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Windows 7: HDD problem I can't fix

23 Feb 2011   #1

W7 64bit 7600 with SP1
HDD problem I can't fix

I've got an old Seagate 250G SATA HDD that I was going to format and use for some additional storage in my computer. I bolted the drive in and W7 immediately recognized it and I opened it and saw that it contained an old image file that was no longer needed. So I went into Disk Management and attempted to "quick format" the drive to get rid of everything that was on it so I could use it for extra storage. It seemed like it took forever to do the "quick format" so I hit "cancel". Big mistake! After several reboots I've been able to delete the partition but can still not format the drive. Sometimes (most of the time) W7 will not recognize the drive even though it shows up in my Bios. Then after a reboot it will show up but will not complete a format using disk management. I've tried using a Ubuntu Live Disk but it won't recognize the drive either. Is there some sort of software that I can use to save this drive?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Feb 2011   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Feb 2011   #3

Windows 10 Education 64 bit

Another option would be to have a look on the Seagate support site. Most if not all hard drive manufacturers offer free utilities to format and test their hard drives. Download and run the diagnostics utility first. If the drive checks out OK then have a go at zeroing the drive. Zeroing the drive is writing all zero's to the drive. Its like low level formating it. Its usually part of the utility used for partitioning and preparing the drive for use. I've used it to recover a hard drive when the partitioning table is really messed up and windows couldn't undo it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 Feb 2011   #4

W7 64bit 7600 with SP1

None of the Seagate software helped nor did diskpart or HDD GURU low level format tool. I'd like to run chkdsk but Windows tells me that the disk must be formated to use that tool.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Feb 2011   #5

Main - Windows 7 Pro SP1 64-Bit; 2nd - Windows Server 2008 R2

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by mowerman View Post
None of the Seagate software helped...
What happened when you ran it? Did you try the SeaTools diagnostic?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Feb 2011   #6

W7 64bit 7600 with SP1

failed to show up and when I reboot and it does show up it fails to complete
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Feb 2011   #7

Main - Windows 7 Pro SP1 64-Bit; 2nd - Windows Server 2008 R2

I would try the drive with a different cable. If that gets you nowhere, try it in another computer. If it's still no dice I would be pretty sure the drive was bad. If three different programs won't work it's either a configuration problem with the computer or a bad drive.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Feb 2011   #8

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1

Did you try the theog instructions?
You need to zero the first 512 bytes of the disk (this contains the MBR and partition table). Clean all will do this and the rest of the disk.
If you did:
(1)elevated command prompt (cmd in start box, right click cmd.exe and run as administrator.
(2) diskpart
>list disk get a list of disks. Carefully identify the 250GB disk number (say n)
>select disk n
>list disk
..........just check that the * is next to the correct disk
>clean all
......... wait quite a while (up to an hour)
>create partition primary
......... puts back a proper MBR with the whole disk a one primary partition
>format fs=ntfs quick
..... obviously formats the disk
....... windows assigns a letter when the drive is connected. You can easily assign the permanent name you wish later.

Windows explorer should hopefully see it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Feb 2011   #9

W7 64bit 7600 with SP1

Tried all of this but it ends with an error.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Feb 2011   #10

W7 64bit 7600 with SP1

PROBLEM SOLVED It turns out that the problem all along was a bad SATA cable. Why I didn't check that FIRST is beyound me. It was a new cable I had left over from a Asus MB build that had the locking connectors on it. Of course I thought that was better than a regular SATA cable so that's why I used it. Never thought it could be bad from the get go. Live and learn. Thanks to all.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 HDD problem I can't fix

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