Corrupted USB drive data files

Mr Flash
March 12, 2007 at 19:52:19
Specs: XP SP 2 home edition, Intel pentium M 1300 MHz.
all the document (data) files on my usb drive are corrupted. i have no other copies and these files are very very important...some for work and some personal. when i open the usb drive the folders are still named correctly but when i open the folders the files and folders inside have changed to weird characters so they are inaccessible. i cant open anything.

one basic thing to try is running chkdsk but i couldnt do it...i think the drive has to be locked first and i don't know how to do that either.

i checked the usb drive on another computer and its the same...all corrupted. i also tried to change the filenames to .doc or .wpd files but it wouldn't let me access them to try that.

the drive is a cheap import from china! but i have been using it fine for almost a year.

please can anyone offer any advice on how i might retrieve these files...they are all still there and the sizes are listed. i just need them to be changed back to their original file names and extensions to open them.

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March 12, 2007 at 20:41:23
Try removing the drive from the enclosure and connecting to an IDE controller in a desktop computer. Be sure all drives on that channel are jumpered correctly. This will eliminate the circuitry in the enclosure and/ or the cable as the problem. Do you faithfully "safely remove that device"?

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March 13, 2007 at 16:35:31
thanks for offering your recommendation. i have kept the usb drive in a hub constantly for a while and only removed it after noticing the corrupt files. i do always ensure that i do not remove such a device if it is in use, such as copying files, if that is what you mean by 'safely removing.'

i can certainly remove the physical enclosure to reveal the circuit board inside. do you mean that i should then insert the device in a usb drive on a desktop computer? i do not understand how such a device can be otherwise connected. that part of your analysis is a bit over my head! as is checking the jumpers. if there's a chance the files could be read on a desktop computer i might try that. but, perhaps i have misunderstood. i could perhaps give the usb drive to a friend to check using these instructions when i see him early next month! i have mailed him and he recommends that i find a reputable usb drive recovery utility to download. he also warned me not to run chkdsk on a usb drive and, course, said that only branded hardware should be used for storage. in another forum the only reply was that i haven't got a chance in hell! apologies for not understanding your recommendation fully.

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March 13, 2007 at 17:25:22
Inside the external enclosure is a STANDARD 3.5" IDE harddrive or if a smaller enclosure that doesn't require external power, a 2.5" IDE laptop harddrive. If the latter case you will need an adapter to connect the drive to a desktop IDE cable.

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March 16, 2007 at 04:48:28
thanks...yes it is a smaller size usb drive. i have sent the info you have kindly provided to my friend to hopefully have a crack at this option.

thanks for your assistance again.

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