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Question Assistance needed with Data Recovery, Seagate 4tb Hard Drive

aknsea

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Apr 15, 2013
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Hi All. I have 4TB Seagate Barracuda hard drive that suddenly would not be recognized by Windows 10? I have Hard Disk Sentinel installed and it did not give me any warning. After days of trying to get it up & running, It now shows in Windows 10 as unallocated and cometimes RAW. It does spin up, with no clicking noises. I don't remember anything I did to accidentally delete a partition or reformat the drive. I do believe that the data is still there and the file system is corrupted or missing.

Windows 10 Disk Management takes a long time to scan drives. When complete Windows 10 shows this drive as; online, E: 3725.90 GB RAW, Healthy(Basic Data Partition).

When I use a data recovery software to search for partitions, none are found. When I then choose the Deep Scan option, which I know will take a LONG time, nothing is found, no files, no partitions. I have left this mode running overnight and into the day 12 hours, with no result. Then, other times it shows as a RAW Partition. W10 fails in Disk Management to initialize the disk.

Questions:

  1. Recommendations? This is the first time I have tried to recover from a 4tb drive.
  2. I imagine there is a way to see if the drive is really functioning? As I said after a few minutes the drive shows up in W10 Disk Management. Wondering if it's a hardware problem? There is no clicking or scratching sounds from the disk. Drive seems to spin up fine.
  3. I have swapped PCB boards on previous drives with success. Trying to figure out if it's a hardware or firmware issue.
I have tried various recovery programs to try to:

  1. Identify existing or lost partitions. None have been able to identify any at this point.
  2. Perform Deep Scanning to identify raw files. Some don't recognize the drive. Those that do are not finding lost partitions or files.
During the early attempts at this drive showed up as FAT32 formatted?? I know that this only allows for 2tb's of data. I had about 80% data on the drive? So, I tried to change it to NTFS.

I also tried to run DSKCHK/DISKPART both in Windows 10 admin Command Line and then in Hiren's USB PE Boot Image, but the command line says the drive is in use by another program and cannot be changed. I utilized several command lines to remove readonly status without luck.

I am pretty discouraged at this point. The drive is 3 years old with very important work files from the last 6 months.

Hopefully, someone can walk me through a process to help me get my files off the disk.

Thank you so much for any help you can recommend.

Arlie
 

Ralston18

Titan
Moderator
Wondering about "but the command line says the drive is in use by another program ".

Any clues as to what that program may be?

E.g., what is being launched per Task Manger's Startup tab?

Unfortunately, you have taken a number of actions that may have made things worse/data unrecoverable.

Think about all that you have done and post accordingly.

But do nothing else pending some other suggestions and ideas that may be posted.
 

DSzymborski

Champion
Moderator
I am pretty discouraged at this point. The drive is 3 years old with very important work files from the last 6 months.

Hopefully, someone can walk me through a process through a process to help me get my files off the disk.

Arlie
If you've used already tried software recovery with software like Recuva and EaseUS, you're nearly at the end of the process. All the fiddling around has likely made it less recoverable than before. The only real option this point with important data is to send it to a data recovery lab where they can use very specialized tools to reconstruct your data. This isn't cheap, either, and depending on the difficulty of the data recovery, you can easily go into four-figure range.

You're probably not going to like this answer, but by far the best way to recover data is to not lose the data in the first place. A regular backup regimen, with backups of important data in multiple locations, is a basic part of PC upkeep, no different than changing the air filter in your furnace or the oil in your car. The question is never if storage will fail but when.

The unfortunate fact is that you didn't treat important work files the way one ought to treat important work files. Hopefully, Recuva or another software package you haven't tried does the trick and the lesson is a relatively painless one rather than a more expensive one.
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Mar 16, 2013
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The drive is 3 years old with very important work files from the last 6 months.
Starting at the top, I was hoping to find mention of a good backup. This indicates that is not the case.

Hopefully, someone can walk me through a process to help me get my files off the disk.
Given all the stuff you did, I doubt there is a simple walkthrough that we out here can do.

This is specifically what proactive backups are for.
 

aknsea

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Apr 15, 2013
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Wondering about "but the command line says the drive is in use by another program ".

Any clues as to what that program may be?

E.g., what is being launched per Task Manger's Startup tab?

Unfortunately, you have taken a number of actions that may have made things worse/data unrecoverable.

Think about all that you have done and post accordingly.

But do nothing else pending some other suggestions and ideas that may be posted.
That command line must be due to the drive not being writeable. I did enter Task Manager and shut down all apps. Then I booted from USB with Hiren's Boot Disk which is a minimal WinPE environment with same message.

Thank you, appreciate the replay.

Arlie
 

aknsea

Distinguished
Apr 15, 2013
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18,510
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If you've used already tried software recovery with software like Recuva and EaseUS, you're nearly at the end of the process. All the fiddling around has likely made it less recoverable than before. The only real option this point with important data is to send it to a data recovery lab where they can use very specialized tools to reconstruct your data. This isn't cheap, either, and depending on the difficulty of the data recovery, you can easily go into four-figure range.

You're probably not going to like this answer, but by far the best way to recover data is to not lose the data in the first place. A regular backup regimen, with backups of important data in multiple locations, is a basic part of PC upkeep, no different than changing the air filter in your furnace or the oil in your car. The question is never if storage will fail but when.

The unfortunate fact is that you didn't treat important work files the way one ought to treat important work files. Hopefully, Recuva or another software package you haven't tried does the trick and the lesson is a relatively painless one rather than a more expensive one.
Appreciate your reply,

Arlie
 

aknsea

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Apr 15, 2013
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Starting at the top, I was hoping to find mention of a good backup. This indicates that is not the case.


Given all the stuff you did, I doubt there is a simple walkthrough that we out here can do.

This is specifically what proactive backups are for.
Agreed
 

aknsea

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Apr 15, 2013
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Considering swapping ou the PCB. This version requires a flash from a working version... Usually using the one you have on the old drive, LOL! Not much info on the Seagate site. Does anyone know if I can flash a replacement PCB with such firmware.

My PCB board# is: 100788341 REV C

I haven't searched to see if it's available online. I know I can get a replacement PCB from $20 to $40 bucks. They mainly list only the first numbers without the REV number. I will keep searching to see if I can find one with REV C, but most are saying it needs to be flashed. Any ideas appreciated.

Arlie
 

ex_bubblehead

Champion
Moderator
Considering swapping ou the PCB. This version requires a flash from a working version... Usually using the one you have on the old drive, LOL! Not much info on the Seagate site. Does anyone know if I can flash a replacement PCB with such firmware.

My PCB board# is: 100788341 REV C

I haven't searched to see if it's available online. I know I can get a replacement PCB from $20 to $40 bucks. They mainly list only the first numbers without the REV number. I will keep searching to see if I can find one with REV C, but most are saying it needs to be flashed. Any ideas appreciated.

Arlie
If you are talking about data recovery then any board swap must be an EXACT match, all the way down to component level. And, if you attempt to do this yourself you can be pretty well certain that even the pros won't be able to recover anything in the aftermath.
 

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