External Hard Drive not recognized

By Ramz ยท 18 replies
Mar 29, 2009
  1. I have been trying all day trying to get my external hard drive to be recognized by WinXp but its not working and really beginning to annoy me.

    I check the Device Manager and can see my Maxtor HD there, but when I click My Computer its not there.

    Also when I click the USB controllers in device manager I can't see the USB Mass Storage, whereas I can see all the other USB devices.

    Also when I click the Manage and then Disk Management I can only see my C Drive and no other drives.

    When I plugged the USB cable in it said 'new hardware found' but thats all it says, I can't seem to get it to work. I have tried everything.

    Hope somebody can help me.
  2. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

  3. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I have tried the methods provided and still didn't work. Hope somebody can help me
  4. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    Then need some more detail on just what you've done/where it fails.

    Please confirm the following. As i understand from your posts as regards Part1, Initial Troubleshooting
    Step 3a is OK
    Steb 3b is OK
    Steb 3c you say you don't see the new drive appear.
    ==> Have you run the test as described and looked for ANY changes appear in Disk Management's Disk View found in the window's lower pane?
    => Did you change the view to Disk List as described?
    => Do you see ANY change in disk list (even if you don't see your drive listed has anything in Disk List changed?)
  5. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Yes I have done the step 3c.. but I can't see no External HD in the disk view only C drive.. I will post a few images of what is going on
  6. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    i tried the steps again and same
  7. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Im about to post images of what the problem is.. I just want to be fixed, because I have alot of work on my external drive
  8. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I have posted a few images of what is going on:-

    Image 1 - [​IMG]

    Image 2 - [​IMG]

    Image 3 - [​IMG]

    Image 4 - [​IMG]
  9. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    You need to do two things:

    1) Plug your device into a DIFFERENT computer to see if
    => it works
    => you have exact same problem (i.e. No USB Mass Storage Device)
    => you have some different problem

    2) Download and run Everest Home. From top of Everest window:
    • Click File->Preferences
      • Check English
      • Still under Preferences click Report, uncheck Include Debug Information
      • Close Preferences window
    • Click Report->Report Wizard->Next. Click Custom selection Now only check items
      • Computer->Summary
      • Storage
      • Devices->Windows devices and Devices->Physical Devices
      • Generate report in plain text
    • Attach the report file to a TechSpot post. When you create your TechSpot post, use the paper clip icon to attach the report. (If you don't see it among your icons, you need to click the TechSpot Go Advanced button towards bottom of window)

    /**** EDIT ***/
    And the disk device you noted i think is your INTERNAL disk drive!????:suspiciou

    Confirm if your USB is really showing up (e.g. is the Maxtor listed when the USB is unplugged? I will guess "no"!. Watch what's changing when the USB external is plugged in
  10. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I have tried it on another computer and same it doesnt say new hardware found and no USB Mass Storage. When I have unplugged my USB cable and the maxtor still shows up on disk drives in device manager. Ive tried it again and nothing comes up.. no new hardware found nothing.
  11. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    1. The maxtor you see in disk drives (whether the USB is plugged in or not, right?) is your INTERNAL hard drive and not your USB drive. That's why it appears regardless of whether the USB drive is plugged in or not
    2. If you see the same thing happening on other computers too (i.e. plug in the USB drive and the disk drive does not even appear under disk drives) either
      • The USB drive power supply is bad (does it have an AC adapter)?
      • The USB drive enclosure is bad (you can buy a new enclosure and move the drive into new enclosure to test it
      • The drive itself is bad
  12. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Oh right thanks for the clear up. It has the AC Adapter, I have tried every plug in my room and it doesnt work. Is there any other way? I have the Maxtor 500GB
  13. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    So it seems pretty clear that Windows (on your computer or any other computer) can't even detect the external USB drive (else you should at least see a new disk appear in Disk Devices).
    => to be extra sure, when the USB drive is plugged in and connected to computer, carefull look device manager at every device (expanding every category) to see if any yellow question mark icons (which would indicate if any unknown devices are detected)

    Otherwise, is clearly a problem with the external drive.

    1) Have you tried using a different USB cable (make sure cable isn't bad)

    2) The next step is to buy a new external disk enclosure. You then remove the hard drive from the old enclosure, and move it / put in the new enclosure
    • Only involves unscrewing the old enclosure and possible screws holding the drive to the enclosure itself
    • You'll see a ribbon cable connected to the drive. The cable has a long rectangular plastic piece at the ribbon's end. When removing the ribbon cable just hold the plastic rectangular cable end firmly on both sides while you pull it straight back (as you don't want to bend any of the pins that connect the hard drive to the ribbon cable)
    • Also good to ground yourself (touch some metal around you to discharge any static electricity) before you touch the drive.

    Do the reverse procedure to connect ribbon cable of new enclosure to the drive when you move it.

    Hope it works in the new enclosure!
  14. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    ive tried on a friends laptop and nothing was found.. no new hardware. Is there anyway I can open the Maxtor 500GB or is there anyway i can get my files recovered.
  15. Spyder_1386

    Spyder_1386 TS Booster Posts: 498

    Hi Ramz

    You've asked for a way to recover your files from the HD. This implies that the HD was working previously and now it isn't. When did it stop working? Also, are any other USB devices you plug in working correctly? Are they being recognised or detected by XP?

    Spyder_1386 :)
  16. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Hey spyder.. it stopped working yesterday for no apparent reason. I have tried other USB devices like my phone USB cable and windows detects it perfectly. When I connect my USB HD windows doesnt detect nothing. I have tried every method possible but it doesnt work.
  17. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184


    Did you read through my last post????? ( i posted it even before your last question!) :confused: read it through it again for your next steps.
  18. Ramz

    Ramz TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Yeah i did read your last post and tried several times and looked at device manager really closely and nothing was changed. I had no yellow mark question there.
  19. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +184

    And then??

    Did you try a different USB cable?

    Have you bought a new USB hard drive enclosure and moved the drive into the new enclosure and tested it?
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