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Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"



 
 
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  #1  
Old November 20th 08, 09:32 PM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general,alt.comp.virus
[email protected]
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Posts: 8
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"

My Western Digital external USB 500GB disk has been working for months
on a variety of Windows XP Home & Professional machines but all of a
sudden, it is found in Windows but Windows says it's a RAW disk with
no data.

Can a virus convert a perfectly good disk into a "raw" disk (whatever
that is)?
How would I recover the data (some of which is not backed up).

Please help ...

The particulars are ...

My Computer:
- Name: Local Disk (X
- Type: Local Disk
- Total Size: blank
- Free Space blank
- Comments blank

Right-click on the disk and select "Properties":
- General tab
-- Tyype: Local Disk
-- File system: RAW
-- Used space: 0 bytes 0 bytes
-- Free space: 0 bytes 0 bytes
-- Capacity: 0 bytes 0 bytes

Double-click on the disk and up pops a form saying:
Disk is not formated
The disk in drive X: is not formatted.
Do you want to format it now?

Right-click on "My Computer" and select "Manage":
- Disk Management
-- Layout = Partition
-- Type = Basic
-- File System = blank
-- Status = healthy
-- Capacity = 465.75 GB
-- Free Space = 565.75 GB
-- %Free = 100%
-- Fault Tolerance = 0
-- Overhead = 0%

  #2  
Old November 20th 08, 09:48 PM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general,alt.comp.virus
philo
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Posts: 1,277
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"


wrote in message
...
My Western Digital external USB 500GB disk has been working for months
on a variety of Windows XP Home & Professional machines but all of a
sudden, it is found in Windows but Windows says it's a RAW disk with
no data.

Can a virus convert a perfectly good disk into a "raw" disk (whatever
that is)?
How would I recover the data (some of which is not backed up).

Please help ...


snip

probably not a virus...


First...try it on another machine...
if the problem remains...

If you are lucky the problem could be with the USB interface of the external
drive


Remove the drive and install it internally


  #3  
Old November 20th 08, 10:27 PM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general,alt.comp.virus
Paul
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 13,411
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"

wrote:
My Western Digital external USB 500GB disk has been working for months
on a variety of Windows XP Home & Professional machines but all of a
sudden, it is found in Windows but Windows says it's a RAW disk with
no data.

Can a virus convert a perfectly good disk into a "raw" disk (whatever
that is)?
How would I recover the data (some of which is not backed up).

Please help ...

The particulars are ...

My Computer:
- Name: Local Disk (X
- Type: Local Disk
- Total Size: blank
- Free Space blank
- Comments blank

Right-click on the disk and select "Properties":
- General tab
-- Tyype: Local Disk
-- File system: RAW
-- Used space: 0 bytes 0 bytes
-- Free space: 0 bytes 0 bytes
-- Capacity: 0 bytes 0 bytes

Double-click on the disk and up pops a form saying:
Disk is not formated
The disk in drive X: is not formatted.
Do you want to format it now?

Right-click on "My Computer" and select "Manage":
- Disk Management
-- Layout = Partition
-- Type = Basic
-- File System = blank
-- Status = healthy
-- Capacity = 465.75 GB
-- Free Space = 565.75 GB
-- %Free = 100%
-- Fault Tolerance = 0
-- Overhead = 0%


You could try "Testdisk" on it.

http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk_Step_By_Step

Note that Testdisk is a "repair-in-place" utility, and that
makes it dangerous. It can do more damage to the disk, if
something goes wrong. Before using a utility like that,
it is preferable to do a sector-by-sector copy of the
disk, to another disk. If the repair attempt screws up,
then you haven't lost everything. The files are still
there (somewhere).

I've used "dd" in Linux, to copy one drive to another.
The beauty of that technique, is the copy program doesn't
have to know anything about the file system types. It
just copies all the sectors. With that approach, the
destination disk should be the same size or larger than,
the source disk.

Since there is no guarantee that "dd" handles bad
sectors properly, you can also try scanning the disk
first, for bad blocks, to get some idea what you're
up against. I don't know what the best utility is for
that, but I have tried HDTune from HDTune.com on one occasion.
They have a free version for download. Scanning for bad
blocks, is one of its options. If the "bad" disk scans
clean, that means you can safely use "dd" to make an
exact copy.

