External Drive - Used as single partition - showing in TestDisk but not recovering

How to use TestDisk to recover lost partition
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nabeelkc
Posts: 4
Joined: 17 Jul 2018, 11:42

External Drive - Used as single partition - showing in TestDisk but not recovering

#1 Post by nabeelkc » 17 Jul 2018, 13:26

Hi all,

I have a 4TB WD external drive that I was using as removeable storage. The whole drive was a partition. No further divisions. For some reason it stopped working due to some power issue. After getting the power issue worked out, when I reconnected I was unable to see my content. Currently it shows as below in the disk management.
Disk Management pic.png
Disk Management pic.png (47.79 KiB) Viewed 396 times
Right now I have connected the drive through a SATA to USB2.0 connector. When I run testdisk on it, the drive shows up as a single drive along with my main drive from the laptop.

After searching for lost partitions, testdisk does find the old single partition and shows it as:
testdisk 3.png
testdisk 3.png (41.88 KiB) Viewed 396 times
At this stage when I press "p" to have a look at the files, I can see it list all the files and folders perfectly fine. The whole drive and its contents are visible.

So I followed some steps from different forums/youtube and tried to get this drive running. After finding this lost partition, I pressed enter on the "Write" option to get this partition written and restarted the computer as per the instructions. But still the drive is not recovered and it still shows up as above in disk management.

Next I tried to change the type of the drive to logical and then restarted the computer after write command and now it shows the following when I "analyse":
testdisk 2.png
testdisk 2.png (38.85 KiB) Viewed 396 times
Finally, I tried to rebuild the boot sector figuring maybe that is the problem. So I went into advanced options as per the testdisk guidelines and chose the rebuildBS command. Once it was complete I tried to view the files but it gave an error saying the file system is not right. I did not write the boot sector as the instructions only said to proceed if you can see files.

I am pretty sure I screwed up somewhere and that is why I have these multipe drives and sector errors showing up. The good thing is that the data is still intact and visible and browseable through testdisk.

Could someone guide me through the steps needed to just get this old partition active and get rid of all this duplicate information.

It would be a huge help!

Thanks everyone!

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cgrenier
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Re: External Drive - Used as single partition - showing in TestDisk but not recovering

#2 Post by cgrenier » 18 Jul 2018, 05:58

Your disk was using 4k sector, it's now detected as using 512 bytes sector only.
HDD using 512 bytes sector and PC Intel partition table are limited to 2 TB partition.
A workaround is to use EFI GPT as it supports disks over 2 TB: run TestDisk, select the disk, EFI GPT, Analyse, Quick Search, Write, confirm, Quit, restart your computer and try to access your data.

nabeelkc
Posts: 4
Joined: 17 Jul 2018, 11:42

Re: External Drive - Used as single partition - showing in TestDisk but not recovering

#3 Post by nabeelkc » 28 Jul 2018, 16:19

Thank you cgrenier for your reply.

I wasn't able to get to doing this before due to some power issues in my area and I didn't want to risk connecting the drive in such conditions.

I followed your instructions and it found the drive again. I restarted the computer and now I can the drive as one whole drive in the windows explorer.

But still it shows as a RAW drive without any recognizable filing system for windows. Even though the data is still there. When I press "p" in the utility, it still lists all the files.

The error is however still there regarding the mismatch of sectors.

Any ideas on what I should do to bring back the table so that I can access data from explorer again.

Thank you so much for your help!

I have attached the diagrams for reference.
testdisk 7.png
testdisk 7.png (46.44 KiB) Viewed 348 times
testdisk 8.png
testdisk 8.png (25.11 KiB) Viewed 348 times
testdisk 9.png
testdisk 9.png (33.53 KiB) Viewed 348 times

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cgrenier
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Re: External Drive - Used as single partition - showing in TestDisk but not recovering

#4 Post by cgrenier » 29 Jul 2018, 17:54

Run "cmd" (right click run as administrator) and "chkdsk /f f:"

nabeelkc
Posts: 4
Joined: 17 Jul 2018, 11:42

Re: External Drive - Used as single partition - showing in TestDisk but not recovering

#5 Post by nabeelkc » 10 Aug 2018, 10:39

Thanks for your reply !

I tried doing that now and it gave an error.

It said that the drive is RAW.
CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives.

Thanks again for your continued assistance. :)

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cgrenier
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Re: External Drive - Used as single partition - showing in TestDisk but not recovering

#6 Post by cgrenier » 14 Aug 2018, 05:40

In this case, try to copy your files (TestDisk, Advanced, List) to another disk.

nabeelkc
Posts: 4
Joined: 17 Jul 2018, 11:42

Re: External Drive - Used as single partition - showing in TestDisk but not recovering

#7 Post by nabeelkc » 15 Aug 2018, 12:54

I was afraid of that. Oh well, guess will have to find out a place to copy it all up.

Thanks a lot for your help!

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