Disk status suddenly 'not initialised' - Can i fix/repair this?

Discussion in 'Storage Devices' started by markey164, Mar 1, 2007.

  1. markey164

    markey164 Geek Trainee

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    Evening guys,

    Looking for some help. I have a 250GB SATA II disk (approx 1 year old) which has been working fine up until now.

    Suddenly, although it appears in the promise raid bios boot screen, in Windows it is no longer visible.

    Checking disk management shows the disk displayed as 'not initialized'.

    Now obviously this status usually appears for 'new' disks, but this is not the case here. From doing some digging it appears the disk may have lost its disk signature and/or MBR.

    I have a lot of valuable data on this disk (unfortunately not backed up, although it will be the first thing i'll do if i recover from this!!)

    What steps should i take to recover from this please?

    Additionally, if i follow the 'initialize disk' wizard, will this simply fix the disk, or will it wipe the existing data on it during the process?

    Thanks

    Mark
  2. RHochstenbach

    RHochstenbach Administrator Staff Member

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    If you initialise a disk, it will be mounted as a drive. You will only lose your data, if you would format it.
  3. markey164

    markey164 Geek Trainee

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    Ok i went through the initialize disk wizard.

    Now it says online, but 232GB Unallocated. In fact there is 230GB of actual data on it. Does this mean i've lost it all?

    If not how do i restore/fix it?
  4. donkey42

    donkey42 plank

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    you killed you data by initializing the disk, you could try some freeware utils to restore your data but the only way to guarentee you data retreival, a firm that specialises in data recovery - although that v expensive[ot]i think they charge by the number of Gb they retreive[/ot]
  5. markey164

    markey164 Geek Trainee

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    Oh great, are you serious. It only took a few seconds, so the data must still physically be on the disk.

    So i shouldn't have followed the advice of post #2then? What should i have done instead for reference?

    would a fixdisk /mbr or something similar fix the disk in this situation. It seems like it has lost its partition table or something. Which is why it thinks the space is unallocated.

    anyone else any suggestions that might fix this?

    MArk
  6. donkey42

    donkey42 plank

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    yeah, that's why i suggested trying some freeware utiities, here is a google search [google]freeware data recovery software[/google]

    that depends, was the drive making any clicking noises and you could have downloaded a utility .iso (bootable CD image) from the HDD manufactures website[ot]with Seagate drives their utility CD is called Seatools, Seatools can destroy data but you have to agree to wipe the data twice[/ot]

    dunno,
    Code:
    Fdisk /mbr
    used to just wipe the MBR (Master Boot Record) but XP can do so much more[ot]but i not expert in XP cos i use linux, i hate Win[/ot]all i know about XP is what i've picked up on HWF[ot]although i did use XP (over a year ago) but i wouldn't say i knew a lot about XP[/ot]
  7. markey164

    markey164 Geek Trainee

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    Ok have now fixed the disk and all seems ok. So data wasnt killed fortunately.

    For reference this was what i did.

    Suspected cause: symptoms suggested partition table possibly damaged.

    Steps taken to fix:
    Downloaded Partition Table Doctor 3.5
    Used the dropdown list to select the faulty disc (this was a data disk not the boot disk)
    Clicking the browse button revealed that the data folders were still visible (good sign)
    Selected option to rebuild partition table.
    Rebooted PC
    Disk now visible and working correctly again.

    Thanks for your help guys.
  8. donkey42

    donkey42 plank

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