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Windows 7: windows 7 lost hard drives

27 Jun 2010   #1

Windows 7 Professional 64-Bit
windows 7 lost hard drives

I am running on a 4+ year old self built box, running Windows 7 Premium 64-Bit. I have two HDD, one WD 500GB that is partitioned (C: 232GB & D: 232GB) and a WD 250 GB labeled E:

(Side note the Main drive [C: D: - WD 500GB is SATA] & the Slave [E: - WD 250GB is IDE])

I have only been experiencing this problem in the last 3-4 days, periodically as I am using the computer windows will suddenly stop recognizing D: and E: drives... leaving me with only C: Not only does My Computer not see the drives but Computer Management fails to recognize them. The first couple of times this happened a quick re-boot fixed the problem. Then last night it failed to re-boot, giving a hardware failure error and forced a second re-boot to properly boot up.

Now nearly every time I boot or re-boot I have to wait through the dos based "A portion of Volume D: has errors please wait while Windows attempts to repair..." process, every time it claims it fixes the issues.

Today it froze on the Windows splash screen "Starting Windows" and after 20 min I cold booted only to get a "failed to start" error where windows attempted to fix the issue. That also failed but gave me the option to restore to a previous system image (the newest one I had was 6/7/10) so I attempted to run a system restore which subsequently failed as well.

I switched the SATA cable on the C: drive for a spare I had and it booted fine for now... But I am concerned that the problem will persist and have no clue where to go from here to solve this problem...

The odd part is that the computer fails to even recognize the partition [D:] on the same drive that [C:] is on...

My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2010   #2
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

Welcome to the Seven Forums! mtlosol

Being a 4yr. or older drive I would make the first suggestion of downloading and running the WD LifeGuard diagnostics program looking for bad sectors or simply a worn drive. If you listen closely to the case besides hearing case fans and hear any ticking, tapping sound you are likely hearing the read/write heads arm slapping up against the spindle from the drive's motor.

The immediate command to enter into a command prompt window would be "chkdsk /r /p" to see if scheduling a run of the check disk tool can help. In the meantine I would suggest trying to back up what you are able to on removable media in the event the main sata drive fails.

As for the smaller ide drive the cable itself may need replacing if that's the typical flat ribbon type since those will harden up over time and become unusable. Even sata data cables can turn bad at times as you saw when replacing one there. The main support page at WD for downloads is seen at WD Support > Downloads > Select Product

They also offer a free version WD version of Acronis True Image for backing up an entire drive available at WD Support
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2010   #3

Windows 7 Professional 64-Bit

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Night Hawk View Post
Being a 4yr. or older drive I would make the first suggestion of downloading and running the WD LifeGuard diagnostics program looking for bad sectors or simply a worn drive.

The computer is 4+ years old (I forgot to mention) the HDD was purchased in December of '09

After this latest re-boot I accessed the D: drive through computer management and accessed the properties - then ran a "Error-check" on the drive which returned no errors. I will download the WD LifeGuard diagnostics program and run it as well.

I have a back-up drive that I will be re-backing up a new image today!!!

I sincerely hope it was nothing more than a bad SATA cable...

Thank you for your input!
My System SpecsSystem Spec

27 Jun 2010   #4
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

You're welcome! Sometimes even with new drives you may see a few bad sectors or simply have a few registry glitches involved. Hopefully that bad cable will be the only thing is right. But that's why manufacturer's have warranties too.

I'll be looking at one retail program soon called HDD Regeneratoring for refurbish and repair of drives seeing bad sectors to see if that will help with some much older ide drives in order to get some old cases running again. It never hurts to backup your drive(s) just the same and can't beat a free version of Acronis seen there.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 windows 7 lost hard drives

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