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I've been having some weird difficulties with one of the hard drives in my system and I replaced it yesterday (warranty) in hopes I could solve them, but the problem has followed me to the new drive. Basically, Windows has been spontaneously getting I/O errors when reading from that device (internal 1TB Western Digital) and then it will mark the drive inactive and disconnect from it. When this has happened before usually all I needed was a reboot or two to be back in order, but this time it isn't working.

Windows sees that the disk is connected (as does my other computer) but it indicates that the partition type is "RAW". If I open the disk in a utility I have (Active Kill Disk) and press "Scan" it performs a logical read of the disk and tells me that the disk is NTFS with 309gb free. Furthermore, I can see my intact file structure inside of Active Kill Disk.

The first thing that comes to mind is that perhaps the MFT got funked up, but I'm not expert on these sorts of things and I'm dealing with 600gb of valuable data. What are some safe things I can try to get the disk properly detected again?


I've now scanned the disk with TestDisk which also confirms the presence of my lost NTFS partition. When I attempted to do a deep scan of the drive it told me both the MFT and backup MFT were inaccessible. I'm now in the processing of copying all of the data off the disk with GetDataBack for NTFS. I wonder though if there's a less complicated fix though? One that doesn't require recreating the entire disk structure.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Have you tried connecting the drive on a different interface, or with a different cable?

It might also be worth checking if the BIOS supports 1TB drives and whether you have the latest BIOS.

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I should definitely try a different cable. The drive size/BIOS isn't the problem. All the equipment is new- but the cable is actually quite old. – Nathan Taylor Aug 14 '10 at 22:13

It sounds like your drive is failing. Try and use a recovery tool to get your data off of it, then scrap it. (Some ideas:

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On the contrary, the disk is brand new from the factory. Whatever is causing the problem was causing the same problems on the disk I replaced. This doesn't really help me to fix the file table as that is the problem currently. – Nathan Taylor Aug 14 '10 at 16:14
@Nathan: Just because it's new, doesn't mean it's not broken. It could have been jostled in shipping; it could even have been broken at the factory. You can never really rule out hardware failure. – Hello71 Aug 14 '10 at 16:32
Certainly, but the behavior it's exhibiting is [nearly] identical to the behavior of the disk I replaced with it. Something else is probably causing the problem, but I can't imagine what. – Nathan Taylor Aug 14 '10 at 16:41
@Nathan: In any case, you should probably get your data off first before trying anything. – Hello71 Aug 14 '10 at 16:46
@Nathan: Guess I should have read the whole thing through... – Hello71 Aug 14 '10 at 16:47

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