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Thread: bzz.. Tick.. Tick.. gone.

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    bzz.. Tick.. Tick.. gone.

    Hello everyone, wow. Been a while since i posted here... busy busy busy with year 11 stuff.

    So just last week.. I heard pretty much what the title says.. oh, that's the sound of my external hard drive.
    my beloved 1.5tb Seagate external just decided to die on me in 5 minutes so i've pretty much lost everything on it.. including some very important and personal photos/panoramas and some backups.. and movies of course and as you can imagine, that made me cry the whole night in my corner. I've only had this drive for about 2 years.. (should i be saying only?) and I am very suprised at the sudden death of this thing. Not to mention the suspicious coincidence of my dad's HDD 1tb seagate which is starting to have problems the day later.
    So i've been looking at replacements (staying away from seagate!) but not to sure about these whole external hard drives anymore. I've been told and read up that Western Digital has some pretty good ones and reliable ones out on the market.. Are there any i should be looking at?

    Thanks! help much appreciated
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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    What ever you decide, buy two and backup twice.
    If not had a problem with Seagate (yet).

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    Cheers Mark, that is a good idea! didn't think of that. Interesting.. I'll have to take some time to choose

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    Member michaellxv's Avatar
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    Which also raises the question. What software do people use to manage their backups?

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    Quote Originally Posted by michaellxv View Post
    Which also raises the question. What software do people use to manage their backups?
    I don't really use any software.. Nor is it a backup as such, I simply copy over the folder i want a copy of.. Good question..

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    Oh, that's a nasty surprise and definitely worth crying in the corner over. You can possibly resurrect your data off that drive with some expert assistance - so please do explore that option before you do anything harsh like trash it.

    For backup software I use Time Machine which is a Mac OSX application, and a Western Digital 1TB USB 3.0 external drive.

    I hope you can recover your data, cheers Deb

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    I try and impress upon everyone, photographer or otherwise, that backups are extremely important. How often do we hear of a student who has their laptop stolen and is pleading for its return cause it has their years work on it? A backup is a necessity not an accessory!

    So agree with the above, but.. I say buy 3. One to use, one to backup to at home and one to backup to that lives at a friends/relatives place. What if you are burgled or your home burns down, bye bye to both drives. Having a third off-site drive is a must for any data that you deem important.

    Have you considered a data-recovery service. It will cost you, but they are often good at getting the data back off the failed drive.

    And it doesn't matter what brand the drive is, they can all fail.
    Last edited by ricktas; 31-08-2013 at 6:19am.
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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Andrew. I hate to say this: SEAGATE!!! (Seagoat!!!)
    I had two pack up on me - but now gladly - years ago. Have avoided them since.

    Listen, though: find out what's wrong with it? See it it's the controller board. I have a 2ple of times
    swapped these over from an identical drive (yes, a possible problem) and retrieved data.
    Am.
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    Former Username : Wetpixels Dazz1's Avatar
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    As Rick said, ALL drives can fail. Over the years I have dealt with MANY brands, and at this point have no preference at all.

    As for backup software, rather than just copy the files, if you want something less full blown than a full backup system, have a look at rsync, and it's GUI frontend Grsync http://www.opbyte.it/grsync/ . Works across many platforms and minimises the time needed by synchronising instead of just copying, and just sending the differences between files.
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    Ausphotography Regular livio's Avatar
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    Hi Andrew, DONT get rid of the drive, the problem you describe is called pinging or pinballing it tells me the electronics on the main board of the drive are gone and the seek arm has no control. It is most likely that the platers on the drive are okay and that the information on the drive is still in tact. There are two things you can do.

    1) See if you can find another drive exactly the same the trick here is to make sure that the drive firmware is the same you may be able to do this via the drive model number and batch number. You could get lucky and find one on ebay, if you do test that it works and with a torks screw driver carefully remove the motherboard and the ribbon cable you might also find a pair of tweezers are handy. Once you have changed the board the old drive should spin up correctly and you have all of your stuff.

    2) You could also send the drive to a data recovery centre it will cost there is no doubt but if the information is important it may well be recoverable.

    3) As a general rule of thumb a hard disk drive should be okay for between 3 and 5 years but of course this is measured statistically that means that you have outliers on both sides of the bell curve. Some drives fail within 3 months these are generally covered by warranty, some under 12 months these may be replaced by warranty and drives between 12 months and 3 years generally you are on your own unless you have expressly signed up additional warranty and that would be rare. Bottom line there is no substitute for having your stuff backed up. Unfortunately it generally takes a data loss to drive home the importance of having backups.

    Hope you find this helpful as it stands you may not have lost and data on your drive what you have lost is the ability to retrieve it as it stands, the two options are valid
    one could be done at your local computer computer repairer the other will cost more but they are generally fairly good at data recovery

    Kind Regards
    Livio

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    Thanks everyone for the replies! Deb, I also have a macbook white but I never really liked the interface of the time machine nor the way it does the backup, Instead for my mac (which has just school stuff, nothing important ) I use CCC (carbon copy cloner) which clones and makes the external backup bootable..

    Thanks Rick for that, that sure is a good thought you put forward! off-site may be the next thing i should do. Also I do understand that any hard disk drive can fail because of their mechanical nature.. Just seeking for one with a good reliability rate. But of course, ultimately they'll fail to.

