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External hard drive not showing up on laptop

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by BlondeBomber, Feb 21, 2009.

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  1. BlondeBomber

    BlondeBomber Thread Starter

    Aug 17, 2005
    First, I apologize if this question has been posted before but I tried searching on this site for the answer but didn't seem to find one. Here is my problem. I have a Toshiba Satellite A200 laptop running Vista Home Premium which has been giving me problems since the day I purchased it. After many calls to Toshiba and taking it back to the store of purchase, the only answer I get is: Format it! So after creating the recovery cds I have to back up bazillions of files. My brother is letting me use his hard drive which is in a SSK USB enclosure. Unfortunately I do not know the make of the hard drive in the enclosure and he is away so I cannot ask him. Here is the problem:
    1. I plug it into the USB port and the laptop makes the sound of finding new hardware and the little icon appears saying "safely remove hardware"
    2. I click on My Computer and the hard drive is no where to be found
    3. I clicked on Device Manager and I can see it under USB Mass Storage Device
    4. I go to Disk Management and I can see it as Disk 1 Unknown Not Initialized

    I have never connected an external hard drive before so I'm a little scared to Initialize it because I know my brother has lots of files already stored on it and I do not want to erase them. I know he did have it connected to his Mac pc and his Macbook so i'm not sure if this is what is causing the problem. All I want to do is backup my files so I can format this laptop that is causing me such frustration!

    I am thanking in advance to anyone who is willing to help me fix this problem. :)

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  2. bigbear


    Apr 27, 2004
    If the drive is formatted to use on a MAC then you will not be able yo use it on an IBM machine.
    It will probably be better if you got your own external drive
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