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Zip disk trouble.

Posted on 2001-06-04
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Last Modified: 2010-04-27
I have two zip disks that files cannot be seen on.  If you put the disks in a zip drive they appeared to have no files on them.  However, if you look at the properties of a disk you will see that there is space being used on the disks.  For example one of them has about 75mb of data, but the files are not visible.  I've tried scanning the disk and checking for viruses.  Anyone have any ideas on what to try.  I'd like to get the data back.
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Question by:boyntont
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18 Comments
 

Author Comment

by:boyntont
ID: 6153598
These are IBM formatted.  They originally came from a 98 machine but I'm testing on my Win2k machine.
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:jhance
ID: 6153605
Do other ZIP disks that you have work OK?

If so, then most likely these disks are trashed.  I'd suggest discarding them.  Data recovery may possible but in most cases the directory information is lost and you will need to use a tool like Norton Utilities to try and locate your data and rebuild the directory information.  The biggest problem is that generally the directory area on the disk is damaged so you really can't get it to be recoverable.

If NOT, then your drive is bad.  Don't put any more important disks in that drive and get a replacement.  Bad ZIP drives have a habit of making bad ZIP disks.
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Author Comment

by:boyntont
ID: 6153639
These actually aren't my disks.  I'm just using my drive to try to access them.  All my disks work.  These 'bad' disks exhibit the same symptoms in all zip drives.
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Author Comment

by:boyntont
ID: 6153731
These actually aren't my disks.  I'm just using my drive to try to access them.  All my disks work.  These 'bad' disks exhibit the same symptoms in all zip drives.
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Expert Comment

by:santiagoc
ID: 6153743
Then dump the darn things and tell the guy to re record the data on some fresh zips preferrably not yours, just in case his zip drive is nearly dead or has a disk killing habit.
The dumping suggestion is kinda serious, for you migt at certain moment mistake those two for good ones and try to use them, risking yourself to data loss
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Author Comment

by:boyntont
ID: 6153762
At the moment that suggestion is not acceptable to them.  I don't care about the disks, but they need the data.  They should've had backups but they didn't.  I told them I would look into trying to retrieve the data somehow.  
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Expert Comment

by:santiagoc
ID: 6153834
Then you should consider using a low level scan to try to retrieve your data, since zip disks work somewhat like floppies, you should check for track 0 integrity, if it is alright, you might be able to recover some of the data.
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Expert Comment

by:santiagoc
ID: 6153839
PS: I'm new here and i didn't know any better when I posted the answer, sorry guys
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Author Comment

by:boyntont
ID: 6153888
By the way.  I do agree with you santiagoc.  The disks should be dumped.  I wasn't disputing that.  That is just no the answer I want to give them at the moment.  I going to try anything first before telling them its a lost cause.
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:jhance
ID: 6153990
>>PS: I'm new here and i didn't know any better when I posted the answer, sorry guys

Yeah right!  That's what they all say.  The fact the the Comment vs. Answer etiquette is clearly posted in the sign-up portion of EE as well as included as a link at the BOTTOM OF EVERY QUESTION!!
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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:kneea
ID: 6155854
Could the discs be in mac format?

I know that a lot of mac people use them.

If I am not VERY careful with naming all the files on a disc, my mac mates see an empty disc even when there are files on the disc.

...maybe it works the other way around and they have used names and properties on a mac which windows can't handle.

I've had problems with free space on zip discs before, but a reformat will solve that.

Go to a computer store if necessary and try the zip discs in a nice new mac.
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Author Comment

by:boyntont
ID: 6155870
No they are not MAC formatted.  They've been used in a Win98 machine for months.  Never even been in the same room as a MAC
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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:kneea
ID: 6155892
ok, try:-

from the dos prompt (start,run,command) type:-

attrib e:

See if that will list any files

type:-

chkdsk e:

What does that say?

(change the e to whatever you zip drive is)
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Expert Comment

by:chasb154
ID: 6178156
If you are unable to get the zip disks to work, you might try Ontrack Easy Recovery.

Zip disks do have a tendency to fail like that.

If these are 100Mb disks, try reading them in a 250Mb zip drive.  May or may not solve the problem, but it sounds like anything is worth a try at this point to save the data.
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Author Comment

by:boyntont
ID: 6178196
I gave the disk back after trying a whole bunch of things.  It's not my problem anymore.  Never should have been.  Oh well, thanks folks.
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:aswally
ID: 6209660
I have had all sorts of trouble with some zip disks, and I and a number of people I know have concluded that win98 doesn't format zip disks correctly

Have you got ImoegaWare installed?

If not I recomend you install it and then try again, and maybe use some of the tools that come with the disks

We also manged to recover data using a Mac, as they can read PC formatted disks, You might be able to try this

I have had no reliablity problems with my zip disks and they have had a lot of beating and mistreatment.  The are heaps tough unlike Jazz disks and LS-120

I hope This is of some Help

Aswally
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