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Old 04-26-2007, 01:18 PM   #1
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Default Vista will not read External USB Drive

I have an 80 gig external hard drive. It worked up until a few days ago. I took it to a friend's to help her back up some files before she reformatted her computer. I got it home and now Vista will not read it.

I plug it in. Turn it on. The "Busy" light of the external drive remains red. Vista will play it's stupid "ding" but it is not shown in computer. Nor can I access it through the command prompt.

I have a dual boot with XP. XP will not read it either. I have tried various boot orders. Like turning the PC on first, turning the external drive on first, etc.

Any ideas?
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Old 04-26-2007, 01:23 PM   #2
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Default Re: Vista will not read External USB Drive

Does your external have to USB points on the end? I have an external like that with one of the USB's have two wires coming out of it and the other one only has one. If I plug in the USB with the one wire coming out it doesn't work but if I plug in the point with the two wires coming out then it will read it and work.
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Old 04-26-2007, 01:31 PM   #3
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Default Re: Vista will not read External USB Drive

My computer/manage/disk management

Make sure for some reason the USB drive does not have the same drive letter assigned as another drive in use.
I've seeen this happen many times at work where the drive gets assigned the same as a network drive and you can't see it or access it.

If so just change the drive letter assigned to the device..............
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Old 04-27-2007, 03:26 AM   #4
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Default Re: Vista will not read External USB Drive

I am not sure I understand the part about two wires. It has a single USB cable that goes from the external drive to the desktop and the power cable.

I shall check Disk Management when I get home. Perhaps when I connected it to my friend's computer it changed the drive letter. It should be "H" on my computer. I'll see if that is the cause.
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Old 04-28-2007, 04:12 AM   #5
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Default Re: Vista will not read External USB Drive

Ok. Update: The drive is not recognized by Disk Management on either XP or Vista. I even tried on my XP laptop. In Device Manager, it says that the "USB Mass Storage" is unable to start.

Thus, I took the case of the external drive apart. The power light will turn on, but the drive will not make any sound nor vibrate. The fan will not turn on either. It sounds like some sort of power issue. Would I be able to plug the drive into my desktop using an IDE cable? It looks like the same as any other hard drive...

Thanks.
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