Problem with external hard drive

  Caldecotte 15:33 10 Dec 2009

I'm desperate for some help from someone who knows testdisk or can recommend another program that will recover my data.

It suddenly started to report that it was raw data and when I ran testdisk (as advised by Western Digital) it appears that the partition table information is corrupted. I believe I need to change the geometry information but Idon't understand how this works.

I really would appreciate any help with this as I am sure the data is still there. The disk has all my partner's music files on it, which were transferred because he has just got a new PC. As he has just had Chemo for liver cancer the stress of losing all his data is really not helping a very sick man.

  canarieslover 15:44 10 Dec 2009

You could try Recuva which is a free file recovery program. click here I'm not sure that it will work if the file allocation tables are corrupt but it will not do any further harm.

  Caldecotte 15:52 10 Dec 2009

I've had a quick look, but it looks like that will just recover the files and I really need them in their directory structure otherwise it will be a nightmare to sort them all out - it's a terabyte disk which is half faull!


  canarieslover 16:00 10 Dec 2009

I have also found this program recommended, on another forum, by someone else having a similar problem with a WD hard drive. click here

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 16:12 10 Dec 2009

Using the TestDisk Recovery Utility
to Recover 'Lost' Partitions
click here

TestDisk Step By Step
click here

Recovering from file system corruption using TestDisk
click here

TESTDISK, The Holy Grail
click here

  Caldecotte 17:10 10 Dec 2009

I've read all of this, but it still doesn't help me! I am trying to recover a NTFS file system and when I run the program analyse option it shows me two identical partitions both labelled primary. Above them it says invalid NTFS or Exfat boot and below no partition is bootable.

When I ran search and then deeper search (both of which took more than four houss) it came up with bad ending head (cma and lba don't match) No parition is bootable.

Can you help me further, I really am worried I may do harm if I do the wrong thing.


  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 17:22 10 Dec 2009

1. is this the bootable drive of a windows PC that will not boot if so what error message?

2. 0r is it a second drive on a PC?

3. or and external drive (test disk doesn't really like external drives coupled by USB)

4. What version of windows?

Have you tried running chkdsk /f on the drive?

  Caldecotte 17:28 10 Dec 2009

it's an external usb drive and I'm running windows xp.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 17:47 10 Dec 2009

Right click My computer - Manage - Storage - disk Management.

can you see the drive?

if so click on it select properties - tools tab - error checking - check now.

  Caldecotte 17:54 10 Dec 2009

I just tried running the program suggested before by canarieslover (find and mount) it says it has found a partition, do you know this program and if it is safe to mount from here?

(It is offering the options to Mount as..) I really don't wantto do any lasting harm!

  canarieslover 17:59 10 Dec 2009

I don't believe it actually writes anything to the disk, it just shows the partition in the same way as you would normally see it. You should be then able to copy folders over to your computer hard drive. If you are not too sure about using TestDisk then getting the files off is the first priority and then if you make a mistake with TestDisk it won't be the end of the world. Good luck!!

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