because the enclosures sold at most prices are crap!
     
  12. bp936

    bp936

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2003
    Messages:
    3,033

    Might be worth checking this out, because once I had an external drive that showed strange letters, somehow, somewhere there was a little virus, that changed my language layout for the keyboard and I could not understand anything it showed.
    Check your Regional and Language settings in ControlPanel when this is happening, if there is an extra language or symbols checked.
    Then some programs forget to return the correct settings. Because your other display for Windows show normal page display, only the explorer side is screwed up, if this only happens on that external drive, something is doing it on THAT drive.
    Another joker once changed writing on my computer to Greek symbols, once I returned to Roman letters, I could read everything.
     
  13. bp936

    bp936

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2003
    Messages:
    3,033
    correction: :mad: I don't know how my first line happened but I meant::confused:
    FAR FETCHED but it happens
     
  14. Master_Yoda77

    Master_Yoda77 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2008
    Messages:
    4
    I am going through my advanced language settings like you said, and I do have more languages selected then just the standard Roman setting, but some of them are locked and I can't uncheck them.

    But I don't see why this would be the problem since it seems to change these files randomly at any time.

    I'm thinking about just taking advantage of the warranty on it and sending it in to get replaced.

    Thanks to everyone.
     
  15. Sponsor

As Seen On
As Seen On...

Welcome to Tech Support Guy!

Are you looking for the solution to your computer problem? Join our site today to ask your question. This site is completely free -- paid for by advertisers and donations.

If you're not already familiar with forums, watch our Welcome Guide to get started.

Join over 733,556 other people just like you!

Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Short URL to this thread: https://techguy.org/769467

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice