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External Hard Drive showing no tabs in device manager

hard drive unallocated windows 8

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Long time lurker, first time poster.

I am currently unable to access my external hard drive; WD mybook

Windows 8 on a Toshiba Laptop. I've done the basic trouble shooting, switching usb ports, unplugging and plugging back in, checking all the wires, reboot reboot reboot... No dice.

In computer management it says "unallocated" in the drive. It used to be located as my E drive but it currently has no drive letter associated with it.

Right clicking on the unallocated partitionless bar results in a menu that does not feature "change drive letters and paths"; which was the solution I was going to try for.

The drive is listed as unallocated; Disk 1 Basic 1862.89 GB Online

I have a lot of music, pictures, and books on there and don't want to lose any of it. I'm also hoping I don't have to go out and buy a new one.

My questions:

How hard will it be to fix this? I've been able to fix my computers a few times over the years but I'm no tech expert. I can follow step-by-step instructions, but have no intuition on what to do without instructions.

Would it be wiser to pay someone to get this thing up and running? And how much do you think it would cost?

Finally: How can I save the data on there?

Thanks in advance for any assistance.

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How hard will it be to fix this? I've been able to fix my computers a few times over the years but I'm no tech expert. I can follow step-by-step instructions, but have no intuition on what to do without instructions.
Would it be wiser to pay someone to get this thing up and running? And how much do you think it would cost?



We cannot answer the above without helping you to try and test the drive and that should only be done after first trying to back up your data if it is at all possible, suggested steps for this below;



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***Required Hardware*** 

CD Burner (CDRW) Drive, 

Blank CD, 

Extra Storage Device (USB Flash Drive, External Hard Drive)  



1. Save these files to your Desktop/Burn Your Live CD:

  • Download Latest Puppy Linux ISO (i.e.: lupu-528.iso) 

    Download BurnCDCC ISO Burning Software 


    There are instructions on how to boot from flash drive with puppy here; http://www.pendrivel...e-from-windows/ 



  • Open BurnCDCC with Windows Explorer 

  • Extract All files to a location you can remember 

  • Double Click 1%20BurnCDCC%20Icon.PNG BurnCDCC 

  • Click Browse 2%20BurnCDCC%20Browse%20Button.PNG and navigate to the Puppy Linux ISO file you just downloaded 

  • Open/Double Click that file 

    IMPORTANT: Adjust the speed bar to CD: 4x DVD: 1x 

  • Click Start 3%20BurnCDCC%20Start%20Button.PNG 

  • Your CD Burner Tray will open automatically 

  • Insert a blank CD and close the tray 

  • Click OK 

Puppy Linux Live CD will now be created 


2. Set your boot priority in the BIOS to CD-ROM first, Hard Drive Second 


  • Start the computer/press the power button 

  • Immediately start tapping the appropriate key to enter the BIOS, aka "Setup" 

    (Usually shown during the "Dell" screen, or "Gateway" Screen) 

  • Once in the BIOS, under Advanced BIOS Options change boot priority to: 

    CD-ROM 1st, Hard Drive 2nd 

  • Open your ROM drive and insert the disk 

  • Press F10 to save and exit 

  • Agree with "Y" to continue 

  • Your computer will restart and boot from the Puppy Linux Live CD 






3.  Recover Your Data 

  • Once Puppy Linux has loaded, it is actually running in your computer's Memory (RAM).  You will see a fully functioning Graphical User Interface similar to what you normally call "your computer".  Internet access may or may not be available depending on your machine, so it is recommended you print these instructions before beginning.  Also, double clicking is not needed in Puppy.  To expand, or open folders/icons, just click once.  Puppy is very light on resources, so you will quickly notice it is much speedier than you are used to.  This is normal.  Ready?  Let's get started. 


    3a. Mount Drives 

  • Click the Mount Icon located at the top left of your desktop. 5%20Puppy%20Linux%20Mount%20Icon.PNG 

  • A Window will open.  By default, the "drive" tab will be forward/highlighted.  Click on Mount for your hard drive. 

  • Assuming you only have one hard drive and/or partition, there may be only one selection to mount. 

  • USB Flash Drives usually automatically mount upon boot, but click the "usbdrv" tab and make sure it is mounted. 

  • If using an external hard drive for the data recovery, do this under the "drive" tab.  Mount it now. 


3b. Transfer Files.


  • At the bottom left of your desktop a list of all hard drives/partitions, USB Drives, and Optical Drives are listed with a familiar looking hard drive icon. 

  • Open your old hard drive i.e. sda1 

  • Next, open your USB Flash Drive or External Drive. i.e. sdc or sdb1 

  • If you open the wrong drive, simply X out at the top right corner of the window that opens. (Just like in Windows) 

  • From your old hard drive, drag and drop whatever files/folders you wish to transfer to your USB Drive's Window. 


For The Novice:  The common path to your pictures, music, video, and documents folders for XP is: Documents and Settings >> All Users (or each individual name of each user, for Vista and above  C:\Users\$USERNAME\[...]. CHECK All Names!) >> Documents >> You will now see My Music, My Pictures, and My Videos


Remember to only click once!  No double clicking!  Once you drag and drop your first folder, you will notice a small menu will appear giving you the option to move or copy.  Choose COPY each time you drag and drop. 


YOU ARE DONE!!!  Simply click Menu >> Mouse Over Shutdown >> Reboot/Turn Off Computer.  Be sure to plug your USB Drive into another working windows machine to verify all data is there and transferred without corruption. Congratulations! 






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    Tech Staff

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Not heard back from you, do you still require assistance with this or is the issue resolved, either way please update or conclude your thread and not leave it hanging, thanks.

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