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My Book 3.0 2TB damage control

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December 21, 2012 7:45:36 AM

Hi guys,

A couple years ago I got a WD external drive (topic for specs) for storage purposes.
A couple of weeks ago, having it about 2/3 full, my PC started having trouble reading its contexts, meaning the WD would not work at all. Temporary solution was to pull it out of the usb, reboot and having it start with the system. However it proved false and when I tried to copy large files, at some the process freezed. Instantly I knew it was a problem of the drive, and not a controller issue, any other external device I own works perfectly (even a couple of Lacie's 500 gb that are 5 y.o. -a sad story for my WD in comparison which failed me in one year and a half-).
After panicking I might lose all of my valuable music, videos etc. I found a video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqxBVgKvdxk and realizing that external drives are just internals in a box I decided to follow the instructions so as to perform a dskchk and other tests while connected via sata. I couldn't do any of these via usb.
Initially, it worked. Unreadable files were deleted, bad sectors were repaired. Then I decided to backup my most valuable files (since it was the 1st time I could access them without issues) and format the disk. I had no problem to keep it as it is now an internal 2TB black WD, I thought. Unfortunately after I started storing again, the PC would enter -sometimes- chkdk in dos mode right after the windows logo. When I skiped the disk shows but of course I dont trust its stable, when I perform it gets errors... It's like its regenerating errors. I managed to save my valuable files but not the drive.
Since It was not a cheap one for its purposes, and if anyone has similar experience, what would you suggest. Should I take it out of the chassis, reassemble it as an external it was and ship it for repair? Or since any guarantee is voided that cost of repairing a damaged HDD is not worth it?
a c 79 G Storage
December 21, 2012 11:15:25 AM

It may not be the actuall drive that's faulty. A classic problem that crops up regularly with ready-made external hard drives is that the PCB fails after a while (that's the little board in the enclosure that handles the interface conversion from SATA or whatever to USB).

When that PCB fails, all the symptoms seem to point to drive failure when it may not be that at all.

With some brands, the drive can be removed (which means forcing open the enclosure), the PCB removed, and the drive installed into a third-party enclosure. However, sometimes that's not possible because the drive may have a proprietary interface which isn't compatible with any standard connector.
December 23, 2012 7:01:33 AM

Hi again, if the PCB is the part that handles the conversion from SATA to USB then probably you didn't read what I said, or I wasn't perfectly clear. Again, in the video as it shows, I stripped the external HD and I used it as an internal. Meaning I removed everything, box, pcb etc and connected it directly to the psu and sata, inside the chassis, I really dont know how to explain it more, the bottomline is that the HDD was faulty even when used as an internal drive. So my question still remains not answered, should I take it out of the chassis, reassemble it as an external it was and ship it for repair? Or since any guarantee is voided that cost of repairing a damaged HDD is not worth it?
!