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Topic: Wii U won't start games from external hard drive

Posts 1 to 20 of 22

PrincessPeach27

I hope someone can help me - I added an external hard drive to my wii u and moved some of the data over since i was running out of space on the Wii U. However, when i start a game that is now located on the external hard drive, it automatically starts from scratch. For example, Lego Dimensions was 10GB, so i moved all that to the external drive. Now when I put the Lego Dimensions disk in, it starts from scratch.

Shouldn't I be able to just continue my games saved on the external hard drive? Do I have to do anything to point the WII U there? Thank you!

PrincessPeach27

bluedogrulez

Is this is new set up? Has it worked before? What are the hard drive specs and how is it connected?
(I ask because I had to research this a bunch before adding my external and it works fine).

Asphalt 9 / Siege Engine FTW

PrincessPeach27

It's a Seagate SRD00F1 2TB. It is connected to a power source as well. The WII u recognizes it, and i am able to move data to it in Data Management, but it will not start games from it. Never did. But I can see all the games data on it.

PrincessPeach27

ThanosReXXX

@PrincessPeach27 Maybe I'm wrong, but it sounds like you just have the save data/DLC on the external drive, and not the actual game. Why would you have to insert any disc if this isn't the case? Only completely digital games can be started from an external hard drive, but save games or DLC should also work just fine.

So, if it is indeed just the saved games and/or DLC that you moved to the external drive, then you should normally be able to load that save file from within a game, directing the game to where the save games are now stored, so you'd need to check the options menu in the game and see if you're able to select a save/load location from there.

Hope that helps.

Edited on by ThanosReXXX

'The console wars are like boobs: Sony and Microsoft fight over which ones look the nicest and Nintendo's are the most fun to play with.'

Nintendo Network ID: ThanosReXX

PrincessPeach27

Yes, it is mostly data. Only moved two games over there, and both freeze at the start up screen. could it be that the external hard drive not compatible? thanks

PrincessPeach27

ThanosReXXX

@PrincessPeach27 Good thing I was watching this topic, otherwise I would have missed your reaction. Hit "reply" beside any username to react to that person, and they'll get a personal notification that you've responded to them.

As for that external drive, here are some useful links:
http://gear.lifehacker.com/the-best-external-hard-drives-for-...
http://www.usgamer.net/articles/wii-u-storage-is-tiny-the-bes...
https://www.pretzellogix.net/2015/05/30/the-best-hdd-for-the-...
http://www.ign.com/articles/the-best-hard-drives-for-the-wii-u

You can cross-reference them to see which drives appear in all lists, so you'll know which ones are guaranteed to work.

And here's the official compatibility list from Nintendo:
http://en-americas-support.nintendo.com/app/answers/detail/a_...

One important question: did you let the Wii U format the drive before you copied data to it? If not, then that might be a thing as well, although I'm almost certain that you must have already done this, otherwise the Wii U wouldn't be able to recognize the drive in the first place, let alone move data to it. But better safe than sorry, so I thought I'd ask anyway...

On the official Nintendo support page, you can also use the search option on the upper right corner to see if they have an answer to your specific problem.

Meanwhile, I'll kindly invite some members of Nintendo Life's staff into this topic as well, seeing as they might perhaps be able to shed some more light on this, considering their ample experience with the Wii U and its peripherals.

Hello @Damo, @AlexOlney, @ThomasBW84, @Shiryu. Perhaps any of you or any other experts amongst the NLife staff have any idea what the heck is going on concerning this specific Wii U external hard drive issue?

Edited on by ThanosReXXX

'The console wars are like boobs: Sony and Microsoft fight over which ones look the nicest and Nintendo's are the most fun to play with.'

Nintendo Network ID: ThanosReXX

PrincessPeach27

@ThanosReXXX Thank you for your reply! Yes, it did format the hard drive and i was able to move data with no problem. Nintendo Land came with the WII U when we bought it, and ever since I moved it to external hard drive it just freezes at the start screen. And with Dimensions, after inserting disc and clicking on it to start, it automatically goes to downloading updates, which of course are already on the external hard drive, so i cannot even start the game to load a game. No problem playing games with data on the console itself.

PrincessPeach27

Shiryu

I do believe that is the issue right there. I can't recall right now, but the Switch automatically starts saving data on the memory card once it detects it. The Wii U should be similar in that fashion, it will begin installing game and save data on the external HDD once it is hooked up. I recommend you try to copy the games you had on the the HDD external storage back to the Wii U Internal nand memory. This should restore your save states. Use the HDD to install future games instead of the old ones, leaving those back on the Wii U.

"No Surrender, No Retreat."

Nintendo Network ID: Shiryu

PrincessPeach27

@Shiryu Thanks for responding. Unfortunately i moved the data because the console was running out of space, so I cannot copy/move all of them back due to lack of space. Also, when I try to move Nintendoland back, which i do have enough space for, there is always an "error occured, some software cannot be moved" message halfway through. Did I lose this game? Thanks

PrincessPeach27

Shiryu

@PrincessPeach27 Since it was pre-installed on your Wii U I believe you just need to go to the eShop and redownload the game from there. But it does sound like there has been some sort of corruption with the unique private key enconding of the stuff on your HDD since that message states that it doesn't not know whose game it is on the HDD. You should contact Nintendo support ASAP, they will be able to explain and offer a solution to your problem in a much better fashion than me.

"No Surrender, No Retreat."

