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  #1  
Old 08-02-2019, 9:30 AM
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Default Old guy with new computer

I'm an amateur photographer and use Lightroom on my computer. All my photos were backed up to a 1TB WD external hard drive.

The computer crashed during a Microsoft update and is dead. It was pretty slow anyways.


I plugged in the WD hard drive into my new computer and it wants me to format the drive.

My question is, if I do that will I lose all my photo data?

Thank you!
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  #2  
Old 08-02-2019, 9:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madjack956 View Post
I'm an amateur photographer and use Lightroom on my computer. All my photos were backed up to a 1TB WD external hard drive.

The computer crashed during a Microsoft update and is dead. It was pretty slow anyways.


I plugged in the WD hard drive into my new computer and it wants me to format the drive.

My question is, if I do that will I lose all my photo data?

Thank you!
If you format the drive, your data will be lost.
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  #3  
Old 08-02-2019, 9:45 AM
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There are utils to repair the drive (which I have never done), but you could carve the data off w/out a format... But carved data gets you randomly-named filenames, you'd have to go through manually to org. If you quick format a platter drive, you can still carve data, AFAI remember.

EDIT: OH AND BTW, CARVED DATA GETS YOU UNINTENDED "INTERNET" IMAGEs/THUMBNAILs... YOU MIGHT WANT TO DELETE TOO...

https://www.google.com/search?q=repa...utf-8&oe=utf-8
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Last edited by the86d; 08-02-2019 at 9:58 AM..
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  #4  
Old 08-02-2019, 11:00 AM
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Thank you gentlemen!
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Old 08-02-2019, 11:32 AM
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Do the minimal amount writing on that drive if possible, to preserve the files.

What software were you using to backup the data to the external drive?
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Old 08-02-2019, 11:33 AM
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Try plugging the external drive into another computer. Maybe it's not a problem with the external drive but with your new computer.

And yes, reformatting a drive will wipe out everything that's on it.

If you can get the drive to work on a different computer (maybe even try a Mac), then I'd make a copy of the external drive onto another external drive before doing anything else.
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Old 08-02-2019, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by creampuff View Post
Do the minimal amount writing on that drive if possible, to preserve the files.

What software were you using to backup the data to the external drive?
Good question. Some backup programs encrypt data that is backed up. In that case, unless you've got that same program installed on the new computer, the disk is going to appear as gibberish.

I never encrypt files. I don't have anything critical enough to require it and it creates more problems than it solves.

And more than one backup is a wise idea. Hard drives are cheap. All my backups are to mirrored pairs of drives so I always have two identical drives with all my files.
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Old 08-02-2019, 11:46 AM
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Once you get settled consider getting amazon prime and enjoy unlimited cloud storage (for photos) and don't put your hard work at risk again.
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  #9  
Old 08-02-2019, 9:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Epaphroditus View Post
Once you get settled consider getting amazon prime and enjoy unlimited cloud storage (for photos) and don't put your hard work at risk again.
Or better yet, get several back-up drives instead and then won't have to worry who is getting into your cloud data.
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Old 08-03-2019, 6:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Epaphroditus View Post
Once you get settled consider getting amazon prime and enjoy unlimited cloud storage (for photos) and don't put your hard work at risk again.
You DON'T want your critical personal files/data stored on "The Cloud". There IS no "cloud". Just someone ELSE'S computer. Think about it.

Last edited by Dragunov; 08-03-2019 at 6:12 AM..
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  #11  
Old 08-03-2019, 6:11 AM
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Or better yet, get several back-up drives instead and then won't have to worry who is getting into your cloud data.
This^^^ is the best advice in this thread.

OP should attempt rebooting his computer, with the external drive connected.

If this doesn't work, EJECT the drive from the "Show Hidden Icons" area, on the right side of the taskbar, then give it a few, then re-connect.

If this doesn't work, reboot before re-connecting.

If this doesn't work, try it on another computer.

There are other things you can do, but I don't know how computer savvy the OP is.
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Old 08-03-2019, 10:59 AM
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Ok, the computer that crashed was using Windows 7. there is no way to reboot, there are no hidden icons, nothing but a blue screen. Its done.

I connected the drive to my second laptop that also runs Windows 7.


That's the computer that told me to format the drive.


Next, I connected the drive to my new computer that runs Windows 10.


It does not request a format. It shows an empty drive, ready to go.


Adobe Lightroom is the program that wrote the data to the hard drive.


So, not knowing jack about computers, I have 2 questions.

How is mirroring 2 back up drives going to survive the crash a single one couldn't.


Is it possible the crash wiped the data on the drive completely or just the path to it?
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  #13  
Old 08-03-2019, 12:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madjack956 View Post
I'm an amateur photographer and use Lightroom on my computer. All my photos were backed up to a 1TB WD external hard drive.

I plugged in the WD hard drive into my new computer and it wants me to format the drive.
Old computer was windoze - what is the new one?
If it is windoze too it should not be prompting to format the drive.
Was it encrypted by any chance?

