Windows 7 wont read my drive, wants to format it

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editundo

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Oct 11, 2008
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Hi,

I have a 500GB external hard drive (USB powered) which just stays plugged into my computer at all times which I use for storing music, video, photos etc. When I started up my PC just now, it came up with an error message saying "You need to format the disk in Drive E: before you can use it", and it keeps bringing up this message whenever I unplug it and plug it back in again, or try to access it; but it was working fine just a few hours ago, and the drive hasn't been moved, bumped, unplugged or anything like that between when it was working, and now - so I see no reason for it to have stopped working. Obviously I don't want to format it as that would mean losing everything on it - including many files backed up from my old PC which I hadn't transferred to this new(er) one yet.

I get the same error message plugging it into my desktop PC running windows XP.

Any suggestions will be much appreciated!
 

editundo

Thread Starter
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
7
Sorry, I assumed my profile would be visible - my computer is:
Acer Aspire 5742 (Laptop)
Windows 7
Intel Core i3-370M processor (2.4 GHz)
Intel HD Graphics
4GB DDR3 RAM
320GB HDD
 
Joined
Feb 17, 2008
Messages
2,637
hiya,try this,open CMD and Type "chkdsk e: /f" - if your external drive mounts as Drive E... Replace this letter as necessary
 

editundo

Thread Starter
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
7
Hi,

Thanks for your quick reply. I tried typing what you said into CMD but it says it isn't a recognised command. What directory does CMD need to be in?
 
Joined
Feb 17, 2008
Messages
2,637
try running the cmd as administrator,type CMD in search,then right -click on CMD exe and run as administrator,type in the command,chkdsk e: /f
 

editundo

Thread Starter
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
7
Thanks.
CMD says:
"The type of file system is RAW. Chkdsk is not available for RAW drives".
But it can't be raw, it was working fine a few hours ago! Any suggestions?
 

editundo

Thread Starter
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
7
Thanks for that suggestion, Lance1! Do you know of any free alternatives? The contents of the drive aren't really worth forking out cash for.
 
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