is my hard drive dead?

By getRand0m ·
seagate freeagent pro 750gb.

it used to work properly.

usb connector in drive fell off cicuit board.

worked around using esata cable plus esata to usb dongle (lack esata port on pc). was working fine under this config.

dongle beginning to fall apart, but restored to proper working order.

one day drive fails to recognize. tried with on another pc with esata port (no dongle), nothing whatsoever. dongle still works okay, so ordered new esata cable.

with new cable and old dongle, shows removable drive with no media (formerly/normally showed freeagent pro h: as a connected hard drive).

drive has a letter, but no media present, but better than before the new cable was bought when it did nothing whenever i plugged the dongle/cable in.

99.5% sure dongle is not the cause of the failure, but then it must be the drive? is it corrupted or dead?

unfortunately there's no pc to try the new cable on, but that is what i must do, and after that can i assume the drive is broken (or the esata is now fallen off the circuit board too)? and if the drive is corrupted/dead, how can i fix it? if i torrent a recovery program, but how do i start using it when the drive is not recognized by the pc? or am i going to lose approx half a terabyte no matter what now, save calling in a professional?

probably buying a new hard drive anyway on boxing day, so can i mirror/clone the data from the old to new or is it still going to be messed up in that situation (ie corrupt data/table)?

thanks a lot guys. i am a nit, but this is why there's the internet, so l33ts can mentor n00bs. please advise. and merry christmas!

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Well you have several options here

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to is my hard drive dead?

The easy one is to open the Drive Management and see what if anything is shown there. I'm betting that you will get some Drive but not Partition Information which can be caused by the Drive not being Dismounted.

Or int he case of a failing Dongle the circuit being continually broken and reestablished again causing the Partition Information to be corrupted on the drive.

As the USB Plug has been broken off the Circuit Board here it's a fair bet that the entire Interface between the USB/ESATA and the HDD Is Failing/Has failed and you'll need to crack the case open and remove the HDD itself then connect to a suitable Interface/Computer to attempt to recover your Data off it, or send it to a Specialized Data Recovery House and pay them to recover your Data.

If the Data is important you really do not have an Option here send it away and pay to have the Data Recovered. If you mess with it you will make the cost of recovery greater and worse still a Complete Recovery Far Less Likely.

But if the Data would only be Nice to have back you can use one of the many Data recovery Applications available.

Here is a short list of the better ones














While the last 2 are from the same company they are very different products. Win Hex should only be considered foe use by someone who knows Hex Inside Out while Davory is a great cheap General Purpose Application.

Personally I prefer the On Track Option but it's anything but cheap. However because I use this type of software a lot it's paid for itself many times over by now, for a cheaper option Spin Rite from Gibson Research or Stella have both very good reputations by other TR members.

Also you need to understand that any external drive is not intended for Full Time use you should only plug these drives in when needed and then dismount the Drive when you have finished whatever it is that you need to do. The external Enclosures Do Not allow the drives in them to remain cool enough and Do Not protect them from Vibrational Damage. Even the Better Actively Cooled Enclosures with a fan in them to help keep the drive cool are not for Full Time Use but they will allow a drive to run much longer then the Passive Enclosures ever could allow.



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by getRand0m In reply to Well you have several opt ...

thanks. yeah the disk management shows a drive but it says no media. and in the toolbar i have the option to safely remove usb mass storage, but in the next window it doesn't say seagate freeagent, just a generic one that doesn't take all but a second to be ready to be unplugged.

and i tried hard not to leave it plugged in, especially since the usb connector broke, since the whole setup was admittedly flimsy and prone to get worse. only when i was copying to it or playing from it would i have it powered up.

and yes i'd have to say it's non-essential to get the data from the drive, just my entire movie and music libraries and photos and little projects and old school work i wish i wasn't losing. i am going to look into those links you posted, just as soon as i recover from the whirlwind of christmas...

thanks again and i'll report back.

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You may like to look here

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to thanks


The links above are for Pay For Programs which I have either used or know others who have used successfully. I have no experience or knowledge of the apps listed in the above link so use at your own risk.


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