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#1 2009-03-26 04:36:01

KuroYoma
Member
Registered: 2009-03-15
Posts: 20

Help with recovering a external HD!!

I have a Western Digital 80 gig external HD.  My teacher in Windows Server 2003 tried to install Windows Server on his external and now it won't boot.  He said he tried tons of windows apps but no luck.  I had him to give it to me for a while and I tried a few things.  I tried

sudo mount -t ntfs-3g /dev/sdb /media/test                                    and
sudo mount -t vfat /dev/sdb /media/test

cfdisk does not detect sdb and niether does gparted.  parted does but can't do anything with it. 

dmesg | tail

sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Result: hostbyte=0x00 driverbyte=0x08
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Sense Key : 0x3 [current] 
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] ASC=0x11 ASCQ=0x0
end_request: I/O error, dev sdb, sector 0
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Unhandled sense code
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Result: hostbyte=0x00 driverbyte=0x08
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Sense Key : 0x3 [current] 
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] ASC=0x11 ASCQ=0x0
end_request: I/O error, dev sdb, sector 0
FAT: unable to read boot sector

lsusb

Bus 005 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001  
Bus 004 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001  
Bus 003 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001  
Bus 001 Device 002: ID 1058:0701 Western Digital Technologies, Inc. 
Bus 001 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002  
Bus 002 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001

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#2 2009-03-26 12:22:41

perbh
Member
From: Republic of Texas
Registered: 2005-03-04
Posts: 765

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

mkdir /media/test
mount /dev/sdb1 /media/test

(note that the majority (if not all) external hd's have at least _one_ partition on them)

You could try:
fdisk -l /dev/sdb
to see the partition table

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#3 2009-03-26 12:39:08

KuroYoma
Member
Registered: 2009-03-15
Posts: 20

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

when I type fdisk -l /dev/sdb I get nothing it just returns to [blah@blah ~]  I tried doing it without the -l option and got

Unable to read /dev/sdb

After that command I dmesg | tail

sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Unhandled sense code
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Result: hostbyte=0x00 driverbyte=0x08
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Sense Key : 0x3 [current] 
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] ASC=0x11 ASCQ=0x0
end_request: I/O error, dev sdb, sector 0
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Unhandled sense code
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Result: hostbyte=0x00 driverbyte=0x08
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] Sense Key : 0x3 [current] 
sd 2:0:0:0: [sdb] ASC=0x11 ASCQ=0x0
end_request: I/O error, dev sdb, sector 0

I already had the directory made and it requires me to define the type of partitions.  When i put mount -t vfat /dev/sdb1 /media/test   :

mount: special device /dev/sdb1 does not exist

and dmesg reads after this command the same as above.

sudo sfdisk -s

/dev/sda:  39070080
/dev/sdb:  78150744
total: 117220824 blocks

sudo sfdisk -l

Disk /dev/sda: 4864 cylinders, 255 heads, 63 sectors/track
Units = cylinders of 8225280 bytes, blocks of 1024 bytes, counting from 0

   Device Boot Start     End   #cyls    #blocks   Id  System
/dev/sda1          0+     61      62-    497983+  83  Linux
/dev/sda2         62     185     124     996030   83  Linux
/dev/sda3        186    3785    3600   28917000   83  Linux
/dev/sda4   *   3786    4863    1078    8659035    7  HPFS/NTFS

Disk /dev/sdb: 76319 cylinders, 64 heads, 32 sectors/track
read: Input/output error

sfdisk: read error on /dev/sdb - cannot read sector 0
 /dev/sdb: unrecognized partition table type
No partitions found

Last edited by KuroYoma (2009-03-26 12:47:39)

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#4 2009-03-26 13:00:10

japetto
Member
From: Chicago, IL US
Registered: 2006-07-02
Posts: 183

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

sfdisk: read error on /dev/sdb - cannot read sector 0
 /dev/sdb: unrecognized partition table type

That says it all.

