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Hd103uj firmware

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June 1, 2011 7:18:01 AM

Hello,

I have a Samsung F1 1TB HD103UJ hdd. I have read in all kinds of forums that these drives have problems due to bad firmware's.

Since I've never been satisfied with my drive I thought I should flash the drive with a newer firmware found at DELL. It is the only downloadable firmware that I've found.

The problem is after the upgrade my bios tells me that I've got a HD753LJ @ 750GB instead of HD103UJ 1TB and my harddrive no longer operate properly (cannot read/boot from it).

Does anyone know if it's possible to roll-back the upgrade or where to find the original firmware and apply it?

/Jimmy

More about : hd103uj firmware

June 1, 2011 6:52:50 PM

Thank you for your reply.

Sadly this file/firmware is the one that wrecked my drive. It was after I used this upgrade my hdd transformed into a hd753lj :( 
Related resources
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 2, 2011 10:16:21 AM

Hey dude

Try this - Samsung HDD site...

www.samsunghdd.com

It doesn't list any firmware, but, it does list a Samsung Diagnostic/Configuration utility you can download.

Hope it helps :) 

Rich
June 2, 2011 9:40:24 PM

Rich: Thank you for taking time. Their diagnostic utility isn't helping me I'm affraid. It informs me that I've got a defect harddrive 8)
June 2, 2011 9:44:41 PM

Registration at samsung didn't provide any more information/downloads :( 
Thanks for the tip though!

I've also mailed Samsung for help but they just ask me to fill out RMA forms. I'm really losing hope...
June 3, 2011 3:46:29 PM

Does anybody have a contact at samsunghdd division? Perhaps if I get in touch with the right person they might give me an original firmware for my harddrive.
a c 288 G Storage
June 4, 2011 3:40:59 AM

Short answer:

If the OP is desperate, and is willing to try anything, even at the risk of losing his data, then he could try forcibly updating his drive using the 1AA17AQM.D38 firmware image.


Long answer:

I've been trying to make sense of what went wrong, so I've used a hex editor to examine the update's EXE file.

Here is a direct link:
http://ftp.dell.com/sata/R220314.exe

This is Dell's support page:
http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/download.aspx...

The details for the update are ...

Release Date: 5/12/2009
Version: 1AC00017, A00

This firmware prevents a potential "hang" condition with the following Dell hard drives.

Samsung HD502IJ 500GB - DP/N XT518 (I = 3 heads)
Samsung HD103UJ 1TB - DP/N FY878 (U = 6 heads)

The first thing I noticed is that the HD753LJ (L = 6 heads) and HD103UJ models have the same number of heads.

The following Dell page lists the specifications for the SpinPoint F1 models that Dell supplies:

Specifications: SAMSUNG SpinPoint F1 Series Hard-Disk Drive User's Guide:
http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/storage/p158782/s...

Description HD251HJ HD322HJ HD502IJ HD103UJ
---------------------------------------------------------------
Number of disks 1 1 2 3
Number of read/write heads 2 2 4* 6

It would appear that the HD251HJ, HD502IJ, and HD753LJ models have data densities of 250GB per platter, whereas the HD322HJ and HD103UJ appear to have 333GB per platter. This appears to account for the difference between the HD753LJ and HD103UJ, ie same number of heads, but different data density.

(* I suspect that the HD502IJ actually has 3 heads, which would give it a data density of 333GB/platter --- I = 3 heads)

FYI, I have done some investigation into Samsung's model nomenclature here:
http://forum.hddguru.com/samsung-model-numbers-t19214.h...

To get an idea of how Samsung's updates work, I examined earlier Dell updates for other Samsung models, eg ...

http://ftp.dell.com/ide/R139989.EXE

The update package includes the following:

1107.EST - an encoded script file
tk09m.DN2 - the firmware image
sflash24.exe - the flash utility
UPDATE.BAT - contains the line "sflash24 /run:1107.est /auto"

Samsung's later updates appear to pack all the above files into a single EXE.

After poking about with a hex editor, I believe that the first part of the F1_FW_17.EXE file is the SFLASH executable.

Further on, we find a "header" section:
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/MFLASH_H....

