500 GB WD Portable USB Hard Drive Not Recogni

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 Thall -
Hello,

My computer does not recognize my 500 GB Western Digital External Hard Drive (HD) (Portable/USB) after the system was upgraded with the Windows XP Service Pack 3.

1. Installed Tweak UI
2. I went to My Computer -> Manage -> Computer Management -> System Tools -> Device Manager - Network Adapters and Disabled 1394 Net Adapter #3. Restarted the system.
3. Uninstalled Windows XP Service Pack 3 and currently running the lower version (service pack 2) now.
4. I went to My Computer -> Manage -> Computer Management -> Storage -> Disk Management where its a blue line and shows only C and D (CD ROM /DVD).
5. I went to My Computer -> Manage -> Computer Management -> System Tools -> Device Manager - Universal Serial Bus Controllers. Right clicked and Scan for hardware changes. Nothing happened.
6. I went to My Computer -> Manage -> Computer Management -> System Tools -> Device Manager - Disk Drives. It shows WD there and when I double click, it shows that This device is working properly. The location mentioned is Location 0.

Please advice as what I need to do in order to get the hard drive working again. I have all my important career documents, memorable photographs, music and movie files.

I dont want to reformat as the data is very important for me.

Its been only 1 week since I have purchased this hard drive.

Appreciate immediate help and support.

Thank you.
Nitin.

3 replies

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OK, I will try to keep this as simple as I can. A common problem with external hard drives. Is that they lose their partition information. The very beginning sector of the hard drive has the MBR on it which holds your partition table. It is very likely that this might be corrupt or damage. This happens when you unplug the drive while it's still writing to the MBR.

If your computer recognizes your drive (ie. if the drive is listed under disk management and/or in you device manager) but the drive shows nothing but unallocated space or no drive letter is assigned then this is most likely the problem.

In this case DO NOT create a new partition in windows. This will reformat the drive and make your life very difficult.

I use Acronis Disk Director Suite it works great for more than just this and is a great tool to have on hand. Other ones are Active Partition recovery (untested by me), Partition Table Doctor (also untested) and freeware HDHacker (also untested).
You can Google "MBR repair" for more programs and info.

Western Digital may also provide help and/or software since it's a new drive.

Good Luck
Hello,

Thank you for the suggestion. I did try but it does not locate the WD drive there as well :(

My computer does not recognizes the drive. Also the drive is not listed under disk management or device manager, however it shows in the system tray 'Safely Remove Hardware' ICON. When I double click on this I see WD under USB Mass Storage Device. Clicking on properties it shows that the device is working properly. The location mentioned is Location 0.

I was unable to find anything on Western Digital website as well.

I am worried now as I am a non-techie and all this is very new to me. My priority is now to get the data back.

Is there other way I can get the drive working or at least my data from the drive. The challenge is that when the drive is not at recognized anywhere how do I go ahead with anything?

Please help me.

Thank you.
Nitin
You are a magic man :-) 0 mb problem is no more :-)
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There is a good chance that the hard drive is dead. What you see in the system tray is the USB mass storage adapter that interfaces the computer to the hard drive (not the hard drive itself). Hardware more often breaks in the first few weeks than in the next few years. I would contact Western Digital to see if the drive and be removed from the case and installed directly into a computer for data recovery. Good Luck
I have got this same problem!!
I've installed second copy of winxp so I can see all usb hard drives