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Any hope of getting the data off the hard drive?

Posted on 2015-02-11
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Last Modified: 2016-10-27
I have an external USB 3.0 HP Portable hard drive (pd1000a) that has stopped working correctly.  Whether I connect it to my laptop or my desktop (front or back USB port, 3.0 or 2.0 port - tried them all), it is recognized, but then when I try to copy the files off it, either I get a message saying the files aren't in that location anymore or "An unexpected error is keeping you from copying the folder.  Error 0x80070037".  When I go into Disk Management, it shows as a healthy partition, and I did try assigning it a drive letter.  I've tried running a scan disk but it won't run - just doesn't do anything.  Power management for all USB-related items is turned off.  Both laptop and desktop are Windows 7 Pro, 64 bit.

On my laptop, it was constantly disconnecting and rediscovering the drive.  On the desktop, it managed to stay connected and the light on the drive remained solid, but as soon as I copy the files and then hit paste, it comes up and says the files are no longer there.  

I haven't tried a new cable b/c I don't have one and didn't think that was the issue but I certainly can pick one up at Staples if it sounds like a cable issue.

Is there any way to get the files off the drive?  They are mostly jpg and camera raw files, if that matters.  Thanks so much in advance!
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Question by:dadoyan
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Assisted Solution

by:Phillip Burton
Phillip Burton earned 100 total points
ID: 40603279
Two suggestions.

1. Try using RoboCopy and using the command line to see if you can copy that way. You can test it without RoboCopy by creating a folder "b" in the root of the C drive, opening a command line and typing

copy g:\*.* c:\b\

Where "g" is the name of your hard drive. Let me know if you need help with that.

If that works, try RoboCopy.

2. Try cataloging the folder to see if you can get some persistent throughput on the drive. If you can't even catalog (which requires less work than copying) then you probably are in trouble. I would suggest using Filecats Explore for that purpose.
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Author Comment

by:dadoyan
ID: 40603351
I was able to run Filecats Standard on the drive.  That is great because at least now I know everything that I might lose :-P

I can list the dir of the drive from the command prompt.  When I try the copy command, it lists the first file y:\hpsimplesave.exe and then says "The system cannot find the file specified."  I didn't go on to try RoboCopy since this didn't work.
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by:William Fulks
ID: 40603361
Can you take apart the housing for the external drive? Inside it's probably just a 2.5" SATA drive and you should be able to install that inside your desktop.

Another thing you might try is download a Linux ISO, boot from the DVD drive, then try to read the files using Linux. I've had to do that before and it worked.
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by:Eirman
ID: 40603371
Could it be the caddy?

You could try removing the hard disk from the caddy
and connect it directly to a PC as an internal hard drive (not USB).

You'll need the proper sata lead.
There is quite likely a spare power connector inside the PC.
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by:William Fulks
ID: 40603374
Not sure if this is the same model, but here is a video on how to take it apart. Keep in mind this will void the warranty.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CTsrmPPOSnU
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by:netcmh
ID: 40603379
An alternate approach - use a Kali LiveCD to boot up, then use foremost or dd to image the drive and work on recovering files from that image. The more you try recovery from the device, you chance destroying data. Once you have the image, run a chkdsk /r on the drive to try and repair it.
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Expert Comment

by:Phillip Burton
ID: 40603385
Maybe you should check the Drive - try downloading Acronis® Drive Monitor.
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Author Comment

by:dadoyan
ID: 40603445
I tried Acronis but the drive doesn't support SMART monitoring.  It did report multiple critical errors "The system failed to flush data to the transaction log. Corruption may occur" but didn't specify which drive it was for.  Looking in the event viewer, there's repeated occurrences of Event ID 51, An error was detected on device \Device\Harddisk9\DR10 during a paging operation but there is no mention of the critical error found by Acronis.

It's a tiny little drive - 3" x 4.5" with no screws so I think I'd have to break the housing to get to the drive.  Maybe I will try one of the other suggestions next.
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Expert Comment

by:netcmh
ID: 40603455
I would strongly recommend the imaging method. That way you snapshot it. And, then work on recovery.

