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Saturday, February 2, 2013

1292. External Hard Drive failed

Lucy asked: I had an external hard drive for just a year or so, and then it seems to have died. It
won't mount anymore. Is there anything I can do besides just throwing it away?

We swear these hard drives know when their warranty expires and they wait till one day after that moment to drop dead. Hopefully, however, yours is still under warranty.  If it is, you can contact the manufacturer to get a replacement drive.  All of the hard drive manufacturers warranty their hard drives, and they’re all reasonable about replacing them during the warranty period. How they react after the warranty period differs from company to company, and it’s still worth trying to get a replacement if your drive has failed close to the end of the warranty period.
Hopefully, if the contents of the drive are important, you have also made a backup of the drive.
If you're really brave you can open up the case, replace the hard drive with a different bare hard drive, and glue it all back together.

Most consumer external hard drives are simply glued together, and opening them up can be tricky. On the other hand, if you find the external case to be a convenient size, or you just want the cheapest means of repairing the device, this can work. The hard drives inside the external drive cases are completely standard, and you can generally replace a dead hard drive with a working one, glue things back together (or use rubber bands, if necessary), and you’ll have
a new working hard drive.
On the other hand, your best option is to contact the manufacturer and try to get a replacement, if the drive’s under warranty.

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