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Getting Windows 7 to recognize NTFS file system of bad hard drive

Posted on 2014-03-20
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Last Modified: 2014-03-27
I have bad hard drive (3TB) which I have been recovering data from using robocopy.
The process has been pretty slow (weeks) but I have been able to recover a significant amount of data.

Yesterday, I had to power down the drive for some time. When I turned it back on, Windows only saw it as a raw device. This has happened previously and running chkdsk /F allowed Windows to recognize the drive's filesystem.

However, this time chkdsk keeps running into an error, I've tried a few times with the same result (see attached screenshot).

Is there anything I can do or is the drive totally pooched?
chkdsk.PNG
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Question by:bejhan
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18 Comments
 
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kadafitcd earned 325 total points
ID: 39943623
Disk is probably close to being dead. Using recovery software is probably your only hope at this point in time.  Recuva is a freeware software and you may have some luck with it.  But if not, a reasonably priced alternative that I've had much success with is Get Data Back.  Try them out they are probably your only hope other than sending it off to a recovery company.

Good Luck HTH
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Author Comment

by:bejhan
ID: 39943876
I just gave Recuva a try but it indicates it cannot determine the file system type.
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Expert Comment

by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
ID: 39944209
Then probably spinrite http://www.grc.com is your only hope for salvation to revive the drive.
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Expert Comment

by:web_tracker
ID: 39944392
HDD regenerator works a little better than does spinrite, as I have used both on dying harddrives and HDD regenerator repairs more hard drive errors and detects the hard drives better. I found spinrite often does not detect the failing drive in order to run the software.  I think spinrite is a little out dated they have not updated their software since for over ten years, they do not offer a money back gaurentee either. HDD regenerator has changed and has been updated as harddrive technology has changed. They also offer a money back gaurentee if you are not satisfied with the software. HDD regenerator has a slightly different technology that they use to try to recover bad sectors.  

I talk from experience using both software tools and found hdd regenerator to be a better product.

Note the more you use your drive the worse the drive is going to get making data recovery more difficult.

If you are really concerned about the data you may need to use the services of a data recovery place to fully recover valuable data.
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by:bejhan
ID: 39944468
The data on the drive isn't important enough to warrant data recovery services. I understand that I am pushing it further toward failure but I just want to recover what I can before that happens.

I actually have HDDRegenetator and ran it on this drive when I first noticed it failing, I didn't have much success. Is there a way I can have it just restore the file system rather than trying to recover all bad sectors? I know recovering bad sectors will fail.
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Expert Comment

by:web_tracker
ID: 39944484
When I do data recovery off of failing drives I would first run HDD regenerator to recover data from bad sectors, then I run Easeus Data Recovery Wizzard Pro. Both are paid software, but are part of my arsenal to recover data from bad drives. Easuse data recovery looks for all the partitions on the drive and can recover data that was deleted or even lost if the directory structure has been corrupted. Normally one of the sectors will have the directory structure of your drive... ex on a xp system. C:\documents and setttings\username\ mydocuments..... etc. or win 7  c:\Users\username\mydocuments...... etc.

Easuse has recovered more data then any other data recovery software I used, but it takes time. It can take up to a day to scan the whole drive depending on what settings you use to scan, and depends on the size of the drive or how much data is on the drive, it also depends how fast the computer is that the drive is plugged into. It is not the easiest data recovery software to use, but most people are able to figure out how to use it, or there are probably online guide on how to use the different features of the app. Note this application has to be installed on another computer and run on the computer it is installed on. So if the computer has capability of running an extra drive inside you can connect it that way, or if you have some type of usb drive docking station you can connect the drive externally (this method is slower). Its always faster if you can connect your drive internally and boot with the system with two drives.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39944649
i'm completely with web tracker, sinc e i also have used spinrite, and HDDRegenerator.
the latest version runs from your disk, while earlier versions only ran from CD (which i still prefer)
i also think it runs a bit faster too
and i never have lost any data by running it
that said - it cannot repair everything, only sectors written badly (too low magnetic field for a good read back)

but yes -  the drive looks bad to me too
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Author Comment

by:bejhan
ID: 39945424
I gave Easeus Data Recovery a try, its intelligent search has been running all night.
It correctly identifies my drive as NTFS and even has the correct file count.

