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Help in recovering my data WD MB 3TB Lost partition & data

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January 7, 2013 3:34:35 PM

Hi,

WD my book essentials 3TB (was used as one partition 2.7 TB), the card in its rack started to fail (the card had some black smoke on it like something was burned, it was working on & off so I could not copy my data from it which was about 2.2 TB the data was sometimes there and sometimes most of the directories are empty), so:

1- I attached it to the PC internally, the disk was not recognized by Win7 in my computer, but was visible from the win disk management in the control panel.

2- I have used it to unpartition then repartition to MBR (but found that it had split to 2 disks - Max partition size was 2TB in MBR so then I repartition it to GPT (probably done this step twice) then formatted it.

3- Normally I thought that I can retrieve the data from Linux boot disk with ddrescue or recuva but it failed, because I have never done it with a HD that was that large and didn't know that the disk was formatted in a different way.

4- I did not write anything on the file ever since.

5- I have tried to recover the partition & the files via Hanyrecovery, R-Studio, EASEUS Data Recovery, Stellar Phoenix, EasyRecovery, photorec and Test Disk, but all failed to see the old partition & they see only the data from the new one, and get gibberish results (like an image with 1.5 GB, which I know that was originally an ISO file).

Note: the program TestDisk had so many promising options but I didn't want to mess with something I did not know so that I would not reduce my probability in getting my data more than it is.

I've been trying for the part 3 weeks, can someone please help (The HD contained very essential data for my & I know it is till there but the problem is getting it out).

Thanks

a b G Storage
January 7, 2013 4:19:48 PM

You removed the partitions, created a new patition and then formatted it. Your data is gone. Contact Data Doctors. They might be able to help.
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a b G Storage
January 7, 2013 4:40:15 PM

Somehow, when you formatted the drive, you missed the part that says, "WARNING: Formatting will erase ALL data on this disk. To format the disk, click OK. To quit, click CANCEL."

Formatting removes all of the labels of where everything is on the drive. If you had stopped there you may have been able to recover some of your data. However you then created a new partition which wrote to the drive a new space for labels that was completely blank. so you not only removed the labels but then you created a drive with new labels that all say, 'there is nothing here'. That is why you cannot recover any of the data on your drive manually.

Yes, the 0s and 1s of your data are probably still mostly intact however you will need to use professional recovery services to get any of the data back, which are very costly. The only other problem you may have is that using all of the data recovery software that you did may have hurt your chances for recovering the data even more.
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January 7, 2013 6:41:08 PM

Thanks for both of your opinions & support, I'm aware of what i have done (i have already recovered data from formatted partitions like this before but not after repartitioning it). and i didn't have anything else in mind to make the drive visible again.

& I'm aware that the last resort is using a professional data recovery company that uses a clean room to recover the data.

However if there is still possibilities to try especially with TestDisk options, i would like to try them any other idea's?

for example: when i tried to recover the boot sector & file system i got the following msg before choosing the advanced option.
"Warning: number of heads/cylinder mismatch 240 <NTFS> != 255 <HD>
Status: OK"
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January 9, 2013 5:16:07 AM

You could try Vimx Partition Recovery, which specializing in recovering data after accidentally deleting or removing a partition.
Actually, a false or bad recovery tool sometimes cannot recover your data. Oppositely, it may damage your original data again. Therefore, even though this partition recovery tool may need some money, it is worth that.
Note for you:
1. Do not store any new data on the same drive to avoid original data overwritten by new data, which can make your data gone forever.
2. Do not save the recovered data on the same drive, which can cause recovery failure.
3. Do not forget to create a new partition, if you need. (Here are the ways for you: Right click“My Computer” to select “Manage”=> Choose “Disk Management” => Right click the deleted or removed partition and hit “New Logical Drive” on the list => format it.)
4. Do not forget to back up your important data regularly in the future.
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a c 288 G Storage
January 9, 2013 8:03:18 AM

No data recovery software will be able to recover even a single byte of your data ... until you reinstall the drive in its external enclosure. This is because your data are encrypted by the USB-SATA bridge firmware, even if you have not set a password, or explicitly chosen to encrypt your data.

Moreover, WD's 3TB My Books are configured with 4KB LBAs. When you remove the drive from its enclosure and install it inside a PC, you expose the drive's 512e LBAs. This means that sector 0 is still in the same place but every other sector is out by a factor of 8.

The original partitioning scheme was MBR, not GPT. A 4KB sector size allows for a maximum MBR partition size of 16TiB whereas the traditional 512-byte sector size limits the partition to 2TiB.

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January 9, 2013 11:41:39 AM

fzabkar said:
No data recovery software will be able to recover even a single byte of your data ... until you reinstall the drive in its external enclosure. This is because your data are encrypted by the USB-SATA bridge firmware, even if you have not set a password, or explicitly chosen to encrypt your data.

