I have no idea of precisely what forum is best to ask this question on since any one of a number of factors could be involved. I'm working with a client running Windows 10 on a Lenovo ThinkPad. It's got AVG antivirus on it and I've determined that's causing problems with access to specific legitimate websites. We were also being blocked from applying the Windows 10 Anniversary Update, and he had already tried prior to my attempt. When we temporarily disabled AVG we could access all the websites that had been blocked (like Outlook.com, for instance) and when I had him disable it overnight [using the "until restart" option] and schedule a restart to try to apply the AU again it worked. I add the AVG details only on the off chance they might be somehow related to what follows.
He also has a 500GB Seagate Slim external drive he's been using for some time to back up user data. Several weeks ago something happened where the drive got renamed (which is what he noticed) and, somehow, repartitioned. Based upon his description this does not seem to be the result of operator error (he doesn't even know how to partition a drive) and based on a Malwarebytes scan I'm doubting that it's the result of malware, either. He had some malware identified, but what was identified did not ring any of my bells for doing this sort of thing. The drive now shows a single partition of just a bit over 30 GB and had its volume name set to "Recovery." Of course, the rest of the drive space still exists, but is not currently accessible.
I don't know precisely what might have happened, so am soliciting theories just because I'm curious. I also don't know whether this could be the result of some bizarre form of drive failure, but it seems far to "organized" a result for that to be the case.
Finally, are there any tools that folks would recommend for trying to examine the now invisible space on the drive to see if we can get it back and recover whatever data may remain on it? I want to take every precaution I can to avoid possibly losing data that may be recoverable. I have already recommended that he replace this drive, and promptly, since I just don't trust it anymore.
Thanks for any advice you all have to offer. If this query belongs in another forum please feel free to move it. There's just too much territory for it to fit conveniently anywhere.