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Thread: How to access files on external HDD that won't mount?

  1. #1
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    How to access files on external HDD that won't mount?

    Oh well, here we go. Undoubtedly a noobish question, please be gentle with me...

    Some time ago I bought a Fujitsu Siemens 500GB HDD. One day it stopped working. To be precise: I plug it in, the blue light comes on, and it goes click click whirr click click whirr click click whirr whirr whirr (repeat as necessary).

    I had most of the stuff on that drive backed up, so its malfunction was not too great a loss. I bought a new HDD and all continued as normal.

    But I have now decided I want to try and fix the Fujitsu Siemens drive, or at least retrieve what files are retrievable. The problem is, it doesn't mount. Its light comes on, it makes the whirry sounds, but my computer doesn't see it.

    Is there a way to get at the files on the drive? If so, how? (I no nothing about data retrieval, so a bit of n00b speak would be appreciated. I'm using Ubuntu 12.04 64-bit on a Packard Bell EasyNote laptop.

    Cheers!
    "All people are scum. No matter what they look like." ~ Spider Jerusalem, Transmetropolitan #4
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    Maryland
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    Kubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: How to access files on external HDD that won't mount?

    That sounds kind of grim. If the drive is making those kinds of noises, I think the drive has a mechanical failure (possibly) and it's not going to be easy (maybe even not possible) to recover.

    However, I recently found this article that was intriguing. The article suggests that as long as BIOS can see the hard drive, you might still have a chance (albeit slim) to recover data:

    http://geekyprojects.com/storage/how...ve-is-damaged/

    Seems like a cool rainy day project to try anyway.

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Re: How to access files on external HDD that won't mount?

    Thanks for the link, I'll have a good read when temporal conditions allow.
    "All people are scum. No matter what they look like." ~ Spider Jerusalem, Transmetropolitan #4
    blog


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Hidden!
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    Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot

    Re: How to access files on external HDD that won't mount?

    Short of moving the platters to another drive (don't bother trying), you're very unlikely to get anywhere.

    A 'whirrr click whirr click' means that the arm is probably shagged, or completely misaligned; you could try a sharp jarring, or one of the many other fluke techniques (boiling/freezing/anointed Yak urine/...), but on the off-chance it does start working, it won't be for long.

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