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If u are connecting it on the front usb Try to connect at the rear usb. If it doesnot work then you have to check in device manager wheather the usb is disabled or not. If it is ok here then go to registry bu typing regedit in run window.
Does it work when connected to a different computer?
If not, is it still under warranty?
If not, disassemble the case, and you'll find an "internal" MAXTOR disk-drive inside the case; try connecting that drive as a "slave" disk-drive inside your computer. If it is not recognized, then it is "dead" and you should take a hammer to it, so that any of your personal data on it will become impossible for any "identity-thief" to read, and then buy a new, larger, external drive.
This depends on your country, i.e whether you can easily get what I'm about to tell you to buy from any computer store. There is an external drive case that is being sold at many computer stores now that can actually enable you to connect your harddrive to it, then it has an external USB cable that will make you to be able plug it in any available USB port on a system (I recommend USB port 2.0 for high speed rate). So you can just get that and trust me, you'll be fine...lol. Hope this helps. Goodluck!
Boot your system with external drive unconnected, then go to add new hardware. then plug in maxtor and follow guide, if this is not of any help then unplug and replug drive IE switch off replug and switch on your Maxtor. After a while when all the software gets together all will be harmonious and groovy.
External Hard Drive is mostly of the USB interfacing type. If urs one is the same, then it is just as simple as plugging in a pen drive in the USB port. If it has external power supplies then u can easily figure out how to connect. There are two parts in the power supply (if external power supply cable is provided), 3-pin main power supply connector and other is the adapter which goes to the external hard drive.plug in the other end of the adapter into the hard drive (there is a hole in it). connect the main power cable to the adapter extension. now for the usb Hard Drive, connect the USB cable to the USB port of the computer. Switch on the power supply to the Hard drive and u r ready to use ur brand new External Hard Drive. If it is a Firewire interfacing one then u may need to open the CPU box, and then connect the firewire connector on to the motherboard firewire port. It is easy to identify, it is a red colored port/connector.