Why has my Seagate external hard drive become inaccessible and how can I fix it?
Question by Corey Haertel /

I bought a 2 TB Seagate external herd drive from Fry’s Electronics. I put music, videos, pictures, and backed up some files from my computer. I only used it for about a month – casual usage, I hadn’t gotten into my major transferring, which I had bought the 2 TBs for.

It started going very slow. Taking several minutes just to open it up and view the files inside, then it started freezing every time I would select a file or open a folder. Then it got to the point that if I plugged it in via USB it would slow my entire computer and I would not be able to disconnect the external hard drive. It says generic volume is in use and cannot disconnect.

Now I can’t even see the driver path, find it in “My Computer”. It does not show up in computer management, under disk management. I tried running diskpart, but I cannot even start the diskpart, it tells me “the disk management services could not complete the operation” and I can’t even list the volumes.

I heard that this happens a bit with Seagate external hard drives, but I couldn’t find any help forums. Also, I could not format the drive, so I think I will have to go to the extreme of re-flashing it.

Is this something that I will have to re-flash and format to make work? Does anyone have any re-flashing tools for a 2TB external hard drives? If anyone has other suggestions I would love a solution that I don’t lose the files I have on there currently.

Someone told me they could write a driver for it, instead of the one Seagate comes with, and that should solve my problem, but I could never get the hard drive to him. Is this something I could figure out how to do myself with a sufficient guide?

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Answers (25)
  • dhananjayan

    i have 1tb seagate external hard disk….. have the data for 487 gb….. now i cant able to access my file and folder…… it shows hidden….. but actually i given show hidden files and folders….eventhough it is hidden…..tell me the reason and solution..

  • The photo guy

    Ok so i have a 500gb seagate drive and recently it has been freezing and making the computer slow (toshiba laptop), very frustrating when you are a photographer and you dont want to have to continuously go to your secondary backup methods because its just a pain. So here is what worked perfectly for me, and its a stretch for anyone who doesnt have the program. Open adobe bridge (i use cs6) from there open your hard drive if it shows up, cut and paste all your shit from there to either another drive or your desktop. Took my computer 5 hours to do 367gigs but everything is fine. I would recommend scanning your harddrive or computer that you transfer files to just to double check that it wasnt a corrupt file on the bad drive. Hope this helps someone!

  • GabrielNar

    here’s a simple fix for your problem:
    http://PathTooDeep.com
    that Long Path Tool helped me in my similar situation.

  • Maya

    I have a seagate external hard drive too, i have an imac computer which is i can also switch it to windows the thing is when i plug my external on imac program its working as my back up time machine and i can open my forlder inside, but when i used to switch on windows there’s an eject icon showing but i cannot even view my folder even i use the other computer which has a windows program my external also not working, im lost and i dont know why it happenned suddenly, Basically i need to open it using by windows program Is anyone there knows what to do and why it happened could you give me some idea on what i supposed to do? please need a help.

  • skimran

    Serial Number: 2GHY4Z8E
    Model Number: ST910004EXM101-RK

    i have an external hard disk and i have bymistake formate it now its not working plzz help

    • fwh

      Here is my simple solution

      – Disk Management
      – Change Drive Letter
      – Click Offline (left side)
      – Click Online (left side)
      – It worked!

  • dan

    i have a 320GB Seagate external HD. I formated to my Bell Expressview. Now i can’t access the drive through my computer. Can someone help

  • Jonathon Sueppel

    ok i have a friend who just bought a new Seagate external hard drive, she was able to use it for a week, then her computer stopped recognizing it. what should she do?

  • nishant

    sir,
    i also go through a step i.e
    1.right click on my computer then go to manage & then disk management.
    after then whatever condition required i also tried but nothing happened ..

    so please give me another solution which benefited me …please

  • nishant

    sir,
    My external harddisk does not working properly i.e it doesn’t show anything files,folders & sub-folders.

    Situation – when i attached my harddisk with my pc it does’t show anything.the drive is invisible.

  • guy

    re: Rpcman’s comment helped me out.
    I had (have?) similar problems with a 1 TB external Hard Drive (the device manager says it’s mitsubishi hardware). Windows would complain about partially written files even during reads, then the drive would fail and disconnect while exploring sub-directories, after taking a really long time to *try* and read them. I couldn’t even browse to pull files off of it.

    I disconnected the drive as Rpcman suggested, and restarted everything at the same time. It seems to have worked, even though, like him, I can’t imagine why. The same directories that reported read errors seem fine, at least enough to pull some important data onto another drive before the external one get’s worse.

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