Solved WD Elements 1TB external HDD mysterious crash

June 8, 2010 at 14:13:44
Specs: Windows 7

Hello,

I recently bought one of these new

Western Digital WD Elements 1 TB USB 2.0
Desktop External Hard Drive

WDBAAU0010HBK-NESN

I have used it on two systems so far: Windows
7 and XP, and treated it like a porcelain doll,
and though I might have used it for a day or
two on end, I was always very careful to make
sure it did not overheat.

And yet, when just a few days after my moving
all my important files (on some stupid impulse
that is very out-of-character too; yes I know
well, backup!) it suddenly was no longer
detected by windows XP in the middle of being
used, I immediately thought the problem to be
a physical one. What with this model not
having a power switch or button of sorts, and
needing electrical supply besides the USB
connection.

We could no longer detect the disk on neither
XP nor Windows 7. Be it plugging the USB
first, or the power supply, nothing worked.

I had a repair shop try and carefully open the
lid (because, of course, the warranty does not
cover such problems of data loss) and place
the drive in another case, but it was no good. It
could not be detected on any of their
computers. Scratch the "it's probably physical
a thing" possibility.

I read an article online about PC inspector the
day they announced the bad news, and
begged them to it for me, which they did, but
apparently there really was no option for
finding a drive no longer detectable. And
though I was brokenhearted, I still tried my
disk on Windows 7 after it was returned to me
(pondering in my head on unachievable ways
to earn the thousands of dollars it would take
me to send this drive to a recovery lab, and on
the life-long debts that would probably result
from this rashness).

Now, here's the funny part.
Upon finally giving up and removing the USB
cable, Windows 7 tells me this: You need to
format the disk in drive G: before you can use
it.

Do you want to format it? (Fat chance of that!
Willingly losing them forever! You kidding me?)

http://img291.imageshack.us/i/thewd...
emcopy.jpg/ (see for yourselves)

In any case, I like to think and hope this is a
rather good sign, as far as recovering the files
is concerned. Please let me know what you
think, I am grateful for any suggestion at this
point.
-

PS: I also read somewhere it might be
possible to recover some of the files I moved
by attempting a recovery program to retreive
them as deleted files (as moving is usually
copying then deleting files). The odds of that
are reduced each time I save something
entirely new to this hard drive, however. And
now being suddenly very aware of that I
hesitate to so much as install the software I
need to attempt this. Any clues on that too?


THANKS IN ADVANCE! God bless the
internetz.

-Yes, I have posted this on another forum
hoping for more feedback.


See More: WD Elements 1TB external HDD mysterious crash

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✔ Best Answer
August 21, 2010 at 07:11:43

Troubleshooting USB device problems including for flash drives, external drives, memory cards.
See Response 1:
http://www.computing.net/answers/ha...

Check that out first.
......

Rarely, not all the ports on the back of a desktop case may be able to supply 500ma each.

If you have a desktop computer, Note that I answered a Topic on this site recently where a guy had an external drive, which does require the full 500ma, connected to a port on the back of a desktop case - it would not work properly when a webcam was in the port next to it, but it worked fine when the webcam was unplugged. Ports on the back of a desktop case often have two ports connected to the same USB controller module that are ports one above the other - you could try connecting the cable to one of those and leaving the other un-used.
......



#1
June 8, 2010 at 14:37:37

If the drive is now seen by Windows 7 go into Disk Management and see how it is seen there. If it says unknown type but the full capacity seems to be showing then try to rebuild the partition using testdisk.

Read the tutorials thoroughly before attempting to use. Get testdisk at the link below.

http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/Test...


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#2
June 8, 2010 at 16:18:59

Actually, it doesn't pop the message until I unplug it. Which I
don't get.
And wouldn't that affect my precious files?

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#3
June 8, 2010 at 18:24:16

If testdisk is successful it would reconstruct the partition without data loss. That is the goal anyway.

Do you have a desktop or a laptop computer. Are you sure you aren't just seeing the enclosure. The enclosure will be listed in Device manager under System devices. The drive will be listed under Disk drives as a USB device with the model of the hard drive.