This header lists the starting offset and size of 4 embedded firmware images. I have extracted them here:

http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/1AA17AQM....
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/1AA17AQM....
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/1AA17AQM....
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/1AA17AQM....

I believe that the tail end of the EXE file has an encoded script file:
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/F1_FW_17....

Here is the embedded documentation for Samsung's SFLASH firmware update utility:
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/SFLASH_Us...

I believe the script file contains instructions for matching the various firmware images against the detected model numbers. Seagate also does it this way. I have managed to decipher Seagate's scripts, but I haven't been able to do the same for Samsung.

Comparing the firmware image files against Dell's table of model numbers, ISTM that the first numeric character in the Dnn file extensions indicates the number of platters for the drive to which it applies. So this would suggest that both the HD753LJ and HD103UJ models would receive the same 1AA17AQM.D38 update.

ISTM, that if the OP is desperate, and is willing to try anything, even at the risk of losing his data, then he could try forcibly updating his drive using the 1AA17AQM.D38 firmware image.
a c 288 G Storage
June 4, 2011 10:54:37 PM

I should add that the script file's offset, 0x00147400, and size, 0x00000375, are stored at the start of the MFLASH header, in little endian format.
June 6, 2011 7:28:57 PM

Oh my god, thank you for betting so much effort into my troubles!

After reading your input I'm not really sure how to flash my drive. I cannot get the flash utility to use the firmware file you pointed out to the most likely to work. It seems that it would need a script file.

But I'm not bright enough to use the above information and flash my drive :( 

I'm most desperate, I'll take any chances :) 
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 6, 2011 9:50:37 PM

Hi, today i have done exactly the same thing as the thread starter... please can someone help to fix this problem, i might just end up losing years and years of family photos and data :( 
a c 288 G Storage
June 6, 2011 10:58:11 PM

I'm thinking that maybe Dell's firmware, or Dell's updater, didn't correctly identify your model, in which case it may have applied the wrong file out of the four that I extracted.

My first approach would be to create a bootable floppy or USB flash drive, and then copy only the desired files. I would also use an earlier SFLASH utility, ie one that has been separately packaged, rather than packed into a single EXE.

Copy the following files to the root directory of your USB drive:

http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/1AA17AQM....
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/F1_FW_17....
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD/F1_FW_17/sflash24....

Reconfigure the SATA controller in your BIOS for compatibility or legacy IDE mode. Install your drive on the first SATA port, and disconnect all other drives.

Boot your flash drive (promote it to the first position in the boot order), and then type the following command at the DOS prompt:

sflash24 /run:F1_FW_17.EST /auto

If the updater doesn't complain and proceeds with the update, then this would suggest that the .D38 file was selected by the script. Otherwise, if the updater complains that a particular file is missing, then you could fool it by renaming your .D38 file accordingly.

BTW, I suspect that the script file contains commands like ...

if model = x, then file = 1AA17AQM.Dnn

Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 6:34:56 AM

Thanks for a fast reply!, is your understanding that the D38 file will contain the model identification information for our drives? is the D38 the corrent one for 1TB HD103UJ drives? Thanks in advance.
a c 288 G Storage
June 7, 2011 6:52:37 AM

I suspect that the "3" in the "D38" file extension indicates the number of platters.

I arrived at this conclusion by comparing the file extensions against the specs at the following page:
http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/storage/p158782/s...

I could be wrong, though.

I also examined each firmware image for likely text strings, but every file had the same solitary reference to "HD102UJ", so this was inconclusive.

BTW, if the updater complains that it requires the D28 file, say, then you can rename your D38 file, from the DOS prompt, as follows:

ren 1AA17AQM.D38 1AA17AQM.D28

This will fool the updater into using your D38 firmware, even though it believes that your drive requires the D28 firmware.
June 7, 2011 7:07:44 AM

For me it doesn't do anything. If I skip the /auto command it output a text "Error: Command fail".

It never says anything about missing files. Either it just jump back to the prompt or saying Error: Command fail.