Moreover, WD's 3TB My Books are configured with 4KB LBAs. When you remove the drive from its enclosure and install it inside a PC, you expose the drive's 512e LBAs. This means that sector 0 is still in the same place but every other sector is out by a factor of 8.

The original partitioning scheme was MBR, not GPT. A 4KB sector size allows for a maximum MBR partition size of 16TiB whereas the traditional 512-byte sector size limits the partition to 2TiB.


Ok what you say seems a reason why I have been not able to get any file with all the software i used.
now, i can get a new board & put it back with the HD in the rack of WD but should i do anything with it or just try to recover as is?
i believe if i connected it windows might not see the drive OR it will see it as raw and needs to be formatted, what shall i do then proceed with format or try to recover as is?

thx
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a c 288 G Storage
January 9, 2013 9:57:33 PM

The new board needs to be matched, otherwise it won't be able to decrypt your data.

The problem now is that you have trashed the start of the user area. These data will show up as garbage, whether or not the PCB is a match, so you could still be scanning your drive from start to finish without finding anything.

To avoid wasting your time and thrashing your drive, I would start by using a disc editor (eg DMDE) to scan for boot sectors. There should be a backup NTFS boot sector at the end of the user area. If you can see this, then the replacement board will be a match, and you can then try to recover your data.
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June 17, 2013 2:48:34 PM

I had a similar problem with a 2tb Mybook. What I discovered is that the mybook disk format and partition information is contained on the board with the SATA bridge inside the enclosure. This is why partition recovery does NOT WORK in this case. I tested this by buying a similar MyBook version and looking at the disk structure while in the enclosure and after it was removed from the enclosure. The result is without accessing the drive through the enclosure, the drive will appear as all unallocated space and disk management will view it as not initialized and not formatted. SOLUTION - (1) Buy a similar version of your Mybook ( I suggest if you need an older MyBook - go to a small mom & pop computer store). (2) Take the new Mybook apart (careful it's only 4 little plastic clasps inside the enclosure. (3) Swap your old MyBook drive for the new MyBook Drive. (4) Plug & Play, you'll find all your files intact and accessible.

RECOMMENDATION - Copy everything over to a ANYTHING BUT a MyBook. Throw away MyBook and get a hard drive enclosure that does not hold disk format, partition, or anything else on an intermediary board. This was a bit of a ripoff because it seems like lots of people have had this problem. Western Digital will not sell you the board, but they will sell you their data recovery services (which probably involves the same steps I just shared for an additional minimum of $500.00

Strays said:
Hi,

WD my book essentials 3TB (was used as one partition 2.7 TB), the card in its rack started to fail (the card had some black smoke on it like something was burned, it was working on & off so I could not copy my data from it which was about 2.2 TB the data was sometimes there and sometimes most of the directories are empty), so:

1- I attached it to the PC internally, the disk was not recognized by Win7 in my computer, but was visible from the win disk management in the control panel.

2- I have used it to unpartition then repartition to MBR (but found that it had split to 2 disks - Max partition size was 2TB in MBR so then I repartition it to GPT (probably done this step twice) then formatted it.

3- Normally I thought that I can retrieve the data from Linux boot disk with ddrescue or recuva but it failed, because I have never done it with a HD that was that large and didn't know that the disk was formatted in a different way.

4- I did not write anything on the file ever since.

5- I have tried to recover the partition & the files via Hanyrecovery, R-Studio, EASEUS Data Recovery, Stellar Phoenix, EasyRecovery, photorec and Test Disk, but all failed to see the old partition & they see only the data from the new one, and get gibberish results (like an image with 1.5 GB, which I know that was originally an ISO file).

Note: the program TestDisk had so many promising options but I didn't want to mess with something I did not know so that I would not reduce my probability in getting my data more than it is.

I've been trying for the part 3 weeks, can someone please help (The HD contained very essential data for my & I know it is till there but the problem is getting it out).

Thanks



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June 25, 2013 11:55:45 AM

fzabkar said:
The new board needs to be matched, otherwise it won't be able to decrypt your data.

The problem now is that you have trashed the start of the user area. These data will show up as garbage, whether or not the PCB is a match, so you could still be scanning your drive from start to finish without finding anything.

To avoid wasting your time and thrashing your drive, I would start by using a disc editor (eg DMDE) to scan for boot sectors. There should be a backup NTFS boot sector at the end of the user area. If you can see this, then the replacement board will be a match, and you can then try to recover your data.


Thanks a mil fzabkar it worked i got 80 % of my data back. your a life saver.
also thanks to all who assisted.
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August 11, 2013 6:56:31 PM

Strays said:
fzabkar said:
The new board needs to be matched, otherwise it won't be able to decrypt your data.

The problem now is that you have trashed the start of the user area. These data will show up as garbage, whether or not the PCB is a match, so you could still be scanning your drive from start to finish without finding anything.

