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External hard drive 1TB

Last response: in Storage
December 8, 2012 4:29:09 PM

Hello, I am running windows 7 64 on a laptop and have a 1TB external drive for backups. Recently the drive showed up in Disk manager as UNALLOCATED with know drive letter assigned to it. It also has a black colored bar and not blue so I cannot assign it a new drive letter. The drive will power on and spin and I have attempted to use the TestDisk freeware with no success. Is it possible to recover this data? If so is it possible with a freeware version ? If not freeware, what is the best product out there that's easy to use. Thanks.
a c 288 G Storage
December 9, 2012 2:53:16 AM

It could be that the drive inside the enclosure has a physical problem.

How does HD Sentinel or HDDScan identify the drive? Does it report its correct model number and full capacity?

HD Sentinel (DOS / Windows / Linux):

HDDScan for Windows:
December 9, 2012 4:00:53 PM

Ran the HDDScan tool and can see the drive and everything on this report showed up as green except the 005 Reallocation Sector Count 100 100 0000000000-002D 005 and it has the yellow triangle symbol which indicates an issue.. Any suggestions on what to do next? I'm not the best on hard drive recovery issues.

HDDScan S.M.A.R.T. Report
Model: Hitachi HDS721010CLA332
Firmware: JP4OA3EA
Serial: JP2940HQ3KLURH
LBA: 1953525168

Report By: HDDScan for Windows version 3.3
Report Date: 12/9/2012 12:44:35 PM

Num Attribute Name Value Worst Raw(hex) Threshold

001 Raw Read Error Rate 100 100 0000000000-0000 016

002 Throughput performance 133 133 0000000000-0069 054

003 Spin Up Time 130 130 0000030102-0143 024

004 Start/Stop Count 100 100 0000000000-0535 000

005 Reallocation Sector Count 100 100 0000000000-002D 005

007 Seek Error Rate 100 100 0000000000-0000 067

008 Seek time Perfomance 138 138 0000000000-001F 020

009 Power-On Hours Count 100 100 0000000000-1810 000

010 Spin Retry Count 100 100 0000000000-0000 060

012 Device Power Cycle Count 100 100 0000000000-0426 000

192 Emergency Retract Count 099 099 0000000000-054C 000

193 Load/unload Cycle Count 099 099 0000000000-054C 000

194 HDA Temperature 200 200 30 C 000

194 HDA Temperature Maximum 200 200 52 C 000

194 HDA Temperature Minimum 200 200 20 C 000

196 Reallocation Event Count 100 100 0000000000-002D 000

197 Current Pending Errors Count 100 100 0000000000-0000 000

198 Uncorrectable Errors Count 100 100 0000000000-0000 000

199 UltraDMA CRC Errors 200 200 0000000000-0000 000
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a c 288 G Storage
December 9, 2012 5:11:51 PM

The drive has 45 (= 0x2D) bad sectors, possibly more.

The "unallocated" message is telling you that the drive's partition information cannot be retrieved from sector 0.

If you try a surface scan using HDDScan, can you see the first section of the drive? You don't need to scan the entire drive.
December 10, 2012 12:50:14 AM

I was able to successfully performed a Read\surface scan on 10% of the drive and then stopped it. I suppose this is good news since I did not have any bad\blue sectors show up in the output. Based on this information do you believe there is still a chance for recovery? If so? what's do you recommend as the next step.. If I have to purchase some recovery software that will be fine because I have to try everything possible to recover info. Thanks in advance!

Best solution

a c 288 G Storage
December 10, 2012 5:25:27 PM

When a drive has problems with sector 0, it is often a sign that there may be a more serious problem. However, in your case it appears that I was wrong and instead yours may be a simple logical fault, ie a damaged file system.

You could try data recovery software such as Partition Find and Mount. This tool will scan your drive looking for your missing partition(s) and then try to mount them. It doesn't repair your drive or write on it. If it is able to locate and display your file system, then the actually repair may be an easy one.

Partition Find and Mount:

Alternatively, you could examine the file system with a disc editor such as DMDE. You can search for your boot sectors by selecting Tools -> Search For Special Sector.

DMDE (DM Disk Editor and Data Recovery):
December 10, 2012 11:52:31 PM


I used the Partition Find & Mount Utility to scan and find my external drive\partition. The program was successful in locating my partition and I was then able to use the mount feature to assign a new drive letter. I successfully recovered all of my data which included several hundred Cisco IOS files that I used in my GNS3 simulation and much more........

Thank you for all of the assistance, you are totally awesome and saved me a tremendous amount of painful recovery time.......

December 11, 2012 11:17:16 AM

Best answer selected by journey23.