hdd trouble...please help

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I have two hdd that show as NOT seen in windows,nor can i get them to
boot. i tried formating with no luck, any advise? TIA

Re: hdd trouble...please help

ps if possible I dont want to lose any data. TIA

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Re: hdd trouble...please help

dan wrote:
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If you have already  attempted to format them as you state in your original
post then you _must_ want to lose the data.

Are the drives seen by the system BIOS when the system is booting? If the
computer has a splash screen or is set to "fast boot" then you will need to
turn these options off to see the actual BIOS boot steps.

In Windows' Disk Management application, does any trace of the drives show up?

John McGaw
[Knoxville, TN, USA]

Re: hdd trouble...please help

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Too late now, you've formatted them.


I only please one person per day. Today is not your day. Tomorrow isn't
looking good either. - Scott Adams

Re: hdd trouble...please help

I was able to save one of the two hdd but partion magic shows as
( "BAD") the the one where i double click where is says "this disk is
not formated" When I open disk management it shows 170gb as
unallowcated and 128 GB as healthy. Whith this in view is the any way
to save data and access the drive? TIA


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Re: hdd trouble...please help

dan wrote:
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You can use a program, such as TestDisk. It is a utility which
attempts to recognize the partitions on the disk, and repair the
partition table.

This page, for example, explains some of the things TestDisk can
do. It walks through a scenario, and shows how deep TestDisk
can go.


The DOS version might be good, if you were working on your C: drive.
I've also used a version which was included on a Linux LiveCD distro.
This DOS one though, is a tiny download, so less trouble if you're
on dialup. (The Linux LiveCD I got, is a 700MB download, so much
more than a DOS floppy would require.)


In terms of a user interface, the program could use a few more
"Quit" options, in situations where you're at a menu level where
you just want to bail out and start over again. If you press
<control> C (hold down control and then press the C key), that
should stop the program. You only want to do that, if the program
isn't in the middle of doing something - I don't know if it responds
to control C all the time or not. But I have managed to get out of
a menu level by using that (Unix style) short cut.

TestDisk is a "repair in place" utility. That means it is working
with the live disk, and not a copy of the disk. If you don't like
that idea, then you could always attempt to backup the original disk,
to a brand new disk. That way, if TestDisk did something nasty, you
still have a chance to get your data back. (Nasty things happen,
even with commercial utilities, so this is not a fault of TestDisk.)

The disk has some critical areas on it. The MBR (master boot record)
might be used during a boot operation. The partition table, labels
where each partition starts. The partition table, also has a byte
which identifies the partition type. But the final arbiter of whether
a partition is recognized, is the actual content in the partition.
If it doesn't "look like NTFS", then the OS may indicate it is seeing
something else, like RAW or whatever. So the trouble could be isolated
to the partition table, or it could be a problem with the contents
of the partition itself.


When a disk is damaged badly enough (such as a hardware fault that
corrupts everything written to the disk), it can be hard for any
utility to piece it back together again. Large amounts of data
may no longer be visible, if the disk is repaired with many
of the commercial utilities.

At that point, you might switch to a "scavenger" utility. They look
for data structures they recognize as various file types. Maybe at
that point, all filename info is lost, so when a scavenger recovers
files, it'll be "00001.jpg", "00002.doc" and so on. It can be a royal
pain, to go through the files one by one, and put the names back. You
need an extra disk, with enough room for the scavenger's output.
Sometimes, the program will make mistakes, and one file gets cut in
two. Then you're left with "00002.jpg" and "00003.jpg" fragments, but
without knowing how to put them together again and make a real file
from them. Files you recently deleted, where the space didn't get
written over, can get recovered as well (which means, now you have
four different versions of your Microsoft word document, and now
you have to figure out which one is the most recent).

Scavengers are a tool of last choice, when repairing the structure
of the disk appears hopeless. They can also have a long runtime. I
used one at work, a couple decades ago, and even on the tiny hard
drive, the runtime took all day.


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