However, it estimates 652 hours until completion, which I believe is just for the search.
I do not want to wait that long. Since Easeus can see the file system, is there anyway to get Windows to recognize it again?

nobus: You were in my other discussion about this drive (http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/Windows_7/Q_28364609.html). It is definitely bad, I'm just trying to continue to recover the data that I can.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39945553
the best recover soft i know is GetDataBack : http://www.runtime.org/

run it , and see what it says that can be recovered - then buy it if you like it's results !
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Author Comment

by:bejhan
ID: 39946071
I cancelled Easeus search and it still showed me a directory tree, I was allowed to attempt recovery of some files. The process succeeded, however, some of the files were bad but I was given no indication by the program. This may be because I did not let its search complete.

Because many of the files will be unrecoverable, this does not work for me.

I will give GetDataBack a try.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39947072
i'm anxious to hear the result..
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Author Comment

by:bejhan
ID: 39952197
Sorry for the delay! I tried GetDataBack and it did not copy the corrupted files like Easeus did. However, it seemed to copy some bad files because when I tried to view a video it was scrambled at certain parts.

I am really just wanting to get Windows to recognize file system on the disk again so I can continue along with robocopy.

I tried Active Partition Recovery but it reports that the boot sector is intact.
I even tried deleting then recovering boot sector information.

Isn't there any tools that can recover NTFS file system when chkdsk cannot?
It seems while chkdsk is trying to repair file system, it attempts write to bad sector or something like that.
I suppose MFT is corrupted (confirmed by TestDisk), which is why Windows indicates that format is required.
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LVL 92

Assisted Solution

by:nobus
nobus earned 175 total points
ID: 39952539
with a bad drive, recovery is dependent on the type of fault - some can be recovered, but certainly not all
since you tried several in vain, i suggest a data recovery service - ask for their recovery police and fee - here a couple :
http://www.lowcostrecovery.com/index.html                        data recovery Company
http://www.gillware.com/                                 "           "                   "
http://www.drivesavers.com/services/estimates.html                     "           "                   "
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LVL 12

Assisted Solution

by:kadafitcd
kadafitcd earned 325 total points
ID: 39953303
As Nobus said. The Drive is toast.  At this point you have only 2 options.  Live with what Get Data Back recovers for you and delete the bad and keep the good.  Or Use a Data recovery company.  The more you do on the hard drive the less likely the Data Recovery will become.  Make a decision now before you go further.  If it's not worth Hundreds of dollars then you will have to stick with Get Data Back.  

Sorry for the bad news but there really isn't any other tools that will do any good other than recovery software that will all work like Get Data Back...
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Author Comment

by:bejhan
ID: 39953619
I know the drive is toast, it has been for a while. And as I said, I was successfully recovering with robocopy, until the MFT was corrupted. I was just hoping to get back to that state and continue the partial recovery as I was.

Anyway, I guess time to give up on that thought.
I will give GetDataBack another try.
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LVL 92

Assisted Solution

by:nobus
nobus earned 175 total points
ID: 39953830
if you don't want to try a recovery service, you can test with more recovery softwares - some can have better results
http://www.pcinspector.de/file_recovery/UK/welcome.htm      pc Inspector -FREE -
      http://www.piriform.com/recuva/download/standard            FREE  -  Recuva
      http://www.stellarinfo.com/                              Stellar
http://www.runtime.org/                              GetDataBack
http://www.ontrack.com/                              Ontrack
http://www.recovermyfiles.com/                              RecoverMyFiles
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:bejhan
ID: 39959112
GetDataBack was able to recover some files then just stop responding.
I think the drive is completely toast now.

I guess time to give up and RMA.
Thanks for the tips.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39959258
tx for feedback
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