The reason I am so cautious, is because of an experience
I had years ago. I had a disk, and a utility that was
supposed to copy a duplicate file structure, when the
primary file structure was damaged. To my shock, when
I ran the utility, it copied the bad structure, over
the good one, dooming all my data. (That was a non-Windows
system.) Now, I'm more careful to try to copy the disk first,
because there is really no way to know whether every
corner case has been considered by the repair utility
writer.

Paul
  #4  
Old November 20th 08, 10:43 PM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general,alt.comp.freeware
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 8
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"

On Nov 20, 1:48*pm, "philo" wrote:
How would I recover the data (some of which is not backed up).


First...try it on another machine...
if the problem remains...
Remove the drive and install it internally


I did try it. On three machines. Same thing. It shows up as a "RAW"
unformatted disk.
I'll try other suggestions (if they come in) before I'll actually take
the compartment apart.

I guess your point is that the disk itself might not be bad but that
the "electronics" surrounding the disk might be?
What that the reason for the suggestion to "install it
internally" (I'm sure it won't fit my laptop no matter what I do)?



  #5  
Old November 20th 08, 10:50 PM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general,alt.comp.freeware
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 8
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"

Your URL of http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk_Step_By_Step seems
very useful.
It says, for example two things might happen:
I certainly have the first:
1. Windows Explorer or Disk Manager displays the first primary
partition as raw (unformatted) and Windows prompts: The drive is not
formatted, do you want to format it now?
[You should never do so without knowing why!]

But, do I really have the second?
2. A logical partition is missing. In Windows Explorer, that
logical drive is no longer available. The Windows Disk Management
Console now displays only "unallocated space" where this logical
partition had been located.




On Nov 20, 2:27*pm, Paul wrote:
wrote:
My Western Digital external USB 500GB disk has been working for months
on a variety of *Windows XP Home & Professional machines but all of a
sudden, it is found in Windows but Windows says it's a RAW disk with
no data.


Can a virus convert a perfectly good disk into a "raw" disk (whatever
that is)?
How would I recover the data (some of which is not backed up).


Please help ...


The particulars are ...


My Computer:
- Name: Local Disk (X
- Type: Local Disk
- Total Size: blank
- Free Space blank
- Comments blank


Right-click on the disk and select "Properties":
- General tab
-- Tyype: Local Disk
-- File system: RAW
-- Used space: 0 bytes 0 bytes
-- Free space: 0 bytes 0 bytes
-- Capacity: 0 bytes 0 bytes


Double-click on the disk and up pops a form saying:
Disk is not formated
The disk in drive X: is not formatted.
Do you want to format it now?


Right-click on "My Computer" and select "Manage":
- Disk Management
-- Layout = Partition
-- Type = Basic
-- File System = blank
-- Status = healthy
-- Capacity = 465.75 GB
-- Free Space = 565.75 GB
-- %Free = 100%
-- Fault Tolerance = 0
-- Overhead = 0%


You could try "Testdisk" on it.

http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk_Step_By_Step

Note that Testdisk is a "repair-in-place" utility, and that
makes it dangerous. It can do more damage to the disk, if
something goes wrong. Before using a utility like that,
it is preferable to do a sector-by-sector copy of the
disk, to another disk. If the repair attempt screws up,
then you haven't lost everything. The files are still
there (somewhere).

I've used "dd" in Linux, to copy one drive to another.
The beauty of that technique, is the copy program doesn't
have to know anything about the file system types. It
just copies all the sectors. With that approach, the
destination disk should be the same size or larger than,
the source disk.

Since there is no guarantee that "dd" handles bad
sectors properly, you can also try scanning the disk
first, for bad blocks, to get some idea what you're
up against. I don't know what the best utility is for
that, but I have tried HDTune from HDTune.com on one occasion.
They have a free version for download. Scanning for bad
blocks, is one of its options. If the "bad" disk scans
clean, that means you can safely use "dd" to make an
exact copy.

