Can't find the external hard drive...

Talk about various bits of technology (both hardware and software) here. Also used for troubleshooting and other problems.

Can't find the external hard drive...

Postby Crescent Pulsar S » Wed Nov 05, 2014 8:36 pm

So, I was finally able to remove a certain hard drive so I can access it externally via USB, but it's not showing up in My Computer. When I followed the instructions that led to disk management, and told me how to change its unallocated status and make a new partition, it's already non-unallocated, and says "Healthy (Active, Primary Partition)." The only right-click options that aren't greyed out are "delete volume" (which doesn't sound like the kind of thing I want to do) and "convert to dynamic disk" (and I have no idea what that's about). I also looked up something about giving the blank drive a letter, but that option was greyed out as well. I don't know if I need to format the hard drive, but erasing the stuff that's on it would defeat the purpose for why I wanted to have access to it. It shows up in devices, but all I can do with it is eject, create shortcut, troubleshoot and properties.

I just don't get what the issue is. Anyone else have an idea?
Senshi of Eris
Image
PADherder (My card collection.)
Crescent Pulsar S
User avatar
Cosmic Power Senshi
Posts: 6395
 

Re: Can't find the external hard drive...

Postby PCHeintz72 » Thu Nov 06, 2014 12:31 am

Crescent Pulsar S wrote:So, I was finally able to remove a certain hard drive so I can access it externally via USB, but it's not showing up in My Computer. When I followed the instructions that led to disk management, and told me how to change its unallocated status and make a new partition, it's already non-unallocated, and says "Healthy (Active, Primary Partition)." The only right-click options that aren't greyed out are "delete volume" (which doesn't sound like the kind of thing I want to do) and "convert to dynamic disk" (and I have no idea what that's about). I also looked up something about giving the blank drive a letter, but that option was greyed out as well. I don't know if I need to format the hard drive, but erasing the stuff that's on it would defeat the purpose for why I wanted to have access to it. It shows up in devices, but all I can do with it is eject, create shortcut, troubleshoot and properties.

I just don't get what the issue is. Anyone else have an idea?

What is the drive and case using. And what was it formatted as (VFat, Fat32, NtFS, etc.)

Hard drive sizes even at 2.5" sometimes will not allow access but be recognized if they are not getting enough power.

Also, some usb ports only put out 3.5, most external drives need the full 5 as called for by specification. This is more common in notebooks, but some desktops have this issue as well.

you may need either a AC adapter, or a USB power splitter connector cable, which uses two usb powers to power and access the drive, to give it enough power.
PCHeintz72
User avatar
Prism Power Senshi
Posts: 2680
 

Re: Can't find the external hard drive...

Postby Crescent Pulsar S » Thu Nov 06, 2014 2:54 am

I'm not sure what you mean by what the disk and case is using. All I know is that the hard drive is a 3.5 IDE (which the external enclosure is for) and had Windows XP on it. I can't get any information about what kind of file system it uses. (The one in my computer is NTFS, though.) The external enclosure (made by Rosewill, if that matters) uses a 2.0 USB cable and an AC adapter.
Senshi of Eris
Image
PADherder (My card collection.)
Crescent Pulsar S
User avatar
Cosmic Power Senshi
Posts: 6395
 

Re: Can't find the external hard drive...

Postby PCHeintz72 » Thu Nov 06, 2014 3:16 am

Crescent Pulsar S wrote:I'm not sure what you mean by what the disk and case is using. All I know is that the hard drive is a 3.5 IDE (which the external enclosure is for) and had Windows XP on it. I can't get any information about what kind of file system it uses. (The one in my computer is NTFS, though.) The external enclosure (made by Rosewill, if that matters) uses a 2.0 USB cable and an AC adapter.

then with the AC adapter and assuming switched on, it should work... XP generally would be NTFS or possibly FAT32. Either should be fine with your current setup.

Only one possible thing occurs to me. Some external enclosures are sensitive to the IDE jumper setting. some want the jumpers all removed, or single drive mode, some want the jumper set to master, and a few want the jumper set to CSEL, which was originally supposed to be more a diagnostic setting, but some odd devices use it.
PCHeintz72
User avatar
Prism Power Senshi
Posts: 2680
 

Re: Can't find the external hard drive...

Postby Crescent Pulsar S » Thu Nov 06, 2014 3:41 am

I think I read something about that. I guess I'll have to fiddle with it, then, and see what happens.
Senshi of Eris
Image
PADherder (My card collection.)
Crescent Pulsar S
User avatar
Cosmic Power Senshi
Posts: 6395
 

Re: Can't find the external hard drive...

