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Problem reading hard drive


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#1
hwc

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Hi,

I'm having a problem with my external hard drive; it is a Western Digital 500gb Elements Desktop (WD Elements)

I can't find anything online that helps, I was hoping someone here may be able to.

The problem is that my computer won't read the hard drive, even though it knows the drive is there. However, the drive used to work perfectly fine. This sucks since I have a lot of work on it being a student (nothing too important, everything really important is backed up). I've tried the drive on my mac and pc as well as numerous others, still get the smae problem.

On my MacBook Pro and other Mac's I get this message after I plug in the drive-
"Disk Insertion
The disk you inserted was not readable by this compter
(initialize, ignore, erase)"

On pc's, I get the pop-up windows in the bottom of the screen saying new hardware has been instelled, the 'safely remove hardware' icon is there, and in device mangager it recognizes it as 'USB mass storage device' (though I think it used to say WD Elements, but I'm not sure). However, there is no icon in my computer for the drive.

The only thing I can think of is that other people have used the drive and unplugged it without 'safely removing' it; I'm not sure that this is something that would cause this sort of problem though.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks.
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#2
Damien Kane

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I had the same problem only a month ago with an external USB drive reading a smaller 80gb WD. Everything looked fine but Windows and Linux wouldn't recognise the disk, so I knew it wasn't a Windows prob.

I took the drive out of the external USB and put it inside the computer, and it was fine. The only conclusion I could draw was the caddy itself wasn't working.

Second, if you try put the disk inside the computer and it still doesn't read, make sure your motherboard can read it. Some older ones have a limited capacity, say, 300gb disks.

Do you know somebody whose caddy you can borrow to see if it works or not?
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#3
silverbeard

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What file format is the drive? Mac doesn't do NTFS unless you add the NTFS drivers.
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#4
hwc

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I wouldn't know how to take the thing apart and get it back together, so I wouldn't want to mess with taking it apart.

It worked on my mac fine before, but I downloaded the NTSF drivers any way and still no luck.

Here's how disc utility looks when I click 'initialize,' if it's any help.
Posted Image
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#5
srizvi1

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I have this same exact problem. Same screenshot, same showing up as 2 TB, etc.

I'm willing to take the external HD apart and putting the actual hard drive into something so I can try to salvage the data on here. Can anyone tell me what to do though? Plus, it's mac formatted so I'm wondering if I can just throw it in my dell tower and be able to read it.

I'm asking about this on the western digital forums:
http://websupport.wd...p?TOPIC_ID=6764

And also found a similar case here:
http://www.mac-forum...ead.php?t=91841

Any ideas from anyone?
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#6
Tyger

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If it's showing up as 2tb then likely the master boot record is messed up. Go to the maker's web site and see what you can find about fixing the mbr.

Edited by Tyger, 01 February 2008 - 01:17 PM.

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#7
srizvi1

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If it's showing up as 2tb then likely the master boot record is messed up. Go to the maker's web site and see what you can find about fixing the mbr.


Thanks for getting back to me Tyger. My external hard drive's a western digital. I did a search for "master boot record" in the site: wdc.com but only found two links, neither of which seemed helpful. I have a thread I started in the western digital forums:
http://websupport.wd...p?TOPIC_ID=6764

I'll post over your advice in that thread. Maybe someone will come along who can offer help on what to do.
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#8
Rum

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hmmm, similar problem with MacBook Pro running Tiger 10.4.11; it will not recognise my I/O Magic 80gb external hard drive. have tried formatting drive on pc but only given option of NFTS. Have installed drivers onto Mac including Mac Fuse but still cant find the external hard drive. Drive works fine on pc's. Grrrr! Any ideas... anyone...? .... please...
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#9
srizvi1

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Hey everyone, someone just PMed me:

hello,
I found this topic and I just wondering, did you found any solution ?
have you got your data back ? I have the same problem
please advise


I replied to him, but I thought I Would post on this thread too. In the end, I was not able to repair the WD Passport and I even bought this USB Bytecc USB to SATA converter thing from Newegg because I was hoping it was just the connector for the mini USB.

So my data was gone for good, and WD said they wouldn't offer any warranty if my unit had been opened (which I did to use this BYTECC thing). But luckily, I bought the external hard drive from costco so I was able to return it there. I have bought a new 320gb for pretty much the same price from best buy when it was on sale. I'll just back up contents on the mini and always expect it to fail though.

I posted a link in my last post to my thread on the WD boards. Might help to check it out to see what happened and why I tried what I tried.
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