I loaded the OS and some files on this NEW drive and 24 hours later I came home to find it knocking like a woodpecker. I powered off. I put the drive in the freezer and then recovered all my data (backup backup backup!!!) I expected the drive to fail again quickly once it warmed up but so far it hasn't.
I downloaded SeaTools, and performed all the basic tests (no advanced tests yet). The drive passed ALL the tests, both long and short! It has not failed for another 24 hours.
So what can I think about this drive? Was a good freezing all it takes to make it reliable for crucial data? I don't know how I can RMA it when it is passing all tests and making no odd noises (maybe a very high pitched sound - but that could be anything else in my comp).
I had a similar problem with 2 1.5tb drives. They ran quite as mice - then once or twice I came back to knocking and reset sounds. Turned off, let cool, then they ran fine for about 10 days without any smart errors or anything. Then it started again. Within a 24 hours - it was totally dead. Happened twice. When they finally go - they go very fast and you're unlikely to get all your data off in time. I don't recommend using it.
To that end - my advice:
1. Just say it died and return it - my replacement ones have been holding strong.
2. Run all kinds of disk surface checkers back to back until it dies - which won't be long. I went this option for about 5 days on the second drive and then did #1 when it went belly up.
Well you should get the firmware updated...like jsc has said, the previous firmware had turned many HDDs into bricks and with their latest firmware, that issue has been solved and the drives have become more stable...
I wouldn't even consider keeping them, Seagate has a pretty decent returns policy I would just RMA it and get a new one... What's the point in having a drive to store important info if it's already showed signs of dying?
That could be me being OTT but is it really worth it?