Postby Crescent Pulsar S » Thu Nov 06, 2014 4:38 pm

So, I tried assembling them in a slave formation, and also took them out, but nothing's changed. I didn't try anything more than that since I don't know what they are/do.
Senshi of Eris
Image
PADherder (My card collection.)
Crescent Pulsar S
User avatar
Cosmic Power Senshi
Posts: 6395
 

Re: Can't find the external hard drive...

Postby PCHeintz72 » Thu Nov 06, 2014 5:56 pm

Most IDE drives have the exact same combinations of jumper pins... normally configured in two rows of three.

Normally the configuration pattern is actually pictured right on the drive itself.

If it is set wrong, it generally does not get recognized correctly, or at all. And could well be the cause of what you are experiencing.

The options are almost always the same: single drive, slave, master, and CSEL.
- Slave is always when have two drives and system needs to know which has priority.
- CSEL is normally a reserved diagnostic mode, and practically never used in a standard computer. I have seen some external drive enclosures want it.
- Master and Single drive are almost always the same functionality if only one drive present, but master is used in two drive setups to indicate which has priority.

I could picture a enclosure wanting single drive operation, master operation, and CSEL, but generally not slave, as slave is specifically for if there is another IDE device in the chain, impossible in a single enclosure.

There are other possibilities as to the problem, but none of them too good for you:

- boot sector 0 could have become corrupted, which would cause what you are experiencing. If this occurred the drive may be beginning to go, or it could merely need a reformatting and it will be fine. Reformatting of course would kill the data.

- on an old drive the drive orientation could be important, possibly tilting the drive to be the same orientation might allow recognition.

- IDE drives, except old ones, when properly powered down, 'auto park', this means it moves the head away form the platters, if that did *not* happen, it is possible you've had or caused a physical crash of data, in which case the drive is likely toast.

- you mentioned the drive as being from a XP system. if using it on another XP or newer system you should have been fine with the exception of probably not being able to access the locked down user profiles. if using it on a older systm, like Windows 2000 (extremely unlikely), you would have had issues similar to what you are reporting, because 2000 and XP and 7 all use different versions of NTFS, each newer version has increased security.

- a incompatibility with the enclosure and drive. this could occur for example if the drive was too large for the enclosure (was common for a while when people were putting 160gb+ drives in early enclosures that only supported up to 120gb), and going back quite some time there was issues at 8gb and 32gb drives.

- If you have not already, try it in a different computer. Could be the enclosure does not like the system.

- if the drive was sitting unused for a long time, it is possible the heads are seized up. That would allow the drive to be seen but not accessed.

Sadly... that is about the limit of knowledge I could give. I could try a whole bunch of things if I had it in front of me, but not so much remotely like this.
PCHeintz72
User avatar
Prism Power Senshi
Posts: 2680
 

Re: Can't find the external hard drive...

Postby Crescent Pulsar S » Thu Nov 06, 2014 6:59 pm

Thanks, anyway. I guess I'm gonna have to try and put the computer it came from back together and see if it still works. That'll probably give a better idea of what the problem is if it still works or not. It's just such a pain, since after that I have to do all sorts of rearrangements to get it hooked up within the limited space I have at my desk, which would require moving this computer out for the duration.
Senshi of Eris
Image
PADherder (My card collection.)
Crescent Pulsar S
User avatar
Cosmic Power Senshi
Posts: 6395
 

Re: Can't find the external hard drive...

Postby Spica75 » Fri Nov 07, 2014 5:18 am

- CSEL is normally a reserved diagnostic mode, and practically never used in a standard computer. I have seen some external drive enclosures want it.


"Cable Select", and it´s not just for diagnostics, but nowadays with IDE flat cables gone(which each connected one master and one slave drive, IIRC the master connected to the endpoint of the cable and the slave to the middle, you could use it if for some reason you didn´t want to set master/slave but rather allowed it to be set by which connector they were hooked up to, and IIRC you could swap their status around in the OS with some special software when in this mode as well), it´s also not much use.

I could picture a enclosure wanting single drive operation, master operation, and CSEL, but generally not slave, as slave is specifically for if there is another IDE device in the chain, impossible in a single enclosure.


Agreed.
Spica75
User avatar
Moon Senshi
Posts: 1950
 


Return to Tech

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users