An example: http://charlesmccolm.com/content/recovering-usb-key-data-foremost

Graphical Step by step: http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/15761/recover-data-like-a-forensics-expert-using-an-ubuntu-live-cd/
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Author Comment

by:dadoyan
ID: 40604636
I downloaded Ubuntu and created a disk.  Changed boot order in bios but couldn't get it to boot from the cd.  Then I downloaded Macrium Reflect imaging software which wouldn't even see the drive.  I also downloaded DriveImage XML which saw the drive and tried to image it but kept coming up with a fatal error.  I don't know if it's worth still trying with the Ubuntu, Linux or Kali Live or if I just cut my losses now and stop trying.
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Accepted Solution

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Merete earned 400 total points
ID: 40604942
Try Get Data Back, it has fully functioning trial comes in fat and ntfs
I tested it once and was so happy with it I bought it, then I wondered if it could recover files off my other HDD from old computers, I keep them in a large storage
And yes it could recover from all 7 HDD of the ntfs
As your HDD is USB no need to buy an external  HDD case.
I give my 100% assurance that unless the drive is none functioning you can recover the files.
Very good guides included
https://www.runtime.org/data-recovery-software.htm

Now what is interesting  Runtime has upgraded, previously we had to buy NTFS or FAT separately now they offer
One license for three program versions.
While we believe you don't want to use anything else once you tried GetDataBack Simple, the price of $79 includes licenses for our classic GetDataBack software as well. Customers who bought GetDataBack for FAT or GetDataBack for NTFS in the past can use their existing license key for GetDataBack Simple. This is the lifetime update promise
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 40605075
you said "On my laptop, it was constantly disconnecting and rediscovering the drive.  On the desktop, it managed to stay connected "

does the laptop and desktop have USB 3 ?  if not or only one - that can be the reason for different behavior
if you can take the disk out , and connect it to a sata cable, that would be the best  way to go here; it looks like a usb bridge problem (can be cable also)
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 40605125
First of all try different cable.
Then if new cable does not help and the data is really valuable for you - open carefully the box and take out the SATA drive. If data is not as valuable as the drive itself - then replace the drive (in case you have yet warranty cover on it).
If you decide to open the box then take the drive out and connect it internally to a PC. There is always one or two free SATA ports.
Once connected boot the PC to Windows and try to copy out the data from the drive.
If you fail - then perform test of the drive using its vendor made check software such as Seatools (for Seagate for example, others have also similar tools). It will check both SMART and surface.
If they fails then your only solution is a data recovery company such as Gillware or Ontrack.
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by:Merete
ID: 40605152
It's an external drive>external USB 3.0 HP Portable hard drive (pd1000a)
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by:noxcho
ID: 40605221
@Merete, was this info for me? :)
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by:Merete
ID: 40605282
@noxcho, no my dear, I was adding to your comment when the phone rang, I went to answer it and came back then found my cat laying on my keyboard?? I guess he pressed some keys,
sorry about that he is the master here lol.  I could have edited it had you not commented :P
ok,  so to continue
It's an external drive>external USB 3.0 HP Portable hard drive (pd1000a)
if there is a problem with the internal wiring
then as noxcho and the others suggested take the Sata out of the box,, now there is another option and everyone one should have an external HDD case soo handy.
 Mine is a Sunbright USB external HDD case which is what I used and with Get Data Back. Mine supports ide and sata.
How it looks there is many newer types now. Look here
Sunbright USB drivebtw noxcho the EE T shirt looks good on you :)
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Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 40605289
Thanks Merete :)
Cats, those sabotage professionals :)))))

GetDataBack will word at its best if the drive is connected internally. This was my point that it should be connected internally to a PC.
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Author Closing Comment

by:dadoyan
ID: 40605846
Thank you to everyone for your advice.  GetDataBack was able to retrieve the files I needed off the drive without having to connect it internally to my computer.  The FileCats utility was very helpful to know what was on the drive as was the Acronis drive monitor.  Lesson learned not to buy the inexpensive HP portable drives that don't have their own power source.  Thank you again to everyone for your help.
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by:Merete
ID: 40607086
Thank you and well done!!!
I am  happy for you dadoyan I know how you feel, after buying GDB I feel a whole lot safer too.
There really is no reason to lose your stuff anymore.
I keep all my files over 4 x 1 terrabyte USB drives just incase my windows drive fails.

@noxcho, yes my cat has cost me one computer already when he was lying on the power board and caused a short , I have since made everything safe :)
 thanks you yes I know there are many arguments about file recovery using internal with the slave drive/ sata.
 For the average user USB is the simplest. then there is absolutely no chance of attempting a recovery from the same drive GDB is installed on.
A lot of systems can be time consuming to get inside the box too. The risk of touching something and causing a short is concerning for most as they don't own an anti static strap and that should also be offered when suggesting placing a drive internally.
Standing on carpet can be dangerous if the static is not released correctly from the body.
Get Data Back provides very informative guides using it via slave/sata and the USB / usb flash etc.
At least we have those options now.
Since main-boards changed from ide to sata I prefer to use USB via the external case and works very successfully.
My External case is supplied with sata and ide.
Step by Step: Doing a Data Recovery with GetDataBack
https://www.runtime.org/howto_datarecovery.pdf
https://www.runtime.org/howto.htm
Just for your information the FBI uses USB for data scans go figure :)
cheers all
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