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miltk2
SCSI Port
Posts: 51
Registered: ‎05-21-2016
Location: US
Views: 257
Message 11 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

ok. i'll try to relate all i know.

to start,,originally i was having a problem with an oldxp(12-14yrs old). when that computer went kaput i could still hear the c drive spinning. i therefore thought it was working but somehow just not being recognized any longer.

 

so i bought the enclosures, and the rest you know.

 

i got the 3rd enclosure today. i tried the OTHER drive from that computer - it worked. everything was as expected. i tried the c drive computer. it doesn't work but i still hear it spinning..

 

ummm, is it spinning or not. now i'm not sure- i feel a vibration

working dsk mngmnt.JPGnon-working dsk mngmnt.JPG

miltk2
SCSI Port
Posts: 51
Registered: ‎05-21-2016
Location: US
Views: 256
Message 12 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

also with the non-workinng disk, i see this in "devices and printers" and "device manager"

 

test4e.JPGtest5e.JPG

miltk2
SCSI Port
Posts: 51
Registered: ‎05-21-2016
Location: US
Views: 255
Message 13 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

if the "device is working properly" why can't i see it.

SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,320
Registered: ‎06-13-2013
Location: US
Views: 238
Message 14 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

Well first, you have to now agree that as I suspected the problem isn't with any of the [now] three enclosures you've tried.  The problem is with the HDD spinner drive you're trying to use inside these enclosures, which is 14 years old from an old XP machine.

 

Next, if you look at your Device Manager screenshot (the one that shows the two physical disk drives, the first of which is that "ASM1156-PM" USB Device) I believe you are seeing the identity of whichever one of the three enclosures you were using at that moment, rather than the manufacturer's identity of the "XP hard drive" inside the enclosure.  In contrast you see that the second physical drive is presented as "WDC WD5000AZLX" which is the Western Digital Corp. designation for a 5GB Western Digital Blue HDD spinner drive that they manufacture.  You didn't show a matching Device Manager screenshot for the "working" test, but I will guess it also should show ASM1156-PM if you try and use the same enclosure but with the Seagate drive installed inside of it.

 

Device Manager presents the physical hardware you have, and apparently the enclosure you're currently using identifies itself as ASM1156-PM, whereas the Western Digital HDD spinner internal drive you've got is identifying itself as WD5000AZLX.  It's not unusual for the external enclosure to simply not pass through the identity of the hard drive installed inside of itself, although some enclosure will do that and other enclosures will not.  All of this is perfectly normal, both for enclosures as well as for Device Manager.  But it is interesting and informative.

 

Next, your DISKMGMT.MSC screenshots reveal EXACTLY WHAT I PREDICTED could be one explanation for why there is no Windows drive letter assigned for the one or more partition(s) supposedly on that failing XP drive.  If you look at the top part of the screenshot of the "working" Seagate 320GB drive inside the enclosure, you'll see the drive has only one primary partition on it (allocated to use all of the available 298GB of formatted space), and that in the "File System" column it shows "NTFS".  This is all perfectly normal, and that's why Windows can understand what's on this drive (as passed through from the enclosure).

 

But if you look in the File System column of the non-working disk, you'll see that it is blank!  There is NO RECOGNIZABLE FILE SYSTEM that can be detected, on either small 6GB OEM partition or the large 180GB primary partition.  This is probably an old 200GB drive, partitioned with MBR, with these two "recognizable" partitions neither of which has any usable data inside of them because neither partition seems to any longer have a recognizable file system.  Perhaps the 180GB partition was at one time formatted with FAT (as opposed to FAT32 or NTFS), or maybe something else.

 

But it's not a recognizable Windows-compatible file system at this moment... either because the drive electronics are fried and not working, or because the data's been wiped clean, or who knows what.  I would speculate the drive itself might actually still be usable since the two partitions are "visible".  It's just that neither partition has a readable usable file system on it, which therefore makes it unusable by Windows at the moment.

