Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Win8.1 File History wont recognize re-connected drive

  1. #1


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1 x64

    Win8.1 File History wont recognize re-connected drive


    I have been using File History (in Windows 8 and 8.1) to an external drive connected through a USB 3.0 port. Since upgrading to 8.1, the 3.0 port is unreliable (Renesas driver errors) and I have not been able to find a solution. So I reconnected the drive through a USB2 port. When I restart, the drive is recognized in Explorer as "File History (E" as it was before. But File History will not recognize it (Unknown Error). When I use "Select another drive", I am given the option to select my File History drive, but when I do so, I get a prompt about moving files from the old drive to the new one. Since they are the same drive, needless to say, this doesn't work! If I decline the option, I get an error message "Could not enable File History - The system cannot find the file specified".

    Any suggestions (short of re-formatting the drive (which would destroy all previous FH backups) and changing its letter!)?

    Thanks.

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Posts : 1,121
    Windows 8.1 x64


    I don't use file History, but I might test it later. But I saw something on one site about turning it off, then reconnecting the drive and turning it back on. Have you tried that?

    If you want to wait, I will probably test it in the next couple of hours.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Posts : 1,121
    Windows 8.1 x64


    Well, I turned the File History on and the files were copied to an external USB 3.0 drive. I unplugged and reconnected to the 2.0 USB port, but it still seems to function.

    Any suggestions as to what I might try to duplicate your situation? You speak about drive letters, did your drive letter change and did you reset it to the original one? What type of USB 3.0 drive are you using?

    Perhaps part of the problem is the USB 3.0 situation causing some irregularities.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1 x64


    I really appreciate you taking the time to look into this. MY USB 3.0 drive is a WD 3tb MyBook.

    As it turned out, I found some more odd things going on. Once connected to the 2.0 port, when I looked in Explorer, the FileHistory folder appeared empty, although the drive reported as being almost full. If I connected to another machine (Win7), I could see the contents of the FileHistory folder. In the end I decided to bite the bullet and reformat the drive..... And that didn't turn out straightforward because it was a 2.7gb NTFS partition! To cut a longish story short, I used EaseUS to recreate the large partition, and eventually got it reconnected to the 8.1 machine. And File History is working again, albeit starting from scratch!

    Thanks again for trying to help me out. and so promptly.

    Graham
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Posts : 1,121
    Windows 8.1 x64


    You might want to keep an eye on it because I have also noticed some strange things.

    When the File History was running after a reboot, I noticed the small blue busy circle flashing about once every second next to the mouse cursor. I assumed it was because of the File History process, so I turned it off. That did not stop the flashing, so I rebooted to try to make it stop.

    During the reboot, my SSD drive disappeared from the boot priority items and I got a "insert proper boot device" type of message. And sure enough, the drive was missing from the boot list. I could see it in the Boot Menu and could return it to the boot priority list, but I do not know what caused it to be removed from the list in the first place.

    My experience may have just been a glitch on my system...but something to keep in mind.

    Glad you got it working.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1 x64


    Well, I am not completely out of the woods yet, either. Although the initial file copy worked (taking over 12 hours to complete - 650+gb), when it had finished, I noticed the tiny indicator light on the front of the MyBook was off. Also Windows Explorer could only see the first, small partition. The H: volume was "empty", apparently. I had to disconnect then reconnect the power to the MyBook, after which both volumes were visible again. and I could manually run File History again. I shall have to keep an eye on this, I think! I'm wondering whether this has something to do with having an oversize partition on the drive, but, if so, it did not happen under Win8.

    Another interesting development is that, having disconnected the drive from the USB3 ports, Device Manager now indicates that the drivers for the PCI-E card are working correctly! There appear to be 2, one for a "USB Root Hub (xHCI)", and one for "Renesas USB 3.0 eXtensible Host Controller - 0096 (Microsoft)".

    In any case, whatever problems are now appearing are new since upgrading to Win 8.1. My drive behaved properly, and File History worked fine before the upgrade.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1 x64


    Curiouser and curiouser. I now find that ALL files on the MyBook, in BOTH volumes, cannot be found in 8.1. This includes the initial software provided with the device (which is in the G: volume) and all the recently added File History. I can see the folders and files listed in Explorer, but I het a File Not Found message when I try to access any of them.

    So I disconnected the drive and inserted it into Win7 port. All is well - everything is where it should be!

    I'm thinking I should escalate this problem to Microsoft directly!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8


    Posts : 1,121
    Windows 8.1 x64


    Are you getting the busy indication next to the mouse cursor as I was? I am thinking the system may need time, and I don't have any guess as to how much time, to rebuild the synchronization between the drive and the system.

    You do know, setting a drive up with a GPT configuration will allow for the entire 3 TB space to be recognized normally. I do not know if that is compatible with your MyBook or if it might have some software/drivers associated with it, that might be involved.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1 x64


    I did notice that my drive, even with the oversize partition, does report itself as being MBR (if I look at the Volumes tab in Device Manager for the device). I also agree that it may be the partition size that is causing confusion in 8.1. However, Win 7 appears happy with the arrangement, and Win 8 did too. I think it is possible that there is a driver issue with the MyBook in 8.1.

    As for your first question, no, I don't see any busy mouse cursor. Furthermore, when I discovered that the files were not accessible under Win 8.1, the computer had been sitting idle for several hours.

    I've googled for other problems with MyBooks in 8.1, and there may be something on answers.microsoft, relating to "live authentication issues". Unfortunately, when I try the link, I get "The page was reset ...etc. etc."!) I'll try again tomorrow.

    Once again, thanks for your time and help.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1 x64


    Latest update (in case anyone else has similar problems!):

    1. Updated firmware for MyBook, and ran install program for latest SES drive. Not sure if driver actually installed - couldn't see it in DevMgr. No difference.

    2. Found that, when connected to USB2 port in Win8.1, occasionally, I could see and move the files, but mostly not. Sometimes I could see some of the folder tree, but usually,eventually would come against File Not Found somewhere down the tree. Drive always worked perfectly under Win7.

    3. Deleted G: and H: partitions, converted the drive to GPT (on Win7 machine), and quick formatted a single partition (NTFS). Win8.1 Disk Manager sees drive but insists the partition is "RAW" and will not format it.

    4. Reconnected now single partition, GPT drive to USB3.0 ports (since drivers appeared installed correctly in DevMgr). Drive appears correctly with single NTFS partition. Ran File History overnight. It completed successfully and files are accessible in the morning.

    5. Let computer go into Hibernate state. (I use SmartPower to manage when the machine hibernates, and this was disabled during File History backup.) On restart, drive not found, and DevMgr shows Renesas Host Controller driver not installed correctly, and USB Root Hub (xHCI) not present.

    6. Disconnected drive (by removing power), and restarted. Same result. Uninstalled Renesas device and restarted. xHCI driver present but not installed correctly. Renesas driver missing.

    7 Shutdown machine completely, then restarted. Both Renesas and xHCI driver correctly installed. Reconnected drive, and it was found, and files are all accessible.

    Next steps: I have changed SmartPower to aim for Suspend (Sleep) state rather than Hibernate. Not sure if that will work. If it does, see whether anything changes. If not, (deep sigh.....) bye bye 8.1. I'm going back to Win 8. All my data is on Storage Spaces drives, which I am assured will be fine after the downgrade! Just have to reinstall all apps!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Win8.1 File History wont recognize re-connected drive
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