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Problems with External Hard Drive

godzillinois

New Member
I have 2 external hard drives I tried to use on my Surface Pro. One is a Western Digital My Passport that shows up when I connect, and I can read/write/copy etc but it won't let me eject it. When I try to eject it by right clicking the option isn't there, and if I try it in the Finder the eject button is grayed out. Had to turn off my Surface before disconnecting.

My portable Toshiba hard drive just keeps opening a window when connected and keeps dinging when it does so, like it's trying to open the hard drive but it doesn't work. Then it causes my micro SD card to not show up. It will just keep opening windows and dinging until I shut off the computer to eject (and I think it causes issues with my WiFi too.)

I also have a 32GB thumb drive that I erased and formatted on my MacBook Pro with exFAT, that works fine in the Surface. The two drives are older and have been formatted for Macs, I'm just not sure what formats they are.

Does this sound like an issue with my Surface Pro? Or is it possibly an issue with my hard drives or the way they were formatted? Anybody else come across these issues?
 

drolem

Active Member
You don't need to eject drives unless you change the default -- just wait for a reasonable amount of time to complete writes.

Interfaces? (USB 2.0 or 3.0) Bus powered or externally powered?

Hub? If yes, what? Extension cable?
 
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godzillinois

New Member
No hub, the one that I could actually read but not eject is a 2.0 I believe. The one that wouldn't even mount and went all crazy is a 3.0. No extension cables used, only the cables that came with them. Why would the Toshiba not read and cause my Surface Pro to go haywire?

Also, my Pro gives me an option to eject the thumb drive that I formatted with exFAT, and the Western Digital (2.0 USB) has the eject option grayed out. Why would this be the case if we no longer have to eject? How do I change the default to make it ok to unplug without ejecting?
 
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kundas1

Well-Known Member
First off, you should be formatting (anything bigger than 4GB) your drives in NTFS not exfat, secondly you should always stop your drives before removing them, it keeps the integrity of your data... so I would recommend not using the eject but right clicking on the USB icon on the taskbar at the bottom right and then stopping the connected devices and then unplug them...
 
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drolem

Active Member
I happen to have 2 Toshibas (Black Friday pickups) -- one bus powered (1.5 TB) and one externally powered (3 TB), and they both work fine with my Surface Pro.

Did you try those HDs on another machine?
 
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godzillinois

New Member
I happen to have 2 Toshibas (Black Friday pickups) -- one bus powered (1.5 TB) and one externally powered (3 TB), and they both work fine with my Surface Pro.

Did you try those HDs on another machine?

I ended up backing up and reformatting my Toshiba to exFAT and that fixed it (still can't "eject" any external hard drives though.) I'm hoping it was only a formatting issue and not something else because my Surface Pro was going crazy whenever I hooked up my Toshiba before changing the formatting. Made the wifi go out and everything!
 
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godzillinois

New Member
First off, you should be formatting (anything bigger than 4GB) your drives in NTFS not exfat...

False, I use my hard drives on both my Macbook Pro and now my Surface Pro so exFAT is a better option:

Use the exFAT File System and Never Format Your External Drive Again

secondly you should always stop your drives before removing them, it keeps the integrity of your data... so I would recommend not using the eject but right clicking on the USB icon on the taskbar at the bottom right and then stopping the connected devices and then unplug them...

Thanks for that! I found the eject option hidden there in the battery icon! Its weird that it shows up there and not when right clicking. Not sure what you mean by 'stopping the connected device.' Ejecting the hard drive stops it from spinning and I get a 'safe to remove' popup.
 

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