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Thread: Serious Problem w/ External HD

  1. #1
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    Exclamation Serious Problem w/ External HD

    Well this is my 1st post here at Mac Guru's. Hopefully you guys can help me. Today I was consolidating my iTunes Library to my External Hardrive. In the middle of it my computer completely froze. I was forced to power off my powerbook by holding down the power button. When I turned the computer back on, the external would no longer mount. An error message popped up saying the drive/disc inserted had volumes that Mac OS can not read. I went to Disk Utilities and Verify/Repaired Disk. It came up with this.

    1.Catalog file entry not found for extent. "in red"
    2.Volume check failed.


    Im extremely worried because I have over 50 gigs of Pro Tools, Photoshop, Final Cut Pro, iPhoto, Basically EVERYTHING! Im very new to mac, and very worried. Someone please please help me.




    Powerbook G4 867 MHZ 512 RAM.MAC OSX 10.2.8. OWC ELITE EXTERNAL HD 7200RPM OXFORD 911

  2. #2
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    Thumbs up Welcome to Gurus the best of mac

    I suggest you go out and get a copy of Disc Warrior. This is somethin internal.
    It could be the block containing the mount fork went bad. If this is true the you may need to reinitialize the disc. How is this External disc connected to your PB?

  3. #3
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    You had no back up? Well DiskWarrior really is the best utility. Don't trust Norton. What if any trouble shooting software do you have now? Just the 1 drive in the computer and the External drive? There are some shareware utilities also. version tracker.com

    DiskWarrior http://www.alsoft.com/DiskWarrior/ you can search it out on the web for a better price.

    Randy

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    What type of connectors are you using? - Randy

  5. #5
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    A amazon search here for DiskWarrior here http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...972606-1903864 It's saved a lot of peoples buns.

    Randy

  6. #6
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    FireWire drives in particular don't like to have the plug pulled or power while writing and more likely to suffer catalogue and volume problems such as in this case.

    FireWire drives need to be handled more as removables and first unmounted by dragging to the trash to make sure that any changes and updates to the disk and especially to the directory are written out.

    I would want to have on hand a 2nd drive ready to copy the contents over. Even if all the data seems to be there and the contents and folder sizes look right, no utility is 200% perfect. If nothing else, there should always be a backup 'set' and a 2nd copy (original and two backup sets).

  7. #7
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    1.The External is Connected to my Powerbook thru a Firewire cable. What does reinitialize disk do? "Mac Japan"

    2. I have no trouble shooting software at all. "Randy"

    3. Im using the basic Firewire cables. "rwm"

    4. When the computer completely freezes up, there's no way I can unmount it. I'll try the force shut down, but when it restarts the drive doesnt want to mount. "TZ"

    Thanks guys for your replies. I really appreciate it. Right now the last things I was transfering to my external was some ripped music. Im not worried about losing that data at all, I can always replace it. I just need the drive to work because I record/edit all my Pro Tools session's on it. It's really important.
    Powerbook G4 867 MHZ 512 RAM.MAC OSX 10.2.8. OWC ELITE EXTERNAL HD 7200RPM OXFORD 911

  8. #8
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    I was trying to point how the proper way to deal with firewire and with backups. And encourage you to look into the FireVue FW cables Randy referred to, as well as backup software. Even moving the drive to another FW case.

    Considering that formating (which is what Disk Utility Erase or Partition) generally refers to but is also called "initializing" - sometimes a good manual or book is in order, such as "Mac OS X: The Missing Manual" to help.

  9. #9
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    Thanks TZ. 'Thumbs Up".
    Powerbook G4 867 MHZ 512 RAM.MAC OSX 10.2.8. OWC ELITE EXTERNAL HD 7200RPM OXFORD 911

  10. #10
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    Im real desparate here guys. Just baught DiskWarrior and damn im real dissapointed. In the middle of Rebuilding the drive it just hangs there till I force quit . It hangs at Step 5 Searching for Data directories, and my external just sounds like a old type writer "real distinct and low".
    Since Im a noob I really need to know what to do next? Alsoft tech support gave me the run around . Priority is to have the drive working as if nothing happened. 2nd Priority is to get the data out of that drive in peace. And last.. Would a complete reformat of the external have it back to normal? Or would I have too buy another one? Gulp.. Help please?

    Trouble SHooting Performed
    Repaired Disk
    Changed the Firewire 400 cable
    Ran Disk Warrior
    Powerbook G4 867 MHZ 512 RAM.MAC OSX 10.2.8. OWC ELITE EXTERNAL HD 7200RPM OXFORD 911

  11. #11
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    Disk Warrior can take a long time if there is a corrupt catalogue and a lot of files to scan. It has to build a new directory and to do that it has to follow each and every file or look for file fragments and segments if it can't rely on the volume directory or the volume backup directory.

    I would buy another drive anyway, whatever the outcome. I keep a spare drive on hand. Will an erase or zero-all be enough? no one knows yet. The SMART logs can help make that distinction.