Quote:
My question is, if I do that will I lose all my photo data?
Absolutely - don't do that.
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Old 08-03-2019, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madjack956 View Post
Ok, the computer that crashed was using Windows 7. there is no way to reboot, there are no hidden icons, nothing but a blue screen. Its done.

I connected the drive to my second laptop that also runs Windows 7.


That's the computer that told me to format the drive.


Next, I connected the drive to my new computer that runs Windows 10.


It does not request a format. It shows an empty drive, ready to go.


Adobe Lightroom is the program that wrote the data to the hard drive.


So, not knowing jack about computers, I have 2 questions.

How is mirroring 2 back up drives going to survive the crash a single one couldn't.


Is it possible the crash wiped the data on the drive completely or just the path to it?
You don't "Mirror" them. You keep the exact same set of backups on each one individually. Every time you back up, you do it twice. One external drive, then, the next. It's a little bit more time consuming, but it's the way I do it, and even though I may have a drive failure, I still confidently have my complete set of backups in tact, and no one else has access to them.

I haven't lost data in 25 years because I do this. It's the "Old School" way of doing things, and it works.

Unless you're keeping corporate secrets, or National Security critical files, never "encrypt" files, if there's absolutely no need.

Does the computer that actually can access the drive, have your Adobe program on it? If not, perhaps that's why your O/S isn't seeing the data. Try installing it, then check again.
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  #15  
Old 08-03-2019, 3:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragunov View Post
You don't "Mirror" them. You keep the exact same set of backups on each one individually. Every time you back up, you do it twice. One external drive, then, the next. It's a little bit more time consuming, but it's the way I do it, and even though I may have a drive failure, I still confidently have my complete set of backups in tact, and no one else has access to them.


Ok got it. I will do this with new computer.


Does the computer that actually can access the drive, have your Adobe program on it?

My new Windows 10 computer does not have Adobe program on it. My second laptop with Windows 7 did. That's the one that requested I format the drive. I will install on new W10 computer and see whats up.


.

Thanks again!
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  #16  
Old 08-03-2019, 3:30 PM
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Once this is solved, they sell external enclosures for back up

https://www.frys.com/product/7996890...H:MAIN_RSLT_PG
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  #17  
Old 08-03-2019, 4:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madjack956 View Post
Ok, the computer that crashed was using Windows 7. there is no way to reboot, there are no hidden icons, nothing but a blue screen. Its done.

I connected the drive to my second laptop that also runs Windows 7.


That's the computer that told me to format the drive.


Next, I connected the drive to my new computer that runs Windows 10.


It does not request a format. It shows an empty drive, ready to go.


Adobe Lightroom is the program that wrote the data to the hard drive.


So, not knowing jack about computers, I have 2 questions.

How is mirroring 2 back up drives going to survive the crash a single one couldn't.


Is it possible the crash wiped the data on the drive completely or just the path to it?
Strange that the crash of your main computer drive affected your external drive.

If you plug the external drive into a good computer, if the external drive is good, it should simply be read by the good computer and you should be able to access it. At this point, I'd have a pro check out your external drive before you do anything. It could be simple like a bad power supply in the external case, or it could be a problem with the drive itself. I had an external drive that I thought was toast and then swapped the drive into a known good external drive case and presto, I had my drive back again.

As for mirroring, all that does it create two identical drives at one time. Essentially you're just doubling down on your backup. Should one of the backup drive die, you have another.

And backing up separately to two drives is a waste of time unless you're running it automatically at night and you don't care how long it takes. I have two mirrored drives internally in my tower for backup and also two mirrored drives in an external enclosure that are also for less frequent backups. They are all identical. And because it's a Mac and I use Carbon Copy Cloner, each drive, besides being identical in content, is also bootable. Should my main drive go bad, I swap one of the backup drives into the slot for the main drive and I'm up and running again that fast. Don't know if there's any capability like that for PC's, though.

So, to be clear, there's no difference between a backup done via mirroring and one done on two drives sequentially. It's just that it takes less time to do the backup.
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  #18  
Old 08-05-2019, 12:14 PM
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Sorry, amazon prime unlimited cloud storage is only for photos - I presumed this thread was primarily about photography related computer stuff.

FYI a hack is to encrypt your docs (not photo) and give the encrypted file a jpg extension then you can use Amazon's cloud storage for anything - encrypted of course.
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  #19  
Old 08-05-2019, 4:03 PM
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@madjack956

Do you have your windows 7 disk? If so, try booting to that and run the repair feature or the system restore feature. Maybe you can repair it, or restore it to a date before the PC crashed?
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Old 08-06-2019, 7:50 PM
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As long as you don't format it,you won't loss your data from your computer.Good luck.
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  #21  
Old 08-07-2019, 7:52 AM
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This is all going to depend on how you had Lightroom setup on the old machine.

Where did you have Lightroom store the photos when imported?
Where did you have Lightroom store the catalog (.lcat file)?
Did you have Lightroom do the backing up?
Did you back up the actual photos or just the .lcat catalog?
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