Ext HDD ???

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by jlrathke, Aug 25, 2011.

  1. jlrathke macrumors member

    jlrathke

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2011
    #1
    Ok, not really a windows on a mac question, but I have a 1TB, NTFS external HDD about a year old that my windows 7 machine stopped reading all of the sudden...said it needs formatting. I got the same result plugging it into an XP laptop. I plug it into my MBP and it reads just fine and was able to copy all my data to another external. Do you guys think I can trust this HDD if I reformat it? Are there any diagnostics on the MBP that I can run prior to reformatting since it has an NTFS format?

    Thanks,

    Jerry
     
  2. aonali21 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2011
    Location:
    Jhang.Punjab,Pakistan
    #2
    First copy all data on your MBP and try below...

    *Plug in and turn on the external USB hard drive
    *Right mouse click on My Computer
    * click on Manage
    * click on Device Manager
    *Expand the USB list
    *Find the USB device for your USB Hard Drive
    *Right mouse click - Uninstall
    *Turn off the external USB hard drive
    *Turn on the external USB hard drive and let it find and install the driver
    It should work
     
  3. Quad5Ny macrumors 6502a

    Quad5Ny

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2009
    Location:
    New York, USA
    #3
    Normally the company that makes it should offer a diagnostic package (I know Seagate and WD do).

    Alternatively you could download a SMART toolkit and view the drives SMART status, but that does not usually work on USB drives.

    A third option is something like DBAN, you would do a Zero Pass + Verify; this would Read & Write the entire user accessible area of the drive. If it finishes successfully then your drive is probably fine. Keep in mind doing this will erase the drive, so backup everything first.
     
  4. jlrathke thread starter macrumors member

    jlrathke

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2011
    #4
    Read a little on DBAN and think I'll try it...shouldn't be a problem running it on an external drive, right?

    Jerry
     
  5. MJL macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2011
    #5
    More than once have I lost all data in the same manner on an external HDD. It happens often when the drive is unplugged improperly or does not want to unmount and then gets disconnected. For all external HDD I used for a long time FAT32 and with Windows 7 you can use exFat. More robust against sudden loss of power / disconnection. Windows itself will not format FAT32 larger than 32 Gb but there are ways around it like fat32format.exe or Paragon Partition Manager.

    SMART is not a reliable indicator at all for impending failure of a HDD - only after the fact that it is dead might it show something. Hence I replace all my HDD as soon as they make unusual noises or get noisier than normal or if they are 18 months old and have had a "hard life" (high usage / high temprature. If an external HDD has been dropped I replace it, (even falling over when standing on its side can damage it) it is no longer trustworthy. My data is worth a lot more than a HDD and I always buy a HDD in retail packinging since I know then for certain that no careless packager has had it in their hands. If the package has been opened I return it, no if's or but's.

    These days I a small external RAID and some USB Flash memory.
     
  6. jlrathke thread starter macrumors member

    jlrathke

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2011
    #6
    Well, mine is about a year old and hasn't been knocked over, but is on constantly so the heat factor is there. Drives are relatively cheap these days...cheaper than the 80-90 gb of music I have on it so I'll most likely replace it. Thanks to all for the advice.

    Jerry
     
  7. Quad5Ny, Aug 27, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2011

    Quad5Ny macrumors 6502a

    Quad5Ny

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2009
    Location:
    New York, USA
    #7
    Nope, DBAN has supported USB disks for awhile now. But make sure you select the correct drive! You don't want to accidentally erase your internal hard drive.

    You could also try Disk Utility's "Zero Out Data" option. This will write to the entire drive, but I don't know if it will Read it back to verify it.

    Oh yea, one more thing Writing and Reading 1TB over USB will take a few hours (I'd say 4+). So start it before you go to bed or something.

    True, but it does help. You can view things like read errors, bad sectors, spin up time, load/unload counts, un-expected power loss count, free fall sensor trip counts, hours of use, temperature, ect. It's a very useful tool for checking the status of a HD.

    .
     

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