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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings to all. Am new to the forum.

The issue at hand: my 200 GB Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 hard drive suddenly (and for the first time ever) has limited at 127/137 GB. OS is Windows XP sp3, NTFS.

This HDD is in an eMachine T5212, Intel Pentium D, 2.66mHz with 2 GB RAM. The motherboard driver and BIOS is completely up-to-date.

I regularly reformat every six months or so. Never before has it given me any problems. Everything important is backed-up onto DVD or flash drive, the hard drive wiped (WipeDrive or DBAN) and then do a clean install of Windows XP from a disc slipstreamed with sp3, which is exactly what happened this time.

Well, apparently Murphy's Law has kicked in and for no apparent reason the HDD won't recognize anything above 137 GB. As best I can tell there is no reason why it should be doing this. It is 48-bit LBA enabled, running with WINXP sp3, and during every previous reformat has recognized that the HDD is 200 GB.

In looking for solutions I've tried or attempted several things, none of which have worked:


*Adding "EnableBigLBa" to the registry
*Using My Computer > Manage > Disk Management
*Installing partition utilities to see if partition stretching was possible
*Rebooting with a Windows disc and going through Recovery console
*Switched jumper from "Cable Select" to "Master"
*Ran CHKDSK


Even the Seagate utility "SeaTools" now says Max LBA is 268,435,455 (127 GB).

What is the likely cause for this to happen? :sigh: What other options might be available to fix this?

Thanks in advance for any help or advice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Unfortunately, there is not. It shows only the one HDD as well as CD/DVD drives. There is no unformated space. This whole situation is positively weird. It is my sincere hope that this isn't so bad that I will have to get a whole new computer (or at least board and drive). I guess I can just accept the 137, but it's incredibly annoying especially not knowing what caused this, nor how to fix it.

Thanks for replying.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/303013/en-us

what does disk management list for the drive any unallocated space

Thanks for the reply. As mentioned in my original post I've already tried that option, and from that very link. Adding that to the registry did not do anything.

In replying again to your question as to whether or not the disk management shows any unallocated space: no, there is no unallocated space at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well if it worked before, we can assume it is not a BIOS issue with 48 bit LBA either, and XP3 should support LBA. Check your atapi version as Dai suggested above, if it is good then it sounds like for some reason something has cut an HPA. Try HDD capacity restorer from here http://blog.atola.com/restoring-factory-hard-drive-capacity/

Thank you for this link. I've downloaded the program and attempted to run it. I realize it isn't your program and you don't give any kind of support for it, but hopefully you can give some advice on this situation:

When running it the first instruction is to select the drive (which is the first in the list) saying that it is 137 GB and that it is not locked. Clicking on that drive it states that it will now determine the factory capacity and will remove it from device manager. Clicking OK it gives the message "Device is currently in use and cannot be removed from the system. Please remove it manually in the Device Manager and try again." I remove it from the device manager, do a cold boot, and it does what one would normally expect: it detects the drive and adds it all over again. So, to make a short story needlessly long I am getting nowhere. Any advice on how to do this?

Thank you so much for your patience, and your kind help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The drive cannot be removed if it is the drive you booted from. You can't run the tool against your boot drive, it has to be a slave or secondary disk to be able to run the tool.

Yeah, I figured as much, but decided to try it anyway just for the hades of it.

At this point the only other computer available to me is my laptop (which I am using at this moment) so from what I understand the only option is to get a USB external HDD enclosure and run the program from the laptop crossing the fingers hoping it can reclaim the space on the destop HDD. That is what I should do, yes? Don't want to screw it up.

Thanks for your reply. It is appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
HDD restorer will not work with USB connections, the low level protocols to talk to the drive are not available through a USB connection
Argh... So, what are my options? I have no way to get another desktop, and if I go the route of buying a new HDD then it defeats the purpose of trying to reclaim this one as I have no need for two, and my efforts at this point are to prevent having to get a new one. The best possible thing that I can think of at this moment is to look for a small "used" drive from a local warehouse store that might knock me back about $20-$40, and use that as a slave to run the program and attempt to recover the original set as master.

Are there any other possibilities that I'm not thinking of?

Thanks for your help and your patience.
 

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UBCD isn't a live CD you can run things from (like BartPE). Each utility just loads independently from the menu - example: dban - you just select hard drive utilities, wiping, then dban then it boots from the dban image... but you can't switch to another program without rebooting (some utilities that require a boot environment will use Unix stuff or FreeDOS).
If the program you recommended is a Win32 program, BartPE may be the way to go. It's not guaranteed to work as some programs require some tweaks, but it's something to try.

Just misc stuff: are there BIOS settings related to this on your PC and what are the choices? Take a peek anyway because some (read mine) BIOSes have been known to reset themselves magically without intervention (usually a bad boot - like hitting reset while it's doing POST - not quite without intervention, but without settings the numbers yourself). I also looked at the manual for your drive (well the IDE model), and the jumper settings for limiting size is for 32GB (not 128GB). It does however say to use diskwizard if you're not getting your drive at full capacity.
http://www.seagate.com/www/en-us/support/downloads/
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
You guys have been very patient, and so am truly appreciating of your helpful suggestions and the time you've taken.

Unfortunately, nothing has worked. I had a PE disk and had not thought to try it but gave it a go and although it would let me run every program on the hard drive the only one that wouldn't fully open was - you guessed it - Capacity Restorer. It says that it cannot find the driver to run. (if you know how to make it so please share) Incidentally, it was in fact made with PE Builder (BartPE). It works best for me.

The jumper settings is/are correct. The manual lists four different settings Master, Cable Select, Slave, and of course the option to limiting it to 32GB but probably another wacky one. The drive has always been the Master and is the only one on it. Seagate suggests switching the drive as slave, but that didn't make a difference. I did not know Seagate's Disk Wizard was a DCO utility but am afraid of Murphy's Law rearing its zombie head again in this case even though Capacity Restorer claims to rese/restore a drives DCO, nevertheless my fear is to make the situation worse than it already is since I have yet to determine precisely if it is the drive or the BIOS. But thanks for the suggestion. :.) Wouldn't it be funny if the 200GB is even bigger? Hey, stranger things have happened!

So... at this point I've looked online for a cheap used drive that is large enough for a OS and from which the Capacity Restorer can be run. Found a 10 gig for 10 bucks and will arrive on Friday. - maybe I'll try Disk Wizard on that one afterward just to see! ;.) - But will not say this is 'resolved' until everything is actually working properly. Worse comes to worse means living off my lappy until getting a new destop machine. Maybe I'd go Mac this time ...

Thanks again everyone. (sorry if spelling errors - half+ asleep)

PS - raptor I love your avatar. For some reason it makes me think of santa clause as a biker ;.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
After a week of frustration we now have success through the use of a second drive ordered online which arrived Friday afternoon (10GB for $10; manufactured in 2000, but was unopened and unused). Once the OS was in place the first thing I did was to install and run the Capacity Restorer and in all of fifteen seconds plus a reboot the problem on the other HDD was fixed. Thanks to all of you who replied and gave additional ideas and thoughts on how to approach the problem. Even after over 20 years of working with computers there are always others who have ideas which hadn't occurred to me! Thanks again everyone. Be well, and be happy.
 
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