Will this force the update upon the drive? Just wondered since my drive is named HD751LJ after earlier update from Dell.
June 7, 2011 7:13:42 AM

Exact output:

C:\SFLASH24 /RUN:F1_FW_17.EST /AUTO

SFLASH Ver SF4.24

{0} [SAMSUNG HD751LJ (1AA01117)] found on Primary Master

Error : Command fail.
a c 288 G Storage
June 7, 2011 8:17:44 AM

The error message is not very informative. :-(

Perhaps it fails because ...

(1) the HD751LJ model number doesn't appear in the script file, or

(2) it can't find the firmware image that it thinks it requires, or

(3) it detects that the drive's firmware is already up to date.

You could add the remaining 3 firmware images to your root directory, one at a time, and try again. That will at least eliminate (2). If the update now goes ahead, then that would suggest that the updater may be using the wrong firmware image. You will then know which file it requires, or thinks it requires. If you get this far, then delete the 3 extra files, keep the D38 file and rename it appropriately.

If the above doesn't work, then you could still forcibly update your firmware by using the "fwdownload" command option for hdparm under Linux.
http://www.unix.com/man-page/Linux/8/hdparm

Tim Small documents two successful Seagate firmware updates:
https://ata.wiki.kernel.org/index.php/Talk:Known_issues

However, he cautions that "you have to be pretty sure that Linux isn't going to access the drive, or it will issue a bus reset during the firmware update process. e.g. if you need to carry out the update on a boot drive, then you could prepare the files, then reboot into single user mode, with all filesystems remounted read-only".

The man page has the following warning:

"This command (--fwdownload) is EXTREMELY DANGEROUS and HAS NEVER BEEN PROVEN TO WORK and will probably destroy both the drive and all data on it. DO NOT USE THIS COMMAND."

An alternative idea would be to use another HDD manufacturer's firmware updater (eg Seagate's SeaFlash), and force it to update the Samsung drive. SeaFlash allows you to specify the model number and firmware file. I don't know whether it will reject your Samsung drive, though. Let me know if you wish to try it.
June 7, 2011 8:52:13 AM

Thanks for all your help!

Copying the other firmware files didn't help. I guess there is something wrong/not matching in the F1_FW_17.EST script file.

I've tried the seagate flash utility but I cannot make it work. It doesn't give any error messages so I'm not sure if I used it corrrectly.

I've received an answer from Samsung telling me to try a update for F3 hdd's, and one of the update files (F3EG) informs me that it has updated my firmware, but it isn't so. It still claims my hdd to be 751LJ =(

Thanks for all your support and patience, if you encounter any more tips or infos please tell me ;) 
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 10:41:24 AM

Interesting, i wonder if updating to the F3 firmware will work for me?
June 7, 2011 10:47:26 AM

After a bit of toying with Seagate's flash utility I have come so far as it tries to save the firmware to the drive, but after a while I get errors..

I tried: sf.exe -f 1aa17aqm.d38 -x -s -b -v -z -i SAMSUNG

I will work further on and see if I can get sf.exe to work with a samsung hdd :) 
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 10:53:22 AM

IF you get it working please post a step by step of what you did... thanks
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 1:49:01 PM

any progress?
June 7, 2011 1:58:59 PM

No. But I get no error message. Seagate's utility says "Completing firmware download" and nothing else happen.

Perhaps it will work bettter for you :) 

It would be best to use Samsungs sflash utility with a script/est file that would identify 751LJ drive and re-program it with the firmware we have for 103UJ. But I have no idea how to alter or even read out any information from those EST files.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 2:03:47 PM

Thanks for the update. How do i edit the EST file? or how do i read it?
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 2:38:52 PM

can you upload the F3 firmware that you used please?
a c 288 G Storage
June 7, 2011 3:17:57 PM

Try ...

sf.exe -f 1aa17aqm.d38 -s -x -b -v -a 20 -i HD751LJ

The above command pauses for 20 seconds after the update is complete. You will need to power cycle the drive for the update to take effect.

BTW, I wonder if the "dangerous" warning for hdparm is still valid for drives whose file systems are not visible, and therfore not mountable.