The problem appears to be with the Master Boot Record (MBR).  The MBR resides in Sector 0, and holds the primary partition table.  You could just try reformatting the disk (if the data is expendable) or I would also suggest searching the Western Digital HDD page for a tool to test the drive and try a low level format if available.  My guess is the issue is a defective drive.

Master boot record - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Last edited by japetto (2009-03-26 13:02:32)

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#5 2009-03-26 14:28:38

KuroYoma
Member
Registered: 2009-03-15
Posts: 20

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

I keep seing these errors a lot.

/dev/sdb: unrecognised disk label
/dev/sdb: unrecognised disk label
Input/output error during read on /dev/sdb
Input/output error during write on /dev/sdb
/dev/sdb: unrecognised disk label

so is there anyway for me the make the disk label recognizable. And how do I fix the read write error on my I/O device.

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#6 2009-03-26 15:51:24

perbh
Member
From: Republic of Texas
Registered: 2005-03-04
Posts: 765

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

I would say that the possibilities of there being only _one_ partition are very great - though it worries me that fdisk seemingly does not even recognize the disk as such.
You _could_ try again to use fdisk on it - and if successful, create _one_ partition that spans the whole disk. This will only affect the mbr on the disk, so you are not wiping anything (yet), you are just re-establishing the mbr and hence the partition table.

If you manage to do this - then you can try to mount it it with 'auto' as filetype (which is the default for the mount command) and check /etc/mtab for what kind of filesystem is on it. If it turns out to be ntfs, you need to umount and remount with ntfs-3g to make it writable.

But - seeing fdisk doesn't seem to recognize the disk as a valied block device - I'm afraid the disk is a goner ... :-(

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#7 2009-03-26 18:22:55

R00KIE
Forum Moderator
From: Between a computer and a chair
Registered: 2008-09-14
Posts: 4,378

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

Edit:
Disregard this, sorry for double posting sad my firefox was acting strange and I restated it and it posted by itself >_<

Last edited by R00KIE (2009-03-26 18:44:44)


R00KIE
Tm90aGluZyB0byBzZWUgaGVyZSwgbW92ZSBhbG9uZy4K

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#8 2009-03-26 18:43:13

R00KIE
Forum Moderator
From: Between a computer and a chair
Registered: 2008-09-14
Posts: 4,378

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

First I would try testdisk and see if it could find the partition that was there and restore at least the partition layout. Then I would try what perbh suggests.

You can always try to mount the partition blindly but that may not work, you can do it with:

mkdir my_ext_disk
mount -o offset=n*512 /dev/sda my_ext_disk

where n is an integer (and do the math don't just put 63*512 smile ), a good value to start is 63

If nothing works and if no program can recover any data from the drive (if there is anything important there) then this _may_ get you an usable drive again:

as root or with sudo do:

dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdb bs=512 count=1

Then give fdisk a try again.
This clears _just_ the mbr so the disk should look brand new (with no partitions of course), if any of the tools start working again then try recovering any important data.

On the other hand for sfdisk to complain .... sfdisk should be able to do something with it unless what got written to the mbr is something really weird.
If nothing really works I guess that disk may be dead, if it is under warranty do claim it otherwise I would try plugging it inside a desktop pc.


R00KIE
Tm90aGluZyB0byBzZWUgaGVyZSwgbW92ZSBhbG9uZy4K

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#9 2009-03-26 18:50:19

evilgold
Member
Registered: 2008-10-30
Posts: 120

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

if nothing else, try using ddrescue to image the drive somewhere, then attempt to recover it from there.

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#10 2009-03-27 01:46:55

KuroYoma
Member
Registered: 2009-03-15
Posts: 20

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

I will try these but I do not care about recovering data.  I just want to be able to make it work again.

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#11 2009-03-27 08:03:09

robmaloy
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2008-05-14
Posts: 263

Re: Help with recovering a external HD!!

I/O errors are most likely due to broken hardware

do you have any spare harddisk lying around?

if yes, open the USB case and replace the harddisk to see if the WD one is broken (most likely) or if its the case's  USB-to-IDE converter.

tell your teacher to replace the broken part


☃ Snowman ☃

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