external hard drive not recognized

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Jofran, May 12, 2008.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Jofran

    Joined:
    May 12, 2008
    #1
    Hi, I'm hoping that I'm posting in the right place here. I've just bought my sister an external hard drive for her g4 imac. Its a 400g WD hard drive, I formatted it using a friend's mac and it worked fine, but her machine wont recognize it. Its not showing up in disk utility. She's running OS X and the hard drive has its own power supply.

    I really don't know enough about macs to be able to sort it. If anyone knows what I'm doing wrong it would be a great help. Thanks.
     
  2. macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Cuidad de México
    #2
    Was the friends Mac an Intel Mac?
     
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jofran

    Joined:
    May 12, 2008
    #3
    I think it was an ibook g4, its certainly an old(ish) mac laptop, so I dont think it was Intel.
     
  4. macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #4
    Check your cable connection (I assume you are using firewire) from the Mac to the drive. Unplug it an replug it in and listen to see if the drive is actually spinning up. If the drive has a USB connection, I would try that as well, but don't plug both the firewire and USB cables in at the same time.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jofran

    Joined:
    May 12, 2008
    #5
    Hey, yeah the drive is spinning up fine. She's using usb. Tried disconnecting and reconnecting to no effect :/
     
  6. macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #6
    Did you try another cable?

    You may want to do the following. You may have a corrupted PRAM or hardware cache file:

    Reset PRAM - which will clear the PRAM code and write a fresh one.
    Safe Boot - which will clear the hardware cache (and other cache files) file and generate a new one.

    Go to apple.com/support and search for the instructions on how to do both.
     
  7. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jofran

    Joined:
    May 12, 2008
    #7
    Hey, I just tried both of those and neither appear to have helped it recognize the disk :( I even held the PRAM zap for three chimes as recommended by the apple support site.
     
  8. JNB
    macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    #8
    Basic troubleshooting (before someone has you going too over the top). This applies to any PC, regardless.

    1. Make sure that other USB devices can be seen out of that port,
    2. Try switching ports,
    3. Try a different cable,
    4. And make sure that you are connecting directly to the Mac, and not a dry hub or a port on a keyboard.

    In other words, isolate and eliminate.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jofran

    Joined:
    May 12, 2008
    #9
    Hi
    Yeah that usb port works and its not a hub or a port on a keyboard.
    I think the cable works because i just borrowed someone's mac laptop to try the hard drive with and it can recognize it fine :\
     
  10. Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #10
    Please do not hijack threads.
     
  11. macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #11
    When you connect the drive, can you see it attached in the System Profiler?
     
  12. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jofran

    Joined:
    May 12, 2008
    #12
    No, its not showing up in the system profiler :\
     
  13. macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #13
    Well then, the drive is not communicating with the mac. Try another (new) USB cable. You may have some wear-and-tear on your USB ports and the cable you are using is not making proper contact or the cable itself has wear-and-tear. When you plug in the cable, make sure you feel it "snap (click) in" to ensure a proper connection. Once in, it should not wiggle or have any loose play.
     
  14. macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #14
    Also, if you haven't done this on her g4 imac, reset the PMU if the above doesn't work. See this article:

    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=95165
     
  15. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    Location:
    Chicago
    #15
    I'm having this exact problem with my Mac Mini and a 1TB WD MyBook Mac Edition USB drive. It worked fine for a couple days, now I can't get it to be recognized on my Mini. Doesn't appear in System Profiler. I can connect the drive to my MBP and it mounts fine. Has anyone else experienced this? Its a 1.66 CoreDuo Mini.
     
  16. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2009
    #16
    Solved my WD Hard drive not recognized by Mac issue

    I am using a Powerbook G4 (ancient, yes I know) and a friend brought his WD hard drive over last night and I tried to connect using the USB, but no luck. The light of the HD came on, but it made this weird clicking noise. He told me he didn't have any issues at home on his PC and his bf used it on an Intel Mac, so I was confused. I tried resetting all sorts of stuff, but knew it wasn't my computer, cuz I picked up my multiple IOmega HD's just fine. Hell, I even tried to connect his HD directly to my 1TB IOmega, but nothing.

    I decided that it wasn't getting enough juice from my laptop, kinda like a car missing some spark. I have an powered external Belkin USB Hub so connected that and voila!, it worked. The clicking noise stopped and I read the HD just fine.

    This may not work for everyone, but it worked for me and figured I'd share this with you.

    Hope this works for you. FYI, I'll never get a WD personally.

    Merry Christmas, Happy holidays or however you swing!

    J.
     

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