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Windows 7: External USB Hard Drive Problems

12 Jan 2009   #1

Windows 7 Professional 64bit
External USB Hard Drive Problems

I have Windows XP and Linux dual booted. My External 400gig Hard drive in it's own case that's plugged into a USB slot on the back of my computer. It is formatted fat23. It can be seen and written to in both XP and Linux no problem. I installed the earlier Windows 7 build a while back and couldn't see the files on it. It said it was empty. Well I thought maybe they didn't have that sorted out yet.. But now even with the Beta 1 installed, it still says it's empty. I know for fact it's not. Anyone with some ideas?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jan 2009   #2


It might be a driver issue with Windows 7 and external USB drives....

Someone else actually asked about that a while ago as well, take a look in the drivers forum.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jan 2009   #3

Windows 7 Professional 64bit

Ok... I booted to XP and found somewhere to store all the files on the USB External Drive. Then formatted it NTFS and transferred all the files back onto it. So now Windows 7 will see the drive and it's folders but not the files inside the folders. Grrrrrr...
My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 Jan 2009   #4

Windows 7 RC 7100 32bit/64bit

Man , that's really weird. I'd still agree with johngalt about the driver issue.

What is you motherboard brand/model? Have you installed all drivers found by windows update, or manually installed the chipset driver?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jan 2009   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

MS Windows 7 Professional 64-bit SP1

Yes install chipset drivers first then test,
If that fails do this tutorial:-Built-in Administrator Account - Enable or Disable
log into the admin account..... if you still cant access the drive it is a driver issue.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jan 2009   #6

Windows 7 Professional 64bit

Th computer I have is rather old say 5 years, It uses nforce2 chipset.. I couldn't find anynewer drives then 2004....... Sucks to be me I guess. :) Anyway I finally just removed it from the external case and installed it inside my computer. Now it works fine... Like you're saying it's probably a driver issue.. Thanks people for the help... Cheers!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Aug 2009   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate RTM
External Hardrive suddenly stops working

i am encountering the same problem.
i am using Windows 7 Ultimate x64 RTM.
i have a Western Digital MyBook Essential 1TB and a Western Digital MyPassport 120GB.

both of them are detected at first.
when i try to copy files from 1TB to my 120GB, it suddenly stops or does not respond.
until when i got o Device Manager and it now displays it is an Unknown Device.
my only way to get them detected again is to do a restart.

but same problem wil occur when i try to copy files again.
i hopes this gets reported to Windows 7 team

i already tried to update my mobo bios and tried to reinstal USB root hub drivers but same problem.'
my machine is Acer M5640

any more ideas?

Note: this problem does not occur when i was using Vista Ultimate x64
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Sep 2009   #8
Major Blud

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
Same Issue

I'm having this same exact issue. Inserting a USB flash drive works fine, but once I start copying files over to it, it will stop after about a minute, and then vanish. Device Manager shows an "Unknown Device". Same thing happens when trying to sync my iPhone. These devices worked fine when I was using Vista Ultimate x86.

I was able to get around it by installing an NEC USB PCI expansion card, and not using the builtin USB ports on my motherboard (Biostar GF7050V-M7). This fixes it, but I had to remove my gigabit ethernet card to make room for the USB card. I have a feeling that the default drivers for the USB controllers don't work well with the USB chipset on my motherboard (which appears to be an Nvidia nForce, not 100% certain). I've tried installing nForce drivers straight from Nvidia but this didn't help.

I hope we can keep this thread alive until someone finds a more solid solution.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Sep 2009   #9

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

My system is Acer M5641 (nforce too)... and yes, I have the same issue like bluegween and major blud
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Sep 2009   #10

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
USB storage devices are messed up on M5641


I have an Acer M5641 too and the same problem. I've found several other threads on various forums with M5641 owners having problems with USB storage devices. A partial solution that stops my 2 WD MyBook 1TB's from crashing is setting them in performance mode. Safe mode seems to be default. This allows me to copy to and from them from a regular SATA drive. However, when transferring to or from a USB-stick it crashes after about 30 seconds. Sometimes the USB gets messed up requiring a reboot and other times it BSOD's. Anyone tried 64-bit linux?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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