To avoid wasting your time and thrashing your drive, I would start by using a disc editor (eg DMDE) to scan for boot sectors. There should be a backup NTFS boot sector at the end of the user area. If you can see this, then the replacement board will be a match, and you can then try to recover your data.


Thanks a mil fzabkar it worked i got 80 % of my data back. your a life saver.
also thanks to all who assisted.


Did you find the backup boot sector or was it just the board that worked. I have a 2tb mybook that is having the same problem and am going to try and find a replacement board on ebay. if you used the backup boot sector how did you put that in place?
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August 11, 2013 6:56:31 PM

Strays said:
fzabkar said:
The new board needs to be matched, otherwise it won't be able to decrypt your data.

The problem now is that you have trashed the start of the user area. These data will show up as garbage, whether or not the PCB is a match, so you could still be scanning your drive from start to finish without finding anything.

To avoid wasting your time and thrashing your drive, I would start by using a disc editor (eg DMDE) to scan for boot sectors. There should be a backup NTFS boot sector at the end of the user area. If you can see this, then the replacement board will be a match, and you can then try to recover your data.


Thanks a mil fzabkar it worked i got 80 % of my data back. your a life saver.
also thanks to all who assisted.


Did you find the backup boot sector or was it just the board that worked. I have a 2tb mybook that is having the same problem and am going to try and find a replacement board on ebay. if you used the backup boot sector how did you put that in place?
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August 11, 2013 6:56:31 PM

Strays said:
fzabkar said:
The new board needs to be matched, otherwise it won't be able to decrypt your data.

The problem now is that you have trashed the start of the user area. These data will show up as garbage, whether or not the PCB is a match, so you could still be scanning your drive from start to finish without finding anything.

To avoid wasting your time and thrashing your drive, I would start by using a disc editor (eg DMDE) to scan for boot sectors. There should be a backup NTFS boot sector at the end of the user area. If you can see this, then the replacement board will be a match, and you can then try to recover your data.


Thanks a mil fzabkar it worked i got 80 % of my data back. your a life saver.
also thanks to all who assisted.


Did you find the backup boot sector or was it just the board that worked. I have a 2tb mybook that is having the same problem and am going to try and find a replacement board on ebay. if you used the backup boot sector how did you put that in place?
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August 16, 2013 12:07:49 PM

6116274,0,410803 said:
No data recovery software will be able to recover even a single byte of your data ... until you reinstall the drive in its external enclosure. This is because your data are encrypted by the USB-SATA bridge firmware, even if you have not set a password, or explicitly chosen to encrypt your data.

Moreover, WD's 3TB My Books are configured with 4KB LBAs. When you remove the drive from its enclosure and install it inside a PC, you expose the drive's 512e LBAs. This means that sector 0 is still in the same place but every other sector is out by a factor of 8.

The original partitioning scheme was MBR, not GPT. A 4KB sector size allows for a maximum MBR partition size of 16TiB whereas the traditional 512-byte sector size limits the partition to 2TiB.


(I have the WD 3tb usb 3.0 back in it's enclosure and the computer is still not reading it). Can you direct me in the right direction so I can access my data. {This is what I have done so far by reading a few post. I removed the drive out of the enclosure, tried looking for it my computer, found it in disk management, it wasn't initialized and still unallocated but I think it some how created a partition, then I noticed it was online so then I tried to initialize it, could not detect it. So I put it back in the enclosure with the sata bridge attached in all, and now I am at the and my computer will not read it through the usb either}. Thanks Ian
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December 29, 2013 7:57:16 AM

fzabkar said:
The new board needs to be matched, otherwise it won't be able to decrypt your data.

The problem now is that you have trashed the start of the user area. These data will show up as garbage, whether or not the PCB is a match, so you could still be scanning your drive from start to finish without finding anything.

To avoid wasting your time and thrashing your drive, I would start by using a disc editor (eg DMDE) to scan for boot sectors. There should be a backup NTFS boot sector at the end of the user area. If you can see this, then the replacement board will be a match, and you can then try to recover your data.


Hi fzabkar,

I'm in a situation just like this.
I have a working 3TB WD Red drive that i'm using with my Probox (HDD Box). After my Probox died i had a hard time looking for a replacement, and since i had an old WD Mybook i had the "brilliant" idea of putting the 3TB drive in it. At first the Mybook read the drive correctly, i can still read and write to it, for a few days. However one day the drive no longer showed up, and it said i must format it to use. I took the drive out of the Mybook and put it back in, I tried your suggestion but DMDE showed that the partition is too large and cannot fit (the Mybook is old and can only support up to 2TB i know now). DMDE also cannot find any partition... So did i mess it up ? Anything you can suggest i try now ?

Sigh thats like >1 TB i have no back up of...

Many thanks if you can help me with anything ...

