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How to open my files on an external hard drive without formatting?

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June 19, 2013 1:00:02 AM

My external hard drive always works fine on my computer. But, it has got some issues yesterday. After plunging it to my computer, it always asked me to format it. But, this drive was my backup drive. Most of my important data, including some precious photos and videos, business document and private files, is all saved there. So, could you help me open these files without formatting? I don’t want to lose any of them. Thank you!
a b G Storage
June 19, 2013 1:06:15 AM

Download System Rescue CD. It contains a tool "Testdisk" that can check the drive for recoverable errors. worste case scenario, it also includes a program called photorec which can recover lost data.

www.sysresccd.org

Download the ISO file and burn it to a disk using Windows Image Burner (right click, burn image to disk) or use ImgBurn.

Boot the computer with the CD in the drive (if the computer boots to windows, you may need to enter the BIOS to change the boot order so CD gets checked before hard drive. power on your computer and look for a message telling you how to enter BIOS or system setup. usually F2, Del, Delete, F10 or control)

Run Testdisk
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June 21, 2013 12:28:18 AM

Are you sure your hard drive is till well?
Why not try to use a diagnostic tool to test your hard drive, such as Seatools?
As to your saved data on this drive, you may need ad data recovery programs. Nowadays, there are many data recovery programs that could easily get back the inaccessible data from a "not formatted" hard drive.
Go search for a drive data recovery freeware over the internet.
After regaining your needed data, you could try to format this drive and see whether it could work as before.
I hope you also could learn to back up your needed data from this trouble.
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a b G Storage
June 22, 2013 9:51:08 PM

342Alyssa524 said:
Are you sure your hard drive is till well?
Why not try to use a diagnostic tool to test your hard drive, such as Seatools?
As to your saved data on this drive, you may need ad data recovery programs. Nowadays, there are many data recovery programs that could easily get back the inaccessible data from a "not formatted" hard drive.
Go search for a drive data recovery freeware over the internet.
After regaining your needed data, you could try to format this drive and see whether it could work as before.
I hope you also could learn to back up your needed data from this trouble.


:no: 
I do NOT recommend searching the net for free data recovery software, this is one of the best ways to get a virus.

Seatools for DOS is a great recommendation if the drive is made by Seagate or one of its child companies.

S.M.A.R.T. Tools:
Seagate & Samsung: http://www.seagate.com/support/downloads/item/seatools-...

Western Digital: http://support.wdc.com/product/download.asp?groupid=612...

Hitachi: http://www.hgst.com/support/downloads/

Recovery tools: http://www.sysresccd.org/Download
(use Testdisk to check for recoverable problems and SmartMonTools to check the physical health of the disk, PhotoRec to recover data if the drive is toast.)
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