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Seagate 1.5TB external on deathbed

Last response: in Storage
May 20, 2012 8:51:40 PM

My external HD died for the most part early this AM. It shows up in Disk Management as "unallocated," with the right size showing, and "initialize" as an option. Clunks every few seconds for a while, then stays quiet, though power light is always on.

I've been running a few different data-recovery packages:
'Kernel for Windows Data Recovery' spent an hour or two maybe running (productively? dunno) while seeking partitions - but the whole time showing progress at 0%. Attempts with other software seem to be similar black holes right now.
"PC Inspector File Recovery" can't seem to even find the physical drive listing, so it's a nonstarter.
'testdisk' doesn't show it as available media, so same deal there.

I absolutely will need to recover files by some means, if at all possible. Given the above symptoms, is it worth opening the case & directly connecting to my mobo?


Win 7
Seagate Ext 1.5TB Freeagent data-storage drive
(SSD 120GB internal with OS & software still OK)
May 20, 2012 9:28:23 PM

I'd open up the external enclosure and connect the drive directly to your computer. Beware though, i've seen some hdd manufacturers attach a usb interface directly to the hard drive circuit board (basically eliminates the need for a sata to usb adapter). But if it turns out your hard drive has a usb interface then its not going to make any difference.
a b G Storage
May 20, 2012 9:39:48 PM

If all else fails, there's always the option to send the drive to a data recovery specialist. Depending on who you use and what they have to do to get your data, it could cost anywhere from $200 to $2000.
May 21, 2012 1:39:27 AM

So yeah, I went ahead and opened up the case, extracted the drive, and connected it to the SATA connections in my PC - resulting in the exact same now-familiar "11 clicks of death," as it seems they may be commonly referred to.

Options before me are to a) send off to unknown-cost data-recovery service, or b) (more typical for me) see if there's anything more to do inside the drive case itself.

Youtube's vast wisdom tells me that some people are having success by replacing the PC board that's removable from the exterior of the drive case...any percentage there?

Failing the surgical option, is there any compendium of drive-recovery services and their ratings/prices here somewhere?