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Windows 7: Problem with System Restore - usb drive not recognised

22 Dec 2016   #1

Windows 7 Pro
Problem with System Restore - usb drive not recognised

So I have been trying to sort this out all day to no joy.

I have a system restore image on an external hard drive and was sent a replacement hard drive for by dell.
I got to the point of restoring from the system image, however when I reboot to continue I cannot select the external drive or see it to select the backup image.

I have followed a few threads around but not got anywhere - I have tried to point it to the correct drivers, but nothing seems to have worked to allow me access to the drive, pretty ridiculous that you aren't told about the huge flaws in the system restore process!

Is anyone able to confirm a way to do this, it's windows 7 pro, its a WD elements Hard drive, i've tried it in the usb 3.0 slots, in the usb 2.0 slots, ones on the front, ones on the back, tried to load the nusb3hub.inf files at the prompt and anything else I've managed to find on the web, but at the moment I'm looking at having to reinstall all my programs and files a different way, which is another day of not working

any help would be appreciated

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Dec 2016   #2

win 8 32 bit

Welcome to the forum what are you booting from you need a boot disk for the imaging software does the drive normally need drivers?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Dec 2016   #3

Windows 7 Pro

When in windows the disk reads fine and doesn't need any drivers, or ask for them.
When you go through the system restore in control panel in the advanced menu it asks if you want to restore from a previously saved image, it then boots into a system restore bit and you have to select the image, this is where the USB HD is no longer found and the option is to look for files on a network or load drivers.
I've tried to do it with the windows DVD too and repair windows but it's the same scenario not being able to see the USB drive.
Seems pretty common issue looking on this and other forums
My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Dec 2016   #4

win 8 32 bit

Is the image a windows image or in other format ie ghost or acronis image?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Dec 2016   #5

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit sp1

samaria is on the right track by asking what did you use to create the USB image. Most imaging programs require some sort of boot method to get the computer to the stage it can read the stored image.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Dec 2016   #6

Windows 7 Pro

the backup was made using the backup and restore in windows 7,
the restore was attempted using the same.

in windows I can see the disk and back up, in fact, it gives me the option to select the dated backups to restore the files from the external hard disk, however if I try to restore the system image it has created I cannot access the external hard disk
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Dec 2016   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


Welcome to Seven Forums!

According to many people who have posted on this Forum, the built in Windows 7 backup and restore can be problematic. Having said that, it's always worked for me. Here's what I understand (if I've misunderstood I sincerely apologize.)
1. Dell sent you a replacement hard drive for your computer. (I'm guessing the replacement drive has Windows 7 on it or you wouldn't be able to boot from it.)
2. You boot your computer and then you go to "Backup and Restore"
3. You try to access your external hard drive (which contains your system images) but no joy.

Have you tried restoring a system image by using a System Repair Disc? Make sure your BIOS is set to boot from your CD/DVD drive as first option. Plug in your external drive. Boot from the repair disc. Select the option for Windows Complete PC Restore.

If you don't have a System Repair Disc this tutorial explains how. If your computer is 32-bit you have to use a disc created on a 32-bit computer. If a 64-bit computer, disc must be created on a 64-bit computer.

System Repair Disc - Create

Again, my apologies if I've misunderstood things. And my apologies (for jumping in) to those members who have been helping you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Dec 2016   #8

Windows 7 Pro

Close enough, when I get into the bit to select the backup either on the reboot from backup and restore or from the repair disk the USB drive where the files are is not seen by windows so I can't complete the process
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Dec 2016   #9

Windows 7 x64


Are you using 2.5 " external HDD.

If the HDD cannot be read by the OS, you need a special Y-shaped_USB_3_cable.

1. The thin cable has to be connect to USB 2 port only, for power supply.

2. The center cable to connect to computer USB 3 port.

Do note that you need to connect to USB 2 for the power (step 1) before connect to computer USB 3 port (step 2).

Most probably is lack of power supply.


Attached Images
Problem with System Restore - usb drive not recognised-y-shaped_usb_3.0_cable.jpg 
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Jan 2017   #10

Windows 7 Pro

thanks for the tip, but I don't think the power is an issue at all as it lights up fine and works if you go into windows, would the power be getting reduced trying to use it in the boot menu?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Problem with System Restore - usb drive not recognised

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