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Old 03-29-2008, 06:35 AM   #1
Registered: May 2003
Location: India
Distribution: Ubuntu 7.04, Fedora Core 9
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Question How to recover data from external USB Drive

My friend has a Western digital 160GB external USB drive. The drive suddenly stopped working. It gets detected in windows, but doesn't show up in "My Computer". When he checked the status of the drive in device manager it showed up as corrupted.
It doesn't get detected in Ubuntu 7.10 as well (He is using Dell 1520 laptop with Windows Vista and Ubuntu 7.10).
Now he wants to recover data from the drive before sending it for RMA. Any ideas about recovery tools in Linux using which he can get back his data. He has tried several tools in Windows without any success.
Old 03-29-2008, 07:11 AM   #2
Registered: May 2002
Location: central florida
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my guess is that the drive is formatted NTFS similar to mine.I do not know if Linux has a data recovery package or not but I have used seagates disk tool to error check a drive and it also works on most other drives too..I am sure there are others too that more will suggest..
Old 03-29-2008, 07:51 AM   #3
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There's more than a few threads at LQ about recovery (use the search, Luke). Anyway. Best thing to do (regardless of the amount of data to recover) is to make an image of the drive as backup (which you can also mount read-only to work on) using 'dd', since working on the drive could degrade its condition further. If 'dd' returns many errors there's alternatives like dcfldd, dd_rescue and ddrescue. Once you have the image stored to file you can mount it read-only and run a filesystem check in "-n" mode to see if it's repairable or proceed with carving files out using testdisk or foremost. Try the HELIX Live CD if you want access to most of those tools w/o having to install a lot of stuff. BTW, if it's data that shouldn't be seen by anybody else try wiping it with Bcwipe (-mz should be enough) or 'dd if=/dev/urandom of=/dev/devicename' before sending it off.
Old 03-29-2008, 03:26 PM   #4
Registered: May 2003
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thanks for the reply bro. I'll forward it to my friend
Old 05-10-2010, 08:50 AM   #5
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Registered: May 2010
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Wink I know that

use data recovery software can recover data from external hard drive, like Diskgetor, hope will help you.
Old 09-21-2011, 03:31 AM   #6
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Try TestDisk

TestDisk has been proven to work great to <bogus link deleted by mod> on any platforms. Definitely NO 1 choice in this case. Regards.


That link was bogus -- it did not point to TestDisk, but rather to a comm'l site selling s/w that does not apply to Linux. Don't spam LQ again or face being banned.

Thank you,

LQ moderator

Last edited by archtoad6; 09-21-2011 at 05:54 PM. Reason: delete bogus link
Old 09-22-2011, 12:38 PM   #7
Wayne Sallee
Registered: Jun 2011
Location: Florida
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Also check out They do data recovery and sell books and teach classes, *AND they also have a ton of *free information and videos on how get data off your hard drive.

Wayne Sallee


data, recovery, usb

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