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Thread: Problem Formating Hard Drive in Windows 7

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    currently Boulder, CO; formerly Seattle, WA.
    Posts
    210

    Problem Formating Hard Drive in Windows 7

    Hi all,

    I realize this is not a computer forum and there are other places I could post this question, but I really like LFPF and there are a lot of people here who know a lot more about this stuff than me.

    So here is my issue. I recently got a new workstation (PC, running Windows 7 Pro 64bit), and to help get me set up I also purchased four 3TB Seagate bare drives from Newegg to upgrade my backup system. I use them with drive docks from OWC, usually connected to USB3.

    After some trial and error, I realized that I needed to Initalize these as GPT (as this seems better for large disks), and it seemed like a good idea to do a full format (vs. Quick Format) at least the first time they are formated. And I also found that I needed to get Teracopy, as Windows doesnt like copying large amounts of data (annoying, especially coming from Mac).

    So I was able to format three of the four drives just fine and copy data to them. However, the 4th drive lets me Initialize it, and allows me to Quick Format it using Computer Managment/Disk Managment. But whenever I attempt to do a Full Format it stops at something like, 41%, 36%, or 34%. The progress just stops there and sits for many hours without doing anything. I know that a full format of a 3TB disk will take a long time, but it seems to usually progress at about 1%/min or so, and once this disk gets to 34% or so it just stops.

    It does seem to work fine if I just do a Quick Format, I can copy data to it, but since a Full Format worked on the others I would like to do the same to this drive. It will be my Offsite back-up of all my film scans and print files from 120, 4x5, and 8x10, so I really want to be confident that it is working properly.

    Could this be an issue with the actual disk? Should I try exchanging it? Or is it more likely a Windows issue? I have tried 2 drive docks, both on USB3 but tried several different ports on my workstation all with the same result.

    Any advice is greatly apprecitated.

    Thanks,
    Adam
    ----------------------
    http://adamsatushek.com

  2. #2
    Preston Birdwell
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Columbia, CA
    Posts
    1,577

    Re: Problem Formating Hard Drive in Windows 7

    Adam,

    It is possible the disk has bad sectors. To verify if the disk is bad, you can run the Check Disk command from a command prompt. Here are intructions from MS Tech Net.

    You can also attempt to repair the disk using a command line switch in the Check Disk command. The syntax to do this is included in the link above.

    If the repair doesn't work, you can return the drive to NewEgg.

    --P
    Preston-Columbia CA

    "If you want nice fresh oats, you have to pay a fair price. If you can be satisfied with oats that have already been through the horse; that comes a little cheaper."

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    currently Boulder, CO; formerly Seattle, WA.
    Posts
    210

    Re: Problem Formating Hard Drive in Windows 7

    Awesome, thanks Preston! I will give that a shot this evening.
    ----------------------
    http://adamsatushek.com

  4. #4
    Name: ______William Booth
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Alabama, USA
    Posts
    193

    Re: Problem Formating Hard Drive in Windows 7

    If that doesn't work, there are some more robust (& free) tools for formatting disks. If chkdsk doesn't return anything useful, let us know, and we can probably point you in the right direction.

  5. #5
    (Shrek)
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Montreal
    Posts
    1,542

    Re: Problem Formating Hard Drive in Windows 7

    The disk is defective, especially as it's a brand new disk. Return & replace immediately, don't waste a minute of your time with it. Considering what you're using it for, you can't afford any probability of future failures, which, from what you've described, is highly likely.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Seattle area, WA
    Posts
    858

    Re: Problem Formating Hard Drive in Windows 7

    Probably a bad disk. Check your System and Application Event Viewer. If you see lots of events from the disk subsystem then it's a bad drive.

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