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Hard drive missing... sorta...

Last response: in Windows 7
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March 30, 2011 7:06:27 AM

Hello all,

I seem to have stumbled onto a new one for me. Here's the gist of the issue:

I recently installed Windows 7 with the intent to run a dual-boot between it and Ubuntu. I need a Linux-type program for school.

My machine uses 2 internal hard drives: 1 for the main os and other programs, the secondary purely for storage. No RAID, no striping.

I formatted the main drive, and created 3 partitions. Part 1 was inteded to be Win7; Part 2 was intended to be a simple storage part for school related materials; Part 3 was set aside for Ubuntu.

After installing Win 7, partioning with 7, and before installing Ubuntu, I checked the drive letter assignments. All looked good until I realized that Drive 1 (the secondary drive) was MIA.

I checked the POST and sure enough there it was, so I ran the "Create and format hard disk partitions" tool in Win7. Oddly enough... I found it there.

Win 7 shows it as Online, healthy, and it displays thesize it should be displaying, but the only option it gives me is to delete the volume. Were it not for the fact that I have 80 gigs of history stored there, I would just delete it and start over, but there is truly some irreplaceable stuff on that drive.

I installed Ubuntu, and sure enough I can mount the drive and see the contents... but seriously... must I continually swith between Win 7 and Ubuntu just to utilize a single doc or program?

Is there a solution for this issue that doesn't involve data loss or cumbersome switches?

Sorry to be long winded, but I really can't come up with a synopsis of this issue that doesn't beg 40 questions.
March 31, 2011 10:17:03 PM

Does anyone have any input here? I still have not been able to resolve this issue.

Thanks.

Best solution

a c 209 $ Windows 7
March 31, 2011 10:26:43 PM
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Sounds to me like you're using a file system that Ubuntu recognizes but Windows doesn't. If so, use Ubuntu to transfer all the files to another Windows-compatible drive, reformat the drive to NTFS using Windows, then copy all the files back to it.
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a b $ Windows 7
April 1, 2011 12:51:27 AM

Windows 7 is fussy about the drive names if the name contains any illegal characters or illegal drive name then Windows will not see it. Try putting in a simple drive name like “fred” using Ubnntu.
April 1, 2011 4:39:19 AM

sminlal said:
Sounds to me like you're using a file system that Ubuntu recognizes but Windows doesn't. If so, use Ubuntu to transfer all the files to another Windows-compatible drive, reformat the drive to NTFS using Windows, then copy all the files back to it.


Thanks Sminlal -

I'd love to say that is the case, but it's been formated as an NTFS drive for over a year. It was available...(I guess that's as good a word as any) before I set up the dual-boot and it was fully operational. I'm really afraid the last part of your reply will be the solution for this one... ugh...

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pjmelect said:
Windows 7 is fussy about the drive names if the name contains any illegal characters or illegal drive name then Windows will not see it. Try putting in a simple drive name like “fred” using Ubnntu.


Thanks pjmelect -

I can certainly try to rename the drive. Worth a try. What gets me though is that the drive-name never changed, only the letter should have been effected. As I view Drive 1 in Ubuntu, it has retained the same name it's always had. I'll give your suggestion a shot now and see what's what.
April 1, 2011 5:17:56 AM

Well... I resolved it using Ubuntu, but looking at the partition's file system settings - so you both helped out.

Here's the gist:

Somehow... and I am at a loss as to how... the drive was "hidden". I checked and rechecked what little drive info I was getting from Windows 7 and all it reported was what I listed in the original post.

Taking pjm's suggestion, I switched to Ubuntu and changed the drive name and switched back to 7. No success there. In changing the drive name though, I noticed that Ubuntu gave me much more control over the drive than did the Windows program, so back to Linux I went. It was then that I noticed the words "Hidden Hsomething something something/NTFS" on a pulldown menu. I found those acronyms without the word hidden and switched back to 7. The skies opened up, Angels dropped from Heaven and sang to me... and there was my missing drive, with the drive letter I expected to see all along.

So it is with GREAT rejoice that I thank you both and sing your praises.


Thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you

If I can figure out how to select both of you for the best answer option I will do so...
April 1, 2011 5:37:04 PM

Best answer selected by RickW.
!