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  1. #1
    ilyaz started this thread.
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    Can I force HDD initialization past "an I/O device error"?

    Trying to format a Toshiba SATA 2.5" HDD. It's hooked up to my desktop via a USB SATA HDD adapter. Using standard WIn7 Sart->Computer->Manage->Disk Management

    It recognizes the drive but says it is not initialized. When I choose "initialize disk" and then either MBR or GPT, it tries then gives me "request could not be performed because of an I/O device error".

    Googled iy but found no solution. So maybe someone on this forum have had luck formatting a disk after en error like this. How did you do it? If I need to use some third-party software that's fine but I would prefer a free tool.



    Thx


  2. #2
    AuburnEwaste's Avatar
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    Try clicking on start>control panel>administrative tools>computer management>disk management. You should see the toshiba drive listed on on the bottom of the screen. Right click on it and click "new simple volume". Then click yes at the prompts, and it will create a new volume and format the disk. If your drive does not show up in disk management, or will not format correctly, it is probably a bad drive.

  3. #3
    ilyaz started this thread.
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    Quote Originally Posted by AuburnEwaste View Post
    Try clicking on start>control panel>administrative tools>computer management>disk management. You should see the toshiba drive listed on on the bottom of the screen. Right click on it and click "new simple volume". Then click yes at the prompts, and it will create a new volume and format the disk. If your drive does not show up in disk management, or will not format correctly, it is probably a bad drive.
    This is the same disk management tool I was using. If a disk is not initialized, you can't create a volume. This is precisely my problem. Maybe the disk is bad but I am wondering if, maybe with a more advanced disk management tool, or some other trick, I can get it initialized.

  4. #4
    Scrappah's Avatar
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    It's more likely that the drive is bad but you might check a couple of things:

    The older IDE drives would draw power from the USB but SATA drives seem to need a separate power supply. My understanding is vague but i think it's got something to do with drawing some kind of signal voltage that isn't available at the USB port.

    The HP's & Compaqs are a little odd in the way they arrange their USB setup. Best guess is that it's got something to do with the driver for the USB hub ? Anyway .... try plugging the SATA adapter into one of the USB ports on the back of the machine and see if it behaves differently. ( That's assuming you're running a tower. )

    Sometimes the error messages will mislead you.

    ETA: Always make sure that the green board on the HDD is pointed up. You don't want it face down on a metal surface because it could cause a short circuit and damage the drive.
    Last edited by Scrappah; 10-17-2014 at 08:11 PM.

  5. #5
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    An alternative that I use is Ubuntu and hard drive managment tool programs that are free using that OS. If you are unfamilar with UBuntu look it up on youtube. If you additional interest send me a pm. Mike.
    "Profit begins when you buy NOT when you sell." {quote passed down to me from a wise man}

    Now go beat the copper out of something, Miked

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  7. #6
    PartTimeScrapper's Avatar
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    Its a bad drive. The I/O error stands for input / output meaning the drive can be seen as a drive but the info the computer needs to know its size and what not is damaged. This is usually a bad board on the drive. the drive itself could still be good. Thats why you see people buying just the boards on ebay. If this happened and you had info on the drive you needed to recover the first thing you would do is replace a board with this error. Hope that helps.

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  9. #7
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    I always use Linux for this. This software costs $10 now, but I have the old, free version. If you want, you could add the packages into Ubuntu. But, if you're not too familiar with Linux, Parted Magic is well worth the $10.

    You'll be using the Disk Health program to run a test on the disk, the Disk Erase program for wiping data, and the Partition Editor for creating partitions. It'll run on an older Pentium 4 PC just fine. I'd go this way.

    The drive that you're looking at is probably damaged, though.

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  11. #8
    ilyaz started this thread.
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    Quote Originally Posted by matador View Post
    I always use Linux for this. This software costs $10 now, but I have the old, free version. If you want, you could add the packages into Ubuntu. But, if you're not too familiar with Linux, Parted Magic is well worth the $10.

    You'll be using the Disk Health program to run a test on the disk, the Disk Erase program for wiping data, and the Partition Editor for creating partitions. It'll run on an older Pentium 4 PC just fine. I'd go this way.

    The drive that you're looking at is probably damaged, though.
    I am quite comfortable with Linux. One question is whether it will recognize the external USB harddrive adapter that I use to hook up drives for testing and wiping.

    So are you saying that the Linux tool is free and for Windows it's $10?

  12. #9
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    Linux should recognize your external enclosure.

