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  1. #1
    Platinum Lounger
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    400GB hard drive (WinXP)

    In <post:=555,455>post 555,455</post:> I said I'd succesfully accessed my 400GB drive after installing Windows XP updates.
    About four weeks ago the drive died. I used my old 80GB as an interim backup.
    Now I'm trying to use the 400GB and failing.
    WinXP says it is unformatted, but it will format it at 127GB for me.
    I have (May 31 2006) downloaded and installed all WinXP patches from Microsoft, rebooted.
    I have esayed with big_drive_enabler.exe from Maxtor, as it looked like a generic registry fix; rebooted.

    I could reinstall XP and see if that makes any difference, but I'd rather not.
    I have a suspicion that a WinXP update that occurred after my post might have un-done my 400GB capability.

    As I have about 3 months backup on there, I'd rather not re-format it (hence my painfully slow and careful path to date),
    But if I do have to reformat it, I'd like to work out how to get back to the full bloom of 400GB that I had back in January this year.

    Any suggestions, before I re-install WinXP?

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: 400GB hard drive (WinXP)

    What service pack are you on?

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    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: 400GB hard drive (WinXP)

    It sounds to me more like a BIOS issue then.
    Have you followed the instructions in MSKB: 303013 and/or re-run the Maxtor utility thingy?

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    Re: 400GB hard drive (WinXP)

    I found this <post:=233,774>post 233,774</post:> and followed the instructions.
    It seems that I (somehow) no longer running NFTS, and would appreciate a nudge in the right direction.

    My BigBeigeBox looks like this (Disk1 is the 400GB that WinXP/SP2 says can now be formatted to 127gb):
    <IMG SRC=http://www.chrisgreaves.com/BBB400GB_1.JPG> .
    When I essay at the command prompt I get this:
    <IMG SRC=http://www.chrisgreaves.com/BBB400GB_2.JPG> .

    In all of this I'm puzzled that it was running at 400GB for 4 months, and then suddenly the system seems changed.

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    Re: 400GB hard drive (WinXP)

    I'm deeply concerned to suggest anything, since you say you have data on this drive that you don't want to lose. We all know we'll likely never know what got you in this predicament, BUT if you've been using the drive at its full capacity AND you do run WinXP, then that physical drive must have been formatted with NTFS to start with. WinXP would not allow you to format it with FAT32 to such a large size. My concern is that your screenshot shows the D: drive without any indication of what the file system is and, as I said, it must have initially been formatted with NTFS. I guess if it were me, I would try using the CONVERT command rather than extend, and try to convert the D: drive to NTFS and see what the command tells you. The main reason I would try that is to see if, in the convert process it would "take back" that 244 gig of so-called unallocated space.

    Please think hard before you try, for you just MAY lose everything on the drive and I hate to see that happen.

    By the way, I don't think this is a BIOS problem because the disk manager does recognize that it's a 400 gig drive, albeit 372.61 GB.

  6. #6
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    Re: 400GB hard drive (WinXP)

    Thanks Al. I'm thinking hard. My motto in these matters is "do nothing", for that seems to put on the brakes.

    I'll try the convert, but first I'm going to suss out those recovery firms and see how much they charge to resurrect what's on there.
    The elapsed time and the research time are creeping way up beyond the cost of a payment to get the data secured and get on with life.

    >I don't think this is a BIOS problem
    Thanks for this confirmation.

    More and more I'm convinced that it's a WinXP upgrade or some other software installation that trigered the problem.
    This weekend I might re-install WinXP on that machine and install updates carefully until i can reogniose the hard drive.
    If that fails, it's off to one of the disk doctors.

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    Re: 400GB hard drive (WinXP)

    If you have NOT installed SP1 and SP2 then that may be the problem.
    When XP was released a 100 GB drive was large, and I think 127 was the limit. SP1 increased that limit.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

  8. #8
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    Re: 400GB hard drive (WinXP)

    Further thoughts:
    I'd just composed a message (not sent) to two local recovery srevices. I planned to drop off the cruddy drive together with a new one of identical make and have them transfer data. I reasoned that I can save myself some cash by purchasing and formatting the new drive myself, rather than paying them, and dropping it off (and collecting it).
    Then it dawned on me that since I was getting into multiple backup/archives, I ought to just go and purchase an identical drive and format that before I do anything else.

    I'm moving to using 2x400GB drives anyway, so if it truly is a problem with the first drive, the second will format correctly, then I'll know.
    OTOH if I can't format the spanking new drive, then clearly(?) the problem is with my WinXP installation, and it's time for a rebuiild of the OpSys.

    Right?

  9. #9
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    Re: 400GB hard drive (WinXP)

    > If you have NOT installed SP1 and SP2
    Oh, but I have.
    Automated updates on both machines.
    I have a feeling that either a WinXP patch or a some other package has corrupted some DLL or similar.
    The drive suddenly wasn't recognised one day, when I slid it in as a backup.
    Previous day we did the backup as usual. This day nada. WinXP has a habit of telling me when I Power Off "Not to worry; I'll just slip this patch in and power off when I'm done; you go to bed and have a good sleep".
    I don't sleep so well any more .......

