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Hard Drive Limitation


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#1 gareth_17

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 11:48 AM

Hi,
i have a problem with my backup internal hard drive. Its 320gb IDE seagates formatted with datas written using my previous windows as i just reformatted my new hard drive which is also 320gb IDE seagates spilted into two partitions(80gb and 240gb). Now my backup drive is seen as 128gb drive healthy(active) not formatted with 170.09gb not allocated. Is it possible to recover my hard drive back to 320gb whole(with all the previous data) without reformatting my drive - which result in lost of my datas. Some information on my pc - Windows Xp Home Edition Sp3, Intel D845GBV Chipset with the lastest Bios, 2 * 320gb IDE 16mb Barracuda Seagate Hard Drive, 768Mb/PC266 ram.

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#2 aommaster

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 02:07 PM

If you have formatted your hard drive partition with all the data, then I'm afraid it's near to impossible (if not impossible at all) to recover the data. Some applications can do a hard drive recovery after format, but:
1.They are extremely expensive
2.Not all files are recovered

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#3 gareth_17

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 08:18 PM

The hard drive i want to recover is not reformatted again. However, i find it weird that the 320gb drive was seen as a 128gb drive because it should be read as a 320gb drive.

#4 Platypus

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Posted 26 July 2008 - 06:30 AM

using my previous windows as i just reformatted my new hard drive

It doesn't seem quite clear to me exactly what was done - what version was your "previous Windows"? If at any stage the drive has been used in a system with Windows XP Gold (original release prior to SP1), e.g. if this was the version of XP used for the re-installation, and it was then subsequently updated to SP3, then the partition structure could have been damaged in this way. XP prior to SP1 did not understand 48bit LBA drive addressing, and could not utilise beyond 128GB. A drive with a primary partition larger than this should not be used in an XP system until it is updated to SP1 level or beyond.

Whether this is a possible cause or not, it may be that software like PC Inspector can recover the partition structure, or recover the drive contents to allow the drive to be correctly partitioned again under SP3.

Edited by Platypus, 26 July 2008 - 06:34 AM.

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#5 gareth_17

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Posted 09 August 2008 - 04:26 AM

Thanks Platypus, i tried using the PC inspector but the programme couldn't help. I give me a bad parameter when i tried to recover the drive. Is there any other programme that is available ? Or do i have to find a specialist to help me recover my data. I suspect that there is a problem with my drive boot system as it could be corrupted when i reinstalled windows XP as sp1 and it could not read the 320gb drive and cause my drive to be read as 128gb drive now.

#6 Platypus

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Posted 09 August 2008 - 06:47 AM

If the re-installation was XP SP1 straight off, that shouldn't be the cause of the problem, SP1 implements 48bit LBA, so can deal directly with drive sizes beyond 132GB. It was original release XP that had the limitation.

However, whatever the cause, if PC Inspector is complaining of a bad parameter in the boot sector, or something like that, another possibility to try is CGSecurity's TestDisk, which may be able to deal with the corruption.

I've been fortunate enough to not need to use anything more than free recovery utilities, but on several tech help sites I've seen folk say that when they had to resort to pay software, GetDataBack worked for them where free utilities had been unsuccessful. At least the demo allows you to experiment and see if it can find files when others have not.

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