hard drives

Why can't I read my hard drive?

Western Digital 6TB USB Drive

Episode 1468

Jonathan from Long Beach, CA

Jonathan plugged in an external drive but he can't see it on his Mac. It wants it to re-initialize. Leo says it could be a host of things from the drive, to the cable, to the USB port, to even a software error. So he'll have to break it down. First, unplug the drive and plug it into a new port. If he's using a USB hub, try directly into the computer instead. Make sure if it's a powered drive that it's getting power. Jonathan can run Disk Utility on the Mac and see if it sees the drive. If he sees it there, then that means that the drive is starting to fail or the formatting is corrupted.

How can I recover missing space on a hard drive?

Hard drives

Episode 1468

Larry from Petaluma, CA

Larry recently cloned his hard drive using EaseUS and then used that on his new hard drive. But the SSD he put it on was 250 GB and he can't use the remaining space on it. Can he recover it? Leo says that Acronis can create an image of the drive, keeping the partition. He can use the Windows partition manager to recover the rest of the partition, but if it doesn't work, Larry could try the EaseUS partition manager.

Why doesn't my computer boot to my hard drive?

Hard drives

Episode 1465

Doug from St. Louis, MO

Doug recently replaced a power supply, and now the computer won't boot up to his main hard drive. Leo says that the SATA cables may have been swapped and that can confuse the BIOS. He should disconnect the data drive and see if it boots to the boot drive. If it doesn't, he can swap out the cables. He should also clear the configuration data in the BIOS so that it can reset. There's also a possibility that his boot drive is damaged, so he should check that. Getting rid of the master boot record on his data drive will prevent confusion as well.

How can I format my MacBook Pro hard drive?

MacBook Pro

Episode 1463

Zack from Los Angeles, CA

Zack is trying to reformat an old MacBook Pro and he gets a "temporarily unavailable" error. Leo says that Apple has a theft prevention setting that would prevent him from deleting everything in case the laptop is stolen. But there's a way around it by restarting it with Command + R. At this stage, Leo recommends going to the Apple Store and have a Genius look at it.

Why does it take so long for my computer to boot up?

Dell Inspiron 17R

Episode 1462

Matthew from Austria

Matthew gave his mother in law a Dell computer Inspiron 17R 571 running Windows 10, but it's taking 5 minutes to boot up. Leo suspects that the spinning hard drive may be starting to fail, with difficult to read sectors. It could also be software that's hanging up the bootup process. Matthew should try using the boot log to see what may be causing the issue. He can get to this by holding the Shift key while its booting, and he can choose to create a boot log on the root level of the drive named bootlog.txt.

How can I get my apps off a failed hard drive?

Hard drives

Episode 1459

Gary from Castaic, CA

Gary can't boot up his computer, not even in Safe Mode. What can he do to fix it? Leo says it's probably the hard drive that's preventing the bootup, and that's why Gary is getting the blue screen of death. It can be one tiny bit or sector that can cause it. Gary could use his Windows Install Disk, and during the install process, it will give him the option of repairing the OS. It's worth a try.

Should I let Windows repair itself after a hard drive crash?

Hard drives

Episode 1458

David from San Antonio, TX

David bought a refurbished computer from Best Buy. It turned off when the battery died, and when he turned it back on, Windows wanted to do a repair. When it did that, it started wiping out his entire Windows 10 operating system. Now he's stuck on the blue screen of death and he's worried that his version of Windows 10 won't activate if he reinstalls it. Leo says it will, but before he installs anything, he should get the data from it. If it crashed once, the drive could be ready to fail.

Why won't my old computer boot up?

Hard drives

Episode 1457

Penny from Long Beach, CA

Penny has an old tower computer that she wants to get rid of. Leo suggests keeping the hard drive and donating the rest of the PC. She tried to boot it up to move the data off the hard drive, but it won't boot. Leo suggests that she check her keyboard connection. Sometimes a computer won't boot if a keyboard isn't properly connected. The BIOS battery or motherboard battery could have died. The hard drive may have gotten stuck. It's called "stiction." Penny should try taking out the hard drive and putting it into an external enclosure to see if she can still read the data.