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CHKDSK won't work on external Disk

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November 11, 2012 12:01:27 AM

I have an external drive (g:)  formatted to EXFAT so as I am able to read/write in the various operating systems I use. It is viewable in Windows, but if I try to read from a file itself or write to the disk my system hangs, crashing but not BSODing. Previously if I was unable to write to it in windows I could run CHKDSK to fix read-only, but however CHKDSK fails to work, only reporting:

"The type of the file system is EXFAT.
Volume label is External."

This occurs with /r and /f, however CHKDSK on C: works fine. FSUTIL reports it needs an NTFS volume as expected.

Is there any way to restore this disk to a useable state in windows, preferrably using CHKDSK, at startup if that is possible.

Additionally running Error Checking (GUI), no progress is made.

Any help is appreciated.
Thanks.
a c 87 G Storage
November 11, 2012 12:10:29 AM

How is your external drive connected? Disk checking utilities require that the disk be locked in order to run, this is not always possible over USB. If you can connect it via eSATA you may have more luck
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November 11, 2012 12:14:02 AM

It's connected over firewire 800 and it's worked before
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a c 87 G Storage
November 11, 2012 12:16:31 AM

rndmate said:
It's connected over firewire 800 and it's worked before


Sounds like the disk might just be totalled. Hard drives die, a lot.
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November 11, 2012 12:25:00 AM

It's not as it works fine in OSX and Linux, read and write and passes fine in OSX Disk Utility.
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a c 87 G Storage
November 11, 2012 12:56:28 AM

rndmate said:
It's not as it works fine in OSX and Linux, read and write and passes fine in OSX Disk Utility.


Oh. I see. All major operating systems have good support for NTFS right now, you may want to just reformat it to NTFS and see what happens. Use one of your other PCs to back it up.

I don't use Firewire so i can't comment on how it works.
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November 18, 2012 5:10:18 AM

I've got 2.5TB of data on there which is of importance and for obvious reasons can't just transfer it elsewhere, taking time and money. Does anyone know if there anyway to force a CHKDSK on restart or something of the such so I am able to use it on Windows?
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January 19, 2013 10:46:38 AM

rndmate said:
I've got 2.5TB of data on there which is of importance and for obvious reasons can't just transfer it elsewhere, taking time and money. Does anyone know if there anyway to force a CHKDSK on restart or something of the such so I am able to use it on Windows?



OK. Might be being a tad blonde here, what's stopping you putting it INTO the actual computer as a second hard drive and CHKDSK'ing it in the actual computer? It'll come up with its own drive number and you can just do a chkdsk on that drive number.

Alternatively, I know that Seagate do a free seet of Diagnostic tools to check hard drives with, they work on external drives. Or - this is a semi-guess - there's MINI-XP which runs off a CD and doesn't seem to mind accessing any drive anywhere for just about anything. CAVEAT - I have NOT tried CHKDSK with MNI XP, but I've used it to move tons of stuff between drives, external/internal, read/rescued bad drives with it, all sorts! There's also BARTS which checks discs for integrity and some BIOS'es let you boot from external drives. So you could access your data by just booting to the external drives (if your BIOS will let you, they don't all.)

Hope some of the above helps - I'm NOT a full-on computer engineer, but I have tried all the above myself on many occasions.

Yours respectfully

Chris.
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