WD 1140 My Book USB Device will only show up as Local Disk.

December 23, 2014 at 23:30:06
Specs: Windows 7
Good day. My Western Digital 1140 My Book USB Device has been working well for me. I have had it for almost two years now, and it has not given me any problems since. The only thing is now, in all the time I had it, I have never really disconnected it from the pc. I always kept it attached, but it is only recently I removed it when I went away for a visit. It worked fine on my laptop, but it is only on my return that that when I tried to connect it to the PC that it stopped working. The thing is, it only shows up as “Local Disk: F”, as is the letter it always had; only it does not show up as “The Ark”, which is the name I assigned it. It takes forever to load, or at least it seems like it is; only it never really does, even after an hour. It shows up on Device Manager, but that is really as far as it goes, and there are no details provided when I click on properties for the device. Basically:
Device only shows up as Local Disk: F
Computer attempts to load, but never does (It’s like walking on infinite stairs in Mario 64)
Shows up only on Device Manager as My Western Digital 1140 My Book USB Device
Does not show up on computer devices, not even on my Samsung Smart TV, which really frightens me.
If I try and run any process where it may need to access the external drive, that process will stop responding... until I disconnect the drive, then everything else carries on like it normally would.
I have not tested with different cable yet.
I there is a clicking sound, but that was there before, and it managed to run anyways.
It has some very important projects I have been working on recently, so I really need help, so any would be appreciated… even if it comes to suggesting a memory recovery company, reality forbids… . So if anyone has any suggestions, do suggest away, and I am terribly grateful.

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December 24, 2014 at 00:36:38
Nothing you say sounds promising, everything indicates drive failure.

For the future, always backup to more than one source.

For the present, here is a possible way to recover your stuff.

Leave the drive in the freezer overnight. In the morning take it out & immediately connect to your comp.
Recover your files as quickly as possible.

message edited by Johnw

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December 24, 2014 at 02:18:51
Would suggest slightly less chilling experience than the freezer-for the drive, as the freezer "may" be a little too cool...

Wrap drive in paper towel and place in a plastic bag (typically a sandwich bag). Put the drive wrapped as above in the "fridge" - NOT the freezer. Typical freezer goes down to -18C, fridge to +5 (which will likely be cool enuff).

Leave for about n hour or so to cool nicely; then remove it from fridge. Open the bag and loosen towel wrapping to let the thing breathe a little, but leave drive in wrapping so any condensation can be absorbed by towel. Leave it that way for about 5mins. or so, then remove towel and reinstall the drive and see what happens?

If it doesn't resolve the problem you might repeat the experiment but via the freezer, with drive there for perhaps half an hour? I have used the fridge path successfully a couple of times, never the freezer, and would be seriously concerned that the drive might actually be frozen solid if in for say an hour; and when it thawed out somewhat the moving parts (not the least the platters) might have suffered seriously? But others might have found the freezer routine (for an hour), with the drive wrapped etc. as above, was OK and more successful than the fridge?

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December 24, 2014 at 02:28:04
Incidentally if the cooling process is successful, it will be very likely short term. So copy files asap. When drive starts to fail again (clicking sounds is classic) repeat the cooling process. Likely it will work a couple/a few times before the drive refuses to play ball, and the drive effectively fails completely.

I would save contents if possible, then destroy the drive. If possible wipe it at least... But even better bash it with a hammer a few times (after wiping it) to ensure it can't be accessed by anyone...

And as Johnw advises, have at least two separate copies/"backups"; two separate hard drives. And even make dvd sets too of anything that is truly valuable (thinking oh photos and family documents etc. at least.

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December 24, 2014 at 02:31:40

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December 24, 2014 at 05:01:57
Interesting... I've only ever had recourse to (used) the fridge... But it obviously doesn't do any harm in many cases to go the "freezer" route...

The paper towel and plastic bag are essential I feel; paper towel to collect any condensation that may occur when drive leaves the "cooler"; and the plastic bag of course is general protection...

@ Johnw - Enjoy Christmas in the blazing heat... Having mince pies, turkey and all that stuff doesn't sound right if its' not six feet of snow 'n ice outside...

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December 24, 2014 at 08:34:12
If the device is recognized I would download and run a free recovery tool, such as Pc Files Inspector or Recuva, if they fail to yield results....then consider less conventional means.



Happy Holidays!

To err is human but to really screw things up, you need a computer!

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December 24, 2014 at 09:32:38
To err is human but to really screw things up, you need a computer!

I always use a screwdriver to screw things up, sometimes employing a spanner (wrench) too when needed.

Merry Crimble and Bah Humbug to all our readers...

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December 24, 2014 at 13:39:26
Merry Xmas trvlr & others in the Computing.net team.
Not too bad temp wise today.

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December 24, 2014 at 14:13:13
Happy Christmas to all - big day in the UK. starts in less than 2 hours.

Always pop back and let us know the outcome - thanks

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December 25, 2014 at 06:48:07
Merry Christmas to all. It is mid-morning here in Michigan. No snow but some rain instead.


I suggest you look for the external in Windows Disk Management to see how it shows up there. Post ALL the information you see there for THAT drive.

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