External HD will not Initialize

Discussion in 'PC Hardware' started by boscru6469, Mar 18, 2014.

  1. boscru6469

    boscru6469 MDL Member

    Jan 9, 2012
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    I have a Western Digital external hard drive I cannot initialize. I have tried everything I can find on the web I could find. At this point I am not concerned with the data that is on it. If I can get it initialized I will try some recovery software to get as much back as possible.

    1. Device manager shows WD External Drive, Disk management shows a Disk 3 (no letter), not initialized, offline. I tried right click to initialize and get "Incorrect Function"
    2. Ran Diskpart as administrator selected the disk. No matter what commands I try I get error messages. When I run List Disk it shows but shows with 0 bytes.
    3. disassembled the external drive and connected the SATA drive directly to my Mobo but it is not even recognized.

    Is there anything else I could try or is the drive toast and I am just wasting my time.
     
  2. Joanne

    Joanne MDL Novice

    Jun 19, 2010
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    When you connected it to the mobo and said it is not reconized, is that in the bios, or Windows?
     
  3. EFA11

    EFA11 Avatar Guru

    Oct 7, 2010
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    try setting a boot delay in your bios settings. 5 seconds is usually enough if this helps.
     
  4. Mr.X

    Mr.X MDL Guru

    Jul 14, 2013
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    No mate, I suspect your HDD is toast... :(
     
  5. Ming_the_Merciless

    Ming_the_Merciless MDL Member

    Feb 7, 2014
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    #5 Ming_the_Merciless, Mar 18, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2014
    "He's dead, Jim."

    Can you get your fingers on the drive at power up? If so, you should be able to feel a slight vibration as it spins up. Depending upon other ambient noise, you may be able to hear the heads move.

    I don't know if it's worth your time and trouble, but sometimes it is drive pcb failure. If you can find the same pcb, including the drive's firmware revision, that may get it going again.
     
  6. boscru6469

    boscru6469 MDL Member

    Jan 9, 2012
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    Both BIOS and windows show a USB drive but neither one actually recognizes the drive properly

    If it is not being recognized properly after it is put in as a USB 15 minutes after boot up would the 5 second delay help?

    When I plug in the USB I can feel it vibrating. When I have it hooked up as an external USB drive out of the case the light on the board for the housing light up one at a time until all 4 stay on.
     
  7. Mr.X

    Mr.X MDL Guru

    Jul 14, 2013
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    Then bad controller card.
     
  8. boscru6469

    boscru6469 MDL Member

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    What is a bad controller card? Can I fix it?
     
  9. Mr.X

    Mr.X MDL Guru

    Jul 14, 2013
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    The electronic card attached to the HDD. No you can't. Replace HDD or even better for you (easier) buy a new external HDD.
     
  10. boscru6469

    boscru6469 MDL Member

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    Is that the card that is called a PCB board. I have replaced a couple before 1 worked the other did not.
     
  11. Mr.X

    Mr.X MDL Guru

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    #11 Mr.X, Mar 19, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
    OK, you've replaced it, fine. But you can't fix a bad one, just replace it. Well, you did it a couple times before and still having trouble. I suggest you to acquire a new drive. :)
    No offense, but sometimes we, technicians or savvy people can do extensive diagnostics, do some tricks here and there that requires experience. You don't have that experience, so my advise above is the best that suits to you.
     
  12. boscru6469

    boscru6469 MDL Member

    Jan 9, 2012
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    I am sorry I did not explain what I did properly. I have replaced the board on 2 other drives before, one worked one did not. I have not done this with this drive. If I find a duplicate board for the drive from someone and borrow it just to get the data out of the drive will I damage the borrowed board?
     
  13. Mr.X

    Mr.X MDL Guru

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    Oh, now I got it. No, I don't believe you'll damage the board, moreover, you need to borrow that board because is top priority to get your data back... It's worth the attempt, but as soon as you recover your data this HD is not reliable anymore, OK?
     
  14. boscru6469

    boscru6469 MDL Member

    Jan 9, 2012
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    If I do get a PCB board and get the data out the old drive will be destroyed and disposed of properly. It belongs to a friend and supposedly contains about 2500 record albums that were transferred to digital. Fortunately most were backed up on another drive also. Thanks for the help.
     
  15. manu198045

    manu198045 MDL Member

    Aug 24, 2010
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    Dear boscru6469,

    You can open your external hdd case and get the hdd out. Remove the "connector board" from the hdd (the connector board not the pcb of the HDD) then connect the hdd into the sata port of a desktop using the sata cable and give the sata power from the SMPS. Boot the desktop after connecting the hdd. If hdd works you will be able to copy the data just like coping from any other drive. But this process will void your warranty. This method I told you because you said the data is very important to you.

    Regards,

    Manu.
     
  16. urie

    urie Moderator
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    May 21, 2007
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    @ manu198045, boscru6469 already mentioned he had done that in post one.
     
  17. manu198045

    manu198045 MDL Member

    Aug 24, 2010
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    Dear urie,

    Thanks, Sorry for not reading that. I dont know how I missed that?:g:

    Regards,

    Manu.
     
  18. urie

    urie Moderator
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    May 21, 2007
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    @ m@anu198045, No Problem at all you were only trying to help :rolleyes: