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Going to swap the HDD plater into a new donor for data recovery


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7 replies to this topic

#1 OfficeJerk

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Posted 21 August 2015 - 08:49 AM

Old HDD, failed years ago, wouldn't mind messing around with it. Been watching some youtube vids of DIY platter replacement and so far so good in terms of at least getting the device to boot up once so I can clone it. Definitely going to give it a shot, HOWEVER, My question is,

 

How similar does the donor drive have to be to the original one?

 

I have a:

WD Scorpio WD1200BEVS-60USTO 120gb

 

and want to put the plater into a

WD Scorpio WD1200BEVS-O8US 120gb 

 

Note the difference in the last 4 digits between HDDs... it was the closest I could find.

 

Thoughts?



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#2 Platypus

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Posted 21 August 2015 - 09:14 AM

I doubt if anyone is going to be able to give a very definite answer.

 

I assume you have a spin motor failure or head/actuator fault?

 

The biggest consideration is how much of the operating firmware is loaded from the platter, and if the control PCB revision level is compatible with that firmware.

 

The older and smaller the drive the more likely it is that the firmware resides on the PCB and the drives will have to be identical. If the firmware is substantially on the platter, then it's more likely that as long as the PCB revision level (usually visible stamped on the board) is the same, the firmware belonging to the platter will load up into the host drive.


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#3 OfficeJerk

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Posted 21 August 2015 - 09:19 AM

Yep, motor failure,

 

I saw another video of a guy who replaced his platter but then the HDD wouldn't be identified when it was hooked upto partmagic.. he simply swapped his PCB over and viola! it worked... again, It dosent matter to me very much if I destroy the HDD... I have a newer HDD which failed and the data is actually important, so im saving that for professional recovery when I have the time.. (and finances) but the one I am looking at opening up is an older one from 2009.

 

Thanks for your answer!


Edited by hamluis, 27 August 2015 - 04:45 AM.


#4 Platypus

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Posted 21 August 2015 - 09:41 AM

If the motor has simply failed (e.g. open circuit winding) without causing any damage to the PCB, then unless the board in the donor drive is clearly identical, the best chance is probably to swap the board too.


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#5 OfficeJerk

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Posted 25 August 2015 - 10:11 PM

Okay! Ive ordered a replacement HDD which is identical to the one I would like to remove the platter from and am going to attempt to swap the platter and PCB while at it.

 

My question is, assuming I am successful, what would be the quickest and best way to extract as much information from the HDD as possible in the short time frame I probably would have (possible) access to it?

 

Would connecting right to windows and hoping explorer will identify the drive and try to access it from there be the best route, or using software like Parted magic to extract the data? What about cloning the entire device?

 

Please advise if you know, ive only got one crack at this and I want to make sure I do it in the best possible way.


Edited by OfficeJerk, 25 August 2015 - 10:12 PM.


#6 Platypus

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Posted 25 August 2015 - 10:33 PM

I think if I was in that situation, and I had at least 120GB free on a storage drive, I would use the free Western Digital Acronis TrueImage Special Edition that can be downloaded from the WD support website to maintain WD drives (will only work if there is a WD drive in the system).

 

I'd set TI to disk mode and see if it found the damaged drive with it hooked up to a SATA port, if it did I would try with the Advanced options to create an image of it in Sector by sector mode, and set to Ignore bad sectors. If it can create an image, it will be the same size as the drive.

 

If this is successful, once the image is stored on a good drive you can cease using the rebuilt drive for the time being and use TI to mount the image, and explore it to find if readable files have come across. If so, the ones you hope to recover can be located and copied without any need to worry about the time involved and possibly causing further damage to the sick drive.


Edited by Platypus, 25 August 2015 - 10:37 PM.

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#7 OfficeJerk

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Posted 27 August 2015 - 05:18 AM

I think if I was in that situation, and I had at least 120GB free on a storage drive, I would use the free Western Digital Acronis TrueImage Special Edition that can be downloaded from the WD support website to maintain WD drives (will only work if there is a WD drive in the system).

 

I'd set TI to disk mode and see if it found the damaged drive with it hooked up to a SATA port, if it did I would try with the Advanced options to create an image of it in Sector by sector mode, and set to Ignore bad sectors. If it can create an image, it will be the same size as the drive.

 

If this is successful, once the image is stored on a good drive you can cease using the rebuilt drive for the time being and use TI to mount the image, and explore it to find if readable files have come across. If so, the ones you hope to recover can be located and copied without any need to worry about the time involved and possibly causing further damage to the sick drive.

That sounds like a good plan. Question, could I back up the drive to my existing internal HDD as there is quite a lot of free space? Or must the disk image it be backed up to an external drive?



#8 Platypus

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Posted 27 August 2015 - 07:11 AM

You can use any drive that has sufficient space available.

Edited by Platypus, 27 August 2015 - 07:12 AM.

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