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ITidiots open forum > Corrupt Hard Drive!! Help!

Hi guys,

I have a Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 that went haywire on me last week. The hard drive decided to lose it's partition and showed the incorrect capacity it holds. Its 1TB.

I paniced and sent it off to a data recovery firm. When it was sent off I looked on the Seagate forums and I found that the hard drives of this sort and model have a faulty firmware. Realising I could of fixed it my self, I rang the firm and told them about the fault.

After the firms analysis they quoted me just over £600! Which I couldn't afford. (They say the hard drive has corrupt sectors and the spindle motor isn't working properly.

I got the hard drive back with the firmware fixed. But the hard drive can't be opened. It says in Windows: E:\ is not accessible... etc. It also won't mount in OS X.

I'm looking for solutions to get the data off the hard drive. The data recovery company sent me screenshots of the files and directories, so clearly everything is accessible.

Any help would be greatly appreciated! :)

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterPhaeton

Hi

I think you should give Spinrite a go. It has fixed a lot of disks for me in the past.
Spinrite

/Per

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterPer

Spinrite is a top app,
Id boot into something like bartpe and see if the disk is accessible, if it is you could try restoring the partions using Testdisk or at least recover some of the files using photorec.
Goodluck
http://www.nu2.nu/pebuilder/
http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterGareth

Hi guys,

Thanks for the quick reply! Spinrite looks like it can solve the problem but I don't have a desktop PC! I forgot to say that the hard drive was from a USB external drive, a Maxtor Desktop Basics.

I only have a iMac and a laptop! I took the Maxtor apart and put the hard drive in a USB external slot.

http://cache.gizmodo.com/assets/images/gizmodo/2008/06/2slotHDD2.jpg

Is it possible to boot Spinrite on a mac? I have windows on the iMac as well.

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterPhaeton

Hi

I think your best chance is to use your laptop with the harddrive connected through usb.
Spinrite should be able to scan it when you boot up in dos, even when it's connected through usb.

Do you want me to test it for you before you buy Spinrite?

/Per

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterPer

Forgot to ask, your Laptop runs Windows correct?

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterPer

I had this before, but with faulty Hardware RAID (can't remember which number, the 2 250GB drives were mirroring on the opposite, e.g. C was mirrored on D. I found that I had updated the drivers for it and it basically showed the C drive on the D drive as it was just before it went wrong. I had to reset the whole computer from a backup (good old norton ghost floppy boot) and it was fine again.

Also, is it one of those black drives with a green rectangle light, if so I've got the same one and have had no problem with it for the 6 months I've had it. My dad even brought a 1TB one and still no problems.

Most modern laptops will boot from USB.

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterJamie

just a thought, can you connect the drive to the wintop and boot to bios and see if the usb device is listed under boot devices, is so set it to primary and reboot into spinrite, not so sure if spinrite will recover partions mind.

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterGareth

I'm out for a couple of hours Phaeton, i'll be back later to assist you.

/Per

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterPer

I just gave my dad the shock of his life, he just brought two 500GB Seagate Barracuda 7200 internal drives but then I looked at the number after the 7200 and it was a 12 not an 11. He is good at building computers (the hardware stuff) and I am an IT sales/finance guy (good at software), he says that you should try something along the lines of what Gareth suggested.

He is also annoyed that he just blew his 4 usb 2 hub from his new external hard drive (also seagate I think, he used to highly recommend them. I have an old 250GB Seagate drive in my XP box and it is coming up for 4 year old now and it is the fastest, quietest disk in there). He plugged it in, it worked for five minutes then I think it surged, took out the 4 port hub and the usb port the hub was plugged into when XP realized that there was a "power surge" on the port and asked if he would like to disable the port or reset it. I did the same thing by sticking a screwdriver into the port (don't ask, I had a screwdriver in my hand from taking the side off my xp machine and without realising it was powered on I just thought I would see how many things I could stick the -- end of the screwdriver in. Audio & microphone didn't work, USB threw a massive spark which was quite funny. I must stop, it was partly related... you may have blown the port?

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterJamie

Hi guys,

Thanks again for the quick reply guys. I'll have a go! Yep, the laptop runs Windows. I've got XP on there. Hopefully it should see the external USB on the BIOS. Its not that old (I don't think!)


Yeah Jamie! It was black and had Maxtor on the side with the green light at the top, I just ripped it apart and got the HDD out quick thinking it was the power thing in the casing. This one was given to me from singapore though. On the Seagate forum someone said that, apparently the hard drive can be built slightly different depending on the location of the manufacturer. Like the PCB being a different shape etc.

Keep an eye on yours Jamie! I can't believe they make these things faulty on purpose! I stored everything on mine! Photos, documents the lot! Seagate customer service was a waste of time as well! I think its just the 7200.11 that has the problem. Its an easy fix if it goes wrong.

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterPhaeton

I got a 640GB one from PC World (UK) and I still have the receipt. I have to say, although chunky, they are fast. It's my Dad who I'm worried about, he has the same one, but a 1TB version (again from PC World) that he's filled with uncompressed AVI files from old HI8 Tapes, VHS Tapes, Mini DV Tapes, HD Recordings, Family DVD Videos and Pictures from when he had long hair and a motorbike in the early 70s! I bet him a pint that he'd never fill it and that second one he brought was because he did fill it. 1TB of Video & Pictures! There we go.

I use my 640GB one for Acronis True Image backups (of my laptop), some general junk and VMware & VirtualBox images (Virtual Machines).