    My description was pretty bad in the last post. My bad. The tool (Parted Magic) isn't available for Windows. It's a Linux OS on a CD or Flash Drive. It's complete with a desktop window manager (Xvesa or Xorg?) and certain packages. It's basically like Puppy Linux or any other compact distro. It just comes with programs to help with formatting and checking hard drives.

    The free way is what I'm working on: I have a Pentium D PC with both IDE and SATA ports. I have a SATA hard drive that I'm installing Xubuntu on. Within that OS, I'm reinstalling the packages that are in Parted Magic. Basically, I'm building his OS. It's a lot of time spent to save $10. But, I'm really cheap, and it gives me a project for the next slow day.

    Parted Magic is just an OS. Just burn the ISO onto a DVD, and plop the disk in the computer. Nothing needs to be installed to a hard drive. I do caution against using Parted Magic in a PC that serves another purpose. It would stink to wipe the wrong drive

    Is there a brand on the hard drive adapter? Mine worked in Parted Magic, but mine may be a different adapter.

    One tip I learned after the longest time: You don't have to use a USB adapter to run a SATA laptop drive in a desktop. They will hook right into the standard SATA cable, and the SATA power supply connector. I felt like a genius the day that I discovered that!

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  14. #10
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    I do use Parted Majic in a tower that was built to test HDD's and has Ubuntu for the OS. In addition to Ubuntu I have Windows 7 installed and choose which OS to use at start up.

    Matdor is VERY correct I have to double check before I start working on a drive so I don't mistkenly screw up the tower drive.

    On this tower I do have to use a USB adapter to test IDE HDD's so the answer to your question is yes Parted Majic will work with a USB adpter for IDE or SATA drives. Mike

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  16. #11
    Scrappah's Avatar
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    Reason it through though .........

    If you plug in a drive and it works correctly it's all good to test & wipe.

    If you plug it in and it doesn't work it's broken. ( Broken HDD's are fiendishly difficult to repair.)

    Why get bogged down in it ?

    If you do any amount of scrapping you'll eventually run across hundreds that you don't have to fuss with. Turn n Burn Baby !

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  18. #12
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    I would second what Scrappah said. I would add that unless it is a 300GB+, I would not mess with it either.

    Scrappah, you from Maine?

  19. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scrappah View Post
    Reason it through though .........

    If you plug in a drive and it works correctly it's all good to test & wipe.

    If you plug it in and it doesn't work it's broken. ( Broken HDD's are fiendishly difficult to repair.)

    Why get bogged down in it ?

    If you do any amount of scrapping you'll eventually run across hundreds that you don't have to fuss with. Turn n Burn Baby !
    Bingo. I have very short leashes with hard drives. Less than 80GB? I take it apart. Doesn't work after I plug it in? Take it apart. Fails a Disk Health check? I take it apart.

    The only ones that get wiped and reused are large enough for use, work, and aren't likely to fail soon.

    Speed is key. I can get on to bigger and better drives (Pun intended).

  20. #14
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    ways to fix I/O device error

    You can try to change the transfer mode of the drive
    Step1. Press Win Logo Key + R and then type devmgmt.msc to open Device Manager.
    Step2. Now, expand IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers. Doing this will let you see a list of IDE ATA/ATAPI channels.
    Step3. Right, click on the channel to which the external drive is attached and then click on Properties. Usually, Secondary IDE Channel is used for the external hard drives.
    Step4. Now, click on PIO Only option from the labeled box Transfer Mode, it is for the device that represents the external hard drive on the Advanced Settings labeled tab. This device is usually set to 0.
    Step5. After this click on OK and close all the opened windows and restart the computer to check the drive.
    Hope it can help you.

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  22. #15
    t00nces2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lerupu View Post
    You can try to change the transfer mode of the drive
    Step1. Press Win Logo Key + R and then type devmgmt.msc to open Device Manager.
    Step2. Now, expand IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers. Doing this will let you see a list of IDE ATA/ATAPI channels.
    Step3. Right, click on the channel to which the external drive is attached and then click on Properties. Usually, Secondary IDE Channel is used for the external hard drives.
    Step4. Now, click on PIO Only option from the labeled box Transfer Mode, it is for the device that represents the external hard drive on the Advanced Settings labeled tab. This device is usually set to 0.
    Step5. After this click on OK and close all the opened windows and restart the computer to check the drive.
    Hope it can help you.
    Thanks for the input, we are always happy to get another viewpoint or angle to pursue..... I know you can hear it coming.... But, this thread was pulled up from 2014 (does anyone even remember how old they were in 2014?). That HDD was probably tossed in the aluminum bin 5 1/2 years ago.

    Welcome to our forum.
    Last edited by t00nces2; 06-11-2019 at 06:42 AM.


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