I had a 3TB My Book Essential that was acting up and not booting. I heard around that they often had trouble with the interface so I popped the drive out of the case and installed it in my pc case. In Disk Management it shows up in the bottom section as two partitions (2048.00 GB and 746.52 GB) with no drive letters and says "Unallocated". I was informed that I needed to right click it and select new simple volume. I did that on the large partition and now it has a drive letter but I cannot access it without formatting it. I have a couple hundred gigs of music, family photos and videos on there and really don't want to lose it. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.
correction, you used to have data on it. if you created a new partition then it wiped the old partition with your data on it. you can see if you can recover the data with:
TestDisk, Data Recovery TestDisk is powerful free data recovery software! It was primarily designed to help recover lost partitions and/or make non-booting disks bootable again when these symptoms are caused by faulty software, certain types of viruses or human error (such as accidentally deleting a Partition Table). Partition table recovery using TestDisk is really easy.
NOTE If seeked lost file are still missing, give PhotoRec a try. PhotoRec is a signature based file recovery utility and may be able to recover your data where other methods failed.
PhotoRec is file data recovery software designed to recover lost files including video, documents and archives from hard disks, CD-ROMs, and lost pictures (thus the Photo Recovery name) from digital camera memory. PhotoRec ignores the file system and goes after the underlying data, so it will still work even if your media's file system has been severely damaged or reformatted.
I've been working on that. It takes along time for it to scan. First scan found nothing. Doing the "Deeper Search" now. If this doesn't work I guess I'll have to take it to someone and have them pull everything off for me.
AIUI, WD's 3TB mass storage devices are configured with 4KB LBAs. The USB-SATA bridge IC inside the enclosure handles the 4KB-to-512e conversion. If you remove the HDD from its enclosure and attach it directly to a motherboard, then the drive reverts to 512e mode, in which case the file system is no longer visible.
An even more serious complication is that Essentials models incorporate AES hardware encryption, whether or not the user has set a password. This means that the data is inaccessible, irrespective of the LBA size issue.