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Thread: External NTFS drive Can't read superblock

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    External NTFS drive Can't read superblock

    Looked all over and can't find a lot of ntfs answers for this.

    Drive is a western digital with 2 partitions, but its only showing up as 1 device, even in /dev

    Try to mount it out of curiosity and get this:

    root@madmike-laptop:/home/madmike# mount /dev/sdb test/
    mount: /dev/sdb: can't read superblock
    root@madmike-laptop:/home/madmike# lsusb
    Bus 001 Device 003: ID 1058:1100 Western Digital Technologies, Inc.
    Bus 002 Device 003: ID 1307:1171 Transcend Information, Inc. Fingerprint Reader
    Bus 002 Device 004: ID 04f2:b109 Chicony Electronics Co., Ltd
    Bus 003 Device 002: ID 0a5c:2151 Broadcom Corp. Bluetooth
    Bus 001 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002 Linux Foundation 2.0 root hub
    Bus 002 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002 Linux Foundation 2.0 root hub
    Bus 003 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
    Bus 004 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
    Bus 005 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
    Bus 006 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
    Bus 007 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
    Bus 008 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
    root@madmike-laptop:/home/madmike# ls /dev/sd
    sda sda1 sda2 sda5 sdb
    Tried regular fsck on it, and got this.

    root@madmike-laptop:/home/madmike# fsck /dev/sdb
    fsck from util-linux 2.20.1
    e2fsck 1.42.5 (29-Jul-2012)
    fsck.ext2: Attempt to read block from filesystem resulted in short read while trying to open /dev/sdb
    Could this be a zero-length partition?
    root@madmike-laptop:/home/madmike# ntfsck /dev/sdb
    Failed to read boot sector.
    Also tried this just in case after googling it:

    root@madmike-laptop:/home/madmike# dumpe2fs /dev/sdb | grep superblock
    dumpe2fs 1.42.5 (29-Jul-2012)
    dumpe2fs: Attempt to read block from filesystem resulted in short read while trying to open /dev/sdb
    Couldn't find valid filesystem superblock.
    So now I'm at a loss. On a windows box it is recognized, but windows just searches for driver and won't ever actually mount it. I've never had to mess with or fix hardware before. Any suggestions?

    EDIT: I should add it was working just fine till today.
    Last edited by madmikeismad; December 3rd, 2012 at 01:05 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: External NTFS drive Can't read superblock

    Bump.

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    2,047

    Re: External NTFS drive Can't read superblock

    /dev/sdb references the drive, not the partitions. You have to mount individual partitions, like this:

    Code:
    mount /dev/sdb1 /mnt
    Yes, I know sdb1 isn't showing up for you. Perhaps you meant to run fdisk on it not "fsck?" Try this:

    Code:
    sudo fdisk -l /dev/sdb
    What's the history of this drive? It's possible the partition table got corrupted...drive could be failing, etc.

    Can you plug in into another computer (a Windows computer) just for fun? Any difference?

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Ubuntu 16.04 Xenial Xerus

    Re: External NTFS drive Can't read superblock

    You cannot run fsck on NTFS formatted partitions. fsck is for the ext Linux family of formats. You have to run chkdsk from Windows.

    chkdsk c: /r

    c: is normally the Windows system partition change to d: or whatever Windows mounts the external as.
    For more info on UEFI boot install & repair - Regularly Updated :
    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2147295
    Please use Thread Tools above first post to change to [Solved] when/if answered completely.

  5. #5
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    Re: External NTFS drive Can't read superblock

    Quote Originally Posted by ahallubuntu View Post
    /dev/sdb references the drive, not the partitions. You have to mount individual partitions, like this:

    Code:
    mount /dev/sdb1 /mnt
    Yes, I know sdb1 isn't showing up for you. Perhaps you meant to run fdisk on it not "fsck?" Try this:

    Code:
    sudo fdisk -l /dev/sdb
    What's the history of this drive? It's possible the partition table got corrupted...drive could be failing, etc.

    Can you plug in into another computer (a Windows computer) just for fun? Any difference?
    fdisk shows absolutely nothing. If I plug into a windows box, windows shows the little icon in the systray saying it's searching for driver, and it just does it forever until I unplug the drive.

    Drive was working fine until this happened. Also, now when I plug it in, disk managers see it as a 2.2Tb drive, even though it's only 1Tb. And I can't do anything but format it. I'm trying to hold off on that until i'm sure I can't recover the data.


    Quote Originally Posted by oldfred View Post
    You cannot run fsck on NTFS formatted partitions. fsck is for the ext Linux family of formats. You have to run chkdsk from Windows.

    chkdsk c: /r

    c: is normally the Windows system partition change to d: or whatever Windows mounts the external as.
    I ran the fsck just for fun, hoping it might give an error I can use, and the ntfsck, and neither worked.

    I'd run chkdsk, but I can't even get it to mount. I'll keep trying though.
    EDIT: Even though it doesn't mount, I tried "chkdsk e: /r" (r was the next letter available, so I assumed), and it says "cannot open volume for direct access"

    Thanks for the replies.
    Last edited by madmikeismad; December 5th, 2012 at 01:44 PM.

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