Latest Q&A

Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500Gb installed as 2nd hard drive in a Windows PC.
Cooling fan in power supply failed leading to increased case temperature and possibly incorrect voltages.
Power Supply replaced.
Took longer and longer for files to appear in Windows Explorer. Eventually the hard drive stopped working.
Bought a replacement PC and tried installing the hard drive. It was found by the BIOS at initial boot but failed to be found by Windows.

I have a USB drive that is bent and no longer works. This was achieved by leaving the USB in the computer and the computer falling off the bed, landing on the USB stick. The computer can no longer detect the USB whatsoever. If i sent the USB in to repair, how long would the repair usually take? I really need it repairing by Thursday (20th Oct 2016).

I have 2 WD external drives that are both at least 5 years old.
They are (I think) 1.5 & 2TB in size.
When I connect them to the mac, I can no longer hear them spin up & they do not appear as connected drives.
From this I assume they have both failed.

Drive has stopped responding and cant be seen by the computer. I have also tried it in a USB enclosure and no joy.
Its a 2 TB Seagate drive around 2 years old and has loads of pictures, music, videos and other files on it
Model: ST2000DX001

I own Seagate 3TB drive from airport extreme router.
Disk failed. I opened the drive in clean room and saw that head is bad and need donor or replacement. What’s the price for that service ? Better for me is just to read platters if that’s possible.

I have an issues with a failed hard drive that will no longer spin. It’s a Seagate ‘Laptop Thin SSHD‘ 500GB (PN: 1EJ162-038).
When plugging the drive in it no longer spins up so we’re unable to retrieve anything off it. Do you think you could help? Any idea of the potential cost?

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External Hard Drive Stopped Working

Here’s a question we received about and old hard drive that recently died.

Dead hard drive“My old (~10 years old) external hard drive stopped working recently. I have tried to open it and connect the hard disk direclty to my computer but it did not work. My hard disk didn’t even start spinning.
Could you please tell me how long and how much it would take to recover the data that are on it?
Here are the details of my hard drive, I am in Coventry:

  • Iomega UltraMax Desktop Hard Disk Drive
  • 500GB Capacity
  • Interface: FireWire 400 (1394a) • USB 2.0
  • 7200 rpm Spindle Speed
  • 8MB data buffer”

Actually the Iomega Ultramax is an external hard drive, rather than a desktop type hard drive. To attempt to remove confusion, ‘desktop’ hard drives are the devices that you find inside desktop computers – you don’t see them as they are inside the computer case. ‘External’ hard drives are those that are external to the computer and are usually connected to it by either a USB or Firewire cable. They are also called ‘portable’ or ‘usb’ or ‘firewire’ hard drives. So even though these external devices frequently sit on a desktop, they are not referred to as desktop drives. A good example of one of these drives is the Western Digital series of My Passport disks.

From the problems you describe above it actually doesn’t sound too bad a fault, and should be easily rectifiable. The key part of your description is where you explain that the hard disk didn’t even start spinning when it was directly connected to a computer. Although it may sound a minor point, it enables me to identify the you’ve most probably got a problem with the electronics on the hard drive, rather than the mechanics, firmware or data. Once a solution is found, the data should be fully retrievable. The best advice would be for you to contact an external hard drive recovery company who should be able to sort the problem out and retrieve the data from the hard drive for you.

Electrical problems on hard drives usually revolve around the circuit board. Although robust, these are easily damaged by power fluctuations and spikes which can destroy a controller board. Fitting a new controller board to the hard drive is often the first thing most of us think about doing, but this will not work as some of the components on the original controller board contain unique ‘adaptive data’ about the hard drive and also need to transplanted onto the new controller board before the hard drive will start to work properly again.

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