Is the model number now HD751LJ or HD753LJ? I see very few Google hits for the HD751LJ.
June 7, 2011 5:35:28 PM

The drive is now HD751LJ.
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 5:36:33 PM

valheren said:
The drive is now HD751LJ.

does it now boot up?
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 6:00:09 PM

mine is showing up as the HD753LJ
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 6:31:45 PM

i tried to update to the F3 firmware, and it rejected it due to the drive name being different...

what does the -i part of the line below do???

sf.exe -f 1aa17aqm.d38 -s -x -b -v -a 20 -i HD751LJ

should i replace the HD model with HD103UJ ???
June 7, 2011 8:12:20 PM

It allows to sf to ignore the fact that it isn't a seagate drive.

Use -i SAMSUNG in order to get the utility to exept your drive.. Or even SAMSUNG HD753LJ if you so wish =)
Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 8:19:51 PM

so did you manage to get the drive work again???
a c 288 G Storage
June 7, 2011 10:40:32 PM

AISI, there are two possible reasons for the original failure of Dell's update.

(1) Dell's OEM firmware is incompatible with Samsung's standard retail models, or

(2) Dell's updater applied the incorrect firmware image to your retail model.

We are hoping for (2), otherwise our efforts will be pointless.

Are you using my most recent upload for F1_FW_17.EST? I omitted to remove the zeros at the end of the file in my first upload, but I amended this a few hours later.

It appears that the drive identifies itself as a HD753LJ after Dell's F1 update, and subsequently as an HD751LJ after the retail F3 update. Since the 750GB F3 model is an HD754JJ, and since the first "J" denotes 4 heads rather than 6, ISTM that the drive determines its identity, not from the firmware code, but from some other code module, possibly in the serial flash memory chip on the PCB, or elsewhere in the reserved System Area on the platters.

BTW, here is the embedded documentation that I extracted from SeaFlash (sf.exe) after unpacking it with UPX:
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/sf_usage.txt
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/sf.exe
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/sf.upx

Seagate's updater uses either of two methods.

(1) the model number, family, and firmware image are specified explicitly ...

sf -m BRINKS -f 4HBXR1B.LOD -i ST3640323AS -s -x -b -v -a 10

(2) ... or the drive's model number and existing firmware are compared against an update matrix in a configuration file.

sf -m BRINKS -f -s -x -b -v -a 10 -h 4hcfgpre.txs

The update matrix is encoded using a simple substitution cipher, ie whenever character X occurs, it is replaced with character Y.

Here are two examples:
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/BR-SD1B.TXT
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/MS-SD1A.TXT

See the following thread for a more detailed explanation:
http://forum.hddguru.com/can-update-sd15-barracuda-7200...

I suspect that Samsung's EST file is also encoded. The file doesn't compress, so at first thought it would appear to be packed in some way. However, I have examined the EST files for the retail F3EG and F4EG firmware and I notice that the first 40 bytes are identical. AIUI, this would be extremely unlikely for two packed files.

58 C1 0D 45 EE C2 70 D6 10 DB 49 63 15 AB 15 50 FA E5 42 5C 7D B1 88 41 AE 85 76 5A 9F EC 84 74 95 03 95 19 5B D9 CE A5

Instead I suspect that the file may be encrypted with a Solitaire cipher. I believe this would have the effect of randomising the data so that it is rendered incompressible. But that's only wild speculation on my part.

BTW, the F3 update was a quick fix to an urgent problem. Samsung advises that the update doesn't change the firmware version reported by the drive, which means that in your case the drive continues to report the Dell version (1AA01117).
a c 288 G Storage
June 7, 2011 11:04:45 PM

FWIW, the following specifications would suggest that the last numeric character in the model number may reflect the cache size.

HD102UJ SAMSUNG Spinpoint F1 1TB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5"
HD103UJ SAMSUNG Spinpoint F1 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5"

HD752LJ SAMSUNG Spinpoint F1 750GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5"
HD753LJ SAMSUNG Spinpoint F1 750GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5"

If so, then it would appear that Dell's firmware correctly identifies the cache size and the number of platters, whereas the F3 firmware gets the cache size wrong.
June 9, 2011 6:28:22 AM

Quote:
so did you manage to get the drive work again???



No, I have not been successfull.
June 13, 2011 4:37:03 PM

Been trying to force .D38 firmware using hdparm and when chosing --fwdownload-mode3 the hdd power/spin-down och then hdparm says "Done".

