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  1. #1

    the_riotgirl's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 09, 2009
    Posts
    6
    How do i find out if the hardware of my external drive is kaputti?
    i got a 250GB Western Digital USB 2.0 external drive last year. it broke down last month, the hard drive disk utility also couldnt repair it, then it wasnt even recognised after mounting anymore.
    So i rescued all the data with data rescue 2 (best programm ever, anyways). that already took several nights on a 8GB RAM MacPro. Now i erased it (with the hard drive disk utility) and wanted to reload all the data on it. that gets the mac to brake down every time.

    maybe that is a stupid idea (im a girl and this is the first time i tried this instead of just buying a new one: not because im not into tech, but because normally the external drives failed after some years when they were already outdated and i had my eye on a new one already :-)) and you are already shaking your heads over me:
    but this looks like the hardware itself is broken, right? i am not sure if i could have guessed this before, i had figured it could have been a data reading problem too
    * looking down, drawing things in the sand with my toes being embarrassed *

    QUESTION:
    is there a way to find out if the disk itself is kaputti (broken) or is there no way it wouldnt have been that in the first place?

    Sorry for all spelling and grammatical errors, english is not my first language (its german).
    i am not good with the terminal application but maybe there is a way to check that out there? (sending a "hello" to the disk or something?)

    thank you for your help!
    as i am a graphic designer, maybe i can help you with something design/photo/vector/creative suite related help in exchange?

  2. #2

    hughvane's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 18, 2008
    Location
    Banks Peninsula, New Zealand
    Posts
    3,296
    Specs:
    MacMini 2.4, 8 Gb, OS 10.10 and 10.6; MacBook 2.4, 4 Gb, OS 10.6.8
    Can your expenses run to Disk Warrior? It does a better job than Apple Disk Utility.

    In your situation however I would take the WD external drive to a computer technician, doesn't have to be a Mac one, to test the hardware. A thorough diagnosis takes very little time.

    Does the WD external drive even start to spin when you switch it on? If yes, another simple hardware check is to switch it on, unplug the connecting cable (USB or firewire), and then plug it in again, to see if there is a response. If there is no reaction at all, then the drive, maybe the connecting bridge inside the case, is probably dead, and you need to buy a replacement.

    You might want to consider an alternative brand of drive, maybe Hitachi or Seagate. If the connecting bridge inside the external case is okay, are you able to put a bare drive inside the external case yourself? It is not a difficult job.

  3. #3

    clayneal's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 27, 2009
    Location
    Lincoln Nebraska
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    2,146
    Specs:
    late 08 macbook 2.0 4gig 320hdd10.7.3 32 gig iPhone 4s
    Drive a nail thru it and get a new one.

  4. #4

    Mac SK's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 21, 2006
    Posts
    1,513
    Quote Originally Posted by clayneal View Post
    Drive a nail thru it and get a new one.
    Hey...That was my line. he..he.

  5. #5

    the_riotgirl's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 09, 2009
    Posts
    6
    i just mentally put the stupid drive to its grave. yes, it is dead.

    it was recognised after i cleared it and showed up normally on the desktop, but i launched disk utility twice and the second time it wasnt able to repair it. so today it will start its new life as a frisbee as my office is on the 4th floor with quite a good view over a shopping street in vienna.

    thank hugh, for the disk warrior hint, i totally forgot that!!

    fun fact at the end: the western digital my passport now has a 3 years warranty: mine only lasted one.
    maybe we should start a theread with the lifespan of external drives: everytime i think some company makes better ones than the one i bought, i meet a person who said that he bought one and it died quite quickly.
    i already saw several lacie die, one samsung, iomega and now the wd:
    BUT: i carry my external drive around in my purse every day, i trow it into my bycicle basket too. and still it lasted longer than the other ones. a friend of mine who skates to his art skool has a wd mybook and even acidentally put it under the welding flame and it still works :-)


    so thank you all again * kotau and curtsey*

  6. #6

    clayneal's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 27, 2009
    Location
    Lincoln Nebraska
    Posts
    2,146
    Specs:
    late 08 macbook 2.0 4gig 320hdd10.7.3 32 gig iPhone 4s
    Here's an idea you my think about. SSD 's are coming down in price and will take a lot more abuse. And depending how much space you need for a backup flash drive are now up to 128 gig. Just a couple of ideas.

  7. #7

    the_riotgirl's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 09, 2009
    Posts
    6
    oh mister clayneal!
    thank you for that interesting bit of information.
    i hadnt even thought of that despite the fact that ads for flash drives seem to raise the gb volume by the week nowadays!

    does that mean that the error-proneness of external drives is normally a natural occurence due to the mechanical disk-reading parts?
    i already read that some people said that one should use 7200rpm drives only as doorstoppers. ( i dont quite get whats the big difference to 5400 rpm should be but anyway)

    isieeeetso?

  8. #8

    clayneal's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 27, 2009
    Location
    Lincoln Nebraska
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    2,146
    Specs:
    late 08 macbook 2.0 4gig 320hdd10.7.3 32 gig iPhone 4s
    That's correct hdd's are no different then any mechanical device. Movement wears them out. They are also prone to shocks and heat. While SSS and flash drives can fail also they are much more likely to survive lifes little knocks and bumps. While I do use standard (7200 ) hdd's in my machine and for back ups I keep a cloned (carbon copy ) copy of my drive on a 64 gig flash drive that I carry with me. As well as another drive I keep large files on. The cool thing about the carbon copy drive is that is bootable so if I really need access to my drive and don't have my MacBook with me I just borrow a friends or coworkers and boot from my flash drive and it's just like I have my laptop with me. I used this method a couple of weeks ago to update my iPhone to 3.1 at the apple store in the town I was in when it came out !
    Anyway hope it helps
    clay
    MY ADVICE COMES WITH A DOUBLE YOUR MONEY BACK GUARANTEE!

  9. #9

    the_riotgirl's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 09, 2009
    Posts
    6
    *snicker* i am going to burrow a tunnel to you and install you against your will as my personal tech adviser. perfect, were do i keep my dogleaches?

    which one do you have? sundisk, kingston? wha, sound all like pc companies to me who use the surface of their products primarily to put their horrendous 80ies logos on, and in the biggest possible manner.


    anyway, some good news (for me, that is and its all your "fault"):
    i checked around for ssd drives BECAUSE OF YOU SUGGESTION and western digital is producing them(internals only) so i stumbled over their warranty check on their website:

    guess what, it is still eligible!

    i am so used to trowing away computer-related stuff i paid hundrets of bucks a year ago that i had totally given up the idea that there might actually be something like customer care!

    *shake my booty to the left, shake it to the right, doing some hula moves* yeah!!!

  10. #10

    clayneal's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 27, 2009
    Location
    Lincoln Nebraska
    Posts
    2,146
    Specs:
    late 08 macbook 2.0 4gig 320hdd10.7.3 32 gig iPhone 4s
    Lol I should be so lucky ! Ok. As for the flash drive my 64 gig is Kingston. And I don't think anyone makes a dedicated ext ssd. Howerever they can be put into an enclosure just like any hdd. Good job on finding the reciept. And I want silver spikes on my leash ! I'll pm you where to send it.

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