While better known for their flash memory devices, the Taiwanese company storage company Transcend also makes a limited range of 2.5” external hard disks. Typically, they use Samsung Momentus disks – in 500GB (ST500LM012) or 1TB (ST1000LM024) sizes. As mechanical hard disks go, these are fairly robust models. Their head disk assembly is tried-and-tested and they use fairly stable firmware.
So, what could possibly go wrong? Well, there is the perennial problem of users dropping their disks. Often, accidentally dropped disks don’t happen out of carelessness just unexpected events. Like, for example, a customer who delivered a disk into our office recently. On his commute home, he had his Transcend external hard disk attached connected to his MacBook Air. He was seated in an aisle seat. His fellow passenger in the window seat had dozed off. As the train was pulling into one of the stations his neighbouring traveller suddenly woke up, looked out the window and discovered to his horror that it was his stop. Our customer, being a gentleman, MacBook-Air-in-hand quickly jumped up from his seat only to suddenly hear the clatter of an object fall onto the aisle of the carriage. It was his external hard disk. His fellow traveller alighted successfully from the train. Our customer gingerly went back to his seat to re-connect the disk only to hear it clicking.
Luckily, only one disk head was damaged, but the head disk assembly still needed to be replaced in our clean-room. The platters had escaped damage. We were able to achieve a 99.5% recovery rate salvaging all of his PPJ (Adobe Premiere) files.
How to prevent this happening? Well, if you plug out an external disk quickly from an OS X (Apple) operating system without going through the “eject” procedure – you risk corrupting the “catalog” file of HFS+ (the file system) which can also lead to data loss. Or, you could use a “wireless hard disk” but I dread to think of the security implications of these especially when used in public places. So, it all goes back to having a robust back-up plan. Or, maybe just not sitting on an aisle seat on a train…
Drive Rescue Data Recovery are based in Dublin, Ireland. We recover data from all brands of dropped external hard disk including Transcend, Adata, Toshiba, Seagate and WD. Phone 1890 571 571 www.datarecoverydublin.ie
Western Digital MyCloud NAS devices are popular in Ireland for their ease of setup, user-friendly OS. And unlike most NAS ranges from other manufacturers, the disks come pre-installed. This is probably not surprising given that WD (unlike Synology, Buffalo, Netgear et al.) manufacture hard disks.
The entry-level models in the WD MyCloud NAS range does not offer any redundancy – they are single-bay only. However, they do come with a USB 3.0 port for external backup which is better than nothing. Models further upstream in the range such as the MyCloud Mirror, MyCloud Gen 2, MyCloud EX2 and MyCloud EX4 offer mirroring with the more advanced models offering RAID 5 and RAID 10 redundancy.
Recently, we helped a customer with an entry-level WD MyCloud which was no longer showing up on his network. He could hear it spinning. But no data appeared when he logged into MyCloud OS. So, he updated the device’s OS to version 3. He removed the 4TB disk from its casing and attached it via USB dock to his Apple Mac. But no volume showed up. He ran some DIY data recovery software on it – but that too proved unfruitful.
He brought the disk (a WD40EFRX NASware 3.0 disk) to us. These “WD Red” (as they are commonly known) are generally reliable disks. A unique feature of them is their disk-to-parking zone timings. Because they are designed for NAS usage their heads will not retreat to the disk’s parking zone until 300 seconds of inactivity compared to 8 seconds for a model from the “WD Green” range.
Our diagnostics revealed several of the firmware adaptive modules were corrupt. These modules are essential in “tuning” the disk heads to the disk platters and are used for the management of disk errors. Secondly, the disk had well over 12000 bad sectors.
The data recovery process went smoothly without any surprises. Over 3.2TB of ORF (Olympus Raw), PSD (Adobe PhotoShop) and .MOV files were all successfully recovered. Everything requested by the client. Every MyCloud does have a silver lining…
Drive Rescue Data Recovery is based in Dublin, Ireland. We recover data from all of the WD MyCloud range including MyCloud Gen 2, MyCloud Pro, MyCloud EX2, MyCloud EX2 Ultra, MyCloud EX4 and MyCloud Home Duo. Call us on 1890 571 571 or find out more at: www.datarecoverydublin.ie