External Install Ruined Disk


I am a little frustrated… I chose to install OpenSuse 64-bit on an external device because Suse insisted on deleted my entire system drive to ensure a fresh GPT partition.

So, I decided to use a SD Card. Not only did SUSE not boot from the card, it permanently screwed it up from ever being mounted or reformatted in Windows. I entered into the Disk Management interface, and no operation can be performed on the now non-recognizable SD Card. There is no drive letter, just a “RAW” formatted piece of junk that I might as well throw away.

So, I figured it was only recognizable by Linux. So, I decided to use an old external HDD to install SUSE on. After installing, the drive would not boot. When boot selection was engaged on the drive the prompt “no operating system found” was displayed.

After attempting to reformat the HDD in windows, I realized that no matter how many times I wiped the drive, Windows refuses to reformat due to “too many bad sectors”. I started a drive check and stopped half way through due to 100% of recognized sectors being corrupt.

I figure I should live an learn, but it would be very nice to recover my now useless HDD and SD Card.

What should I have done? I followed the instructions.

What should I do to regain control over my HDD and SD Card?

I was able to recover the SD Card by entering into the custom setup and setting up a delete and re-partition to NTFS. I then aborted the install after those operations were complete.

I am pretty sure the HDD is shot though. BIOS seems to get caught in a loop when the drive is connected on start-up. The drive will not spin, only the spindle will tick.

Is there a USB Grub Manager I can use to clean and partition the HDD from BTRFS to NTFS?

Parted Magic has lots of tools included

Does a live cd and fdisk see the external USB?

At this point, nothing will recognize the external HDD, except Disk Manager. After I used AOMEI Partition Assistant to wipe the drive and attempt a repartition, it was unable to recover. The repart. was terminated due to errors in sectors leaving an unallocated drive. Linux will not recognize, as detecting the device will lead to loop out.

It would be nice to restore the drive, but I have pretty much resigned myself to the fact that it is gone. I still would like to install the 64bit on a partition on my internal HDD, but I am scared to death of the same lockup happening with it. But, I have also been prompted with the requirement to convert the entire drive to GPT and I am unwilling to lose data on my separate partitions. I have previously installed the 32bit version on a partition with no problem with GPT, or erasing and reformatting afterward.

Was I suppose to load a GRUB extension for all of this? Or, manually partition on set-up?

You should be able to recover if the drive is not damaged. an OS can not damage a drive as such. A drive may fail. If the drive is not physically damaged you should be able to re partition it.

Get a low level disk scan from the drive maker it should tell you if it is repairable or not.

On 07/13/2012 05:36 AM, atangeman wrote:
> I chose to install OpenSuse 64-bit

i don’t it possible to offer good help until we know more about the
situatio, like:

which version did you try to install

  • 11.4
  • 12.1
  • 12.2
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 11
  • other (please state the version)

from what source

if you downloaded an iso from this page http://software.opensuse.org/
did you download the iso for:

  • 64 bit DVD
  • 64 bit Live GNOME CD
  • 64 bit Live KDE CD
  • 64 bit Network CD
  • one of the linked to Derivatives (which?)

once you had downloaded the iso and before you burned the disk did you
check it with md5 or sha1 checksum routine? what were the results of
that check?

after checking the iso and burning the install disk did you do this
http://tinyurl.com/2ebcf27 before install attempt? what were
the results of that check?

if you did not checksum test the iso or run the install disk self test i
have to assume a corrupt install disk because i’m not familiar with this
reported behavior: “Suse insisted on deleted my entire system drive to
ensure a fresh GPT partition”

you state that you “followed the instructions” and i wonder which those
were…did you (for example) follow the instructions in the “Download
Help” link (on http://software.opensuse.org/) to perform the md5/sha1
checksum test?

and did you follow the installation instructions linked as “openSUSE
startup guide” on that same download page?

lets turn to that guide now, beginning at this point
http://tinyurl.com/74ltkjo and ask you to tell me does your
hardware meed the recommended system requirements?

then scroll down to slide associated with paragraph 4 (below paragraph
3) and say if you left the check mark in the box next to “Use automatic

scroll again, to paragraph 6: what did you select here? (Gnome, KDE or

then on 7:

  • what was the original Suggested Partitioning (before you changed any
    check boxes on that page to other than the default)?
    – if you had a preexisting operating system (if so, please identify
    that operating system) on the internal drive, was it detected? and did
    the install program offer to keep it, shrink its partition size and then
    install openSUSE along side it, dual booting?
    – did you select to accept the suggested scheme? or

  • did you instead check any of the boxes “Create LVM”, “Propose separate
    Home Partition” or “Use Btrfs as default Filesystem” (which)?

  • then did you click “Create Partition Setup”, “Import Partition Setup”
    or “Edit Partition Setup” (which)?

was it after clicking for LVM and/or Btrfs and which of those three
buttons that “Suse insisted on deleted my entire system drive to ensure
a fresh GPT partition”

and if it was then that “Suse insisted” did you then read up on
partitioning at http://tinyurl.com/5krulv and/or
http://en.opensuse.org/SDB:Partitioning before proceeding?

and, if you wanted to install on a machine with a preexisting operating
system (what is it–the below includes info on various versions of
Windows and Ubuntu, but not OSX, if you need help with an Apple, say so
and i’ll try to dig out some info) were any of these helpful:







with some of those answers we can then understand the problem, and offer
better help…

by the way, WELCOME to the openSUSE forum…is this your first move into
Linux, or are you an old hand at it?


On 2012-07-13 07:16, gogalthorp wrote:
> You should be able to recover if the drive is not damaged. an OS can not
> damage a drive as such. A drive may fail. If the drive is not
> physically damaged you should be able to re partition it.
> Get a low level disk scan from the drive maker it should tell you if it
> is repairable or not.

I concur.

Linux did not damage the disk, it was already bad and writing to it failed.
Use the manufacturer test disk utility to check the drive; for example,
seagate has seatools for download, a bootable ISO.

Notice that being an external drive, a bad connection of the USB or SATA
cable can run havoc.

Cheers / Saludos,

Carlos E. R.
(from 11.4 x86_64 “Celadon” at Telcontar)