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External Hard Drive Problem


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#1 mamma

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 05:52 PM

I am running Windows Vista Service pack 1- 64 bit

For some reson my external hard drive now shows up as 'Local Drive F'. The name of the USB device is WDC WD64 00AAACS-00G8B0. I no longer can access the files on it. This was the drive I put my backups on. :huh:

When I click on the "SAFELY REMOVE HARDWARE' icon in the task bar...The message says " windows Cannot stop your device because a program is still using it. Close programs etc..."

Before the disaster.........
  • I installed some software I had for my monitor Viewsonic vx900 (when I had Windows XP) onto the new Vista.
  • It was not working properly with Vista so I uninstalled it.
  • Some of the dll files I could not delete...maybe this is the problem.
  • I tried the System Restore... but to no avail.
Is there a way to recover my files from my external drive?

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#2 Ryan Pianesi

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 06:24 PM

If you indeed had any program files on it in the past, i would suggest deleting all of those files, if not...and you need the files..continue on.

#3 mamma

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 07:43 PM

If you indeed had any program files on it (What 'IT' are you referring to..Hard drive or External drive? I cannot access the External Drive)in the past, i would suggest deleting all of those files, (Are you suggesting I delete and reinstall programs on my Hard Drive? that sounds doable)if not...and you need the files..continue on.



I do believe that something may have happened when a (I think it was a) Windows Media Menu opened and said it "Found some media I could share" then asked "ALLOW" or "DENY". I said "ALLOW" because there is another user on this computer. I have a suspicion this could be the culprit.

#4 MrBruce1959

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 09:03 PM

Welcome to Bleepingcomputer.

When you say you try the safely remove hardware option and it says it is use, are you sure a back up is not in progress?

You also said your USB external drive shows up as local disk F:, what did it show up as originally?

Bruce.
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#5 mamma

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 10:20 PM

Welcome to Bleepingcomputer.

When you say you try the safely remove hardware option and it says it is use, are you sure a back up is not in progress? Very sure...there is no backup in progress.

You also said your USB external drive shows up as local disk F:, what did it show up as originally? It used to say External Hard Drive F.(depending on which hub I connected it to)
I also tried to uninstall all the USB drivers in the Device Manager. I first unplugged all usb's then I rebooted the computer waited for computer to re-install them and then plugged each device in one by one, ...still nothing. I am thinking it was when I "allowed" sharing that something or some program on the external hard drive and my Local C: drive is linked and that is why it is telling me it 'can't remove hardware'.

After I posted this last night another thought came. I recently upgraded my computer from XP to Vista.

  • When I got the puter back I noticed that I had odd file beginning with cab156... numbers listed as files.
  • I also noticed I have a duplicate file called 'old windows' and an another Program file. The old windows file had boot and ini files in it I think.
  • I called the puter guy asked him what and why...he said DELETE the files; bring it in and copy or save rest your files.
  • So when I tried to Delete the Old Windows files it would not let me.
  • So I tried CUT and COPY to my EXTERNAL DRIVE it worked BUT it would not let me copy all the 'old windows' files.
  • Called back puter guy he said Windows tries to protect itself incase one Deletes important files for the OS.
  • He DELETES all OLD WIndow files for me but says he is not sure what the CAB files are for.
  • One of the cab file now has a 'MRSTUB' file in it. I checked on the web and it is an XP
  • Found the following info:.....Description: mrtstub.exe is located in a subfolder of C:\. Known file sizes on Windows XP are 89,504 bytes ....on this site http://www.file.net/process/mrtstub.exe.html
I now believe that the "Old WIndows XP" files somehow hyjacked my external and hard drive!
Here is pic of the strange 'cab' and the 'mrstub' files.......


Posted Image

By the way thanks for your time, very much appreciated :huh: !



Bruce.


Edited by mamma, 08 September 2010 - 07:15 AM.


#6 MrBruce1959

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Posted 14 September 2010 - 01:05 PM

I read your post above mine.

The files you mentioned in relation to old windows, is probably actually called WINDOWS.OLD

If this is the case, this would be the folder saved when you upgraded Windows XP to Windows Vista.

In some cases when you install a newer version of Windows it offers to save the original installation of your WINDOWS folder as Windows.OLD, then it creates a new folder called Windows.

It is the folder C:\Windows that Vista was installed in, the Windows.old folder is where Windows XP was installed in.

I want to emphasize you can not boot to that Windows.old folder, but you can still access it and move files from it.

Other than that, that folder is useless if there is nothing in it that you want to save.

As far as deleting the Windows.old folder, Windows Vista has newer security features Windows XP did not have, such as the UAC (User Account Control) you have to right click the folder and choose PROPERTIES then SECURITY on this tab you can change the permissions allowed for this folder.

Using the Sharing option in the main menu you get when right clicking the Windows.old folder is NOT the correct way to gain access to the folder to delete it.

Use the Security tab instead, also you have to be logged into the Administrator account to succeed with this, you can access the control panel and choose user accounts to see if your account is the administrator account.

I realize you said you used the share with option in the right click menu of the drives, you can correct this by going back there and setting default, this will undo what you originally did.

