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External Drive Repartitioned

“Not sure what happened, but the data on one of our external drives vanished. Somebody suggested attaching it directly to one of our computers, but this didn’t help. Many thanks to DiskEng for recovering most of our data.”

M Ellison, company withheld, Didcot

A 2TB Western Digital hard disk drive arrived from Didcot at our laboratory in Oxford. Our hardware data recovery specialists examined the hard disk finding there to be no physical problems with the drive. Our data recovery engineers were able to secure a sector-by-sector image of the disk to our servers finding no unreadable bad sectors during the process.

A scan of the secured revealed it to contain 3 NTFS partitions, two small partitions, one a recovery partition and a large partition of 1.9TB. These contained no significant data, so a low level unformat process was undertaken. This revealed approximately 700GB of files, but their contents were incorrect, suggesting the partition scheme was incorrect. It is quite possible that the new partition scheme laid down on the drive was a result of it being attached directly to another PC and answering a popup dialog incorrectly.

A further scan of the drive image revealed that it originally contained a single 2TB data partition when a copy of the boot sector was located in the final sector. Our data recovery specialists created a virtual volume for this original partition, allowing the unformat process to be run again. This again located approximately 700GB of files, of which about 95% loaded correctly when tested. This data consisted mostly of photos, videos and some assorted office documents.

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