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Cannot move files from Hard Drive to ANY external hard drive

Posted on 2006-03-28
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Last Modified: 2011-09-20
Ok, this one is a toughie, so put your thinking caps on.  I had a problem with windows last week.  I couldn't figure out what the hang up was so I took it to a shop.  They got it running, or so they said, but said it was running slow.  When I got it back the thing was a mess.  It appeared that anything running a windows function was messed up.  The taskbar was all screwy, programs wouldn't start or would hang.  It took forever to get it to do anything.  Worst of all, the reason I needed it temporarily back up in its current condition was to back up some needed files to an external hard driv.e  I'd try to cut and paste or copy and paste, and it wouldn't go through.  I'd try moving from one window to the next.  NO go.  I'd try the "copy to folder, move to folder, etc", still no luck.  A friend suggested I run knoppix on it.  I did and it started up much faster than normal and is quite usable (I'm on it right now).  But, still a problem.  It's telling me that the external drive is write protected.  Only problem?  It's not.  No external drive works on it, even with the read only unchecked and the can read and write settings set.  I've got no idea what to do.  The only means, so far, that I've been able to do to transfer files is to e-mail them through a web based e-mail client.  SInce I've got roughly 15 gb of material to back up, that's really not a feasible solution.  I just hooked a dvd burner to it and I'm going to see if it will let me burn the files.  If so, great.  But, in the meantime, I'm putting you guys to work.  So, here's what I need.  A) A solution for getting it to write to an outside drive or B) An alternate solution that won't drive me nuts sending one file at a time via e-mail.  Thanks guys!
Matt
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Question by:matthewaschenk
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Assisted Solution

by:Callandor
Callandor earned 500 total points
ID: 16310580
Why don't you hook it up as a slave drive to a system with a compatible OS?  Copying the files to an internal hard drive should be easy at that point.  The OS on this drive sounds messed up, so don't use it to boot up.  Once you've copied it to an internal hard drive, you should be able to copy it anywhere else, including external drives.
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by:matthewaschenk
ID: 16310670
I'm not a very knowlegable tech person.  I'm in graphic design, and know my way around software fairly well, but not hardware.  This is the first time I've had the guts to try knoppix...so I don't know how to do that.  Is it complicated?  Do I have to open the machine up?  This is a work computer at a small business, we don't have a tech person (I'm as close as you get.)  Is it difficult?  I don't really have another machine aside from my laptop that I can use.
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Expert Comment

by:maduropa
ID: 16310713
okay, you use knoppix, and want to copy to the external drive?
check if your external drive is formatted for NTFS or Fat32.
Knoppix is linux, so might be unable to write to NTFS, so make sure the drive is formatted as Fat32.
If not possible, follow Calandor, or download BartPE bootdisk. (a quick and easy google should tell you the rest)
This one is able to write to NTFS if I'm not mistaken.
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Author Comment

by:matthewaschenk
ID: 16310799
I am in the middle of a test burn of a dvd.  If all goes well with the burn, I'll just back up the hd with a few dvds.  If that works, and I know this is a truly stupid question of me to ask, but I want to just start over scratch with this machine.  I have to options.  One, is the dell disk that came with the machine which has ms windows xp home sp1 on it and all the dell garbage.  I also have, at the office, another copy of just ms windows xp home that's got a validation left on it.  Is it going to be a problem to just put that in my hard drive and load it up?  What choices when it pulls up do I choose to completey wipe my computer and start from scratch?
Matt
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by:Callandor
ID: 16310848
Knoppix is a nice self-contained OS, but you seem to still have problems when using it.

Taking a drive out and hooking it up as a slave in another system is not very difficult.  Look at the instructions for adding a second hard drive here: http://www.helpwithpcs.com/upgrading/install-hard-drive.htm.  The only difference is that you shouldn't format it once it is installed.  Removing a drive simply involves powering off, opening the case, disconnecting the power cable and the data cable, unscrewing the screws holding the drive, and sliding it out.  Once it's out, change the drive jumpers to slave and install in the other system.
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maduropa earned 500 total points
ID: 16310901
If you install windows with a valid license, you will only need the Dell-drivers.
If you make sure you have all drivers present, you can proceed with the 'plain' XP, and add drivers later-on. usually, these come on a CD, and is marked Drivers & Utilities.
If you don't have this CD, you can still easily find the libraries on the dell-website, and download them separately. (you need the asset-code on the case), best to start with the network-driver, after that, it's easier to find the needed drivers and updates.
The Dell-website is very good with this, so you don't have to use the original Dell CD.

If you boot with the CD, you get to choose on what hard-drive. There is also an option to delete all partitions, and create new ones, and then select the partition for the system.

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Author Comment

by:matthewaschenk
ID: 16311278
Thanks so much all of you.  I'm going to run the repair once I make sure that the dvd has burned correctly.  It's taking its sweet ass time right now.  After I make sure it's burned right I have two more dvd's or so to back the rest of the junk up.  Then I'll run the windows install.  Once all is up and running again, I'll distribute points evenly between you all.  I just want to wait in case another glitch pops up so I don't have to open another question.
Matt
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Assisted Solution

by:gurutc
gurutc earned 500 total points
ID: 16312159
also, you can boot from an ultimate boot cd for windows, go to www.ubcd4win.com, download and burn the cd, and you can boot from it and copy to any destination you want.
- Travis
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Author Comment

by:matthewaschenk
ID: 16312197
Ok guys, the dvd burning is working like a charm.  Finished the first disk and everything's there just fine.  I'll just back things up that way.  Then I'll run the windows installation this afternoon.  I'll let you know how it goes.
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Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 500 total points
ID: 16313847
Just some info on knoppix. It can't write to ntfs partitions (yet), maybe the new version 5 which should be downloadable any time soon (I'm checking the download mirrors daily at the moment) can write to ntfs... So at the moment you would have to copy the data to a fat32 usb drive. This should be no problem as long as these files aren't over 4GB in size and if you don't need to retain any special ntfs attributes. Before being able to write to a HD using knoppix you first need to mount that partition (just click the icon and it will mount), then right click on the same icon again and you should see an option which says make the partition writeable. After that you can write to that partition.
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by:gurutc
ID: 16841364
cool with me - gurutc
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