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External Hardive Not Accessable


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#1 alanmcquillan

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Posted 29 December 2006 - 06:46 PM

I have a Western Digital external HD, plugs into the USB. And i cant acess it on my computer. I dont think it shows up in the device manager. my comp wont recognize the ecternal drive. What do i do?

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#2 Albert Frankenstein

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Posted 29 December 2006 - 07:04 PM

A couple of questions to help diagnose the problem:

Has this external hard drive ever worked on this computer before?

What happens when you plug the drive into another computer? Does it work ok?

Does this external hard drive have it's own power source as well as the USB cable, or does it get it's power through the USB cable?

Is this a Dell computer by chance?
ALBERT FRANKENSTEIN
I'M SO SMART IT'S SCARY!


Currently home chillin' with the fam and my two dogs!


#3 alanmcquillan

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Posted 29 December 2006 - 07:07 PM

A couple of questions to help diagnose the problem:

Has this external hard drive ever worked on this computer before?

What happens when you plug the drive into another computer? Does it work ok?

Does this external hard drive have it's own power source as well as the USB cable, or does it get it's power through the USB cable?

Is this a Dell computer by chance?



Has worked on thiscomputer before, came up right when i turned on teh computer, no problemo.

Doesn't work on other computer either. But i can access the music if plugged into the xbox360, through its music system.

it gets power through the usb. I have it plugged in right now and the blue light is on.

Emachines, the other one is a Compaq

#4 Albert Frankenstein

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Posted 29 December 2006 - 07:13 PM

Well, based on those answers it appears to be one of two things:

The fact that it doesn't work on the second computer either would make me suspicious of the external hard drive itself as having an issue. However, the fact that this ehd gets it's power through the USB cable could be a clue, too. Sometimes these devices strugle to get enough power to work correctly. It sometimes requires two cables to power them up properly. Did you get a second USB cable with this ehd? If so, unplug the ehd from the computer, hook up the second cable to the ehd as well, then plug both of them into the computer at the same time, or at least within a second or two of each other. Then see if it works. If it does, then it just needed more power and you will need to run it with two cables from now on.

If this is in fact the 'fix', I have no idea why it would have worked once and now doesn't.

If this is not the fix, then there seems to be an issue with the ehd itself. I hope you have backups of your data.
ALBERT FRANKENSTEIN
I'M SO SMART IT'S SCARY!


Currently home chillin' with the fam and my two dogs!


#5 alanmcquillan

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Posted 29 December 2006 - 07:17 PM

i can only plug in 1 usb into the drive at a time. The drive is also making a light clicking sound, i doubt that good. Also i cant access it through the computer management/ disk management either.

I dont think its completely shot, b/c i can still play music files off of it through the xbox.

#6 Albert Frankenstein

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Posted 29 December 2006 - 07:25 PM

Noises are not a good sign. See this:

http://tinyurl.com/34y47
ALBERT FRANKENSTEIN
I'M SO SMART IT'S SCARY!


Currently home chillin' with the fam and my two dogs!


#7 alanmcquillan

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Posted 29 December 2006 - 07:52 PM

none of those sound like it, it much quiter.

dude this sucks. im just gunna save up for a better one.

#8 Albert Frankenstein

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Posted 30 December 2006 - 07:14 AM

I suggest getting one with it's own power source. This way you plug it into the wall, and into the computer. The main problem with these devices is as I described earlier - not getting enough power. This is especially true with Dell computers.

This shortcoming can usually be overcome by installing a new USB expansion card and then using one of the USB ports in this card for the external hard drive. But it is better, IMHO, just to get one with it's own power source.

If you are going to use this drive for backing up your data you do not need to purchase one with it's own backup software. Just buy a hard drive you like, then use the free software called Cobian Backup. A quick Google search and you will find it available for download. Also there is a tutorial on it's use here at Bleeping Computer. I use it and like it, and it is every bit as good as software I have purchased before.
ALBERT FRANKENSTEIN
I'M SO SMART IT'S SCARY!


Currently home chillin' with the fam and my two dogs!





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