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I have the password, but the computer it came from got fried.

It is a SATA hard drive (Western Digital Scorpio Blue) from an Acer laptop.

I have a SATA to USB connector, when I try to use that, the drive just shows up as uninitialized.

I have another laptop that I can put the hard drive in, the password prompt appears, but this laptop (a toshiba) only handles passwords less than 8 chars, when mine is 10 chars, so it fails to authenticate.

What is need is one of two things:

(1) some way to unlock the drive with the password though the adapter.

(2) some way to unlock the drive on a live boot

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Take Effective Ownership over the files using command prompt and then you should/will have access to these files.

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The OP's drive is password-protected at the ATA level, rather than via the operating system. It's not clear if this is a straight-forward password or if the drive is encrypted, but I suspect the former. – ChrisInEdmonton Oct 10 '13 at 15:29

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