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Related Solutions

#4
June 14, 2010 at 13:34:17

Hello, sorry for the late reply. I'm afraid it's no use. I can't detect
the hardrive, no matter what I try, not in Disk Management, not
with the software, not even with PC inspector.

Any other suggestions?


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#5
June 14, 2010 at 13:38:46

Look in Device Manager under USB devices. Expand that listing and see if there is a listing for a Mass Storage Device.

Be sure to remove any USB thumb drives prior to performing that check.

If your do see that listing that means the enclosure is functioning on some level. The drive itself may have died.

Is the unit still under warranty?


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#6
June 14, 2010 at 13:44:56

Go to the link below and download the DataLifeguard utilities for Windows and run it to see what it can find.

http://support.wdc.com/product/down...


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#7
June 15, 2010 at 00:54:57

The Unit is indeed still under warranty, but I don't want that
money back, it'd be a small price to pay to get my files back
having to pay for it again.

Don't think I'd be able to afford a lab even if I worked all
summer, though.

WAIT! It did appear. Not each time though. Once out of ten.
At least it wasn't listed until I plugged it.

I'll try some more and let you know.


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#8
June 15, 2010 at 01:09:59

Well, one it would stop blinking when the usb was unplugged
(this thing does not have a power switch) and now it just keeps
blinking be it plugged or not. I'll try again later.
Do you think this could be physical afterall? And if the drive is
dead as you think it might be, is there any point in sending it to
a lab?
I think it's worth tinkering with some more.

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#9
June 15, 2010 at 04:20:34

Why don't you try what I suggested in both #5 & #6 and then post feed back on the results.

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#10
August 20, 2010 at 22:38:08

My external hard drive was working great one day and the next day i plugged it in and it asked me to reformat it. I don't want to do that incase i lose everything.

I need to know what I can do to fix this. This hard drive has all my family pictures on it.

Any suggestions

Michelle K


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#11
August 21, 2010 at 05:44:37

Did you try the suggestions in #5 &6? Those procedures will not change what is one the disk. The second one will examine the disk for physical problems.

What you need to understand is that you are dealing with TWO different hardware devices. The external enclosure is one and the actual hard drive is the second. The external can work and still have a problem with the drive. Or the opposite may be the case.

Using testdisk doesn't format the partition either. Just re-constructs the file tables so Windows can make sense of the data.


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#12
August 21, 2010 at 07:11:43
✔ Best Answer

Troubleshooting USB device problems including for flash drives, external drives, memory cards.
See Response 1:
http://www.computing.net/answers/ha...

Check that out first.
......

Rarely, not all the ports on the back of a desktop case may be able to supply 500ma each.

If you have a desktop computer, Note that I answered a Topic on this site recently where a guy had an external drive, which does require the full 500ma, connected to a port on the back of a desktop case - it would not work properly when a webcam was in the port next to it, but it worked fine when the webcam was unplugged. Ports on the back of a desktop case often have two ports connected to the same USB controller module that are ports one above the other - you could try connecting the cable to one of those and leaving the other un-used.
......


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#13
December 16, 2010 at 11:46:35

hi i have the same problem...i dont wanna lose what i have on my drive either but i think its already lost...WD drives arent reliable...did you ever get yours going or you info retrieved...i'd sure like to know.

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#14
December 16, 2010 at 12:16:12

i feel your pain...i hope you can retrieve your info and i hope i can do the same...

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#15
December 16, 2010 at 16:28:55

mindless behavior

See the responses of those who have answered in this subject, especially response 12 !
There's probably nothing wrong with your external drive itself, but you may need to repair damaged data on it !


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#16
January 21, 2011 at 16:56:28

I too have an Elements external. Mine is 120gigs. I had the same problem and I tried for weeks to get it right. Finally....I plugged it into one of my computer slots(It was in an extension 2.0 usb slot...and my computer has 1.5...I guess since it's 10 yrs old....and it showed up. Problem now is it keeps crashing every 2-3 minutes. I will be getting a new external next month and will transfer all files to the new one. Meanwhile I live in FEAR!!!

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#17
January 21, 2011 at 20:03:20

AliveStillKickin
See response 15.

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