    Thanks Am, I've been reading articles and seeing that sometimes that is the case and their is a way to fix this by either firmware or a bad circuit.. I tried using the SATA/USB plug from another external seagate to see if that was the problem, but still the same.. well, it made the ticking stop but now no disk manager can see it, both on the PC and the fruity apple.

    Thanks for the link Wetpixels, that is just the type of software i've been looking for ! I'll sure take a look at it. Also, i am aware that all hard drives can fail.. not looking forward to the day i have to replace my desktop's! looks like SSD's are the new thing.. but gosh their prices to size ratio is crazy.

    Thank you for that Livio, I certainly will not throw this precious piece away! As for your number 1, that is something i have considered and leaning to that as a certain possibility.. I've also looked into data recovery places but having a look at prices around sydney.... Even though I have no doubt in them being able to recover it, I just don't have such money to pay for that service.. Unless i'm looking in all the wrong places?
    As for warranty, this drive is still under warranty according to their warranty checker on their website, I'm sure i could get a replacement if that was the case, but does that mean they will recover the current drive? I tried finding such information form Seagate but nothing was found. Is that a general practice for Storage companies to make or am i just making up hope?

    Again, thanks to everyone who replied !

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    Ausphotography Veteran Speedway's Avatar
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    Warranties cover the drive only they specifically do not cover data stored on them. as stated many times Back Up, Back Up and Back up again I have used many different drives over the years, the oldest I still have is the 10 year old 200Gb Seagate which is the system disc in my desktop I also have 1 320Gb WD & 2 1Tb Seagate internal HDD's. External I have a 1 500Gb Seagate, 1 1Tb WD and 1 2Tb Seagate and will order another one of these next week. I have been lucky over the years never having a HDD die completely the only ones that have eventually died I was able to save the data before failure. I am also watching the prices on SSD,s to replace the system drive with one when the prices get to a reasonable level.
    Cheers
    Keith.
    Last edited by Speedway; 31-08-2013 at 10:35am.

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    Former Username : Wetpixels Dazz1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedway View Post
    I have been lucky over the years never having a HDD die completely the only ones that have eventually died I was able to save the data before failure.

    That reminds me, I meant to say that it's a good idea to monitor the SMART status of your drives. The error rates etc will usually give early warnings.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedway View Post
    Warranties cover the drive only they specifically do not cover data stored on them. as stated many times Back Up, Back Up and Back up again I have used many different drives over the years, the oldest I still have is the 10 year old 200Gb Seagate which is the system disc in my desktop I also have 1 320Gb WD & 2 2Tb Seagate internal HDD's. External I have a 1 500Gb Seagate, 1 1Tb WD and 1 2Tb Seagate and will order another one of these next week. I have been lucky over the years never having a HDD die completely the only ones that have eventually died I was able to save the data before failure. I am also watching the prices on SSD,s to replace the system drive with one when the prices get to a reasonable level.
    Cheers
    Keith.
    Thanks Keith, well I sure am going to purchase more than one backup drive now, as a system disk SSD's seem quite reasonable if the only thing you store on it is the OS and application files. But yes, will have to wait till the prices eventually drop a little..

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by wetpixels View Post
    That reminds me, I meant to say that it's a good idea to monitor the SMART status of your drives. The error rates etc will usually give early warnings.
    Another great idea i did not think of. Cheers for that !

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    I am not a techie and there is some interesting hints in the replies. Thanks you for improving my education.

    These drive failures may be batch related. I have had two mechanical drives fail (bought about the same time) and two SSD drives fail.
    One of the SSD drives was replaced under warranty after I had bought and installed a different brand.
    Not to waste the storage....
    If you have any spare internal SATA drives lying around, buy a docking station and you can use them just like a plug in drive.

    In answer to another question in the thread, I use Secondcopy to back up my files....john

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    Quote Originally Posted by chappo1 View Post
    I am not a techie and there is some interesting hints in the replies. Thanks you for improving my education.

    These drive failures may be batch related. I have had two mechanical drives fail (bought about the same time) and two SSD drives fail.
    One of the SSD drives was replaced under warranty after I had bought and installed a different brand.
    Not to waste the storage....
    If you have any spare internal SATA drives lying around, buy a docking station and you can use them just like a plug in drive.

    In answer to another question in the thread, I use Secondcopy to back up my files....john
    Cheers John, you had an SSD fail hey? first time i've heard that. Do you know the reason for that?

    I've seen docking stations and such but really prefer portables as on an over night trip for say a night out for a timelapse, would be handy to have some extra storage on sight with a laptop..

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    Ausphotography Regular junqbox's Avatar
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    I had a similar thing happen a couple of years ago and took it to a retrieval service and got everything back. Wasn't cheap (about $1400) but...

    The company was based in Artarmon in Sydney.

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    Quote Originally Posted by junqbox View Post
    I had a similar thing happen a couple of years ago and took it to a retrieval service and got everything back. Wasn't cheap (about $1400) but...

    The company was based in Artarmon in Sydney.
    That's the thing, I wouldn't mind at all to bring it to a retrieval service but the price is what's stopping me.. Just got to find if it's worth the money!

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    Ausphotography Regular junqbox's Avatar
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    How much would it cost to go out re-shoot everything then process it. In my case it was all my photos and my music collection.

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    Quote Originally Posted by junqbox View Post
    How much would it cost to go out re-shoot everything then process it. In my case it was all my photos and my music collection.
    That is true..

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