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Old 08-02-2009, 12:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Problems with an external hard drive

I dropped my external hard drive on the floor (twice), and it stopped working.

i thought it may just be the case, so i took the drive to the nearest computer centre and asked if i could test it

it seemed to work fine on their computer (which looked like it was running XP), though there was something odd about the directory names (they seemed to all end in exe or something, but i'm not certain about this point). but i could access some files (images in my pictures folder), so it certainly seemed to be good enough

unfortunately, when i got it home, i'm having the same problems as before (i'm running vista)

when i plug it in, the little 'device found' icon appears, but no window

if i click on 'my computer', explorer hangs, and has to be shut down

if i then try and restart explorer, nothing happens (though explorer shows up as running in the task manager)

if i open any program which can browse through folders, this also crashes as soon i click on 'my computer'

if i restart the computer, it won't start with the drive connected, and this last time, even after the drive was removed, it repeatedly shut down during start-up, and gave a blue screen several times, telling me to consult technical help (it's possible these shut-downs were caused by overheating, but i don't know)

as such, i'm a little wary of even connecting it back to my computer, but i also don't want to just throw it away, when it does seem to work under certain circumstances

any help would be appreciated... and if there's any more information you need, please tell me and i'll provide it. i'm not very techy.

thanks
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Old 08-02-2009, 04:25 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with an external hard drive

You should start in Safe Mode with Command Prompt and run chkdsk /r /f on the drive. This will try to find problem and repair them if possible. If you hear any noise that is out of the ordinary for the drive i would think that you might have damaged the read/write head. Which would be real bad.
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Old 08-03-2009, 07:40 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with an external hard drive

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You should start in Safe Mode with Command Prompt and run chkdsk /r /f on the drive. This will try to find problem and repair them if possible. If you hear any noise that is out of the ordinary for the drive i would think that you might have damaged the read/write head. Which would be real bad.
thanks for the suggestion, but command prompt doesn't recognise the drive
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Old 08-03-2009, 08:39 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with an external hard drive

Then it has to be something with the USB Ports on your system. Have you updated your chipset drivers? Have you tried a different port? Have you tried direct connect to the PC and not to a USB Hub?
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Old 08-03-2009, 11:08 AM   #5 (permalink)
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No I've not done any of those things, except try different ports. the ports all work fine with everything else, so i'd dismissed that idea

i'll take it in to work tomorrow and try it on a computer there

i only have a laptop, so i don't think i can connect it to the pc directly, right?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dominic View Post
thanks for the suggestion, but command prompt doesn't recognise the drive
oh, to clarify this,

if i type 'f:', on command prompt, i just get a blinking cursor but no progress

i tried this in safe mode anyway, and after a few minutes, the drive started making some clicky, scratchy noises

then my computer turned itself off and wouldn't come back on
the underside was extremely hot, so i think it was due to overheating

though i don't understand why my external hard drive can make my computer overheat
overheating isn't a problem i ever have usually
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Old 08-03-2009, 02:36 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with an external hard drive

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dominic View Post
i tried this in safe mode anyway, and after a few minutes, the drive started making some clicky, scratchy noises
Definitely a damaged drive if it has click.
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Old 08-04-2009, 06:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with an external hard drive

I plugged it into the work computer (running XP), and it recognised it, but when i double-clicked on it, no files were visible. I clicked on properties, and it showed the correct capacity/remaining space.
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Old 08-04-2009, 09:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with an external hard drive

On the working computer do this:

Start>Right click on My Computer select Manage.

When that window pops up on the left side click the link for Disk Management.

What does it show and say for the external drive? From the sounds of it, it will say RAW disk format. Which means that it lost the partition table for the drive. If that is the case your best option for recovery will be to create a partition, format it and then use Recovery tools to get the data back.
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Old 08-05-2009, 06:49 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with an external hard drive

ok I tried that, but it showed up as healthy

i ran chkdsk, and got 'unreadable sector' messages, from like sector 1,000 to 100,000

i then tried to reformat it, but i had to leave it

and then later someone came and told me the thing i'd left attached to the computer was really hot and making weird noises
(it was clicking a lot)

it didn't seem to be formatting anymore (disk management wasn't open), so i turned it off and unplugged it

so is it just dead? can i give up now?
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Old 08-05-2009, 08:32 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Problems with an external hard drive

If they say it was making those sounds, i would call it dead. That is the read/write head bouncing off the platters most likely and at that point it would take a professional to fix the drive.
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