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Windows 7: 3TB Hard disc became "unallocated", how to recover?

14 May 2014   #11

Windows 7 Ultimate

Hello and thanks. The three partitions found all span only a small part of the disk. Here are the three screens:

Attached Images
3TB Hard disc became "unallocated", how to recover?-3.jpg 3TB Hard disc became "unallocated", how to recover?-4.jpg 3TB Hard disc became "unallocated", how to recover?-5.jpg 
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2014   #12

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit

OK, Partition Recovery Wizard is not going to work here and rewrite the correct partition table.

You may try to recover data either using PhotoRec or TestDisk.

If you are going to use Testdisk, exercise caution not to give any write command. You will use it only to copy the found files to another external drive of sufficient capacity which should be plugged in before you run TestDisk.

PhotoRec is much safer in that you can't give any write command at all :).

( It still beats me why the Boot partition and another small partition shows up at the end.I have always been advocating for quite sometime, given that we don't yet know how well the conventional partitioning/formatting software can deal with GPT drives, anyone having a GPT drive should save the first few sectors where the Protective MBR, the GPT header and the GPT Table resides. Then when any mishap like this occurs merely by restoring the saved sectors one could easily resurrect the drive without going through the timeconsuming data recovery procedures like this..)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2014   #13

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit

I reread your first post again since I had lost track of it in two days.:)

If your intention is to keep the folder structure in-tact as is evident from it, then I have to alter my previous recommendation. In such a case you should go in for TestDisk. But exercise caution. If Test Disk finds the partition, just view the folders/files and copy them. ( Do not perform any write operation with Test Disk, until you have recovered all and find all the copied files are OK.)

And to answer your question, whether it would be possible now to resurrect the HDD without performing a data recovery operation:

If only you hadn't tried Easus Data Recovery, it could have been possible but after that it is a question mark - for we do not know how it had manipulated the drive during the data recovery process.

You can still try just by replacing the first sector which you had initialised as an MBR disk with the Protective MBR of a GPT drive which is the same for all GPT drives.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

14 May 2014   #14

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit

Here is how I did it using Bootice.

Lost EVERYTHING by using 'diskpart - clear'. Help??

In your case I shall write all zeroes to the first sector and save it. That will take away the normal MBR which you had written by initialising it as an MBR disk.

Then I will populate it with relevant data that applies to a GPT disk Protective MBR as shown in the first screenshot in the above reference and save it.

Provided nothing else has changed in your HDD that should bring it back - your HDD - to the original state.

Hmmm...... if only you had come here with your problem in the first instance without doing anything on it or even immediately after initialising it with MBR, this would have most definitely worked, barring some unforeseen or perceived cause.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 May 2014   #15

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64

Worth trying pguru.

The pro version works fine unregistered. Try the partition recovery on that ( NOT the data recovery, they are different things.)

Recover partitions using PartitionGuru - Eassos

Recover deleted files, Partition manager and Windows backup - PartitionGuru
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 May 2014   #16

Windows 7 Ultimate

Thanks a lot for your replies. At the moment I am running PartitionGuru to see what this program finds. Attached is the screen shot of the disks as they are seen by it.

I had tried with testdisk before, but ran it in "user-mode", instead of starting it with admin rights. Therefore it only showed one disk at all, one that is not involved into the disaster here at all.

Now I started the scan with PartitionGuru, which takes some hours too, and afterwards had the idea to start testdisk with admin rights. Now it sees the lost harddisk. Now I did not want to break PartitionGuru, but as soon as I have the results of that I will post it here to you again to hear what you say to this.

Attached is the screen shot of partition image how it sees the disk.

Thank you very much again for your help, I really appreciate it. Thanks!

Attached Thumbnails
3TB Hard disc became "unallocated", how to recover?-7.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 May 2014   #17


External 3TB drives are usually NTFS formatted and recognized at~2.7TB through special driver even by older OS's this suggests MBR.To make it work as internal for the os you have to have it as GPT. So best to ask manufacturer first about methods to recover. Perhaps one of the wizards converting MBR to GPT but i have no experience.

Where Guru shows partition table raw it should be MBR
and both Sector size and Physical sector size 4K. I'm not 100%sure though.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 May 2014   #18

Windows 7 Ultimate

I have been trying with testdisk and photorec now, testdisk does not find more partition than the orther programs, and photorec will restore all files into a single directory too. This is what I am doing at the moment. On the other hand I am seriously considering buying MiniTool Power Data Recovery, because this program obviously would restore at least a big bunch of files to the former directory structure.

Though it is expensive... Still thinking about it...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 May 2014   #19

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit

As told in my post #14, In testdisk your intention should only be to copy the files shown in the partition of your interest and not rewrite the partition table.

So did it show the partition of your interest?

Were you able to see the files in it?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 May 2014   #20

Windows 7 Ultimate

Hello and thanks for your reply.

Testdisk did not see any partitions that might have been the one to restore. There were some with 3MB size, some with 300 MB or so.

At the moment I am restoring the files an the structure with Minitool PowerData Recovery, which does itīs job very well. It promises to restore 2TB to itīs original folder structure, that might be the complete content of the disk.

But nevertheless: Since until now nothing has been written to the disk at all I would like to try to restore the complete disk after having restored whatever files I could. I would like to try your "replacing the first sector"-advice for that. If you don't mind I would like to get some more help when trying.

Thanks a lot! Martin.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 3TB Hard disc became "unallocated", how to recover?

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