  10. #10
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    Re: 400GB hard drive (SATA)

    From Logic Computer House a solid firm; I've done business with them before: <pre>Seagate ST3400633AS (NCQ 3Gb/s) Barracuda 400G 8MB 11MS 7200rpm SATA II Product #4832 - Cash Price: $209.99 Reg. Price: $216.99
    Seagate ST3400633A Barracuda 400GB 16MB 8.5MS 7200RPM IDE Product #4794 - Cash Price: $212.99 Reg. Price: $219.99</pre>


    They no longer stock my 7200.8, so these (above) are the closest I can find.
    For an extra $cdn 3 I can shave 2.5ms of the access time and transfer twice as quickly - neither enhancement being of interest to me, since these are background backup/archive slaves.

    But the SATA qualification intrigues me. What is it, and why would I care?

    This review tells me that my current drive is a SATA drive; I never knew!
    This article tells me that my motherboard etc. should be compatible; but it must be, because I was using the 400GB drive for months. (Sudden thought! Given that I was installing all this and my new laptop over the Christmas break, perhaps i wasn't really paying attention, and it never did format as 400GB. No, surely not. I would have drooled gleefully over a massive 400GB for at least a minute, no?)
    It tells me too to "download the latest SATA controller drivers from the manufacturers site". I should try this now.
    This article tells me SATA stands for "Serial ATA", as in "The new Serial ATA technology is poised to improve the performance and reliability of your system." OTOH the same article says that the 40-wide ribbon cables are replaced by slimmer cables (I'm still using the 40-wide) and that "The only difference you'll see in the SATA drive is the connector scheme (and the absence of drive jumpers).", but my drive has jumper pins; so maybe mine isn't the 7200.8 SATA drive after all.


    (next Day)
    Purchased a Seagate 300GB for about $140. The Big Beige Box (WinXP/SP2) recognises it as 300GB, and foprmats it as 300GB, so WinXP is OK.
    That suggests that my 400GB is NOT OK for some reason.

  11. #11
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    Re: 400GB hard drive (SATA)

    If I may I'd like to suggest that when you post NEW information you should make a new post; whereas if you change something, correct a typo or clarify something, a post EDIT is a good idea. For those of us who use the Lounge's Watched Threads feature, your edit doesn't show up.

    Now you didn't say, and I'd like a clarification on whether my earlier comments were correct: Did you format this new drive with WinXP and if so, is its file system NTFS? Is this new drive an external USB device?

  12. #12
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    Re: 400GB hard drive (SATA)

    > Did you format this new drive with WinXP
    Yes. I unplugged the 400GB from the removable tray, plugged in the 300GB and away we went. Same machine, same OS, nothing upgraded or re-installed AFAIK.

    > Is its file system NTFS?
    yes, it is reported as NTFS

    >Is this new drive an external USB device?
    No. It is a regular IDE, looks just like the 6GB drive I bought 8 years ago.
    And judging by the comments of the sales clerk, it is probably the last IDE I'll buy. He told me he no longer had the 400GB IDE and wasn't restocking them.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  13. #13
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    Re: 400GB hard drive (SATA)

    That's clear. Well, I don't know what you decided about spending the $$ on a recovery service, but before I'd junk that other drive, I think I'd try that convert thing to see what happens. If you decided to try format again (since the machine insisted on the smaller size!) I would get myself a Win98SE boot floppy with the format command on it and do it from that diskette, rather than the hard drive. Anything to keep from throwing away a possibly good drive.

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    Re: 400GB hard drive (SATA)

    >try that convert thing to see what happens.
    Oh yes, that's definitely in the pipeline.
    Right now I'm (a) formatting the 300GB, ([img]/forums/images/smilies/cool.gif[/img] surface checking all three drives, backing up both my main C: drive and the interim backup (80GB) to the new 300GB drive (d) testing my modified backup procedure to make sure it is making two backup copies (80GB and 300GB) before proceeding (e) considering getting treatment for my paranoia (grin)
    Once I have a backup back in place I'll try the convert and see what happens.
    Remember that my plan was to get a form to resurrect the 400GB, but figured that I may as well provide my own formatted new drive, as p[ay them to be doing things I could do my self.
    So far my new 300GB drive has shown me that it seems not to be a problem with Windows.
    I've changed my tune.
    I'm wondering now whether I really did format the 400GB to 400GB, or whether in my haste/eagerness I'd formatted it only to 127GB and by April it had filled that up, and somehow "imploded" under the strain.
    That is, I may well have 127GB on there, but with a ragged edge.

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    Re: 400GB hard drive (SATA)

    I realize that I am coming into this thread very late sorry. I just want to pass along that every time I have had a hdd fail or cause problems it has been a Maxtor. I have had three over the years that have caused me great pain. Just my two cents on this, I would blame (biased) the Maxtor as having something wrong.

    Good Luck!
    Bret

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