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Windows 7: 6TB HDD - a disaster

22 Nov 2017   #1
AaLF

Microsoft Windows 7 HomePremium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 
6TB HDD - a disaster

Wife has a 6Tb HDD for data storage.
It's always been a pain often not appearing in active drives (my computer panel)
We often find we need to unplug cables & re-plug to have it re-appear.

After not appearing for a week or more we opened up disk management.

NOTE: It was a one partition HDD. with about 3.5 to 4TB of data files on board. Look what we see now.

The HDD is on my wife's PC at home. No one else has ever touched or ever used the PC.

note2 : Can only view in disk management although it is drive G. In 'my computer' all that appears is the G drive symbol but no bar to indicate useage/storage.

How can this happen? Can we recover the data. probably 3.7 to 4 TB missing.




Attached Thumbnails
6TB HDD - a disaster-22-11-2017-5-18-46-pm.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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22 Nov 2017   #2
Megahertz07

Windows 7 HP 64
 
 

You have to give us more information about the Hardware.
Is your wife's computer a desktop or laptop? Brand, model?
Is the drive on a USB case? Brand, model? It seems to be a Legacy-MBR drive.
Partition G: is marked as Active. Did you try or installed a OS on it?

Legacy-MBR drive has a partition size limit of 2.2T; so a 6T Legacy-MBR drive should have at least 3 partitions, each one no bigger than 2.2T.
UEFI-GPT has no size limit.

You wrote that the drive had only one partition and now it has 3 partitions. One 6T partition on a Legacy-MBR isn't possible.
So the question is: Is the drive a Legacy-MBR or UEFI-GPT?

Open disk management and on the View - Top - Disk list. On the partition style you going to find if it is a GPT or MBR.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Nov 2017   #3
AaLF

Microsoft Windows 7 HomePremium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Thanks for replying Megahertz07.

The HDD was a working single giant (half-full of saved data) partition then we woke one morning to see 3 RAW partitions.

  • The drive is a western digital 6TB internal 3.5" Hard disk drive.
  • It was a GPT single partition. Been so for 6 months or more and working away except for the power & SATA cables not seeing it irregularly. It had about 3.5TB of her data on board
  • Don't recall the partition size perhaps 5.6TB. Whatever the max. is for a 6TB.
  • The 6TB is classified in Disk Management as RAW. The rest show as NTFS. Don't know where to locate "DISK STYLE".
  • The desktop PC is generic with win7 Professional and an ASUS H170-Pro motherboard.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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22 Nov 2017   #4
mrjimphelps

Linux Mint 18.2 xfce 64-bit (VMWare host) / Windows 8.1 Pro 32-bit (VMWare guest)
 
 

Quote:
We often find we need to unplug cables & re-plug to have it re-appear...The drive is a western digital 6TB internal 3.5" Hard disk drive.
I hope you didn't unplug and re-plug this drive while the computer was on. You can't do that unless the drive is USB, and I've never heard of an internal drive that is USB. I know that SATA is supposed to be hot-swappable (i.e. you can unplug and re-plug with the computer on), but I wouldn't want to take a chance by doing it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Nov 2017   #5
AaLF

Microsoft Windows 7 HomePremium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

We did plug/unplug while "ON". Read it some other tech place chasing solution about 6 months back. Is this the likely assassin?

Assuming we have found the cause........ if I buy another 6tb HDD can i recover the 3tb of data from the old HDD?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Nov 2017   #6
Megahertz07

Windows 7 HP 64
 
 

Open disk management and on the View - Top - Disk list. On the partition style you going to find if it is a GPT or MBR.


Attached Thumbnails
6TB HDD - a disaster-dman.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Nov 2017   #7
mrjimphelps

Linux Mint 18.2 xfce 64-bit (VMWare host) / Windows 8.1 Pro 32-bit (VMWare guest)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AaLF View Post
We did plug/unplug while "ON". Read it some other tech place chasing solution about 6 months back. Is this the likely assassin?

Assuming we have found the cause........ if I buy another 6tb HDD can i recover the 3tb of data from the old HDD?
In my opinion, this is a possible reason for the failure.

To recover the data, boot the computer with a Linux Live DVD. Linux can often read disks that Windows can't. Hopefully you will be able to copy your data off of the disk while in Linux.

* To make a Linux Live DVD, go to Download - Linux Mint and download either the 32-bit or the 64-bit version of xfce (depending on your computer). Create a DVD from the download, and then boot with that DVD. Nothing will be written to your hard drive when you do this.

After getting your data off of the drive, I suggest that you partition and format the drive, to see if it will work correctly.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Nov 2017   #8
Megahertz07

Windows 7 HP 64
 
 

As there are two un allocated partitions you wont be able to read data from it. Fist thing to do is to find out if the disk is still GPT.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Nov 2017   #9
jumanji

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Megahertz07 View Post
.... Fist thing to do is to find out if the disk is still GPT.
A very good suggestion. I would like to see a full screen - and not a truncated - Windows Disk Management as per this tutorial Disk Management - Post a Screen Capture Image. The only difference is as suggested by you, he should select View > Top > Disk List instead of Volume List as in your post #6.

He should also tell whether his wife's system is a 32 bit or 64 bit. ( I was actually put off since the OP did not give any relevant details of the drive and the system in his first post. Nevertheless I dug up its past history)

I would think it was a GPT drive and somehow the protective MBR in sector 0 has got corrupted and it now behaves as a normal MBR with three partitions. ( The protective MBR in a GPT drive will always have just one partition table pointing to a 2 TB drive). Just a guess and may not conclude unless all the relevant sectors in the drive are checked for GPT structure.

I had seen the Op's other thread involving the same 6TB drive but he had left it hanging :) without informing whether the problem had been solved..That was I think more than six months back.

First thing he has to check the health of the drive with the manufacturer's diagnostic/repair utility
or third party utility like Crystal Disk Info since his drive was always a problem from the beginning. May be it was a lemon. He let it be like that leading to this regression and severe problem.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Nov 2017   #10
AaLF

Microsoft Windows 7 HomePremium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Hi guys. thanks for jumping in to help us with this problem -

In response to various questions and issues from above posts -
The 6TB is MBR says Disk Management>view.
The PC is 64bit.
The drive was initiated as GPT in error as the existing 3TB drive is GPT so we intialized as same unaware that GPT doesn't go as large as 6TB. You guys advised me how to change it to MBR.
Drive was converted to MBR with one max. capacity partition. The drive was never used as a GPT.
Drive has been a working as MBR. Still is. Except it has mysteriously split into 3 partitions.


CrystalDisk info -


Attached Thumbnails
6TB HDD - a disaster-ffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffff.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 6TB HDD - a disaster




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