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External USB HD not recognized by Windows XP

I have an external USB HD with data on it.  Now Windows XP - in three different computers do not recognize the drive.  System Management says the drive is "unallocated" and Nortons wants to looks for DOS Partitions.   What might be the problem and what solutions are out there - preferably without losing all the data.  Thanks.  Ziggy
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Ziggy622
Asked:
Ziggy622
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4 Solutions
 
rindiCommented:
Get a copy of knoppix, boot the CD and check if you can read the drive using that OS. If that is the case you can use it to copy off your data to a networked drive or some other HD.

http://knoppix.net

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logic0004Commented:
Could u provide some more details regarding whats the size of the USB HD and how many partitions are there on that HD.

Also, if u use a flash drive i.e. USB memory stick, does that work with ur system.

Also, whats the size of the HD which is presently in ur system.
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nobusCommented:
any other options in disk management? (right click the drive)
if open is available, you can access the drive here.
But since it does the same on 3 Pc's, i can suggest this :
-if flash stick : it's gone bad - replace it
-if HD : possible disk or case bad. try the disk on an IDE connector
if you need to recover the data, pick one of these :
http://www.pcworld.com/downloads/collection/0,collid,1295,00.asp            Free Recovery
http://www.grc.com/spinrite.htm                              Spinrite
http://www.runtime.org/                                    GetDataBack
http://www.stellarinfo.com/                                    Stellar
http://www.bitmart.net/                                    Restorer 2000
http://www.snapfiles.com/get/restoration.html                        Restoration
http://www.snapfiles.com/get/activeundelete.html                  Active undelete
http://www.pcinspector.de/file_recovery/UK/welcome.htm                  pc Inspector
http://www.handyrecovery.com/download.shtml                        Handy Recovery
http://www.snapfiles.com/get/smartrecovery.html                  flash recovery
http://www.ontrack.com/                                    ontrack
http://www.ontrack.com/easyrecoveryprofessional/                  Easy Recovery
http://www.cgsecurity.org                                    Test Disk + utils
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PUNKYCommented:
To narrow down issues, you might try take out the drive from USB closure and hook up into computer as slave drive, see if you can access the drive.
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nobusCommented:
already said, punky . .
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logic0004Commented:
May be u can try taking the HD out of the enclosure and put it as IDE slave drive and then see what happens..
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
I did remove the Seagate drive out of the USB case and put it into my desktop.  I get the same message as I did when it was in the USB case.

The message from Disk Management is that the drive is "Unallocated."  It it indicates there is 74.53 GB.  Now, I know there is a lot of data on there, so am I to assume that the computer is not reading the data?

I also gather, that the next step is going to have to be to try to recover the data?

Any additional comments and assistance is greatly appreciared.

Thanks.
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rindiCommented:
Have you tried knoppix, or getdataback mentioned by nobus?
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nobusCommented:
is the drive recognised in the bios ok?
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
I have not tried knoppix yet.  I have tried "getdatatback" the FAT version.  Curious, it got all sorts of .bmp files back - but they are all dated as having been created in 2000.  They aren't mine and I have not seen any of my files, most of which are .mp3, .jpeg and I bought the HD as new (supposedly) in April of this year.  So?????

I am going to try Getdataback with it its NFT version.    Don't know if it makes any difference.

And to answer nobus' question - yes, BIOS recognizes it as a slave drive.

And, as I said, disk management sees it as an "unallocated" drive.
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nobusCommented:
>>   yes, BIOS recognizes it as a slave drive.  << yes, but are the parameters correct, and the size?
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
OK, I am a bit of a novice when it comes to hardware, so here is the information, I think, you are looking for.

In the CMOS settings for this drive, it provided the following info:

Capacity - 80 GB (I know that is correct.)
Cylinders - 38,309
Head - 16
Precomp - 0
Landing Zone - 38,308
Sectors - 255

Is this what you wanted to know?

And thank you for your continuing guidance along the road to recovery. (and thanks also to all the other experts for their suggestions.)
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nobusCommented:
yes, that identifies the disk ok.
Time to try the data recovery. - did you try accessing it with the knoppix cd yet ?
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
Not yet - I'll download it today.  Thanks.
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
An additional question, nobus.  

I went on the Knoppix site - but have no idea which of those files I need to dowqnload.  Could you please tell me?  Thanks.
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nobusCommented:
yes - look at the country - if you need an english version, use a usa based download mirror
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
I am sorry I did not make myself clear - I mean - what is the specific name of the file or program I have to download.  Thanks.
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nobusCommented:
ok - but what language or country do you want ?
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rindiCommented:
Get this:

KNOPPIX_V5.0.1CD-2006-06-01-EN.ISO

This is the newest english knoppix version. It is a complete CD so will take some time to download.
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
OK - I have finally been able to download the file onto a CD.     It is a file with an ".iso" extension.

Now what happens?   Do I need to do anything else to the CD or to the file that is on there.?  By the way it is only one file - 696 MB.  ?

The following is what I assume I should be doing.    

Change the settings of the computers so that the computer will only boot up through the CD drive?

And what should I see when it has done that?   The Windows XP operating system or Linux?


Because I did all that and the Windows XP came up - not Linux.

Thank you for your additional guidance.

Ziggy
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rindiCommented:
what CD burning software do have? If it is nero, select "recorder", then "burn iso image", and then just select this file to get burnt on a CD (it needs to be large enough, 700MB). If you are using another burning software, look for a similar option.

Once the CD has been burnt, change the boot priority to boot from cd as you are suspecting, and then it should just boot up. Make sure the external drive is connected before booting. You should get a gui that looks similar to windows, and you should see the drive icons on the desktop. just click on these icons and it should mount the partitions on the drive and open them in an explorer-like window.
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nobusCommented:
>>   OK - I have finally been able to download the file onto a CD  <<  normally, you download to your disk, then burn it as an iso image, as rindi said.
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
OK I have burned the file  - using Roxio - to a CD.

I have changed BIOS settings so that computer will boot from the CD.

When the "Boot Other Device" is "enabled" in BIOS settings, the Windows XP operating system starts up.

When the "Boot Other Device" is "disabled" in BIOS settings, I get a Disk Boot Failure message.

In other words, the Knoppix file does not appear to be bootable.  Am I missing a step somewhere.?

Any comments?

Thanks

Ziggy
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rindiCommented:
You don't burn the file, but rather burn the iso image. Look for an option inside roxio "burn image to CD" or something similar (as I use other burning software I'm not sure on the exact description).
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nobusCommented:
you can try the cd on another pc first, to be sure it boots or not.
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
OK - Once I burned the "image", I got the CD to boot.  That was cool!.

Anyway, here is it what happened.

Linux recognized the HD that has all the data - but - it came up with the following error message:

"Could not mount device."        "Mount: could nhot determine filesustem type and none was specified."


So, folks, I still cannot access the data that is on that hard drive.

Any further suggestions?

Thanks.
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nobusCommented:
if the disk is not recognised normally, it is a sign of hardware failure - i would recommend a data recovery Cy at this point if the data is of importance :   http://www.gillware.com/      
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rindiCommented:
Did you try getdataback already which was mentioned a lot earlier? With that you will be very likely to recover your data.
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Ziggy622Author Commented:
Thank you to all who contributed to a successful outcome of this problem.

I have my data back and have been able to reformat the errant diskdrive.

Thanks again.

Ziggy
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rindiCommented:
your welcome.
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nobusCommented:
have a nice weekend !
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