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My hard drive isn't receiving power. How can I open the case to check the connections?

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  • Cnythia Miller May 11, 2010

    Please describe your system unit?


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What's your make and model # please? I can get the exact directions. There should be three or four screws on the back on the side opposite the power supply. These may be thumb screw or just phillips. If you remove these screws your cover should just slide right out. There maybe a indentation on the side that looks like a handle. It is a handle. Use this to pull your cover back. If you're sure your hard drive isn't getting power you can try a different connector from the power supply. You may have a power supply that's going bad. Give me make and model # and any more symptoms while you see if those directions help. I'll wait for your reply. Of course if this was all you needed then you can rate this as fixed. If not get me the info and I'll help you more. Thanks Tall.

Jeff

Posted on May 02, 2008

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My computer will not provide access to the toshiba external hard drive


1)Check that the drive is receiving enough power to spin up. The USB port might not provide enough power, in which case a powered hub or other external power supply might be the solution.

2)Check the cable. A bad connection anywhere in the chain can block current flow, both for power and for data transfer.

3)If you can open the enclosure without damaging it, check that all internal connections are good.

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Go to the Disk management service and check if the drive shows up there. The route will depend on your OS. In Windows 7, click Start > Control Panel > System and Security. Go down to the Administrative Tools and click Create and format hard drive partitions.

Look at the lower half of the window and scroll down to see all identified disks. If your external drive is listed, something got corrupted in the NTFS or FAT record. Use a third-party drive repair tool before reformatting the drive (which will delete any information on the drive). If your external drive isn't listed here, try connecting it to a different USB port. Make sure that your USB ports are providing enough power to the hard drive. (Some USB ports can be disabled for power savings/security.) If you are using a laptop, try plugging in your AC adapter/charger. If you are using a USB hub, try a direct connection to the computer (or use a powered hub).

If you are still not seeing the drive listed, there is a problem with the connections inside the external drive. Either the wiring between the drive and the controller has come loose, the USB connection to the controller is damaged or the drive failed.

If the drive is out of warranty, you can try opening the case and using a different enclosure (2.5" or USB/IDE/SATA adapter). If you have a desktop with a free SATA controller, you could try putting the drive in your system. If the disk works with another controller, the enclosure was bad.

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So either the computer isn't generating a video signal, the cable isn't carrying the signal to the monitor, or else the monitor isn't capable of receiving a video signal.To test this, first try a video cable that you know is good, in case your cable is bad, If it works with the other cable, the problem was your original video cable. If it still doesn't work, put your original cable back, and hook another computer up to the monitor. If the monitor makes the same message, the problem is with the monitor. If the other computer works when connected to this monitor, your problem was that the original computer isn't booting (which could be due to several reasons I will list below), or the video adapter is broken.Possible reasons for the computer not booting: bad power supply, bad power button, bad hard drive, bad memory, bad motherboard component. If you determine that it isn't booting, unplug everything except the keyboard mouse monitor and power cord, to see if that makes a difference. If it boots after that, something you unplugged was causing the problem, plug them each back in one by one, rebooting in between, and when it stops booting properly, the last thing you plugged in is causing the problem.

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Inside that plastic external case of the Hitachi XL 1000 external harddrive, is a regular desktop computer sized harddrive.

It is a SATA type of harddrive.
It is 3.5 inches across in Width. (3 and a half inches)
1 TB in size.

Looks similar to this example,

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=5589521&CatId=2459

On the back end of the Harddrive is where it's power cable, and data cable are attached.

Inside the case of the Hitachi also is a small circuit board. (PCB or Printed Circuit Board)
The SATA harddrive is connected to this small circuit board.

The small circuit board, or Interface PCB , is attached directly to the Harddrive.
Or cables (Wires) are used to connect it to the Harddrive.
The Interface PCB is connected to the computer, via the USB cable that is attached to the Interface PCB.

It is this small circuit board that usually goes bad.
(Unless the external harddrive was on, and dropped. Then the problem is the Harddrive)

There are two solutions;

One, buy an 3.5 SATA external enclosure, and use the Harddrive as an external harddrive again.

Two, install it as a Slave drive in a desktop computer, and retrieve all your information. Burn to disk/s, or flashdrive/s.

When using a SATA harddrive as a Slave drive, there are NO jumper pins to mess with.
DO NOT change any jumpers on the back of a SATA harddrive.
(These are for the factory)

This is an example of a 3.5 SATA external enclosure,

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=2145406&CatId=2780

There are no guides to open a Hitachi XL 1000's case, to my knowledge.
It isn't something the manufacturer wants stated.

However opening the external enclosure (Case) isn't that tough. It falls under the same as this model,

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hQ_vjyvK28A

Here we see at 3:00 through 5:00, that the Harddrive is attached directly to the Interface PCB.
Just remove the Harddrive from the chassis, and unplug it from the Interface PCB.

For additional questions please post in a Comment.

Regards,
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Check your connection between the power supply and the motherboard. Is it possible that your power supply was getting weak instead of the hard drive you replaced? First check the power connection and then try another power supply. If a different power supply boots the computer then you know that it may not have been a problem with your hard drive. You didn't say why you replaced the hard drive.

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The Hard Drive could have come loose from the SATA or PATA connection, or your Hard Drive could have simply died. If it is still under warranty; replace it. If it is out of warranty; open the external casing and check that the HD is connected and / or test the HD in a separate external casing or Desktop that you have. If it is connected and the external casing is working properly (or Desktop is booting properly and can read it), then you have a dead Hard Drive and will have to buy a new one.

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  1. Step 1 Back up your data. Make sure you back up any important data stored on the hard drive in the event something goes wrong. Also, if you are selling or giving the hard drive to someone else, you should erase any data on the disk by formatting it.
  2. Step 2 Open the case. Remove any metal rings, watches or bracelets you may be wearing. Unplug the computer from the electrical outlet, then touch the metal casing to eliminate any static charge. You can also use an anti-static wrist strap if you prefer. Check the user's manual if necessary to determine how to open your particular PC case.
  3. Step 3 Locate the hard drive. Typically the hard drive will be connected to a flat 2 1/2 inch wide IDE cable and a power cable. Hard drives are often housed in removable metal cages which are secured to the computer case with one or more screws. Refer to your user's manual to locate the hard drive if necessary.
  4. Step 4 Disconnect the hard drive. Unplug the hard drive from the IDE and power cables. Grab the plastic IDE cable connector with your thumb and forefinger and gently pull until the connector breaks free. The power cable can be difficult to remove if the connector is fitted tightly. Make sure you don't bend any of the pins when disconnecting the cables.
  5. Step 5 Remove the hard drive. If the hard drive is fitted in a metal cage, locate and remove the screws that are holding the cage in place. Hold your hand under the cage to catch it if necessary. Once the cage is free, remove the small screws on either side of the hard drive to remove it from the cage. If the hard drive is connected directly to the computer case, simply remove the screws on each side of the hard drive and slide it out of the case.

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You may find that either the cable is not connected properly or is faulty, or the worse case the mother board has problems (driver, chips, breakages)
May even be a power supply problem, as the power supply has many output points and different voltages that the HDD power out may have blown. If it has then the rest of the system will appear to be ok.
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