**RAW External Hard Drive Fix??**

Hey guys. I've been reading this forum for a while, and I need some help from you guys.

Recently, I did a hardware upgrade (new motherboard, RAM, and CPU), and I needed to reformat my 500GB USB external hard drive (I looked inside the case, and it was a Western Digital) so I could use it to back up my HDD, and do a clean installation of Windows 7 to fit with my new hardware.
I tried formatting the External Drive with Command Prompt. I cleaned the old partitions... and well, it wasn't able to create any new partitions.

It ended up becoming a RAW hard drive. :(

I think it was because it was previously formatted as "WBFS" file system (its a format for reading Wii games so you can play them from a USB drive... Windows can't read it though). Or maybe its just because I used Command Prompt and I wasn't patient enough to wait for the easy "right-click on drive, press format, and start" method. I don't really know...

I've tried formatting it in Disk Management, but it reads that the "format did not complete successfully". I tried assigning it new drive letters, but that makes no difference. It reads as a "Healthy Primary Partition", with nothing unallocated, and 100% free.

I tried using RecoverMyFiles, which can detect my RAW drive is there, but it can't reformat it.

I tried EaseUs, but it can't detect my RAW drive.

I've even tried using Command Prompt again, but its inaccessible and can't format.

I'm almost sure its not a connectivity problem, since Windows can detect the drive going into the USB port, and it shows up under "Hard Disk Drives" and in "Disk Management". But, when right clicking and trying to format the drive, it says "Windows was unable to complete the format". ALTHOUGH, the "Activity" light on the case of the drive isn't lighting up...

I honestly don't care if I lose all my data on it, I just want it to be a usable NTFS drive again.

Please answer ASAP... my build is waiting downstairs to be completed :(

THANKYOU IN ADVANCE! :D
Reply to bobby1879
10 answers Last reply
More about external hard drive
  1. did u try hiren boot cd
    did u try formatting hdd from installation of win 7 or xp
    when u reach the partition in installation format the hdd from there
    Reply to profkefah
  2. profkefah said:
    did u try hiren boot cd
    did u try formatting hdd from installation of win 7 or xp
    when u reach the partition in installation format the hdd from there


    Woops, forgot to mention that I tried that. I select the drive in the Windows 7 installation, but the format option is grayed out. :??:
    Reply to bobby1879
  3. Hi Bobby,

    Use the command prompt utility called DiskPart. It's techy and using a CLI you have to double check each step to make sure you are choosing the correct drive. I am assumming there is nothing important on the drive since you tried to Format it. When done, there will be Nothing on the drive. With this drive attached also,

    Right click on Cmd, to RunAs Administrator

    Then type DiskPart
    Then type List Disk - will get a table of disks each with a Disk #.
    Then choose Select Disk n (whatever the disk # is) This disk now has the focus
    Then type Clean All.

    That will remove all partitons, formatting, data, and write zeros to all sectors.

    That should give you a "new" drive that will have to be Initialized, Partitioned, & Formatted.
    Reply to John_VanKirk
  4. Hi Bobby,

    Use the command prompt utility called DiskPart. It's techy and using a CLI you have to double check each step to make sure you are choosing the correct drive. I am assumming there is nothing important on the drive since you tried to Format it. When done, there will be Nothing on the drive. With this drive attached also,

    Right click on Cmd, to RunAs Administrator

    Then type DiskPart
    Then type List Disk - will get a table of disks each with a Disk #.
    Then choose Select Disk n (whatever the disk # is) This disk now has the focus
    Then type Clean All.

    That will remove all partitons, formatting, data, and write zeros to all sectors.

    That should give you a "new" drive that will have to be Initialized, Partitioned, & Formatted.[/quotemsg


    i have a same problem as bobby... i did those diskpart but heres what it says


    [ DiskPart has encountered an error: Access is denied.
    See the System Event Log fo more information. ] :cry:
    Reply to faktayalalng
  5. Nice answer
    Reply to babytech215
  6. John_VanKirk said:
    Hi Bobby,

    Use the command prompt utility called DiskPart. It's techy and using a CLI you have to double check each step to make sure you are choosing the correct drive. I am assumming there is nothing important on the drive since you tried to Format it. When done, there will be Nothing on the drive. With this drive attached also,

    Right click on Cmd, to RunAs Administrator

    Then type DiskPart
    Then type List Disk - will get a table of disks each with a Disk #.
    Then choose Select Disk n (whatever the disk # is) This disk now has the focus
    Then type Clean All.

    That will remove all partitons, formatting, data, and write zeros to all sectors.

    That should give you a "new" drive that will have to be Initialized, Partitioned, & Formatted.



    I done this. The harddisk is good as new. But when i reboot my pc, it turned out i have to reformat again. How to solve this?
    Reply to Filza Amzar
  7. Hello,
    Depends if you are using this "new" HDD as a primary drive to install Win, or as a secondary data drive.

    If to install a clean version of Win-7 or Win-8 on, it shouldn't be initialized or formatted. Insert your installation DVD, and boot to the DVD. It will find the drive, follow the directions.

    If for use as a secondary data drive on a working system, right click on My Computer, Manage, Computer Management, and Disk Management. The Drive should be listed, but will need to be Initialized, then Partitioned as needed, and NTFS formatted.
    Reply to John_VanKirk
  8. hlo john, i cleaned my hdd using command prompt but cant use it as a storage drive..i can see it among my hardware but cant use it..am using it as a secondary drive..pls any idea
    Reply to millatripz
  9. millatripz said:
    hlo john, i cleaned my hdd using command prompt but cant use it as a storage drive..i can see it among my hardware but cant use it..am using it as a secondary drive..pls any idea


    Hello,
    Please let us know what type of computer you are using and the HDD that is causing trouble. I would do 4 things: check in your BIOS to see if the HDD is visible there as a hardware device, then check in the Device manager to see if it is listed there, and if there is either a yellow alert or red alert icon next to it's listing, and then check in the disk management section to see if it listed in the lower graphical area. Please report back to Tom's Hardware but since this thread is several years old, please start a new question in this Storage section, so a lot of experts can give you the best advice to get it going again. I will watch for your new entry also.
    Reply to John_VanKirk
  10. GO TO CMD

    DiskPart <ENTER>

    list disk <ENTER>

    select disk # <ENTER>

    clean <ENTER>

    list disk <ENTER>

    select disk # <ENTER>

    create partition primary <ENTER>

    list volume <ENTER>

    select volume # <ENTER>

    format fs=ntfs quick <ENTER> NO slash

    active <ENTER>

    exit <ENTER>

    exit <ENTER>

    Reboot and check Letter assigned in Windows Disk Management

    i hope it works and help also we u guys..

    -COOLITS
    Reply to Dj_COOLITS
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