I'm trying to mount my HDD, /dev/sdb, which is connected via an enclosure but every time I try do so I get an error message

mount: /dev/sdb: can't read superblock

How do I solve this problem and mount my HDD?


Test this:

Connect your Hdd.

Open a terminal,

Press Ctrl+Alt+T

Run it:

sudo -i
fdisk -l

Suppose that fdisk reports that the partition hdd is /dev/sdb1, continue running:

fsck -y /dev/sdb1
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    Hello, it didn't detect the HDD. it detected /dev/sda1 on which ubuntu is running instead. – SaeedAwadX Oct 24 '14 at 7:16
  • The drive is likely a goner. Start searching for answers regarding data recovery if you have needed data on the drive. – Elder Geek Mar 16 '15 at 23:31
  • 1
    This worked for me. – LEMUEL ADANE Aug 17 '18 at 16:50
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    This worded for me. We Can't have acces to a partition: /dev/sda, but this solved the problem, put in the terminal: fsck -y /dev/sda5 – Indacochea Wachín Nov 4 '18 at 20:26

I realise this is an old thread but I will add this just in case it helps someone. I have also had similar problems with and external disk in the past which I think were linked to usb power problems. I got the person I was helping to try the disk in a powered usb hub and this made it visible and mountable. Try that before throwing the disk away as it may be the problem.


I had the same issue and solved it with testdisk. Using this info: Advanced FAT Repair | CGSecurity


Let me share this solution also. Not really related to Ubuntu, but I have Ubuntu and I wandered around this forum to find a solution that turned out to be a hardware problem. I tried all possible solutions I found, nothing worked. I picked a screwdriver and opened the screws of my external drive, dissembled all physical parts and reassembled it again. And it works! I can't explain why, but somehow it works. Of course, you can only try this if you can physically dissemble your drive without breaking it, and probably you should try this after you tried other solutions. But maybe this could save your data as well.

  • PS I have an external SSD hardrive, that I enclosed myself. – Ricoter Apr 11 at 20:54

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