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Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 09:18:45
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USB hard drive problem


[link to this post]
 
My USB hard drive was unplugged whilst in use. As such the laptop doesn't see it any more. It spins up when plugged in, but doesn't appear in the list of drives in 'Computer'.

Is there a fix please?

Standard User MHC
(sensei) Mon 23-Mar-15 10:07:56
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
What happens on other machines? Can they see it?


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

M H C


taurus excreta cerebrum vincit
Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 10:49:35
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: MHC] [link to this post]
 
Tried it on a Vista machine. Device drivers were installed, yet it doesn't appear in 'Computer' and can't be accessed.

On my Win 8 box (not 8.1) the drive appears in device manager. When using the Safely remove hardware feature the drive appears as an option by name, when clicking on the drive name nothing happens. The only option is to unplug. This brings up a warning message;

"Windows is unable to stop the device USB Mass Storage device. Don't remove this device whilst it is still in use. Close any programs using this device then remove it".

The drive is a Samsung M3 portable 1TB. The features of the drive were not being used, it was used as a storage drive only.


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Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 10:59:09
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
The first thing to do is to use the storage manager to see if any partitions are visible:

Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Computer Management > Storage > Disk Management

Alternatively, run 'diskmgmt.msc' from the command prompt.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User MHC
(sensei) Mon 23-Mar-15 11:00:57
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
I have the same issue on Win8 ... Before you try anything, make sure you have copies of data from the drive, which should be possible on your Win8 machine.


One way may be to get rid of all drivers and instances in Vista with the drive disconnected ... on Win XP that was done by opening a CMD window,

typing set devmgr_show_nonpresent_devices=1
then devmgmt.msc

Go to the view tab and click on show hidden devices. Scrolling through each option will bring up greyed out references to the drive and delete each one.

You will be surprised at te number of uninstalled/not-present USB devices.

It should force a reinstall of the drivers next time the drive is attached.

I am about to try it as I have a problem with a Nokia phone - I have lost file manager access to it although I can use te Nokia Application to update contacts, copy images off &c.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

M H C


taurus excreta cerebrum vincit
Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 11:43:32
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: MHC] [link to this post]
 
I have the same issue on Win8 ... Before you try anything, make sure you have copies of data from the drive, which should be possible on your Win8 machine.
I can't access the usb drive on either machine. Having said that the data isn't important.

I typed in the Vista machine
set devmgr_show_nonpresent_devices=1
which took me to a 'Search Results in Indexed Locations' box.

I'll try Mick's suggestion. on the W8 box. Do I need to connect the usb drive?

Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 11:49:28
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by wingco1:
I'll try Mick's suggestion. on the W8 box. Do I need to connect the usb drive?
Absolutely. I want to know if the Master Boot Record is corrupted.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 11:53:26
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
The Samsung disk doesn't appear in the list, where other usb disks do.

Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 12:05:46
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
Right... It should appear even if the MBR is corrupt. I'll have to think about it. Maybe others will have suggestions.

Try running the Device Manager (devmgmt.msc) and see if it pops-up under disk drives. Don't ask it to show non-present devices.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 12:08:43
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
OK. Download USBDeview and see if it is recognised as a USB device.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith

Edited by micksharpe (Mon 23-Mar-15 12:13:53)

Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 12:27:02
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
It's seen as a "USB Mass Storage Device". No Drive Letter.

Edited by wingco1 (Mon 23-Mar-15 12:27:33)

Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 12:28:52
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
It shows up in Device Manager disk drives. Although it takes longer to appear than other USB drives I connect.

Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 12:35:20
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
OK. The MBR is probably corrupt. Now, how to fix it? Don't format it if you want to retrieve your data.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 12:42:14
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
Easeus Data Recovery will probably do the job. The trouble is, I've forgotten how to use it. My memory is shot to bits these days. You need to ask it to recover the drive partitions. The file systems inside the lost partitions are probably OK. It's a common scenario.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 12:47:49
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
Thanks for all your help Mick. I'm not wanting to recover the data it's stored elsewhere. But I can't remember how to format the disk either. Bearing in mind the computer doesn't see it.

Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 12:54:45
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
You'll need to create a new partition. That should fix the MBR (if it's corrupt). Then, you format the partition. It can all be done using the Disk Management utility.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 13:24:38
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
Disk Management doesn't see the usb drive.

Standard User rogerfp
(regular) Mon 23-Mar-15 13:56:21
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
I assume the drive is in a USB caddy and out of warranty? Try removing it from the caddy and connect directly to a Sata port on the motherboard and see if it's recognised correctly. If you do damage the caddy in doing so (should be easy with a bit of care) its not a big deal as you can get replacement USB 3.0 caddy pretty cheap if the drive is OK. Could be the pcb in the caddy that is faulty.
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 14:06:28
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: rogerfp] [link to this post]
 
It's possible that the USB controller is fried. I'd still try one of the free disk utilities first, EaseUs or Paragon come to mind.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 14:23:39
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
Have you checked the PSU? It's just possible that the USB interface is drawing power from the USB hub but the HDD itself has no power. Do any lights come on on the case? Does the drive spin up?