    I would delete all the files that iTunes was trying to update and consolidate. I never let it until and unless I know I have backups or prepared to feed all the audio CDs back (not into buying via iTunes - I like to have physical disc and I wish that music stores could burn a copy of what you buy - Symantec does that when you buy software as do others.

    Alsoft is small but good people.

    Backups are only an "option" if you have never needed one.

  12. #12
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    Did you install DW on your PB boot drive or run the DW CD as the boot drive? In either case try the other way. Another point, about a year ago a friend of mine with an MDD had been ginning along for about two years without ever doing maintenance on any of his drives. DW step 5 took a long time, like an hour to find all of the directory of just one drive. k

  13. #13
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    Yep, if the directory is seriously flawed it will take a long time. I watched it recently for about 30 minutes. Seemed stuck, but I knew to let it go. Actually the version I was using v3.0.2 reported to me that the delay was caused by missing directory info -- which was correct. The drive wasn't appearing on the desktop, which is why DW was in use.

    Someone reported, and I have no reason to doubt him, that DW once took about a week to repair a seriously messed up drive. Longest I ever heard reported. But when I said 'repair' I mean it, DW repaired the drive.

  14. #14
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    thanks eric, I meant to say that taking hours, even days, is very possible. At least killing it shouldn't have done anything except whatever was written to /tmp/ or the boot drive - which is one reason why MicroMat advises against running TTPro 4 from a CD - it can't write to /tmp and VM isn't able to be utilized.

  15. #15
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    This is the best news I heard all morning. I got about 40 used gigs on a 120 gig external drive. I am running DW from the PB internal drive. And no I never ran any maintenence on my drives, for almost a year. On the DW progress window while your rebuilding has 2 Progress lines. A blue one and another one that looked like a blue n white candy cane. The candy cane strip was completely frozen solid. It'll move slightly like every 5 minutes. Now how can I tell if the programs actually working or if its just stuck? When should i call it quits? And yes im buying another drive once this one is saved. I learned the hardway. Thanks guys, you helped more than Alsoft, OWC, and 4 other forums.
    Powerbook G4 867 MHZ 512 RAM.MAC OSX 10.2.8. OWC ELITE EXTERNAL HD 7200RPM OXFORD 911

  16. #16
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    communist,

    welcome, this is the place!

    As you can tell from the other posts in this thread, DW is a highly respected utility here. One of it's most endearing features is that it's not going to do anything irrevocable to your broken directory until you tell it to do so. If it's running right now, albeit very slowly, it's building a new directory. And that could take a while! Read eric's post! When it's done, it's going to ask if you want it to go ahead and fix things. Nothing's certain, but DW's record is pretty good, and I'd say let it do it's thing. How long? Don't know. Could be hours, could be days.

    When it's fixed (see how optimistic I am), and you've got your new drive too, come here for advice regarding a backup strategy. As the bull-goose Guru 'round here will tell you, "if it ain't automated, it ain't a back up". And that's damned good advice.

    biggles.
    "illegitimis non carborundum"

  17. #17
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    I haven't had the opportunity to see, but I would expect that the Activity Monitor or running Terminal top -ad would show activity. I seem to recall there are 3-4 background threads that DW uses. And you should see disk I/O.

    One of the reasons people use to like to have an LED light on their drives.

  18. #18
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    Other than a drive activity LED on the Lacie, I don't know. Some DW operations use very little drive activity but searching for all of the directory fragments should show some activity. If there is directory corruption, there would be plenty of times when there is no activity while it is sorting all of the corrupted fragments out, sort of just thinking about it.

    I don't use the CD. Having DW on your boot drive is better for running DW on the Lacie. At some point, however, you will need to run DW on your boot drive so you will have to boot from something else and have DW installed on it. k

  19. #19
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    good call TZ, I just looked at top -ad and sure enough, there they are.
    "illegitimis non carborundum"

  20. #20
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    A couple of ideas.

    1) Pull the drive out of the Firewire enclosure and mount it directly inside your Mac. You have four total internal drive spaces inside a MDD Mac and pulling an ATA drive off of a FW bridge cuts out two places where the data is converted from parallel to serial and back to parallel. If there is a cable or bridge problem, mounting the drive internally can resolve that and simplify recovering your data.

    2) Let Disk Warrior run. Walk away from it. I have had it take over 12 hours to get through step 5, larger the drive and worse the corruption the longer it takes.

    3) Make darn certain you have enough space on another drive connected before you attempt a recovery. I have seen a recovery with Disk Warrior where the data was made available but not repaired. So you may have to copy it to another drive to save it.

    4) Never, ever, store anything important in one location. Hard drives fail, and always at the very worst of time. So a backup drive is essential. Internal drives are less than a dollar a GB and you can install up to four total inside your Mac with no other hardware needed, just the drives. Add more space internally and start a backup scheme that doesn't rely on a flaky firewire enclosure from the lowest bidder. (brutal, no offense, but OWC Firewire enclosures are not to be confused with high quality)

    Best to you,

    Rick
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

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