Reply To: raw partition
I haven’t seen this type of error. Here are some thoughts.
What type of file structure is the drive partitioned as? FAT32? And what size is it?
The RAW designation, from what I understand, is used by some operating systems to indicate a drive that hasn’t been formatted. But I suppose for some older machines where they don’t automatically detect the correct drive parameters, some corruption to the BIOS settings might result in a drive not being accessed properly. You might double check what the BIOS is reporting out for the drive, like for size of HD, and so on.
Another serious quirk I’ve run into is where you have a computer with a large enough drive to use the EFI (GPT, or whatever) boot rather than the MBR for describing disk layouts. My motherboard does not really like to have the two types of disk formats mixed on the machine. It will handle either sort of OK, but not both without strange results. While the HD you are having a problem with is an XP system, what OS on the guest machine you tried the drive on? (And, how big are the other drives on it?)
If you have the diagnostic software from the HD’s mother, you might give that a try. Most of those (and you can usually download them for free) do a good job of diagnosing problems. Just be careful you don’t run any of the destructive tests (like write zeros, and so on) — unless you really want to start over from with the drive.
And, a little rant: So many of the searches using like Google and Yahoo! return hits that are really just ads to sucker you into some overpriced software (yeh, FREE download!) that will solve all your problems.
There is one for-sale utility, Spinrite, (http://crc.com) that used to do a good job of checking and repairing drives with failing sectors, but with the size of drives these days it isn’t practical.
Keep us posted on what you find.