Page 1 of 1

Ext harddrive thinks it is RAW format

Posted: Sat Nov 26, 2016 10:49 pm UTC
by Angua
My external harddrive (which I've used fine in the last month or so) has suddenly decided that is is RAW format. It is a Seagate 1tb drive, and had a lot of stuff on it, and now is not there. Is there any way to recover??

Re: Ext harddrive thinks it is RAW format

Posted: Sun Nov 27, 2016 3:21 pm UTC
by cphite
Angua wrote:My external harddrive (which I've used fine in the last month or so) has suddenly decided that is is RAW format. It is a Seagate 1tb drive, and had a lot of stuff on it, and now is not there. Is there any way to recover??


There is a good possibility that your data is still there on the drive. The key is to get it off the drive without doing anything to erase or modify it.

There are data recovery programs you can use - here are some examples http://www.techradar.com/news/software/applications/best-free-data-recovery-tools-1321723

I've had good luck with DMDE, and Recuva has worked for me too... any of them on that list are good. Just take your time and read whatever documentation they have; do that and they're all relatively easy to use. Honestly, when these things happen and people do end up losing their data, it's because they rushed into something.

Alternatively, you could try booting your machine into Linux from a USB and reading the drive directly, but you'll probably have more luck with the recovery tools.

In any event, your goal should be to get whatever you can off the drive and onto another drive, before you do anything else. Once you've done that, you could try reformatting the drive and using it for temporary storage... I personally wouldn't trust the drive for anything important again.

All of that said, if you have anything really critical on the disk, you might also consider a data recovery service. They aren't cheap, but might be preferable to losing something really important to you.

Good luck :)

Re: Ext harddrive thinks it is RAW format

Posted: Sun Nov 27, 2016 4:29 pm UTC
by Angua
Thanks for the tips! Hopefully 'Test Disk' (recommended to my brother by someone he knows) will be able to recover - it has apparently found some corruption in the boot bits (yeah, I don't know enough) which is good because that hopefully means the data is fine. Fingers are crossed.

Re: Ext harddrive thinks it is RAW format

Posted: Sun Nov 27, 2016 8:48 pm UTC
by EdgarJPublius
I know this is not particularly useful right now, but let this be a reminder to all:

Back Up Everything Always

Re: Ext harddrive thinks it is RAW format

Posted: Sun Nov 27, 2016 9:28 pm UTC
by Angua
I mean, thanks, but that was my backup. I hopefully have most things on the old computer who's monitor was on the blink, but it's not like I have the space to keep everything on my laptop if I want to also run a couple of rpg games. I have to move house every year which makes having a desktop a pain.

Re: Ext harddrive thinks it is RAW format

Posted: Mon Nov 28, 2016 9:05 pm UTC
by morriswalters
It could be a bad controller in the external case. If all else fails the raw drive might be readable even if the USB controller is damaged. I've had one fail this way' I still use the drive sans the case.

Re: Ext harddrive thinks it is RAW format

Posted: Mon Nov 28, 2016 10:13 pm UTC
by Angua
Thanks for the input. We just tried and it didn't work, so going with some recovery software. It managed to see that there was 500GB on the drive somewhere so hopefully it will be ok.