Data recovery on a Seagate ST4000DM000 Backup Plus 3.5″ USB 3 external hard drive – April 2016

 

This 4TB hard drive was brought in by the client after she had dropped it off her desk. Her laptop computer used an SSD with limited space so she was using this external hard drive to store her data, which worked well until it was dropped and damaged. The drive was making clicking and beeping noises after she powered it up after the drop, a sure sign that the read/write heads were damaged.

Seagate 4TB external hard drive

Seagate 4TB external hard drive

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We opened the drive in the lab and removed the damaged heads, luckily there was no visible damage to the hard drive platters themselves. Below are the damaged heads, notice how they have been ripped from the assembly.

 

Damaged heads

Damaged heads

 

 

 

 

 

 

Usually when a hard drive, particular the Seagate DM series, has heads which are this badly damaged, the chances of data recovery can be low as it is often accompanied by media (platter) damage. However, in this case we were lucky. After installing a new head assembly of 8 heads, the drive powered up and initialised. We made some firmware changes to make the drive more stable and started recovering the data. Notice the successfully read (green) sectors.

 

Recovery of the data from the hard drive

Recovering the data from the hard drive

 

Once the data recovery process was complete we had recovered 100% of the client’s data, much to her relief. Another successful recovery at our Cape Town lab.

 

 

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SouthBit Data Recovery

SouthBit Data Recovery