Maxtors Basic Desktop External Hard drive

  big erch 14:24 24 Aug 08

My computer won't recognise this drive and it makes a noise like it trying to start, but after a couple of seconds, silence, then it tries again. It was working with both my computers, which are Vista, but now fails on both of them. Anyone got any ideas?

  johndrew 14:36 24 Aug 08

Check all connections are good and try another power supply in case it is this. You could also try another USB cable as these sometimes fail.

It may also be a bad connection to the drive inside the caddy check these also.

If none of the above work you may have either a HDD or caddy electronics failure.

To check you could remove the drive from the caddy and install it into your PC. If it works there it may be the caddy that has failed - you could try another drive in it to see.

  big erch 14:41 24 Aug 08

Thank you for your help. I have checked the connections, but do not have another power supply to test as yet. If I remove the drive from the caddy, then I will invalidate the warranty, but then I will lose all of my backups, if they replace it. Decisions decisions!!

  johndrew 09:56 25 Aug 08

If the drive is still under warranty, contact either the supplier or the manufacturer.

If you have the original data on your PC it really doesn`t matter that you will lose the backups from the drive. If that which is on the drive is the only copy of the data, it is the original not a backup and you should have it backed up elsewhere.

In the event that it is original data, you will need to try and recover it depending on what part of the external drive has failed. If it is the HDD it could be expensive.

  Batch 09:59 25 Aug 08

What is more important (i.e. of more value to you) - the data or the warranty?

  big erch 11:04 25 Aug 08

Thank you for your help. It's a long story, but the outline is that the hard drive was a backup before the computer went back to manufacturer to be fixed. During which they did as suspected manage to erase everything on the computer. There is also the aspect of me not knowing what to do if I strip the hard drive and find something unfamiliar. Anyway, my problem, thanks again for your help. Erch

  Batch 11:21 25 Aug 08

The physical size (and screw fittings) of the disk in the external caddy should be readily compatible with fitting it in your PC.

The only thing to watch out for is the interface type. It is unlikely that the PC or the caddy support anything other than IDE (also known as PATA) and / or SATA.

There are only two connections to make - the power and the signal. IDE and SATA differ on both these counts. However, often newer PCs (which support the more recent SATA) also have IDE connectors (but are often missing an IDE signal cable and you would need to find out where to plug one into the motherboard).

The only other thing to watch out for (esp. with IDE) is the jumper setting. All this is is a small connector on the hard drive (bridging pairs of pins) which sets the drive up to be master or slave.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 11:31 25 Aug 08

All IDE drives in external caddies should be set as master.

  big erch 19:39 25 Aug 08

Contributors, thank you very much for your time and efforts. Erch

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