View Full Version : Power Loss to External Drive

12-06-2009, 01:02 PM

I had to rebuild the kid's PC so I backed it up with the windows backup utility to a 40GB external IDE drive. The PC was/is XP pro. When I came to restore the files that they wanted, the power was interrupted part way through the restore process and now all the data on the disk seems to be lost.

Under Windows explorer on an XP machine the disk has NTFS format and there is 88MB used and 37GB free but there are no files on the disk at all. Looking at it with a Vista machine there is not even a file system at all.

I'm not sure what happened and what the best approach is to recover the files. I can see files on the disk using a file recovery utility but they are way too small to be right and I am wondering if I need to do some kind of partition recovery or something? What might have happened? Appreciate any advice.


12-06-2009, 01:11 PM
Sounds like the external hard drive got zapped from the power loss......I have had internal drives get zapped from power loss.

How was the power...interrupted?

12-06-2009, 02:16 PM
You can try performing a chkdsk /f on it.

Hopefully its just a corrupted file system.


15-06-2009, 09:47 AM
The power supply was jerked out by a passerby. Not a good look.

15-06-2009, 09:51 AM
The chkdsk /f didn't help unfortunately.

15-06-2009, 12:19 PM
thats bad luck mate!

15-06-2009, 01:12 PM
if a recovery program can see some but not all , the data is more than likely still there - rescued many HDD's that windows says are blank.

First thing I'd try (and this does work with external drives as well) get Knoppix (http://www.kernel.org/pub/dist/knoppix/KNOPPIX_V6.0.1CD-2009-02-08-EN.iso) << Thats a direct download link from Here (http://www.knoppix.com/) -- Knoppix is linux based, its a recovery CD that is used to rescue windows :rolleyes: Sometimes it works fine other times it doesn't. Its a 645MB ISO download, burn it using your ISO Software, to create a bootable CD - if it locates the files, simply copy/Paste to the Main Drive.

15-06-2009, 02:43 PM
Hi, tried knoppix but I could not see what I was looking for, a folder or file about 20GB big with the backup information and the associated backup log file. I can see a folder which looks to be the one but there is nothing inside it except for RP folders which I think are old restore points.

I was wondering if I need to restore a partition or something?

15-06-2009, 03:09 PM
If the partition table has been damaged somehow, testdisk is your friend (provided you're happy using CLI tools). The MFT may also have been damaged and need rebuilding.

Failing that, I'll let others here recommend a nice GUI tool :D.

In the meantime, whatever you do, DO NOT write any data to the drive!!!