Unrecognized External Hard Drive...

MyntMynt Registered User regular
Hoping someone can help me out here, or I end up losing a lot of video work. Here's the situation...

I have an iomega usb powered 1TB external hard drive that I recently used for transferring a lot of video footage and some artwork when I don't have access to the cloud. Today, though, I go to pull some of my work down and the drive is not being recognized by my computer. Going into the device manager, though, it is showing up. Did the update drivers dance to no avail.

I'm at the end of my knowledge for what to do, besides reformat, so I do the google thing, and learn that I may just need to assign a letter to the drive, but when I go into disk management I find, along with my long lost Russell Peters DVD, that the drive is "unallocated"... whatever that means.


Googling further, some people mentioned things like partition recovery & data recovery. Again, I'm in over my head, but I go ahead and install the free software, and follow the steps to no avail. EaseUS partition master sees the drive, but no partition to recover, and data recovery searches the drive for 10 minutes only to return absolutely nada.

So, am I screwed here? Do I just chalk it up to a loss, and reformat the drive? Or does anyone here have some miracle juice they can share?

Thanks in advance.


  • EsseeEssee The pinkest of hair. Victoria, BCRegistered User regular
    Well, if you're trying to recover data, I would try to use PhotoRec, first of all (if you haven't already tried it). It's free, and it seems to be the most reliable program for the purpose. You'll probably end up with some "junk" files if you recover everything, but all your stuff should be there, too. Anyway, beyond that, I don't have any particular advice. Just want to recommend that if you haven't tried it.

  • MyntMynt Registered User regular
    @Essee Thanks... I'll give that a shot.

  • finalflight89finalflight89 Registered User regular
    "Unallocated" means there isn't any partition information... which is bad. You're going to need software such as this.

  • Joe Camacho MKIIJoe Camacho MKII Registered User regular
    Echoing what Essee said, but adding that you could try using a Knoppix Live CD and see if linux recognizes the drive, I have had some luck with usb and hard drives that for some reason refuse to load or be able to access them on windows on Livecd. Also, Knoppix LiveCd as Photorec in case you are able to access it but have errors while looking at it.

    steam_sig.png I edit my posts a lot.
  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    Yeah your chances of getting data from this is slim, but, good thing is it's not a physical malfunction!

    not a doctor, not a lawyer, examples I use may not be fully researched so don't take out of context plz, don't @ me
  • Great ScottGreat Scott King of Wishful Thinking Paragon City, RIRegistered User regular
    edited November 2012
    Mynt, the problem is that the partition (and all of your data) isn't being recognized by Windows, although the drive appears to still be working.

    I would run (not walk) to install the Trial version of R-Studio NTFS [EDIT: or FAT, they make that version too, I'm not sure how your drive was originally formatted] (http://www.r-studio.com/). What this software does, is it scans the drive at the hardware level, and find files from the raw data (and spits out a nice Windows Explorer style interface to recover things).

    Note that the Trial is fully functional to find files, but won't let you recover. The good news is that you'll know if the software will work before you buy it. Also, keep in mind that your drive is large; a full physical scan could take up to 18 hours.

    I'm hoping that this isn't a sign of imminent drive failure. It's very possible that time is not on your side.

    Great Scott on
    I'm unique. Just like everyone else.
  • MyntMynt Registered User regular
    Thanks for all the suggestions guys... I'll give these a try and report back. Crossing my fingers!

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