 

Finally, as I have also repeatedly urged you to do, I believe that this 200GB drive (small as it is and 14 years old and slow as it is) may still actually be usable, IF ONLY YOU WILL INSTALL PARTITON WIZARD and use it to delete these two partitions and create one new NTFS partition on the drive.  This will give you a 186GB NTFS partition with Windows drive letter D, which will no doubt now "work" (i.e. be usable) in any of your three enclosures (same as your Seagate 320GB drive is).

 

Just use Partition Wizard to "DELETE" the two existing partitions which have no file system in them anyway so the data, if any, inside the two partitions is useless.  You will then have 186GB of "unallocated" free space on the drive.

 

Then use Partition Wizrd to "CREATE" a new NTFS partition, using all 186GB of this now unallocated space.  It will get lettered as D, and you'll be off and running.

 

 

So, bottom line: YES, all three enclosures work fine.  YES, the old 200GB drive is most likely also working fine inside of any of these three enclosures.  But because neither the small 6GB OEM partition (like "Lenovo recovery", probably, put there by whoever was the manufacturer of your old XP machine) nor the larger 180GB "data" partition has a readable usable file system on it, current Windows cannot assign a drive letter to either partition.  You MUST have a valid file system (preferably NTFS) in order to assign a drive letter in order to make a partition usable.

 

That's what Partition Wizard will do for you (as I've been urging you to do), in about 5 seconds, namely solve your problem instantly.

 

Of course you might be well advised to spend a few dollars and buy a new modern fast, quiet, much larger, and much more reliable HDD spinner drive if you want to actually add an enclosure/drive to your current machine... replacing this 14 year old tiny and slow 200GB drive you've been fighting with.

miltk2
SCSI Port
Posts: 51
Registered: ‎05-21-2016
Location: US
Views: 234
Message 15 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

the new enclosure is also a cloner  

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06XQH7VHC/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

i am thinking of getting a cheap wd/1tb hd for $40 and just do an off line clone....do-able?

SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,320
Registered: ‎06-13-2013
Location: US
Views: 221
Message 16 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

You've lost me. I don't know what you're talking about now.  This device you now point to has nothing to do with your issue.  You're trying to use that old drive, in an enclosure, as an additional "data" drive for your current PC, right?  What are you talking about with "cloning"??????????????  What does this new device have to do with anything?

 

Your problem is that the 14-year old drive you're trying to use is currently not formatted properly.  It has no "file system" (i.e. NTFS) in either of the two partitions (which both ARE VISIBLE, BUT UNUSABLE) thus making it useless at the moment.  That is why you can't "see it" when you try to use it in any of the two enclosures you say you've tried... BECAUSE THE DRIVE HAS NO FILE SYSTEM IN ITS PARTITONS.  The problem is not with either of these enclosures, but rather with the drive you're using.  Do you follow what I'm saying?

 

An enclosure is a box that allows you to put a drive inside it, and then you plug the power/USB cables in (to the wall and to a PC), and bingo... you can now work with that drive exactly as if it had been installed inside the PC itself.  The only difference is that the drive is not inside the PC, but rather is physically housed in an external enclosure connected with two cables to the PC and to wall power.

 

And from what information and pictures you've provided so far, you have "success" seeing your Seagate drive when you use it in an enclosure... which is because this Seagate drive is properly partitioned and has a proper NTFS file system inside of the partition.  Thus Window "sees it" correctly through the USB cabl connection, and assigns a drive letter of "D" to it when you power it on.

 

In my opinion, I believe you could also have the same "success" with that 14-year old drive which is currently NOT working for you with this mehtod, if only you'd fix the file system on that 180GB partition on it... which IS VISIBLE, but has no NTFS file systekm.  Do you understand?

