|If push comes to shove you may be able to recover files by using a live version of Linux. Knoppix is one that works. Knoppix installs to and runs from one CDR. Knoppix is a free 700MB download and you will need to burn it to disk. |
If you can't see the partition Knoppix may not be able to see it either. Try testdisk.
You refer to the external drive. You mean the laptop drive don't you?
Did you try using an external monitor on the Laptop before you removed the drive?
You do understand that the drive letters will change when you connect the laptop drive via USB.
View the contents of all visible partitions to be sure you aren't just confusing one for another.