External Drive is showing 0 capacity, 0 free space

By ecusicanqui ·
My 250 GB Seagate External backup drive (about 2 years old) was working fine and I only use it about 2-4 times a month for backup purposes. When transferring some data I received an error message that windows could not find the path directory and the drive was no longer showing up under My Computer. This happened before a month ago and was corrected after a restart. Though this time, when I restarted the PC, the drive came up as the F local drive instead of the usual E drive and it was empty. When I opened up its properties it showed 0 capacity and 0 free space. Getting a bit nervous that I had lost about 175Gb of archives, I connected the external drive to my laptop only to find the same properties coming up on the F drive (again skipping the available E drive space). Any help is much appreciated.

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You need to look in Drive Management

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to External Drive is showing ...

To see what is actually being shown as present not My Computer.

But my best guess is that you either have shut down the computer without using the Safely remove Option First or you have unplugged the HDD without using the Safely Remove Option and the partition Information has been corrupted.

Shutting down the computer with the external drive running does not shut down the external drive correctly it just removes the power from it and will eventually cause the Partition Information to disappear.

As for loosing the Data on the Drive depending if the drive still actually works you can use any Data Recovery Application to recover your Data here is a short list of some that are available though you should use Seatools first to test the HDD to make sure that it is actually working.















While the last 2 are from the same company they are very different products. Win Hex should only be considered for use by someone who knows Hex Inside Out while Davory is a great cheap General Purpose Application.

Personally I prefer the On Track Option but it's anything but cheap. However because I use this type of software a lot it's paid for itself many times over by now, for a cheaper option Spin Rite from Gibson Research or Stella have both very good reputations by other TR members.

Seagate however recommend 1365 but as they are the ones selling it that isn't surprising.



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Still Struggling

by ecusicanqui In reply to You need to look in Drive ...

Thanks for the prompt reply. I am not sure how the HDD became corrupted but windows basically failed to find the directory path in the middle of a file transfer.

As to your recommendations, I tried the following programs with evaluation copies to check if they could detect the error:

o Seagate Tools: Could not find the drive
o PC Inspector: When checking the Bios and scanning for drive ? ?NT read error 2, drv: 129 LBA:0 blocks:1?
o Archive Partition Recovery: Doesn?t show drive
o Davory: When scanning for drives, I got the following message, ?Error #10?
o File Recovery for Windows: Drive appears but cannot perform any task on it.
o On Track Option Easy Recovery Professional: Test Results: Partition test for volume F: Failed!
Partition test for drive F failed, critical system structure errors have been found. Run the Full Diagnostic Test, from the DriveTests tool, on the drive containing the partition to verify if your drive has any physical problems. If you ARE experiencing a data loss situation, you should run the applicable tools in the Data Recovery category to recover lost data. I did not run a full Diagnostic Test because this was only a trial evaluation.

I would hate to find out that there is a physical problem with the drive because it is relatively new with minimal use. I will also be checking in with Seagate to see if this is a common problem with their drives. Any further recommendations are appreciated


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You need to test the drive with Seagate's

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Still Struggling

Utility available here. But you will need to get the correct Test Utility so if this is in a Seagate Enclosure you will need to pick that Type of External HDD


So you need to click on the Free Agent if it is a Free Agent Drive and so on.

However if this is not in a Seagate Enclosure open the Enclosure and fit the HDD to a Computer to test. If Seatools fails the HDD it's Either Dead or the USB Interface Card is damaged and you then need to open the case remove the HDD and test in a Computer. If it passes the Second Test you can then go about recovering your Data but you will need to replace the Enclosure.

Ideally you should use a USB Enclosure like this one


The MX1 is Actively Cooled so the HDD will never overheat which is one of the biggest killers of them and the Circuit Board that goes between the USB Lead and the HDD. The MX1 also supports ISATA and comes with the required parts to fit inside the computer to allow a ISATA connection and Faster Data Transfers.

Ideally you should fit your Own HDD to Good USB Enclosures to get the best results but this will be more expensive than buying one off the shelf but you will get longer life out of the HDD and better Reliability if you use an Active Cooling Enclosure. One with a Fan in it to pass air over the drive to keep it cool which are not fitted to any of the External Drives made by any of the HDD Makers.

Seagate will replace the Drive without a problem but they will not recover your Data as that is not their responsibility so it is up to you to protect your Data and pay for the recovery if required. Seagate will however accept the Documents from a HDD Recovery Service along with the damaged drive and replace it Under Guarantee so at the very least you will not be out of pocket for the Drive but you should check with Seagate in your Country First before proceeding along this path. You need to deal directly with Seagate not one of their resellers for things like this.


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Seems to have been a problem with the enclosure

by ecusicanqui In reply to You need to test the driv ...

Thanks for the suggestion. When I connected the HDD directly to the PC, I was able to find the data. I ran some tests on the HDD, using the Seagate tools and it looks ok. I?ll be looking to replace the enclosure with something a bit more proper as you suggested and add some other backup system such as DVDs.

Thanks again!

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Your Welcome

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Seems to have been a prob ...

Sorry for the delay in answering but I have not been receiving any Updates from TR for a few days now.


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