I plugged the usb cable from the hard drive into my laptop to see if i could save the files on it instead of having it connected to the desktop computer. so when i plugged it back into the desktop computer it won't read the hard drive. help!!
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A Hitachi USB external hard drive is a device that acts as portable, removable storage for your personal computer. If you need additional space to house files on your computer but don't want to go to the trouble of installing an internal drive inside the case, a USB external hard drive is your best option. These drives are "plug and play" devices, which means that very little can actually go wrong. If you're having problems, fixing them shouldn't take more than a minute or two.
Check your connections. A USB cable needs to be connecting your Hitachi external hard drive to your computer. Your external hard drive's power cable also needs to be plugged into a functional wall outlet, surge protector, extension cord or power strip. Make sure your Hitachi USB external hard drive is turned to "On." An "On/Off" button is present on the front of the unit. If the indicator light around said button is not illuminated, the drive is "Off" and your computer won't be able to recognize it. Press it to turn it on and then try to access your drive again. Format your hard drive. If your Hitachi USB external hard drive doesn't currently have a file system on it, you won't be able to use it to store data. Open up the "Computer" icon in the "Start" menu. Right-click on your USB external hard drive's icon and click "Format." Click "Start." This will install a file system on your Hitachi USB external hard drive. After this process is finished, you will now be able to use your drive. Restart your computer. Certain models of computers (especially older models) won't recognize new hardware unless your computer boots with the hardware already connected. Leave your USB drive plugged in and restart your computer. Once you do this, your Hitachi USB external hard drive should appear as normal in the "Computer" folder with all of your other drives. Hope this helps.
USB hard drive is a portable external storage device that works just like a conventional hard drive. The device is simply plugged into a USB port on your computer as you would connect a flash drive. Unlike a flash drive, however, a USB hard drive can store a much larger amount of data. If your computer will not recognize your USB hard drive, you can try troubleshooting steps to resolve the problem.
Plug one end of the USB cable into the port on your hard drive and plug the other end into the USB port of your computer. Ensure that both ends of the cable are connected securely. Open "My Computer" (Windows XP) or "Computer" (Windows Vista/7). The USB device should be listed as "removable disk" once it is plugged into the computer. If it is not listed among the available drives on your computer, proceed to the next step. Ensure that the data cable is working properly. Try another USB cable if you have one available. Disconnect all other USB devices from the computer as they may interfere with the operating system detecting the external hard drive. Reboot the computer if the USB hard drive is still not recognized. Plug the USB cable into another USB port and check to see if the device is detected. If you are using a USB hub, remove the device and plug the external hard drive directly into a USB port. If the computer still fails to recognize the device, the external hard drive itself may be experiencing a hardware problem. Check the status of the hard drive in the "Device Manager" window. Under Windows XP, right click "My Computer" and select "Device Manager." For Windows Vista and Windows 7, click the "Windows" button in the lower left corner of the screen, then type "Computer Management" in the search bar and press "Enter." Select "Device Manager" in the "Computer Management" window. In the Device Manager window, click the "+" sign that appears beside "Disk Drives." If the external drive is not listed, click "Other Devices" in the Device Manager window and see if an "Unknown Device" appears. The external hard drive may have been detected but the device is not working properly. If it is still under warranty, take the device to the computer store where it was purchased to have it repaired or replaced. Hope this helps.
If these drives are internally powered by the USB hub, two devices will not be recognised. ie: you can have as many pendrives as you like and they will be seen, because they draw little power from the hub, however, a larger external hard drive requires more power (some of these in fact have two usb connectors to power them). which is why your laptop will only recognise one drive at a time:
Solution: If you can get an externally powered usb drive, this should work.Another and possibly cheaper way would be to get an externally powered USB hub, which would solve the problem
you may have to assign a letter to the unseen drive manually: goto start menu and right click on my computer/ select manage/ select storage/ select disk management/ right click on the drive in question and select change drive letter and paths/ then give it an unassigned letter and that should do it. hope this helps:)
click start control panel administrive tools ,computer management ,device manager look through all of your devices if you see a yellow question mark?or exclamation mark ! or red x right click to reinstall drivers or if you can see your usb but its not working ports(com&lpt)right click update driver if your computer came with a motherboard disk the drivers could be on it sometimes the wires inside the cable will be damaged due to bending or stretching or placing heavy equipment upon the cable, just replace the cable of the hard disk, when you plugged the external disk drive you got that windows could recognize the USB device change the cable everything should work fine again, check the USB leads that attach to the motherboard usually red-white-green-black make sure they are securely seated and have no dust build up on them dust will cause static and a lot of unforeseen problems also make sure the computers Ram and Cmos battery are securely seated hope this helps
I tried a different cord and it started working again. Additionally i've had this work for me (see below)
Unplug all USB devices
Turn off Ext Hard drive
Shut down computer
Power on ext hard drive (then wait like 1 min)
Turn on computer
Wait for windows to finish loading
Plug in the USB cord from the ext hard drive to your computer (may take up to a minute for computer to recognize it)
If it doesn't recognize it then keep trying it in different USB ports
If it still won't recognize get all the latest windows update and reboot. If that doesn't solve your issue try your external hard drive on some other computers, check to see if drive needs special drivers installed (which most don't). From SimpleTech's website: "1) I have the drive plugged in but I cannot find the drive in "My Computer", why? The most likely cause would be not enough power provided by a single USB port on your computer. Unplug the portable drive from the cable and unplug the cable from the computer. Now, plug the cable into 2 USB ports directly on your computer. (If you have a desktop, you should plug the USB cable directly into the USB ports on the back of the computer. If this is a laptop, you should plug directly into a USB ports on the computer. Do not plug into a USB hub or docking station). Then plug the drive into the cable. In a few seconds you should see the drive listed in the "My Computer" window as a SimpleDrivePS."
If all that fails you need to RMA (Return to Manufacturer) your external hard drive. Most hard drives have a pretty decent warranty on them. Your simpletech 250GB has a 3 year warranty on it. Info on the warranty can be found at http://www.simpletech.com/support/warranty/. If you want to RMA it, click the "Technical Support / RMA Request" on the left hand side of that page.