Question about Maxtor OneTouch II external hard drive 300GB 7,200 RPM - FireWire & USB (E04W300)

3 Answers

Data disappeared overnight

I have a Maxtor One Touch II external hard drive which is used to store family photos and music. One day we are using the drive to order prints online, I-tunes, and Photoshop the next day it shows the disk as not being formatted and the available space is the same as the total. Where did all the data go?

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  • dclegge May 14, 2009

    Thank you both. I think I will do a combination of both and take it to a recoery place so they can put it in a new enclosure. That is above my tech level.

  • dclegge May 15, 2009

    The hard drive inside does not appear to be a SATA drive Correct me if I am wrong. Here is what it looks like:



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I've seen a lot of flack about these puppies lately. It's usually due to the external enclosure, the harddrive is in, and not the harddrive itself.

It is for this reason, that I suggest that you take the harddrive out of this enclosure, and install it into a decent, affordable, new external enclosure.
External enclosures are relatively cheap!

The harddrive inside the Maxtor One Touch II is a desktop size harddrive. It's a 3.5 inch one.
(3 and a half inches across in width)
It is a Sata harddrive.

These are examples of external enclosures for a Sata 3.5 inch harddrive,|c:2778|&Sort=0&Recs=10
(My recommendation would be the Vantec NexStar 3 NST-360 Su-BL)

This external enclosure has instructions, is easy to install the harddrive, and uses a USB cable just like your old one.

Posted on May 14, 2009

  • joecoolvette
    joecoolvette May 14, 2009

    If you take it to a Recovery place, I'm willing to bet your tech level will
    shoot up! They usually charge $75 to $100 bucks an hour!!

    On the old external harddrive enclosure, there will be screws you
    remove from the outside of the case. These screws may be hidden
    by small rubber covers, or a label, or two. (Sticker)

    It may be a different design. If you look closely, you will see where
    two halves of this case go together. There will be a parting line.
    You may have to take a butterknife, and go across this parting line to
    cut across a paper label. You can use the same butterknife, insert the tip into the parting line, go down with the back of the butterknife, and pop
    the case apart. (More than likely it has screws)

    To remove the harddrive, you remove a screw or two inside, and pull
    on it. The harddrive will look like this,

    At the bottom of the photo it shows the connection area. The opposite
    end, is the end you pull from.
    This connection area has metal pins. They just pull out of sockets,
    in the interface area of the external harddrive.
    Just like when you plug a lamp into a receptacle. The two metal prongs
    plug into two slots, or sockets. You are just pulling the plug out of
    the receptacle. The external case has a receptacle, (Interface), and the harddrive has the plug -> prongs.

    There may even be small cables instead. They are of different sizes,
    and can't be confused with each other. It's easy to see where they go.

    The new enclosure has very simple instructions. You remove two screws
    (Philips head -> +), from each side, then open the case. The harddrive
    then just plugs in. Close the case, install the screws, and you're done!

  • joecoolvette
    joecoolvette May 15, 2009

    Yes, I stand Fully corrected! It is a PATA harddrive, and not a SATA!
    (PATA is also referred to as IDE, and EIDE.
    1.Here is a video tutorial, of how to install a harddrive into an external enclosure,

    2.Here's a video tutorial, of how to set the jumpers on a PATA

    (Can you tell I'm trying to make up for my erroneous information?)
    In my area it's $60 to recover what data is recoverable, and past
    that point it's $75 an hour. Some shops are higher.
    I'm the guy that tries to show people how to do it themselves, and
    save their hard earned money.


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All drives have two sectors of Master Boot Record, one is the working copy and the other a backup copy at the end of the drive. A power outage overnight, or perhaps a windows update that caused a reboot may have occurred that didn't allow the drive to shut down properly therefore corrupting the MBR. The drive reports it's full capacity so I expect there is not likely to be any hardware problem. More likely you can recover the data simply by using a recovery utility like would come with your Norton, or other anti-virus software. I assure you the data is still there. Data on any disk is there until something writes over it. You can't see the data because of a problem with the working copy of the MBR. The recovery utility can restore the working MBR from the backup copy, therefore giving you back your access. Be careful though, do not use any format or re-partitioning utility or you can lose all access. Read the instructions carefully before taking an action.

Posted on May 14, 2009

  • Bruce Volkers
    Bruce Volkers May 15, 2009

    The article is a nice find, thank you for posting it. If you decide to open the case you should be able to install into your deskdop as a slave (set the jumper to slave or cable select accordingly) where you may be able to recover it easier with your disk utility I mentioned before.


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More then likely the controller inside gave out take it to a recovery place do not play with it anymore and they will recover the data -- thanks

Posted on May 14, 2009

  • Grand Canyon Tech
    Grand Canyon Tech May 15, 2009

    Well I do not agree with $75 to 1 hundred per hour they charge per GB and this is per the files they revoer gareenteed the rest you do not pay for. They open the drive, they hook it up and they will hand it back to you in a diffrent inclosure if you so want. But in no way there going to charge you per hour see I been around a lot longer then most techies to know that this is not the case. A DYI is risky like you said because you said it was beyond your expertise so the other solutions here would likly not suit you as much "no pun attended to my other experts" But to comment and chime in I will have to educativly disagree on the labor charge respectivly. Thanks


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We found out after the Geeksquad screwed up on a harddrive recovery that the Maxtor one touch is auto formated for the PC. And if you have an Apple you can see the data but it is all locked. In order to unlock you have to save a copy of the data elsewhere, wipe the drive clean, and reformat it.

That might be your problem as well?

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And U do not need drivers for external hard drives. They just plug into your usb port and work with modern OS after the unit is recognized.

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