I have 314GB Free Space. Still downloading office...

August 7, 2009 | Registered CommenterJamie

Hi guys,

I basically used mine for backup of everything. If one of the computers needed reloading I'd put everything onto the Maxtor then reformat it. I've only used 260GB! It's hard to fill up!

I've just been thinking. How long would Spinrite take to fix a 1TB drive? I don't know whether to start the repair now or do it when I get back from holiday. I would imagine it would take a long time. I don't want to leave the computer running when I'm away!

I looked into the USB. It says it can boot it. Its got FDD as a choice, I think it would pick it up cause it does'nt have a floopy drive but one can be connected through USB. Spinrite says that it's addiment that it would pick up USB drives.

Has anyone else been in this situation? And how big have the hard drives been to recover?

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterPhaeton

When my XP box went wrong over a year ago (something got corrupt from testing IE8 Beta) Windows XP would not pick up my two 250GB drives during the install (I lost everything). So I borrowed my Dad's vista box and just connected the hard disk but didn't fix it in the case and just dangled it loose out the side and Vista somehow fixed it as it asked if I would like to format the drive! I couldn't get the other one to work though.

So, try plugging it into Vista first then failing that, use Spinrite and 1TB could probably be done overnight / over two days. I don't know having never had to do this, but I should think it would take about twice the amount of time it takes to format it. Depending on the amount of data on the disk and how fragmented the disk is.

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterJamie

Hi guys,

Just bought Spinrite! This program looks like its up for the job. I've just booted it from a burned CD and it doesn't pick up the USB slot drive!

I'm not shaw what to do next. I'm thinking I could probably get a cheap desktop with SATA support on ebay and stick the drive in that.

Is there any other programs in windows that could recover folders than the whole drive?

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterPhaeton

Spinrite doesn't support USB drives , RAID or even many SATA controllers

SATA's require Legacy Mode in your BIOS (system sees it as a PATA)

if you try sprinrite you should take the drive out of the case, if SATA place it on a mobo that supports Legacy Mode.

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterSupernova

Hi guys,

I'm gonna ask a friend if he's got a spare desktop to borrow. I forgot to put down what happened before I sent the hard drive off. I tried Partition Table Doctor and Active File Recovery. In PTD I tried repairing the MBR, which did nothing. Then I tried fixboot which didn't do anything aswell.

I'd just noticed last night searching through forums that the MBR writes to the hard drive and consequently could corrupt the HDD. I had no idea this happens when I tried it before sending if to the data recovery company.

So, the corrupt part of the hard drive could be from the MBR or the fix boot. I downloaded DiskExplorer with GetDataBack today.

DiskExplorer shows all the files and folders there as well. And it shows several boot sectors with 'invalid' across them, probably the amount of times I tried that option. Theres the boot sector with the volume name 'Backup HDD' which is the name of the drive before the disaster happened.

If I scroll down the sectors I can see the file names or part file names. It's so irritating that I can't just open them and save them to another disc. It can see all the stuff on the hard drive!

Anyway, I had a go on GetDataBack which started and is taking a very long time! It says its doing everything sector by sector, and it has in total over a million sectors to go through! At the moment its on 169,000 and was started at 11.30, its now 1.30!

I'd probably stick it in another computer and run spinrite. I was looking at spinrite, is it 100% safe? What does it actually do to recover the data?

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterPhaeton

Also sprite doesn't repair damaged data structures for NTFS it will try to copy the data, as is, from a damaged sector to a reserved sector. You may have to still repair NTFS and even repair individual files on top of that.

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterSupernova

Hi Andi,

How do I put the drive in Legacy Mode? The hard drive is FAT32. If all the sectors could be corrupt would Spinrite still work?

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterPhaeton


use r-tools to recover to another separate HD

r-tt.com or .r-studio.com

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterSupernova

How do I put the drive in Legacy Mode? The hard drive is FAT32. If all the sectors could be corrupt would Spinrite still work?

its a option in the BIOS, not all PCs have it. if the drive is PATA (IDE) you dont need it

oh yeah of course its FAT32

Spinrite could work that all i can say really, it certainly has better support for FAT than NTFS. As it can repair FAT tables as well if i remember correctly

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterSupernova

I don't know of any tools that can help, but if there is one that will just copy across the data that you want onto another drive, then go out and buy another 1TB drive?

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterJamie

Hey,

I had a similar problem with a Western Digital Drive a few months back.
I ended up using an app called DiskWarrior, It worked very very well. Rebuilt the file structure of my drive and it was as good as new... (it was very quick as well. Only a few mins...)
I had to spend quite a long time looking for software, as my drive is HFS+. DiskWarrior supports USB and Firewire drives, multiple file types, but it is an OS X app... (although that should work quite well for you)

Just another option...
Tom

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterTom

I didnt think DiskWarrior 4 supported FAT32?


"While DiskWarrior 4.0 will see the partition with Windows, it will not rebuild the directory of the Windows partition as it will be formatted FAT32 or NTFS."

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterSupernova

Hi guys,

Andi, I've tried Diskwarrior with no success. It says it can't be fixed, all the buttons are greyed out as well.

I've noticed on GetDataBack, when I go through the stages and it scans the hard drive, it slows down and reports error 1117 on every sector till it keeps up all the files and folders and its fine, then its back to the errors.

R studios doing the same. Its alot slower, I had it running since half one and its still 0%.

August 8, 2009 | Registered CommenterPhaeton