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith

Edited by micksharpe (Mon 23-Mar-15 14:24:32)

Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 14:42:06
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
Tried the two progs you suggested. Neither can see the usb drive. The psu seems fine
everything works OK with a different usb drive connected.

Can't understand why device manager can see the Samsung but explorer can't. Not to worry these things happen.

Thanks very much for all your help, greatly appreciated.

Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 14:54:33
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
Try Roger's suggestion. You may be able to salvage the HDD. I would if it's a decent capacity.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User wingco1
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 15:14:47
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: rogerfp] [link to this post]
 
Sorry Roger I didn't see your post. Unfortunately It's factory sealed I even looked under the rubber feet but no screws.

Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 15:26:45
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
It's possible that the drive is specially manufactured and has a USB interface. If so, you would be out of luck. Even so, I wouldn't toss a 1TB drive. I'd break the case open and have a look inside, but then that's me.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User rogerfp
(regular) Mon 23-Mar-15 16:25:51
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
I'm with you on that. I'd go for it and force it open. If its not under warranty what is there to lose? If the drive is OK then buy a new caddy. If its U/S then its a dustbin job. At the moment i it's about as useful as a chocolate teapot.
Standard User BatBoy
(sensei) Mon 23-Mar-15 16:33:52
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
Don't be fooled into breaking it open by these guys. I have a couple of far better suggestions from Google.

One is to slam it down on it's side on the desk - no, really.

Another is to go into device manager and change the drive letter.


____________________________________________________________________________Information_without_perspective_is_a_higher_form_of_ignorance________

Edited by BatBoy (Mon 23-Mar-15 16:36:16)

Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 16:35:45
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: BatBoy] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by BatBoy:
Another is to go into disk manager and change the drive letter.
A bit difficult if it doesn't show the drive. Still I'm with you on exploring all possible non-violent alternatives. A bootable Linux CD might help but I'm no expert there.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith

Edited by micksharpe (Mon 23-Mar-15 16:37:34)

Standard User BatBoy
(sensei) Mon 23-Mar-15 16:36:53
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
Edited. It's possible from device manager.


____________________________________________________________________________Information_without_perspective_is_a_higher_form_of_ignorance________
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 16:38:34
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: BatBoy] [link to this post]
 
Is it? I did look. Any possibility of a linky-poo?

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 16:47:41
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: BatBoy] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by BatBoy:
One is to slam it down on it's side on the desk
Actually, I think that Wingco feels like throwing it out of the window.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User BatBoy
(sensei) Mon 23-Mar-15 16:56:28
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
Maybe not. Sorry.


____________________________________________________________________________Information_without_perspective_is_a_higher_form_of_ignorance________
Standard User BatBoy
(sensei) Mon 23-Mar-15 16:56:59
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
That may or may not work.


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Standard User BatBoy
(sensei) Mon 23-Mar-15 16:58:58
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: BatBoy] [link to this post]
 
... Computer Management on the other hand, may work.


____________________________________________________________________________Information_without_perspective_is_a_higher_form_of_ignorance________
Standard User BatBoy
(sensei) Mon 23-Mar-15 17:12:23
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: BatBoy] [link to this post]
 
How about DiskPart in a CMD prompt?

DiskPart to assign drive letters via Command Prompt
If you ever need to set a drive letter via Command Prompt, you can use diskpart.

1. Open a command prompt

2. Type in diskpart

3. Type list disk to see a list of disks

4. Type select disk # (where # is the disk you want)

5. Type detail disk to see partitions

6. Type select volume # (where # is the volume you want)

7. Type assign letter=x (where x is the drive letter)


____________________________________________________________________________Information_without_perspective_is_a_higher_form_of_ignorance________
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 17:14:05
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: BatBoy] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by BatBoy:
... Computer Management on the other hand, may work.
But then you're back to using either Device Manager (which doesn't do the business) or Disk management (which does the business but doesn't see the drive). Even if there is a drive letter collision, you should still see the physical drive in Drive Manager. I don't understand what's wrong. Maybe some Linux utilities would help but I lack the experience. But you're right. It's probably just some trivial problem. Looking on the web, a lot of users are complaining of the same problem and there doesn't seem to be a fix (with Windows). Maybe re-partition the drive with Linux?

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 17:15:27
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: BatBoy] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by BatBoy:
How about DiskPart in a CMD prompt?

DiskPart to assign drive letters via Command Prompt
If you ever need to set a drive letter via Command Prompt, you can use diskpart.