After a reboot the drive is still named HD751LJ :( 

So I don't know if the firmware really was uploaded to the hdd or if the .D38 file is wrong....
a c 288 G Storage
June 14, 2011 2:06:55 AM

I don't have any more suggestions, just some questions and observations.

(1) Does your drive still report its original serial number?

(2) SeaFlash may not be able to handle a drive which reports a model number with a space in the name, eg "Samsung HD751LJ".

(3) Why did Samsung's tech support advise you to try SpinPoint F3 firmware on an F1 model? Surely this was madness? Does this incorrect (?) advice now impose an obligation upon Samsung to make it right?

(4) The fact that Samsung's F3EG updater claimed to have updated your firmware begs the question, how was it able to circumvent the model screening (???) in the embedded script file? That is, why did you not receive an error such as "no applicable model found"? Have I misinterpreted the function of the script file???

(5) If Samsung identified a problem with Dell's OEM firmware, and if this same problem also exists in retail firmware, then why have Samsung not issued a similar fix to the retail channel?
a c 288 G Storage
June 14, 2011 9:33:56 AM

I wonder if you could investigate how the drive identifies itself to BIOS after you enable Power Up In Standby (PUIS). You could use HDAT2 or Hitachi's Feature Tool to do this.

Enabling PUIS will prevent the drive from spinning up until it receives an appropriate "SET FEATURES" ATA command. This means that it will be identifying itself using the information in the serial flash chip on the PCB rather than anything it finds on the platters. In this case I wonder if it will report its original model number. If not, then this would suggest that the flash memory contents were modified by the updater, or subsequently by the drive itself, after a power cycle.

You could then experiment by obtaining another HD103UJ drive, configuring it for PUIS, and then transferring its PUIS-enabled PCB to your original drive. Confirm that your drive now IDs as a HD103UJ in your BIOS. Don't send any command to spin it up, unless your are prepared to sacrifice your new board.

Your original drive will now have Dell firmware on the platters and the original code in flash memory. If you now spin up the drive, I suspect that it may rewrite its own flash data, rendering the board useless as before. Alternatively, it could be that the flash contents are only modified during the firmware update process, in which case the drive will continue to identify itself as a HD103UJ.

In short, it could be that a straight board swap *may* work. To lessen the risk of ruining your replacement board, you could protect its flash memory contents by desoldering the chip's Write Enable pin. That's a relatively simple procedure. Let me know if this approach is of interest to you.
a c 288 G Storage
June 14, 2011 10:05:26 AM

One more idea.

How does your original board ID on your replacement drive, both when PUIS is enabled and disabled? If the drive rewrites the contents of flash memory, then perhaps your donor drive could transparently "repair" the flash contents on your original PCB. (???)

Once again, the above ideas are just wild speculation, so take care.
August 30, 2011 9:10:13 PM

Hi, I would like to test the Dell update, but now I'm afraid... Even if it seems that just Valheren HD was messed up around internet...
Any hint?
August 31, 2011 8:22:18 PM

@Valheren: wich was your stock firmware? Perhaps 1AA01118? It seems that drives with that firmware are different from others...
a c 288 G Storage
August 31, 2011 11:10:09 PM

FYI, I have been notified via a private message that applying the .D28 firmware file to a HD103UJ model (using Seagate's flasher) bricks the drive. :-(

AISI, this is to be expected because the HD103UJ has 3 platters, and the .D28 firmware is for drives with 2 platters.
January 7, 2013 6:47:40 AM

Hi,

some time ago i have had the same problem with the dell firmware and my samsung hd642jj. It was bricked and renamed to hd753lj.Even though dell's firmware patch functioned without any problem on my other identical hd642jj.

Due to fzabkars fantastic analytical work and his many useful hints and tips i could rescue my hd and the data.

