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Testdisk Re-Building Partition - Is it safe for me to do it?

This is a discussion on Testdisk Re-Building Partition - Is it safe for me to do it? within the Hard Drive Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. Hello everyone, my 5TB external USB3 drive (intenso case, with Toshiba HDD inside) suddenly stopped being recognized, apparently the case


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Old 02-12-2018, 06:38 AM   #1
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Hello everyone,

my 5TB external USB3 drive (intenso case, with Toshiba HDD inside) suddenly stopped being recognized, apparently the case connector did break on me.
So I removed the HDD and connected it to my PC internally.

It did get recognized only in "volume management" on my Windows 10 as "not allocated" space (around 4TB) and RAW (around 500GB).

The guys from minitool recommended to change the MBR to GPT.
It didn't work. The disk still isn't recognized regularly within Windows10, except within volume management as described above, and within such programs as easeus partition master (see photo).

I could just "recover partition" as the program suggests, but now after converting to GTP already, people were shouting at me why I would do such a thing as it may have altered the whole disk and my chances may have dropped on recovering the disk as it had been.

When using testdisk and analyzing the disk, I find all folders and files still existing on the disk as they were back then. So that was a relief right there.

Now, should I try testdisk and if so which options do I have (the files are all there, now how to get them? searching and copying will take many days I think)?
Or should I try recovering the parition and have the disk ready without any long search and copy procedures?

If you have any questions please ask, as I absolutely need some advice here.
The contents are 1 whole year of travels in Japan. I did a backup but I didn't dare to try the japanese power adaptor in my european household (yet. If you know that it is totally save please tell me.)

Thanks everyone. :)
Chris

PS: "Nicht zugeordnet" means "not allocated" (german).



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Old 02-12-2018, 01:15 PM   #2
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You should not have changed the file system to GPT, this may have corrupt any data on the drive.
EaseUs or the free TestDisk still may be able to recover your files. You will need another drive of the same size or larger to restore your files to. I have had the best luck with GetDataBack.
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Old 02-12-2018, 03:30 PM   #3
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@Dezorian, as already stated by spunk.funk, you should not have changed the drive partitioning from MBR to GPT. In fact there was probably nothing wrong with the file system.

The actual problem is that your external enclosure is configured with a sector size of 4KB. When you removed your drive from its enclosure and attached it to a SATA port on your motherboard, you exposed the drive's 512e sector size and rendered your data inaccessible. Essentially you now have a 4KB file system on a 512e drive. Windows can still see the partition table in sector 0, but every other sector is out by a factor of 8.

Your partition table is reporting a 582.19 GiB partition. If this same partition were viewed from behind the USB-SATA bridge in your enclosure, it would have a size of ...
  • 582.19 GiB x 8 = 5.00TB

582.19 GiB x 8 in TB - Google Search

What you need to do is to repair your enclosure, or be prepared for a tedious data recovery from inside your PC. I don't know if Testdisk will be able to understand your 4KB file system, but DMDE can. DMDE should also be able to repair the damage to your MBR with a couple of mouse clicks.

https://dmde.com/

If you can show us DMDE's Partitions window, I may be able to help you.
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Old 02-12-2018, 03:40 PM   #4
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Sure. I put a screenshot at the end of this post.
Also, thanks for recommending that GetDataBack Prog.
In just a few seconds my whole HDD had been analyzed and all the folder structure is now visible and am allowed to copy everything to my other hard drive. :) Super.

Of course it would be even easier if my harddisk could just turn back to its former self and be accessible as such.
Hopefully the info below will help you help me.

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Old 02-12-2018, 08:59 PM   #5
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@Dezorian, I'm a little confused. You have shown us a DMDE screenshot, but you say that you were able to access your data with GetDataBack. Are you asking for help with DMDE or GDB? I don't use GDB, so spunk.funk would be the one to help you with that.
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Old 02-13-2018, 01:40 AM   #6
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GDB works great, and I have had the best luck with it. It is free to download and scan your drive, but there is a minimal cost to recover your data. Plus you need to restore to another drive of the same size or larger.
I think the OP wants to recover his drive using DMDE, but if you can restore your files using GDB, then just Reinitialize the drive MBR and create a new partition and format it and start fresh.
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Old 02-13-2018, 02:30 AM   #7
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Great advice from you all.

To clarify my situation:

My pirmary goal is to restore my 5TB HDD's Masterboot record or partition, whatever it is called, so I can normally access it.
I think this is where DMDE comes into play, right? Restoring file systems.

In the meantime I try to recover individual files via GDB.

fzabkar, what do you need from my side to help me restore access to my hdd? :)
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Old 02-13-2018, 10:56 PM   #8
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@Dezorian, ideally you should reinstall your drive inside a working enclosure. This is because you now have a 4Kn file system on a 512e drive, ie a mismatch. When the drive is inside the Intenso enclosure, it will appear as a 4Kn storage device.

Normally all you would need to do would be to r-click the "Basic data partition" and select "Remove the Partition". Then you would r-click the INTENSO volume and select "Insert the Partition (Undelete)". You may need to select Edit -> Edit Mode beforehand, and Drive -> Apply Changes at the end.

You will probably need to power cycle the PC so that Windows can rediscover the drive, or you could eject it if it is a USB device, then reinsert it.

There is one potential snag if you choose to do this via SATA. The problem is that I don't know whether DMDE will restore the partition table to its original condition (as it was in the enclosure, ie boot sector at 256), or whether it will use the current location (sector 2048). I would backup all your data before making any changes. Let us see DMDE's new Partitions window before you start writing to the drive.
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