Bruce.
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#7 MrBruce1959

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Posted 14 September 2010 - 01:25 PM

I will have to check my friend next door Vista computer for clarity, but on my Windows 7 computer the name MRT is the Malicious Software Removal Tool located in C:\Windows\System32\MRT

I would not delete that for now being that it is on your C:\ this may have been installed as part of VISTA. Doing so may put you at risk.

In the meantime if someone who currently has Windows Vista installed can offer advice on the MRTStub before I reply back that would be much appreciated.

Bruce.
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#8 MrBruce1959

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Posted 14 September 2010 - 01:37 PM

Checking my Windows XP machines I do not see the cab folder you have in your picture above, but in Windows XP C:\Windows\System32\ I see MRT.exe

I am about to check that Windows Vista machine shortly.

Sorry I can honestly say I have never purchased or installed Windows Vista on any of my personal computers.

Bruce.
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#9 mamma

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 12:33 PM

I read your post above mine.

The files you mentioned in relation to old windows, is probably actually called WINDOWS.OLD

If this is the case, this would be the folder saved when you upgraded Windows XP to Windows Vista.

In some cases when you install a newer version of Windows it offers to save the original installation of your WINDOWS folder as Windows.OLD, then it creates a new folder called Windows.

It is the folder C:\Windows that Vista was installed in, the Windows.old folder is where Windows XP was installed in.

I want to emphasize you can not boot to that Windows.old folder, but you can still access it and move files from it. I brought computer back to store and the guy removed the Windows.Old before the disaster. But I had copied it on my External drive because I was not sure what the file was and just in case it should not have been deleted.

Other than that, that folder is useless if there is nothing in it that you want to save. There was nothing I wanted to save.

As far as deleting the Windows.old folder, Windows Vista has newer security features Windows XP did not have, such as the UAC (User Account Control) you have to right click the folder and choose PROPERTIES then SECURITY on this tab you can change the permissions allowed for this folder.

Using the Sharing option in the main menu you get when right clicking the Windows.old folder is NOT the correct way to gain access to the folder to delete it.

Use the Security tab instead, also you have to be logged into the Administrator account to succeed with this, you can access the control panel and choose user accounts to see if your account is the administrator account.

I realize you said you used the share with option in the right click menu of the drives, you can correct this by going back there and setting default, this will undo what you originally did. It was actually a menu window that popped up by itself.

Bruce.


As I am rehashing the events that led up to this disaster some other odd things pop up

-I needed to download pics from my camera

-Since I did not have enough free USB ports I unplugged the first one I could reach :My external Hard Drive (EHD)

- I unplugged the EHD (which was still ON!! and plug in my camera. When I finished I "safely remove" camera and just replugged the EHD (still powered ON).

- Now when I plug in EHD my computer tells me that it "Found New Hardware"...but not for EHD. The message says :'Found New Hardware for CAMERA.'

- I find this odd, so I remove the EHD and plug in my Camera. It works but Computer does not say "found New Hardware' and there is no "Safely Remove" ICON in TASK Bar

- And when I plug in EHD I get the "Found New.." and the Icon in task bar....but I cannot "Remove Safely" it keeps saying it is "In Use"

Should I try to run a CheckDIsk on the EHD?
-

- Someone also recommended I get some special software to Recover my data on my EHD. I believe I corrupted the external drive when I unpluged and repluged it.

Edited by mamma, 15 September 2010 - 08:46 PM.


#10 mamma

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 08:47 PM

I just brought my computer and EHD to store to try to get it fixed. He tried the CHECK DISK but it said 'CANNOT ACCESS...' and then tried more stuff.

He then said he would take the EHD out and connect it directly to my computer. Well he just called me back and said he still can neither access the disk or see any files. When Properties is Clicked it shows the EHD ad FULL!

I heard that there is some Software out there where if your format a drive that it can still retreive lost files....(Please tell me it's true) :huh:

Thanks
Barb
:huh:

Edited by mamma, 16 September 2010 - 11:04 AM.


#11 cryptodan

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Posted 16 September 2010 - 05:37 PM

I would try accessing the drive via a Live LinuxCD like Ubuntu. If you can access it via Linux then its a Windows issue, if you cannot then your drive maybe dead. What kind of drive is it?

#12 mamma

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Posted 18 September 2010 - 02:12 PM

I would try accessing the drive via a Live LinuxCD like Ubuntu. (Mamma says:)I have No idea what you mean by this. Is it an actual CD i need to download or purchase... where can I get this?
If you can access it via Linux then its a Windows issue, if you cannot then your drive maybe dead. What kind of drive is it?


Edited by mamma, 18 September 2010 - 02:14 PM.


#13 cryptodan

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Posted 18 September 2010 - 02:15 PM

You download it via http://www.ubuntu.com and burn it to a CD.

#14 mamma

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 10:30 AM

You download it via http://www.ubuntu.com and burn it to a CD.


Thanks for your help.

Regarding the make: it is a Western Digital hde6-640g GU2S-3B/SL (thoes are the things printed on back)

OK...so now I have downloaded program and burnt it to CD....What do I do next?



#15 cryptodan

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 10:34 AM

Did you burn it to a CD, and set the BIOS to boot to CD-ROM Drive. Have you ran any hard drive diagnostics on the external drive. You can get the diagnostic tools from http://www.wdc.com.




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