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Resolved External Hard Drive Freezes Entire Computer

Discussion in 'PC Hardware' started by Varick, 2014/07/04.

  1. 2014/07/04
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    OK, Here is my situation:

    I have a WD 1TB external hard drive that has all my music (350 gigs) on it and it also backs up everything else on my computer.

    Yesterday & Today, after much troubleshooting thinking my entire computer was crashing, I realized that as long as I don't plug this hard drive in (via USB port), everything is fine on my computer.

    About 3 seconds after I plug the USB jack from the external hard drive back into my computer, EVERYTHING on my computer freezes: Can't reduce pages or programs, and after a few more seconds I can't even move my curser. I even left the room for about 15 minutes, came back, and nothing had moved on my computer.

    The Second I unplug the USB jack, everything on my computer goes back to normal and operates fine.

    I changed the USB port I used to two other different ones all with the same result.

    I have also uninstalled "Mass Storage Device" via Device Manager, restarted the computer and same result.

    It even freezes when I restarted in safe mode.

    Is this Hard drive toast?

    If so, can I recover what's on it via another method?

    Thank you in advance.

    V
     
  2. 2014/07/04
    MrBill

    MrBill SuperGeek WindowsBBS Team Member

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    Have you tried plugging it in when the PC is off and then turn the PC on and see if it will boot and work properly?
     

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  4. 2014/07/04
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    Yes I did MrBill. Still the same result.
     
  5. 2014/07/05
    MrBill

    MrBill SuperGeek WindowsBBS Team Member

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    Can you plug the HD in your PC and run the WD test on it?
     
  6. 2014/07/05
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    What would I plug the HD into my PC with, other than a USB connector?
     
  7. 2014/07/05
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    Forgive me Mr. Bill, I am what's known as a computer moron, but relatively capable in many other things. Please have patience with me if I ask, what to most would be an obvious question.

    I'm not sure how else (or that there was another option) to plug my ext HD into my computer.

    V
     
  8. 2014/07/05
    Bill

    Bill SuperGeek WindowsBBS Team Member

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    I would try this drive on another computer and see if it locks it up too.

    I think what MrBill was implying was removing the drive from the external enclosure and installing it as a secondary drive (NOT boot) in the computer, by-passing the external enclosure. This may require the use of an adapter cable.

    Note many external enclosures also support eSATA connections along with USB. So if that one does, and your motherboard does too, then you might try that.

    If it does work on another computer, I would quickly backup any files on the external drive.
     
    Bill,
    #7
  9. 2014/07/05
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    Ah ha. Thank you Bill. That makes sense. I'm hoping some time tomorrow I'll be taking it over to my neighbor's computer to see if it works on his. I will know a lot more once I do that.

    Thank you for the clarification.

    V
     
  10. 2014/07/06
    Bill

    Bill SuperGeek WindowsBBS Team Member

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    Sounds like a plan. Keep us posted.
     
    Bill,
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  11. 2014/07/06
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    OK, here's the deal. I plugged it into my friend's computer, everything was easy to read and access. I even did chkdsk command on it and it said no bad files and no problems found on the ext HD.

    Soooo, I guess it means it's my computer that I am typing on now.

    Here's another bit of info that I have absolutely no idea if related or not:

    A few months ago, I thought my DVD/CD burner was shot because suddenly, I was unable to burn a disc. I was able to UPLOAD a music CD into my iTunes library, but I couldn't burn one.

    I changed out a spare Burner and again with the same result. So apparently there is very little wrong with my hardware, but there does seem to be a bunch of other problems within my computer that is wreaking havoc on my USING my hardware.

    I would love to fix the CD burner issue, but my main priority FIRST is getting my computer to be able to read my Ext HD.

    So what is my next step here? Thank you

    V
     
  12. 2014/07/07
    Bill

    Bill SuperGeek WindowsBBS Team Member

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    It does not sound like a malware issue, but I would sure scan this system with everything in your arsenal to be sure.

    And as an electronics technician, I always like to ensure I am supplying good, clean, stable power - essential with high-speed digital electronics. An underpowered PSU or a PSU with one or more of its outputted voltage slightly out of tolerance, a little too much "ripple" (an unwanted AC component riding the DC voltage), or a bit unstable can result in "a bunch of other problems" that don't "seem" related. So if me, I would swap in a known good power supply while troubleshooting (or have yours professionally tested).

    Are you using an external power supply with this external drive, or does the drive get power via the USB port?
     
  13. 2014/07/07
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    There is an external power supply with this Ext HD.

    However, your query helped me remember a strange thing that happened about two weeks ago (a day or two BEFORE this happened).

    Within a week, (I think 2 days in a row, could have been 3 days in a row), the power in the entire neighborhood quickly pulsed on and off. I had to restart my computer and reset clocks in my house each time.

    However, that is what happened. It could be the cause, it could have contributed to this problem, or it might not have anything to do with this at all (just coincidental). Either way, I am hoping to find a solution to this.

    The new computer I want to buy is about $800, but right now, I have a few more important things to do with that money. So, if I can fix this computer and get it running right for another 9 months or so, it would be a TREMENDOUS help.

    V
     
  14. 2014/07/07
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    And I have done multiple scans with SpyBot, ChkDsc, SUPERAnti-Spyware, Macafee all with DEEP scans (the kind that I start before going to bed because it takes 4-6 hours). Everything came up clean.

    V
     
  15. 2014/07/07
    Bill

    Bill SuperGeek WindowsBBS Team Member

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    Certainly, killing power without "gracefully" shutting down Windows first can, and often does result in corrupt system files and drives. Chkdsk will repair the disk sectors, but if the data within has been damaged, it may not be fixed.

    And extreme power anomalies banging on your PSU is not good either. I would still want to know I was supplying good power.

    Also, you might run try running SFC.
     
  16. 2014/07/07
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    BILL, YOU'RE A LIFESAVER!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I ran the SFC and it automatically fixed the corrupted files and now I have no problems accessing the Ext HD!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you so much. This web site and the people on it ROCK!!!

    Now... I tried to burn a disc again and I get "The Attempt to burn a disc failed. An unkown error occurred (4300).

    I tried looking up this code and the only thing I found were other people's complaints about this error message. One person suggested changing the burning speed which I did, but to no avail.

    V
     
  17. 2014/07/07
    Varick

    Varick Inactive Thread Starter

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    PS: I use iTunes library and have been for four years. I have 350 gigs of music and am not going to change my library (if this has anything to do with iTunes itself). I have a feeling this is yet another issue with my computer.

    I changed out 2 different burners all with the same results. I can upload an audio CD, but can not burn one.

    V
     
  18. 2014/07/08
    Bill

    Bill SuperGeek WindowsBBS Team Member

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    How different? Different brands and model numbers, or two of the same model drives?

    You might check out Microsoft Fixit.
     

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