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Hard Drive/partition question disappeared in Windows explorer

Posted on 2011-04-30
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Last Modified: 2013-11-30
Hey experts, this is something i am seeing more and more of lately when servicing computers and now it randomly happened to me.

I have a workstation with 6 hard drives ( non-raid). suddenly 2 of them disappeared from windows explorer. I opened drive management and the drives are being detected but Volume and file system type are blank.  Everything else is ok "layout "simple", Type "Basic", Status "Healthy ( active, Primary partition"). neither of these are OS partitions

They are both labeled as empty but not raw or unformatted.

*running Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit.

I know not to do anything to them , i have done data recovery before  but this is annoying and doing data recovery on these 2 drives would be annoying as all hell since one of them has 2 million + files, 1 tb and 1.5 tb sizes.

i used Active@ Partition recovery to look at the drives and everything seems perfect, i cannot see what is wrong and why they are not being detected.

Any Ideas aside from getting extra drives and copying it all over?
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Question by:Tsz109
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9 Comments
 
LVL 47

Expert Comment

by:David
ID: 35497202
100% of all disk drives fail ... eventually.    Why are they not being detected?  Probably because they are now broken :)
You should probably get yourself some decent diagnostics to determine if the problem is a failed disk or an O/S issue.
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Expert Comment

by:robertkennedy
ID: 35497205
I have seen something similar occur when a Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit system resumes from Standby mode. Normally a restart fixes the issue and the drives are again accessible.

Have you tried restarting this particular machine?
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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:robertkennedy
ID: 35497212
The following knowledgebase article appears to explain the issue i was referring to:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/977178/en-us

It appears a hotfix may be available for it, not sure if you issue is the same but definitely worth looking into if the drives are SATA disks.
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Author Comment

by:Tsz109
ID: 35497214
#1 the discs are not failed,
#2 Yes i have restarted the computer and even have changed the plugs around so they are on different sata ports.
#3 in data recovery software every file i have looked at and opened inside the drive is perfect.
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LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:hmarcbower
ID: 35497486
Are they on a SATA3 controller?  If so, is it Marvell? If so, I know there have been some problems with their controllers.

What is your motherboard model?
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Accepted Solution

by:
ReclaiMe earned 1600 total points
ID: 35497990
As these likely were NTFS, use something like TestDisk or a disk viewer (e.g. WinHex) to make sure primary boot sectors match backups. TestDisk can copy backup over primary I recall. Also, make sure the power supply is good enough to provide proper power for 6 drives. I've seen similar issues when the power supply deteriorates and cannot provide its rated power (on about three-five years old units). Six seems higher than average number of drives.
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Assisted Solution

by:David
David earned 400 total points
ID: 35498064
Have you actually run disk diagnostics?   Let's face it, no way could you have possibly actually examined more than 0.000001% of the data.   Even if you verified 100% of the files, then that doesn't mean you looked at 100% of the media, unless the drive was 100% full.
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Assisted Solution

by:Tsz109
Tsz109 earned 0 total points
ID: 35498111
OK strangest thing is, i tried just "change drive letter " in drive management and they came back good as new. now to find out what did it.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Tsz109
ID: 35696456
was simple but yet complex, had to try a few things on my own, noone suggested just changing the drive letter.
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