Why did my music disappear from my external hard drive?
Question by Mark Creado /

I had a music folder on an external hard drive with about 180GB of data. Now suddenly, when I connect the hard drive the music folder is empty and the folder icon shows a file of just 32KB. Where’d my music go!?!?


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Answers (8)
  • Jewels S.

    I had just 1 song disappear from my library. I did not delete it, but the file was physically gone from my hard drive. I use iTunes; however, I purchased this 1 mp3 song on amazon.com. Very strange that the file would just be gone one day. In order to re-download the song I had to install amazon’s mp3 player (yet another useless program I don’t want). I have anti-virus software installed, it is up-to-date, and does a full scan of my drive once a week. I doubt it is virus-related.


    Hello, have you connected this external drive to a different computer outside your network lately? It might well be that it became infected somehow. Have you checked how much used space is reported? To do so, try the following:

    — connect external drive
    — click on computer/my computer
    — right click on external and select properties
    — under the general tab, how much free and used space is reported?

  • zeeshan khan

    First, make sure that you do a full virus scan.

    Second, got to this link: http://www.tech2hell.com/2011/02/how-to-recover-hidden-files-from-virus-infected-usb-pendrive/

    The link is for usb flash drive but I tried it on my portable hard drive and it worked!

    *Note: The second step is only if you have nothing in your drive but there is still something covering the space.

    • zeeshan khan

      If the above doesn’t apply to you then just try doing a full virus scan and then download a file recovery software to recover your files. I used Recuva for this.

    • zeeshan khan

      Your usb port might not be functioning properly. Make sure you update all your drivers.

  • Jenne Qing

    You can use minitool power data recovery software to get your photos back.

  • ha14

    If they are not deleted then they should be there and somehow are hidden.

    1. Go to control Panel, Folder Options — select VIEW— select Show hidden
    files and folders and uncheck Hide protected operating system files
    (recommended)  click APPLY
    2. go to your external hard drive  delete the virus and all the shortcut folders that have
    no data in them. create new folders (give the same name as your normal non infected hidden folders) and copy the data from YOUR hidden folders
    into them. once that is done delete the old hidden folders.
    3. enter task manager— find the virus program that is still running which will
    have the same name as the one you just deleted off the hard drive
    4. go back to control panel, Folder options select view- select DO
    NOT show hidden files and folders and recheck Hide protected operating system
    files (recommended).

  • Bruce Epper

    First, do not write anything to that drive.

    Next, you need to run a full virus scan on your computer. There is an old worm that spreads via removable media that looks for and deletes all .mp3 files it finds. I am unsure if there are newer ones that do the same.

    After that, install Recuva or a similar file recovery tool to your system and run it against the music folder on your external drive. As long as nothing else has been written to that drive to this point, this program should be able to recover all of your deleted files.

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