Semi-Corrupt (?) External Harddrive

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Thread Starter
Jan 2, 2011
I use a old Windows XP Home Edition PC running SP2 for a home file server. I hooked up a 2TB Western Digital Elements external drive (NTFS) to my computer to store the files. It began to shutdown for a Windows Automatic Update for Software Distribution Service 3.0. When it was downloading 1 of 2 updates, the PC basically did nothing. Then an error box appeared on the screen giving a cryptic error of the update that said click OK to terminate and cancel. I hit OK to terminate and the PC shutoff.

When I turned it back on a blue screen appeared with the Windows XP Logo and it said Please Wait..., it did nothing for a long time so I shut it off manually. Upon restarting the computer was unable to boot normally, in safe mode, in safe mode with networking, and with Compaq System Recovery Mode. (Safe Mode would freeze when loading mup.sys) It finally booted after unplugging the external drive. When the drive was plugged back in the computer would not boot. And if the drive was plugged into ANY Windows computer after they have booted it would acknowledge that it found new hardware and then freeze the PC until the drive was unplugged. (Tried with 2 Laptops and the PC).

I then ran a live DVD openSUSE and plugged the drive in. openSUSE stated the drive could not be mounted. When plugged into a Mac Mini, the mac mini was able to read the drive. It showed three files in Finder which were the folders on windows and was able to give the file sizes for those three folders. But because the Mac saw the folders as files it was not able to read the contents of the folders. (I believe it is because the harddrive uses NTFS).

The harddrive doesn't seem to be completely corrupt as the Mac Mini was able to read the folders as files and was even able to read the size of the files (folders). Could my files be recovered by software such as Smart Data Recovery ( If so which software would be best. If not is there any other method I could use to extract the data from the drive without losing it. Can either Microsoft or Western digital help with this issue, and will Microsoft take responsibility for corrupting the drive which had purchased iTunes content on, as their update crashed while installing.

Thanks in advance.
Jan 18, 2011
I am running xp sp3 and since installing the latest windows updates i can no longer access my Seagate external hard drive. It returns an error '' :f drive is not accessible file or folder is corrupt. ''

When I view the drive in my computer it says total storage and free space are equal so basically the drive is empty... however when connected to my vista pc I can see and view what I assume to be almost all my files.

I am assuming that in some way the windows update has altered something on the hard drive which is why it is displaying as all free space...

This is the second Seagate hard drive I have had issues with only this one is not backed up :rolleyes: and the previous model that this replaced did not survive the swipe form the desktop :D

I am so pi$$ed at myself as I always run a backup of my hard drives however as I am currently overseas and living from my laptop this has taken a back seat.

How can I go about removing all association of the hard drive to the pc so that it is as though I have plugged the hard drive in for the first time only it contains data.

Please help an already receding hair line arrrrrrrrrgh :confused:
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