Duy Hung
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a c 288 G Storage
December 29, 2013 9:40:23 AM

@Duy Hung, it appears that your My Book has a 32-bit LBA limit. When you wrote data beyond the 2TiB point, it wrapped around to sector 0 and trashed the start of the file system.
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December 29, 2013 8:15:39 PM

fzabkar said:
@Duy Hung, it appears that your My Book has a 32-bit LBA limit. When you wrote data beyond the 2TiB point, it wrapped around to sector 0 and trashed the start of the file system.

Uhm, that sounds like the whole file system is now messed up and i can no longer recover it anymore, is it ?
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a c 288 G Storage
December 29, 2013 10:47:08 PM

Your data should still be there. If the MFT is intact, then you may be able to recover the original file and folder names, otherwise you will be left with a raw recovery.

If it were my drive, I would install it inside your computer and quickly examine some critical sectors before throwing any data recovery software at the problem.

Specifically, I would examine the last two sectors of the drive, use them to determine the location of any boot sector and backup boot sector, and then use the boot sector to locate the MFT. If the MFT is undamaged, then your prospects would be good.

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December 30, 2013 7:05:55 AM

fzabkar said:
Your data should still be there. If the MFT is intact, then you may be able to recover the original file and folder names, otherwise you will be left with a raw recovery.

If it were my drive, I would install it inside your computer and quickly examine some critical sectors before throwing any data recovery software at the problem.

Specifically, I would examine the last two sectors of the drive, use them to determine the location of any boot sector and backup boot sector, and then use the boot sector to locate the MFT. If the MFT is undamaged, then your prospects would be good.



Hi,

I'm sorry but i really am clueless ...
I installed the drive into my computer and ran DMDE.

The partitions now shown as:


I followed your instruction from another thread and copy the sectors of 0 to 3, 264192 to 264195, the last 3 sectors to bin files on my desktop. The 0-3 when opened with notepad has "Invalid partition table", the 264192-5 has"A disk read error occurred", the last 3 sectors has "EFI PART " ..., the rest i cannot read (font ?).

Can you tell me what else i can do with this ? As you can see from the table partitions there're Microsoft reserved partition and Basic data partition. These two im afraid were created when i installed it in the computer and let it run check disk. Suprisingly the Basic data partition has some files and folders from before its messed up, but not all (only a few files).

Thank you very much!

I don't have much hope though, now its like this ...

Duy Hung
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a c 288 G Storage
December 30, 2013 11:51:07 AM

ISTM that all your data are still there.

I would examine sector 264192. That's the first sector of your data partition. It should be an NTFS boot sector.

Launch DMDE, uncheck the "Show Partitions" box.

Editor -> Goto Offset -> sector 264192.

That should tell us where to look for your MFT. If the MFT is intact, then you should be able to recover your data with the original file and folder names.
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June 11, 2014 1:56:07 PM

fzabkar said:
No data recovery software will be able to recover even a single byte of your data ... until you reinstall the drive in its external enclosure. This is because your data are encrypted by the USB-SATA bridge firmware, even if you have not set a password, or explicitly chosen to encrypt your data.

Moreover, WD's 3TB My Books are configured with 4KB LBAs. When you remove the drive from its enclosure and install it inside a PC, you expose the drive's 512e LBAs. This means that sector 0 is still in the same place but every other sector is out by a factor of 8.

The original partitioning scheme was MBR, not GPT. A 4KB sector size allows for a maximum MBR partition size of 16TiB whereas the traditional 512-byte sector size limits the partition to 2TiB.



Any idea how close the enclosure has to be to the original? I have a 3TB external HD that just died and need to recover the data. This explains why I cannot get any of my data. My drive is about 2.5 years old...is it feasible that it will work in a new 3TB enclosure?
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a c 288 G Storage
June 11, 2014 2:10:35 PM

Sorry, I don't know the "rules" for PCB matching. Even if you get a PCB that looks compatible, you may still need to transfer the 8-pin firmware chip from patient to donor.
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June 11, 2014 7:49:35 PM

fzabkar said:
Sorry, I don't know the "rules" for PCB matching. Even if you get a PCB that looks compatible, you may still need to transfer the 8-pin firmware chip from patient to donor.


Thanks for the answer. After doing some addition research, I am going to try to find an exact match to the PCB which I believe is 4061-705089-001 REV AF. I think one that has a REV AG should would work. Which chip is the 8 pin firmware chip?
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June 17, 2014 9:03:44 AM

fzabkar said:
Sorry, I don't know the "rules" for PCB matching. Even if you get a PCB that looks compatible, you may still need to transfer the 8-pin firmware chip from patient to donor.


OK...so I bought another PCB 4061-705089-001 REV AG (mine is AF) and I am still having the same issue. Comes up as local disk on my computer, RAW file system and 0 bytes. Any suggestions?
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