1. Open a command prompt

2. Type in diskpart

3. Type list disk to see a list of disks

4. Type select disk # (where # is the disk you want)

5. Type detail disk to see partitions

6. Type select volume # (where # is the volume you want)

7. Type assign letter=x (where x is the drive letter)
It's worth a try. smile

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User rogerfp
(member) Mon 23-Mar-15 19:03:12
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
If the software solution fail then this may help to show how to open the Samsung enclosure.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=3g6MdAuv9sk
Whatever you do DON'T slam it down on a flat surface as has been suggested (which I assume was a joke) this has every chance of allowing the heads to hit the disk surface which is the kiss of death for a disk drive. The heads are running microns above the disk surface, even a human hair would not fit in the gap. That's why they are in a vacuum so not even a speck of dust can get between the heads and the disk surface. Think of a disk drive as being made of extremely fragile glass. Any servere shock will kill it stone dead

Edited by rogerfp (Mon 23-Mar-15 19:21:15)

Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 19:17:03
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: rogerfp] [link to this post]
 
If that is a USB drive (and it says so on the box) then the USB controller is built into the circuit board. It's not a SATA disk drive (although it looks like an eSATA connector).

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith

Edited by micksharpe (Mon 23-Mar-15 19:18:20)

Standard User rogerfp
(member) Mon 23-Mar-15 19:39:36
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
Just to clarify what Mick said, all USB drives, whoever the manufacture, use a standard bare Sata disk drive with a small plug on PCB interface that provides a USB connection. No disk drive manufacturer builds a separate disk drive specifically for USB enclosures. That's why if you buy a USB caddy, inside you will find a small PCB that plugs onto the Sata drive connectors to give USB and power connectivity.
Standard User BatBoy
(sensei) Mon 23-Mar-15 19:51:41
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: rogerfp] [link to this post]
 
I think Samsung has built USB into the circuit board - i.e. you are mistaken.


____________________________________________________________________________Information_without_perspective_is_a_higher_form_of_ignorance________
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 19:59:35
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: rogerfp] [link to this post]
 
If you buy a run-of-the-mill external drive, that will almost certainly be the case, but Samsung have enough dosh and expertise to commission custom circuit boards. They will probably make the boards themselves and buy in the bare drives.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith

Edited by micksharpe (Mon 23-Mar-15 20:25:07)

Standard User rogerfp
(member) Mon 23-Mar-15 20:25:01
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
In that case I'll defer to both you and Batboy's superior knowledge on this particular subject. My suggestion to remove the drive from the case and plug it in to a Sata port would be a no goer then.
Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Mon 23-Mar-15 20:32:36
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: rogerfp] [link to this post]
 
Well, the socket on the PCB looks like an eSATA connector but there's clearly no additional circuitry on the case -- the connector just pokes through. Since the case has a label with USB 3.0 on it, I can only conclude that the PCB has a USB interface. I can't imagine that they would provide some sort of smart cable with it to convert SATA to USB. It doesn't make sense and it would hardly be a USB drive. Large manufacturers can and do fit custom circuit boards to bare drives.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith
Standard User rogerfp
(member) Mon 23-Mar-15 20:33:47
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
How old is this M3 drive as I believe they have a Samsung 3 year warranty?
Standard User rogerfp
(member) Tue 24-Mar-15 00:30:33
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: micksharpe] [link to this post]
 
The stupid thing here is that I'm the one who posted the Youtube link on how to disassemble a M3 caddy which if Id bothered to watch the whole thing shows exactly how the hard disk PCB is made. Doh! The socket is a USB 3.0 micro-B btw.
Standard User wingco1
(legend) Wed 25-Mar-15 10:32:18
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: rogerfp] [link to this post]
 
Thanks to all for your advice. After spending a lot of time trying various software options, Including Mick's suggestion I ripped open the case. No SATA connections so a caddy was a non starter.

It's so annoying that device manager can see it but windows explorer can't. So, in the end I slammed it down on it's side on a desk. I didn't really but felt like doing it. I've written it off, so will look for a replacement.

Standard User micksharpe
(legend) Wed 25-Mar-15 11:17:36
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Re: USB hard drive problem


[re: wingco1] [link to this post]
 
Why not buy a SATA drive and an external enclosure that provides both USB and eSATA interfaces? That way, you will know that if the drive fails (or you want a higher capacity), you can easily replace it. Be aware that a lot of dual interface enclosures only support USB 2.0. I'm still looking for a moderately-priced USB 3.0 / eSATA enclosure.

Edit: It may also be cheaper than buying an integrated unit.

Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so,
almost everyone gets busy on the proof. -- J.K. Galbraith

Edited by micksharpe (Wed 25-Mar-15 11:19:18)

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