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Caviar Black: the surface is intact but the drive locks-up with use

Last response: in Storage
January 25, 2013 9:47:53 AM

Hello fellow posters.

I have a WD Caviar Black Caviar 2TB, WD2002FAEX, and it has a strange problem.

After like a year of normal use, it suffered some sort of lock up, causing Windows 7 to take a very long time to boot. It would eventually boot, and Windows Explorer would see the drive was there but if I clicked to try and access the contents WE would freeze.

EDIT: Actually it caused Windows 7 to take a long time to boot as a secondary hard drive, if it was the primary the OS probably wouldnt even load.

Also, Windows 7 disk manager could also see the drive but not be able to manage the partitions in any way.

Then I tried formatting the drive with some third party partition management tool (IIRC it was Gparted) and I managed to format the drive, and it came back to normal. I passed a complete surface test (using the W7 tool) on it and it had zero defective clusters.

I thought everything was good and started to fill the drive again. After some weeks (perhaps some months) the drive suffered the same lock up, and exhibited the same behavior as before.

Again I used a tool to format the drive and right now it seems to be working normally but now I know this drive can´t be trusted.

What could possibly be the problem of this drive? If the surface is intact, what else could be the culprit of this?
Is there anything I can do besides RMAing it? I´d rather not do this if there is something else I can do (seems unlikely).
January 25, 2013 2:56:51 PM

Bejusek said:
Try using WD data lifeguard diagnostic software:

Maybe this will tell you what the problem is.
It sounds like a mechanical problem and those usually can't be solved by any software.

Thanks there for the answer mate.

I just scanned the drive with the W7 tool, here are the results:

The WD LifeGuard Diagnostics tool says the drive passes the SMART test. I have used this in the past after recovering the drive for the first time, and it passed all tests. The drive still suffered the second lock-up, which is really unfortunate as it leaves me no way to detect the problem before it happening.

What else can I do?
Related resources
a b G Storage
January 25, 2013 3:46:36 PM

I'm sorry, besides RMAing it, I have no more suggestions.
January 25, 2013 4:04:14 PM

Bejusek said:
I'm sorry, besides RMAing it, I have no more suggestions.

What would be Western Digital´s response if I send the drive to them as it is right now?

DO you think there is a chance they will simply plug the drive, see that it appears to be working fine (it does indeed seem to be fine) and simply ship it back to me saying there´s nothing wrong with the drive?

a b $ Windows 7
a c 100 G Storage
January 25, 2013 5:45:55 PM

You simply start the RMA procedure with Western Digital.

You don't just pack up your drive and send it to them, you have to:
1. go to the Western Digital site for your country
2. find the RMA link and fill out the information
3. wait for a validation reply in e-mail
4. follow instructions for packing and labelling your returned drive