The reason I am so cautious, is because of an experience
I had years ago. I had a disk, and a utility that was
supposed to copy a duplicate file structure, when the
primary file structure was damaged. To my shock, when
I ran the utility, it copied the bad structure, over
the good one, dooming all my data. (That was a non-Windows
system.) Now, I'm more careful to try to copy the disk first,
because there is really no way to know whether every
corner case has been considered by the repair utility
writer.

* * Paul


  #6  
Old November 20th 08, 10:55 PM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general,alt.comp.virus
[email protected]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 8
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"

On Nov 20, 2:27*pm, Paul wrote:

Since there is no guarantee that "dd" handles bad
sectors properly, you can also try scanning the disk
first, for bad blocks, to get some idea what you're
up against. I don't know what the best utility is for
that, but I have tried HDTune from HDTune.com on one occasion.
They have a free version for download.


I tried the Microsoft Checkdisk program but it reports an error.

C:\G:
The volume does not contain a recognized file system.
Please make sure that all required file system drivers are loaded
and that the volume is not corrupted.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/315265

I'll try your suggested free program to check an external 500GB hard
disk that shows up as a drive letter but as "RAW" format.
  #7  
Old November 20th 08, 11:08 PM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general
Paul
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 13,411
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"

wrote:
Your URL of
http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk_Step_By_Step seems
very useful.
It says, for example two things might happen:
I certainly have the first:
1. Windows Explorer or Disk Manager displays the first primary
partition as raw (unformatted) and Windows prompts: The drive is not
formatted, do you want to format it now?
[You should never do so without knowing why!]

But, do I really have the second?
2. A logical partition is missing. In Windows Explorer, that
logical drive is no longer available. The Windows Disk Management
Console now displays only "unallocated space" where this logical
partition had been located.


The web page I posted, is intended to illustrate the flexibility
of the program. If your problem is less complex than that one,
then it will be simpler to fix (fewer steps, a subset of the
example).

There are undoubtedly other utilities, with nice GUIs on them,
that could also do this repair. What you're trading, by using
a program like Testdisk, is it is free. Due to the nature
of the interface, Testdisk isn't everyone's cup of tea.

Paul

  #8  
Old November 20th 08, 11:39 PM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general,alt.comp.virus
David W. Hodgins
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 134
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"

On Thu, 20 Nov 2008 17:55:32 -0500, wrote:

C:\G:
The volume does not contain a recognized file system.
Please make sure that all required file system drivers are loaded
and that the volume is not corrupted.


Be extremely careful. When m$ software doesn't recognize a valid partition
table on a storage device, simply connecting it, will cause a new partition
table to be written. I found that out the hard way, with a usb memory stick
where the entire device was formatted as a linux filesystem, without a mbr.

Forgot to remove it before booting into windows. Windows overwrote the
first sector with an empty partition table, without any warnings. Didn't
realize what had happened till I tried to read the device in linux, and
viewing it with a hex editor showed an empty partition table.

Regards, Dave Hodgins

--
Change nomail.afraid.org to ody.ca to reply by email.
(nomail.afraid.org has been set up specifically for
use in usenet. Feel free to use it yourself.)
  #9  
Old November 20th 08, 11:59 PM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general,alt.comp.freeware
David H. Lipman
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 408
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"

From:

Please remove; alt.comp.freeware
It is Off Topic subject matter.


--
Dave
http://www.claymania.com/removal-trojan-adware.html
Multi-AV - http://www.pctipp.ch/downloads/dl/35905.asp


  #10  
Old November 21st 08, 12:01 AM posted to alt.comp.hardware,microsoft.public.windowsxp.general
philo
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,277
Default Virus? USB 500GB external hard disk is now "raw format"


wrote in message
...
On Nov 20, 1:48 pm, "philo" wrote:
How would I recover the data (some of which is not backed up).


First...try it on another machine...
if the problem remains...
Remove the drive and install it internally


I did try it. On three machines. Same thing. It shows up as a "RAW"
unformatted disk.
I'll try other suggestions (if they come in) before I'll actually take
the compartment apart.

I guess your point is that the disk itself might not be bad but that
the "electronics" surrounding the disk might be?
What that the reason for the suggestion to "install it
internally" (I'm sure it won't fit my laptop no matter what I do)?



Correct

you need to install it internally in a desktop or tower to try that



 




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