Arris Gateway PVR prompting to reformat an external HDD its been using for years

PG_Croat
Grasshopper

No idea if anybody can help with this but for years I've been using the the Arris Gateway with an external hard drive and last week the PVR appeared to clear itself of almost every recording except for a small fraction of what I had while still showing that the PVR was about as full (around 80%).

I realized that it was cause the PVR was not longer pulling from the external drive and, while troubleshooting that by going into the external drive in settings, I found that it was saying there was no drive connected. I verified that it was connected and powered up, so I decided to reboot both the PVR and Drive. Once I did that, the PVR recognized that there was a drive but that it required reformatting. It will not use it till I've done that.

I have hundreds of hours of recordings on it and reformatting will require me to wipe that clean. Does anybody know how I can correct this without doing that. If not, is there a way I can back up what's on the drive so I can restore it once I've reformatted the drive?

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-- the external disk-drive inside the Arris Gateway is fa...

mdk
Grand Master

@PG_Croat -- the external disk-drive connected to the Arris Gateway is failing, leaving you with only the content stored on the internal disk-drive.

If you have an eSATA port on your computer, can you connect the external disk-drive to that computer, and then download/install/run the free SPECCY software.  Expand its "storage" branch, and look at the "S.M.A.R.T." statistics for that disk-drive.  Do you see any "warning" or "bad" messages? If so, that will confirm that the disk-drive is failing.

Because the file-system on the external disk-drive is "unknown" to Microsoft Windows, you will not be able to access any files.

The external disk-drive has 3 components: the case, a SATA-to-eSATA interface, and a "standard" internal SATA-interface disk-drive. It could be that SATA-to-eSATA interface that is failing.  In that situation, maybe connecting the disk-drive into an "empty" case/interface will allow you to access the content. (If you are sitting inside a taxi that has a flat-tire, move yourself inside a different taxi, to get yourself to your destination.)

As an experiment, you could remove the disk-drive from its case, and connect a new disk-drive, and then connect the device to the eSATA port on your computer, to see if you can "format" the new disk-drive, and can read/write.  If successful, this will prove that the SATA-to-eSATA adapter is OK.

If the disk-drive itself is not failing, then there might possibly exist some software to make a sector-by-sector backup, and to restore from that backup onto a new disk-drive. But, if is failing, the backup may fail. Sigh.

So, the short answer is "it is not likely that you will be able to recover the content".

 

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Unfortunately, I don't have an eSATA port on my computer....

PG_Croat
Grasshopper

Unfortunately, I don't have an eSATA port on my computer. So I'm stumbling right out of the gate with troubleshooting that. Do you know if an eSATA to USB cable would work in accomplishing a connection with a computer?

I figured I might not be able to access the files on it via Windows, assuming it would be an unrecognizable type, but my hope was that I would be able to see an object, or series of objects, that I could temporarily copy, then have the box reformat the drive again and then move those objects back into it with the use of the computer. I'm also assuming that that's wishful thinking but, given how quickly people put newly aired content like that online, I was hoping there was a tool or something that I could use to temporarily move the content I legitimately recorded on my PVR  as I reformat the drive.

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-- Do you know if an eSATA to USB cable would work in acc...

mdk
Grand Master

@PG_Croat -- Do you know if an eSATA to USB cable would work in accomplishing a connection with a computer?

It might work, but I have my doubts. 

I have one eSATA-to-SATA cable that I have used. So, on my desktop computer, I can connect to a spare SATA port.

I've never tried that backup/reformat/restore operation. How to avoid rewriting the first few sectors back to the external device, because it probably is those sectors that need to be exactly what the PVR expects to see.

Maybe, some sort of "disk-drive-partition-table-editor" program can be used, to update those sectors?  "Left as an exercise for the reader."

Any LINUX gurus out there, who know what file-systems it supports, and what "recovery" tools are available?

 

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had the same thing happen to me on my Western Digital Ter...

sparkiedale
Grasshopper

had the same thing happen to me on my Western Digital Terra Ext Hard drive

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-- had the same thing happen to me on my Western Digital...

mdk
Grand Master

@sparkiedale -- had the same thing happen to me on my Western Digital Terra Ext Hard drive

How old is that WD device?  It probably has a one-year or two-year replacement warranty.

 

 

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