 

Please... use Macrium Reflect and delete both of the partitions from the 200GB old drive.  And then create one new NTFS partition on it.  You will very likely now have "success" with it, assuming the drive itself really is still working properly and the electronics in it are not somehow fried but that it is usable and can actually still be "written to".  Do you understand what I'm suggesting?

miltk2
SCSI Port
Posts: 51
Registered: ‎05-21-2016
Location: US
Views: 205
Message 17 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

i knew it was the disk problem when i saw that it worked with the other drive

 

i just don't understand the computer logic as to why the disk isn't recognized. i see it,,,i don't UNDERSTAND it.

Highlighted
SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,320
Registered: ‎06-13-2013
Location: US
Views: 180
Message 18 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

You're using ambiguous and generic imprecise terminology, which is adding to your confusion.

 

Regardless of whether a disk drive is (a) installed for use internally inside of your PC case and then connected to the motherboard with a SATA data cable as well as to the power supply with a SATA power cable, or (b) installed for use externally inside of a separate physical enclosure and then the enclosure is connected to wall power with a 12V power adapter as well as being connected (for "data") to a USB port on the PC through a USB cable, there are two aspects of that disk drive which determine whether (a) it is physically seen by the hardware and if so what are the physical characteristics of the drive, and (b) has the drive been "formatted for use" and if so how and what are the current contents of the drive, if any, both allocated "in-use" as well as unallocated "free space".

 

The physical characteristics of the drive include the manufacturer's model number, perhaps firmware version for the drive, total capacity of the drive in bytes, etc.  In order to support access to the data bytes available on the drive, a "partitioning method" is used.  This "partitioning" is a technique by which the total physical capacity of the drive can be sub-divided into smaller "partitions", which might be thought of simply as smaller independent "logical" drives all of which together constitute the one large physical drive.

 

In order to specify how the physical drive is sub-divided into one or more "partitions" (i.e. smaller "logical" drives) one of the two standard partitioning techniques or methods is used (either MBR or GPT, the details and differences of which aren't important at the moment).  A small portion of the drive is reserved for use by MBR/GPT in order to store the "partition table" which contains the low/high sector number for each of the one or more partitions on the drive (where "sector" is the "address of" a specific collection of bytes on the drive, equivalent to identifying a particular location on the disk).

 

As is clearly visible in your screenshot of the "non-working" situation, the drive inside the enclosure shows TWO PARTITONS: one is the 6GB partition (shown as "healthy (OEM partition)", and the other of which is a 180GB partition (shown as "healthy (active, primary partition)".  This says lots of things, all of which are GOOD.  First it says that the "partition table" on the drive is present, in good shape, and visible and readable by the computer BIOS hardware which has passed the low/high sector information for both partitions to DISKMGMT.MSC for presentation in this window.  We see on the left that there is 186GB of "formatted capacity", which suggests to me that this is actually most likely a 200GB raw byte capacity drive, with 14GB of it having been used up to create "sectors", partitions, etc., leaving the remaining 186GB for sub-division into one or more partitions.  In your case TWO PARTITIONS were created 14 years ago, and they are still physically "visible" by the PC hardware and DISKMGMT.

 

The second aspect of EACH OF THE ONE OR MORE PARTITIONS on the drive is the "internal data contents" on that partition.  This pertains to allocated folders, sub-folders, and files, as well as unallocated free space.  All of this information is catalogued in a "Table of Contents" through and organizational method named the "file system" for that partition.  In order for Windows to be able to use and manage the data contents of any partition, every partition MUST HAVE A FILE SYSTEM on it (i.e. "table of contents for that partition").  If there is no "table of contents" (i.e. "file system") present inside the partition, Windows has no way to know what folders/sub-folders and files are, where they start and end, what their names are, what date they were created/modified/accessed on, who created them, etc..

 

Although it should normally never be the case that a partition exists without also having some "file system" present inside the partition which provides the "table of contents" for that partition, that appears to be the case fo your problem drive.  That's proven by the screenshot from DISKMGMT which has blank space up in the field of the "file system" column for the two partitions.  That is impossible, and yet it is true.  How did that happen?  I don't know.  Might it indicate a physically defective drive, whose electronic ability to read/write data might have gotten fried, so that the "file system" table of contents is simply no longer readable?  That's possible too.

