Western Digital Data Recovery (WD20SMZW-11YFCS0)

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Five Star Data Recovery
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Case Study: Western Digital My Passport – Beeping

Initial Issue with Issue:

Customer had dropped her Western Digital My Passport external hard drive and it started making beeping sounds. She went to a couple computer repair shops to try and get the data backed up from the drive, but they weren’t able to help her as the drive had mechanical problems.

She opted into our Expedited Data Recovery Service as it was time sensitive to get the data back. Lets open up the drive cover in our Clean Room and see what we’re working with.

Western Digital My Passport 2TB

Our Initial Diagnosis:

Since we knew the drive was making beeping sounds, there was no point in causing more damage to the drive by attempting to power it on. We opened the drive cover in our Clean Room to inspect the condition of the platters and the severity of the damage. What are we looking for when we open the drive cover? We are checking the platters to make sure there is no scratches or heavy contamination.

A little information on how drives work. Data is stored on round platters and read/written by read/write heads. The heads have to be parked on “parking ramps” when the drive is powered off. When the drive gets powered on, the platters spin at 5400 – 7400 RPM’s, creates a wind effect, then the read/write heads come off the ramps and hover nanometers above the platters, reading and writing data to and from the platters.

In this case, the heads were stuck on the platters about 50% into the drive. We were able to safely remove the heads from the platters, but since the drive was powered on many times after it was dropped, the reading write heads were completely damaged (please see photos).

Western Digital My Passport Beeping - Inside Drive

Outcome of Case:

Unfortunately the outcome of this case was “unrecoverable due to damage of the service area of the drive.” The Service Area of a drive is where critical system files are stored, with instructions on how to drive is supposed to work. Constant attempts to power on the drive after the physical damage caused serious damage to this part of the platter. We attempted 3 head swaps and unfortunately the results were the same after each one of them.

This is why it’s super important to power down a drive as soon as possible after any physical damage to the drive. If you find yourself in a situation where you need Western Digital Data Recovery, please feel free to contact us 24/7. We are happy to provide a free quote over the phone.

Western Digital 2TB My Passport Broken Head Connector

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