Many thanks to fzabkar! :-))


So here are my successful steps:

1. I downloaded the firmware a17aqm.d11, d17, d28, d38 from fzabkar's urls. (but i only need to use the d28-version)

2. I only connected the bricked hd to a sata-port. (just for safety reasons)

3. Set bios to ide-compatible mode. (this was the only mode the bios recognized the hd)

4. boot linux from a live dvd (the boot process seems to hang when linux tries to read some sectors of the defect hd; be patient linux will go on booting after it gives up reading the sectors)

5. in linux i mounted a usb stick with the firmware on (in terminal: mount -t vfat /dev/sdb /media/sdb - for example)

6. in terminal: fdisk -l (this will give you the device-name of your hd)

7. in terminal: hdparm --fwdownload-mode7 --yes-i-know-what-am-i-doing --please-destroy-my-drive /media/sdb/A17AQM.D28 /dev/sda

(hints: must be fwdownload-mode7 for me, other modes don't work; /dev/sda was my device-name, maybe others for you; the yes-i-know-what-am-i-doing and please-destroy-my-drive are forced flags from hdparm so you have to write it down with the hdparm command)

The hdparm command finished in just a second and my hd was healed - except its name is now 753lj, doesn't matter could also be ottifant, it's just a name

Hope this can help someone ...
a b G Storage
January 7, 2013 9:19:32 AM

fzabkar is God Like!
- Did you grow up with DEBUG.EXE and MS-DOS and/or PC DOS?
June 9, 2013 11:41:15 PM

Back when i faced this issue with my HD103UJ i left it as a bricked HDD. Few months later i purchased the same drive and only recently decided to do a PCB sway again AND with the information @wrzl gave, thought i would put my BIOS into IDE MODE.. and the hard drive now detects as HD103UJ with the bios ending 113.

Now my question is, can i flash the drive with .D38 or will it totally change the model number rendering my working PCB dead? From what i recall flashing the broken drive (when it used to be detectable using SeaGate flasher),, My mistake was to use D28 and that was for a 2 platter drive. This sort of tells me that SeaGate flasher works.. and all i need to do is apply D38 !!??????????????
a c 288 G Storage
November 24, 2013 1:06:46 PM

I've done more research on this problem and I've come to the conclusion that Dell's update rewrites the entire 256KB flash memory (aka "ROM) on the PCB, but does not touch the firmware modules in the System Area (SA) on the platters. This means that the solution should be as simple as locating a PCB with the original ROM code.

Here is my Analysis of Samsung's SpinPoint F3 firmware update:
http://malthus.zapto.org/viewtopic.php?t=679&p=1986#p19...

Here is the structure of the firmware image file:
http://malthus.zapto.org/viewtopic.php?t=679&p=1989#p19...

Notice that it has 3 components -- some loader code, a 256KB ROM image, plus an image of the MOVLY001 SA module. Therefore the SpinPoint F3 update rewrites the ROM code, plus it updates one of the main firmware modules in the SA.

Applying the same analysis to the Dell update, we find that each firmware image contains a loader plus a 256KB ROM image, but nothing else.

For example, the 1AA17AQM.D11 file is structured as follows:

0x00000 - 0x009FF -- LFRD or FLDR loader code
0x00A00 - 0x409FF -- 256KB ROM image
December 3, 2013 1:43:29 PM

fzabkar said:
I've done more research on this problem and I've come to the conclusion that Dell's update rewrites the entire 256KB flash memory (aka "ROM) on the PCB, but does not touch the firmware modules in the System Area (SA) on the platters. This means that the solution should be as simple as locating a PCB with the original ROM code.

Here is my Analysis of Samsung's SpinPoint F3 firmware update:
http://malthus.zapto.org/viewtopic.php?t=679&p=1986#p19...

Here is the structure of the firmware image file:
http://malthus.zapto.org/viewtopic.php?t=679&p=1989#p19...

Notice that it has 3 components -- some loader code, a 256KB ROM image, plus an image of the MOVLY001 SA module. Therefore the SpinPoint F3 update rewrites the ROM code, plus it updates one of the main firmware modules in the SA.

Applying the same analysis to the Dell update, we find that each firmware image contains a loader plus a 256KB ROM image, but nothing else.

For example, the 1AA17AQM.D11 file is structured as follows:

0x00000 - 0x009FF -- LFRD or FLDR loader code
0x00A00 - 0x409FF -- 256KB ROM image


!