Linux - HardwareThis forum is for Hardware issues.
Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?
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I'm having a big problem with my 1tb WD Elements hd. Whenever I try to access my information 'You must format the disk drive' pops up. I have all of my info for my company on it and I haven't been able to access it for a while. How would I go about recovering my information, would I use 'Knoppix'? If so could you send me a link to where I could download a safe version and help me in the process of recovering my information?
I hope you didn't answer yes to the "format drive" question? What file system does (or did) the drive contain?
An external hard drive can become inaccessible for a number of reasons: a damaged file system, a defective USB-to-SATA controller or a broken hard drive. A Linux live CD or DVD could help you determine the likely cause of the problem, and perhaps recover some or all of the data.
I'm a big fan of System Rescue CD, but I'll be the first to admit it's not the most beginner-friendly live CD out there.
"RAW" is Windows' way of saying "I have no idea what this is". You need to boot a live CD and run some tests to find out what the problem is.
I'd start with smartctl -a drivename and fdisk -l. The external drive will probably be called /dev/sdb, but you can find that out by plugging it in, waiting a few seconds and then run dmesg | tail to view the end of the kernel log.