 

Might there be some other logical reason why the "file system" has disappeared (since it HAD to be present originally when the drive got partitioned, as creating an empty "table of contents" on that partition is just something which is automatically always performed when partitioning a drive? Yes as well.  When that 180GB partition got created, its "file system" also had to have been created.  But it's not there now and we will never know how it disappeared. There's no real Windows authorized method for vaporizing a "file system".  You simply can't do it.  And yet... we know it's currently now gone.  Somehow.  But in truth it is gone.

 

In contrast, it's obvious that your 320GB Seagate drive is "working properly", and that NTFS shows up as the "file system" for its one partition.  And because Windows can read the "table of contents" for that partition on the working Seagate drive, Windows went ahead and assigned a drive letter (of D) to it.  And that's why you can access the folders/sub-folders/files on that D partition when the Seagate drive is in one of your several enclosures... because (a) the partition table is in good shape, and (b) the NTFS file system is in good shape.

 

But for the defective 200GB drive has what might be an otherwise usable 180GB partition on it, but the "file system" has somehow gotten vaporized, for reasons we will never know.  And that's what makes this drive UNUSABLE BY WINDOWS AT THE MOMENT, because there is no "file system" present. The drive is apparently powered up and spinning, and the partition table is present so that the drive shows up in DISKMGMT.MSC, but because the "file system" has somehow been disappeared the partition is unsuable for Windows.  Hence Windows does not assign a drive letter to that partition, and you cannot access it through Windows for purposes of "data".

 

However... all you have to do is re-partition this 200GB drive today, using Partition Wizard (or DISKPART, or any other available technique), and there is a possiblity we can bring the drive back to usable useful life.  As long as the drive itself has not truly been electrically fried and thus is now truly defective and physically unusable, if the drive still really works and we can re-partition it from scratch (and thereby also reinstall an initialized empty NTFS "file system" table of contents on that partition) then the drive should magically spring back to life immediately thereafter.

 

Just use Partition Wizard to DELETE the two partitions currently on that physical drive.  This will produce 186GB in total of "unallocated" free space.  Then use Partition Wizard to CREATE let's say just one new partition (opting for NTFS as the file system), using up all of that 186GB free space and assigning a drive letter of D to that partition.  All of this can be done by Partition Wizard when you then push the APPLY button.

 

30 seconds later, you will have this drive usable for you again, because we've now re-partitioned the drive to use all 186GB for one new partition, and also simultaneously installed an initialized proper NTFS "file system" on it.  This completely satisfies the Windows requirements, and you're now in business (with either of the first two enclosures you bought), just like with the Seagate drive.

 

Hope this wasn't too dramatic.  But if you simply follow my instructions and use Partition Wizard, this whole story will be over in under 1 minute from now.

miltk2
SCSI Port
Posts: 51
Registered: ‎05-21-2016
Location: US
Views: 169
Message 19 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

is the free version all i need?

SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,320
Registered: ‎06-13-2013
Location: US
Views: 162
Message 20 of 46

Re: enabling enclosures

That's all you need... the free version.  It contains 97% of full functionality, and what's also available only in the non-free version is strictly for experts who might need some extra-special capability for the rarest of needs.

 

Also, as I've said previously, the free version will offer you some 3rd-party software install which is pre-checked to install by default at one point along the way, unless you un-check it when given the opportunity during the Partition Wizard Free install dialog.  Something like AVG anti-virus, etc., which even even if you miss seeing it or forget to un-check to "opt-out" you can always still UNINSTALL whatever you might accidentally let get installed, after the fact. But I just give you a heads-up here to point out that the installation dialog allows you to opt-out of installing the other software product, by just un-checking the offer box which is pre-checked by default. This will prevent this accidental unwanted 3rd-party software install from ever occurring.  And this has zero effect on the install of Partition Wizard Free which will still be performed normally and completely, even if you opt-out of the other software product being offered.

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