Old 04-21-2011, 10:33 AM
headcoatman headcoatman is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 14
Angry Wow! Major problem just happened with my J3.

Please help!!
I was using my J3 at work this morning, paired with my bluetooth headphones. I navigated to another music folder to listen to something different, but all of the info was wrong. Track names were suddenly pointing to different files, cover art was missing or in the wrong place--then after rebooting, the text changed to Korean! I tried rebooting a few more times, switched off bluetooth (in case, for some odd reason, that was causing an issue), and also reset via the tiny hole in the back. Now it said it was the Cowon S9, and not the J3, but was back in English.

I'm really stumped here.

As soon as I got home I connected it to the pc. I right clicked on the J3 in My Computer > properties > tools > check the drive for errors > automatically fix file system errors.
That had no effect.
I ran it again, this time also choosing Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors.
That had no effect.

I attempted to defragment it (it was 39% defragmented). When that was taking too long, I decided to move all my music and video files back to the pc. Fragmentation now showed 0%.

I applied the new firmware, v2.25.
That had no effect.
Then I moved back a few of the music folders.

Here's how I get to my music on the J3. From the main menu I choose music; from there I select Folders, then J3. From there it's all messed up now. It's just a list of folders that ALL say J3. I even forget what they used to say (terrible memory).
Clicking on the first "J3" brings up a list of swf and jpg files.
Clicking on the 2nd "J3" brings up a partial list of some of the music I transfered back to the player. That is, a list of some of the music folders, eg:
[1970b-Journey in Satchidananda], or [1971a-Universal Consciousness] (this is how I labeled them; some records by Alice Coltrane). But there's nothing inside.
This was always the easiest way for me as it listed from there all of the music folders I had put on the J3, and I could just scroll through and choose an artist or a specific album residing in the artist folder. I have all folders labeled as either [Artist] or [Artist - Album Title]. But now I can't do it.

I'm probably going on too long about the exact errors; the real question is what could have happened, and how can I fix this?
BTW, I also tried updating the database and resetting to defaults, but nothing has had any effect.

Please, I hope someone can help me with this. Is there a way to restore the Cowon to "as new" state, such as reformatting a pc?

Thank you very much.
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Old 04-21-2011, 07:28 PM
DSperber DSperber is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Marina Del Rey, CA
Posts: 699

I'd suggest starting over.

I assume you're in MSC connection mode (as opposed to MTP).

FORMAT the J3 (both internal and external storage, separately), using this recommended SD Formatter utility.

Then "safely remove hardware", disconnect the J3 from the PC, re-boot. This will recreate all default initial "factory" system folders.

Then re-connect to the PC, and hopefully you should once again get your normal Windows drive letter(s) assigned, and you should once again be able to re-copy your music over.
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Old 04-22-2011, 12:17 AM
headcoatman headcoatman is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 14

Thank you so much DSperber, that worked perfectly. I was in a panic that it had become a virtual paperweight.
I went with the defaults--quick format, format size adjustment off, and it fixed all the issues and still kept the new firmware version.
You're the best!
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Old 02-21-2014, 05:27 PM
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jamez jamez is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 1
Default quicker fix (for my issue)

thank you!
i had what appears to the the same issue, but i'd like to explain what i found.
2 days ago my j3 went rogue, like headcoatman's. (this may be because i forgot to safely remove it--i don't recall, but sometimes i forget that.)
when i turned it on after loading a new video, the quick player widget showed the album art for the song i last heard, and it played okay, but the title was all logograms (presumably korean?).
i also reset it, to no avail.
i deleted the video i had just added, but that didn't fix it. when plugged in to my computer, all the files and folders were intact as usual.
i regularly back up its settings files (\system\param.cfg & \system\flash ui\*), so i copied those back onto it, overwriting files on the j3. that didn't fix it.
i downloaded the latest 2.29 firmware and reflashed it, even though that's the version that was on it already. no fix.
i spent the night with a confusing j3. :'( i found my micro sd card worked fine, but anything on the j3 itself behaved like headcoatman's: choose a folder and all files & folders have identical names. items in "flash" didn't work at all--there were all my flash files (presumably), but they didn't run. videos worked, but no way to tell what's what without playing it. apps (calculator, hunter, notepad, etc.) were all fine. pictures were there, but all out of order. when i'd choose a music category (e.g., artist, year, genre), it would only show files on the sd card--nothing on the internal memory. sometimes when browsing by folder, i'd click a [j3] (folder) item and it would play a song. then when i clicked the top-left browse button, everything came up [], [], [].
i googled and found this post. thank goodness! before i formatted, however, i wanted to copy the files off the j3. this is where i found what i think was the problem: in the \audible folder, there were the usual files, plus 4 16-byte no-name files with modification timestamps that matched when this all started! (screen shot attached) i couldn't open them--they froze up any program i used. i couldn't delete them--i got a permission error. i tried del *.*/p (only way to reference the no-names) but got "access is denied." i tried unlocker, but it only sucked up more and more system memory. i ended the unlocker.exe process after it exceeded 200,000k.
i backed up the good files in the folder and renamed it, but it didn't help my situation.
so, the only way i could get rid of these 4 miscreants was to format it. i backed up everything else on the j3 but them and did a quick format using the windows format tool. then i copied everything back over. now it's working the same as it ever was.
sorry for the long post, but i wanted (1) some other poor soul googling this issue to find the solution easily, and (2) to spell out the actual trouble (imho) in case someone smarter than me knows how to delete these blank files without formatting.
thank you, dsperber, for your post. it did help me, even if i didn't follow much of your advice (no sd format, no "factory" init). i do already use the sd formatter for sd cards, though!
fwiw, my j3 is using msc usb mode.
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corrupt, reformatting, resetting, system error

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