Nintendo Network ID: Shiryu

ThanosReXXX

@PrincessPeach27 No problem. Hope you're going to find an answer to this one. It would certainly annoy me too, but I haven't had a need for an external drive yet. By the way, is your drive on any of those lists I linked to? If not, then perhaps it's better to use that drive for your PC or laptop and buy another one for the Wii U. And personally, I would also not buy one with it's own power source: a portable HDD with a Y-cable will work just as good, if not better. In case you don't know, a Y-cable is simply a double USB to HDD cable, which will connect to both the USB ports on the back of your Wii U, taking power directly from the console itself, instead of from a separate mains connection.

One thing that still puzzles me, though: in your first comment, you mentioned having to put the disc in for Lego Dimensions, even though the game is installed, and games on disc can't be installed and don't need to be installed, so big question mark there, still.

And now you mentioned Nintendo Land, but did that come pre-installed or on a disc? I myself have the black Mario Kart 8 edition Wii U, which actually did come with the game pre-installed, but I thought the initial Wii U's came with physical discs, but I could be wrong.

If Nintendo Land gives you a hassle with moving the files, you could always try copying them, if that's an option. Don't know, never had to do that so far.

And if none of that works, then I'm afraid it's bye-bye save games, and you'll just have to replay the games, or re-download all the stuff that is now on your external drive. If that is going to be the case, I would advise you to re-format the external drive first.

As an in-between solution, you could always buy a 64 or 128GB USB stick, which aren't that expensive anymore, and try to move the data from the external drive to that, so that you can re-format the drive, or check it on your PC, to verify that it doesn't have any errors.

'The console wars are like boobs: Sony and Microsoft fight over which ones look the nicest and Nintendo's are the most fun to play with.'

Nintendo Network ID: ThanosReXX

rjejr

@PrincessPeach27 I went through something similar a few years ago, and it was all annoying. I saved a few things but lost a few things. Here's a few things to try, mostly obvious.

When the Wii U is off disconnect either the power to the HDD or the Wii U from the HDD, then start up the Wii U and see whats still there and how it works. You can then also go into settings to see what' still on the Wii U, look for your save files inside the other files if you haven't done that already. I believe when you move files to an external HDD it only shows the larger folder, not the smaller files inside of that folder.

When you moved stuff to the external drive downloading all of the extra stuff for Lego Dimensions is a pain, as even with the game on disc there are still about 10GB of downloads for all of the sets, whether you own them or not the game auto downloads everything so when you do buy them you can just play without having to wait to download. But if you only moved the data and not your save file, which actually I don't think you can do but who knows, then it may be trying to redownload everything to your internal drive again, not your external.

It does sound like your external HDD is having some communication issues with your Wii U. My HDD actually went on fire, smoke and everything. Well not the HDD, it was fine, but the external enclosure. Replaced it and the disc was fine, so maybe your wires are loose? Maybe it's a bad USB cable?

Also, USB thumdrives do work, and are cheap. Before you lose your mind, try backing up everything from the Wii U to the thumbdrive, just in case, so you don't lose all of your save info if things go wrong. Moving stuff from an external HDD to a thumbdrive is really really slow, so don't do it if you are in a rush. For the past 2 years I've only been using my thumbdrive, disconnected my HDD, so it does work. Someday I'm sure I'll lose everything, but at least it won't go on fire. Which reminds me, I need to back up all of our Zelda U files before that day comes.

Good luck, ask if you have any questions, I'll try to help.

Oh, just in case though I don't think you did this, Wii U can only play with 1 USB or HDD attached at a time, so if you attach 2 at a time you can transfer stuff, but not play.

Someday we'll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers and me

bluedogrulez

@PrincessPeach27 : I did a buyers guide on another website. "Size of Drive. Nintendo says anything more than 1TB will not work and recommends a few 1TB and 500 GB drives." I don't know how or why, but your 2 TB may be the source of the problem.

Edited on by bluedogrulez

Asphalt 9 / Siege Engine FTW

PrincessPeach27

@ThanosReXXX Thank you, yes, the current drive is not on the list that are guaranteed to work with the wii u, but it does have a Y cable, so it is connected to a power source.
Yeah, maybe i was confusing, I only have lego dimensions on disc, and I moved the game data (which was about 10GB) to the External drive.
Nintendo Land came preinstalled, and I moved it to the external drive, and since then we cannot play it. It just freezes at the start screen. I tried to move it, and i got an error. I tried to copy it, and got same error. I even tried to copy/move it to another external hard drive, and same error.
It's just a little frustrating, but really no big deal, I guess it could be worse. Thanks again.

PrincessPeach27

PrincessPeach27

@rjejr Yes, when I insert Dimension disc, it downloads another 5GB to the console which takes about an hour. I guess I thought the purpose of the external hard drive is to save data on that, and not on the console. I guess i will try another hard drive, and see if i have better luck. Thanks for your response.

PrincessPeach27

ThanosReXXX

@PrincessPeach27 Good luck with the new drive.

'The console wars are like boobs: Sony and Microsoft fight over which ones look the nicest and Nintendo's are the most fun to play with.'

Nintendo Network ID: ThanosReXX

rjejr

@PrincessPeach27 It really sounds like your HDD isn't being recognized by the Wii U. I've never used a Y cable before, always buy HDD that need to be plugged in to an external socket, but as I mentioned before if you have an old USB thumbdrive laying around you can try that before buying a new HDD.

Someday we'll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers and me

gcunit

@PrincessPeach27 Try swapping the y-cable plugs over.

For some reason my ext. HDD acts up if I have the thicker cable of my y-cable plugged in to the top socket at the rear. When I switched it round so the thicker one was at the bottom, it worked fine.

What better way to celebrate than firing something out of the pipe?

Nothing is true. Everything is permitted.

My Nintendo: gcunit | Nintendo Network ID: gcunit

PrincessPeach27

@rjejr But it does recognize it, as it shows up in the data management. And I can move data onto it. Just can't use that data any more it seems. LOL

PrincessPeach27

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