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Lost hard drive identifier

Posted on 2013-05-20
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Last Modified: 2016-10-27
Well... now I gone and done it... I cloned an 80G SATA laptop drive to a brand new (was brand new) 320G drive. I saw the check box to also copy over the 'disk signature'... (Acronis' wording), just out of curiosity of course... Now my 320G drive is an 80G and I tried 'Diskpart' with 'clean all' option to remove all info...and I read a lot about the MBR on this... I am starting to think the Acronis software (2011 I believe), I used - brought over an identifier of sorts and not just a signature... wiping the drive and 'clean all' haven't helped. Its a Hitachi drive and I have their disk software .ISO burned...(it supports SCSI and ATA in a DOS environment),  and haven't seen what it might offer. I suppose... I need to somehow re-establish this 'identifier'... but I am not seeing answers to this - outside of the signature fixes etc. I used the Acronis alignment tool to view this drive and I see the missing space... but beacuse the drive is 'already aligned' I can't do a thing with it. The 80G (73G) section is there and the remaining 200+G is there in another 'section'...

Anyone have a good answer? Please?

Thanks Much,
AlpenIT
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Question by:alpenit
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9 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 39182367
You have cloned your original 80 GB partition to an identical 80 GB partition. The rest of the disk is still available. You can add another partition within diskmanagement and assign that a new drive letter, or you can resize the original partition to fill up the space. If you have Windows vista or newer you can resize the partition within diskmanagement, if it is XP or older, you need a 3rd party tool for that. In that case I'd recommend the PartedMagic LiveCD and then the partition editor on it's desktop:

http://partedmagic.com

Also, the diagnostic utility you downloaded should include an option to either write zero's, format or erase the disk. Use that to clear it and then you could try cloning again (also for that you can use the LiveCD I mentioned, and use CloneZilla which is also included on it.
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Expert Comment

by:choward16980
ID: 39182373
Sounds like the remaining 240GB of the drive is not presented, correct?  diskpart with the clean option on the correct partition should erase any and all partitions, presenting a uninitialized disk of 320GB.  Are you saying, even after you do that, it still is presented as a 80GB drive?   If so, have you typed the drive model number into google just to make sure you're not mistaken about the capacity?
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by:alpenit
ID: 39183503
Thanks for the reply!!! Your input on this is greatly appreciated. Actually I have worked with hard drives actually in the washing machines we used to call them in the 80's. Have had to deal with virus that wipes a drives identifier... and nothing can repair that.. that drive would be toast.
So... a software did this.. and I would hope a reveal in some means. You can't pick a partition with diskpart if the drive had been wiped a few times (in my case with some good 'wipers'...)... there are no partitions period. IF I try to create on - all I have as a hard drive choice after all the 'fun' is the 73G (80G) visible area... I know the manufacturers size, speed, part numbers etc... I do this a lot.. I have a pile of drives - used - of all sizes and speeds... I made a doofy dumb lack of mind mistake... its pretty clear that Acronis' idea of a 'dive signature' actually seems to do what a bad hard drive focused virus will do- duplicate the 'identifier' and replace the true manufacturer's identifier... have I contacted Acronis? Would it do any good? Probably not. Just hoping for a real wizard here on this as I am pretty adept at this understanding. thanks and please answer more to this if you have more ideas.

Thanks choward6980
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Author Comment

by:alpenit
ID: 39183512
Thanks Rindi - beyond all that as stated above... its 'deeper' than these obvious and in my case - typical first moves...

Ouch... I think its toast...
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39183525
i hope this article helps  http://www.howtohaven.com/system/change-disk-signature.shtml
or this one :  http://blogs.technet.com/b/markrussinovich/archive/2011/11/08/3463572.aspx

and of course - Acronis is also able to help you
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 39183591
I don't think the "identifier" is important. The manufacturer's diagnostic should be able to get the disk back to the original state. In your Question you mentioned that you can "see" the missing space. Please post a screenshot, and possibly also another of the diskmanagement.

If the diagnostic tool can't get the rest of the disk back, check other utilities, like hdat2, mhdd32, the ibm/hitachi feature tool or similar (you'll find several on the UBCD), with those you can set a "cap" on a disk, so it appears as another size than what it actually has. You can also use those tools to remove that "cap". This CD also includes the manufacturer's diagnostics, by the way:

http://ultimatebootcd.com
http://pharry.org/data/ubcd523.iso

Today's disks are way different from the old "washing machines" (which I used to repair too, replacing platters and heads, aligning them etc).
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 39183952
Do I understand it correct? Your new bigger drive is seen now only as 80GB right? The problem looks as HPA problem and I never see it causing this due to disk identified (or signature). Acronis cannot move such deep to HDD structure to corrupt this.
But Host Protected Area cloned from smaller drive to bigger one can cause the problem you are referring to.
Look this link: http://www.goodells.net/dellrestore/hpa-issues.shtml
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alpenit earned 0 total points
ID: 39675218
I just want to thank you all for the time and answers. I did read them. Though they might offer help for others, my situation here fell to the backburner... and I just tossed the drives, as they weren't worth all the time I was putting into this.
Its been a while since this was posted. It should be closed. Thanks again.
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Author Closing Comment

by:alpenit
ID: 39686661
Situation is no longer existing.
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