External Disk no longer recognized

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folan

PCHF Member
PCHF Member
Oct 12, 2020
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Hi there. I have 3 external seagate hard drives. Each is 2 TB. One of them is no longer seen in explorer. It appears in the Disk Management, though. I've tried several partition software to try to salvage the material I have on the drive to no avail.
I have a windows 10 OS
processor: Intel(R) Core(TM) i3-5005U CPU @ 2.00GHz 2.00GHz
64-bit

Is anyone able to help me try all possibilities before getting to the point where the only solution is to format the drive.
PS I am not expert enough to use DOS or too complicated solutions. Thnx in advance
 

Bruce

Forum Regular
Support Team
PCHF Member
Oct 8, 2017
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Yeppoon, QLD, Australia.
on the assumption it may (just may) not be the drive but the cable or enclosure, try putting that drive into one of the other external boxes or even into the PC itself.
failing that, then yes, chances are good the drive has failed, as they do, not often but often enough that we should be doing backups if the stored data is important.

if not important, try the reformat. you could just do a Quick Format then try a recovery tool like Recuva from Piriform but be warned, it is a VERY tedious process with files coming back in fragments rather than one nice big file the way it was.
all all depends on how the drive was originally formatted, the files in question and how the drive has died.

the Quick Format will just kill the Master Boot Record and be enough to have Windows recognised the drive again, if it doesn't, than more serious issues have occured and if the data is needed, you are looking at professional data recovery mobs and the price goes up considerably.
 

folan

PCHF Member
PCHF Member
Oct 12, 2020
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Thanks for the thorough, though concise, explanation. I have already tried changing the cable and external box.
In some cases you see the computer upon start up doing a sort of scan for bad sectors or other errors while still in DOS. I wonder if there is a certain software for me to try in my case.
I realize that I may have to resort to the format option eventually; I want to try all the possibilities before I get there.
 

Bruce

Forum Regular
Support Team
PCHF Member
Oct 8, 2017
1,792
275
Yeppoon, QLD, Australia.
if you're seeing that 'please wait.... scanning drive' sort of message and errors flying up the scree like 'bad sector found.... trying to recover data' and file names like $i30 flash past than all is not good.

the drive, if not failing completely, has at least bad sectors on it.
and laptop and external drives are notorious for failing more than desktop units simply because of the harsher environment they live in, what with the bumps and knocks they get.
typically a drive has more system files than personal files so playing the odds, you are more likely to have a bad sector containing system files rathar then your stuff, not that that helps if the drive is not accessible.

most times that DOS startup scan for bad sectors eventually come to an end and it'll try to get the drive readable, if you are letting that process complete and the drive is still not readable than I'm afraid that's another nail in the coffin.
 

phillpower2

PCHF Administrator
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Sep 9, 2016
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Thread closed due to lack of any feedback from the OP.
 
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