2Tb WD20EARX - a bad buy

I originally posted this in the wrong thread - apols if ive confused anyone by moving it.  - ADMIN NOTE, perhaps a delete option for the OP could be included in the controls…?

last october I bought one of these drives to replace my 250Gb slave data drive.   I used my external HD rescue tool caddy to initialise and format the drive, into 3x 621Gb partitions, in line with the existing drive it was replacing.  I then copied and restored each drive in turn from the old slave to the new drive. so far so good.  As its a SATA drive and my Mobo has both sata ports and IDE there was nothing to say this wouldnt work. took old drive out, put new drive in. fired up the box, dropped into bios set the settings and restarted. and thats when things started going wrong.

After spending a week exchanging pointless and useless emails with WD support who only seemed interested in pasting the question between blank lines on a preformed email and re-confirming my identity I gave them up as a wqste of time.  i then spent 6 weeks buggering about trying to get the BIOS to recognise the drive, installing and reinstalling drivers, raid drivers and eventually following some seemingly knowledgeable advice that said the raid drivers could only be properly installed during the OS installation, i took to reinstall my whole windows system.  after spending 2 days reinstalling all the software, the new  2Tb drive was still deaf n dumb.  So, i changed tack.  I bought  a USB / SATA converter plug which allowed me to plug the drive into the USB card, which after a fashion allowed me to use the drive.  I bought a proper enclosure and the internal drive became an external unit, semi permanently plugged in working as a system drive, as i had intended albeit not in the box.

That was in December '11.  Yesterday march 26th i turned on PC and got several wierd windows error messages telling me my 2Tb CG drive was now a paperweight.  something has failed overnight on the drive.  It hasnt been dropped, banged kicked or abused, its sat on the shelf of my desk with my other 2 exHdds.I have spent all day today fiddling and got nowhere.  I switch it on and it tells me its a usb mass storage device, with 0kb free.  switch off /on and its a disk drive with hyroglyphs for an ID, with o free space. repeat ad nauseum running utils up the wazoo its just not being recognised by the PC as a drive.  The PC recognises some usb device has been plugged in but thats as far as it goes.  I took the actual drive out of the caddy and replaced it with 2 seperate older drives, both work fine. this tells me its not the caddy its the drive. On one go, it finally showed me all three drives, each at 621 Gb, only one with a drive letter and all 3 at 100% empty.  when i restarted the pc i’m back to zero again.  on attempt 45 i finally got a reading of 505gb unallocated uninitialised space, (approx one quarter of the drive) and my file recovery software found zero files, of the 36Gb music, 167 Gb of file and archived software and my whole photo library & gawd knows what else - and yes i have backups, but thats not the point.  

As i re-write this the drive has opened up again, and this time its showing 990Gb nearly half the drive, the format has jumped from NTFS to RAW but files are viewable, just shy of 61,000 and are currently under recovery. whether it will allow me to finish only time will tell. This kinda suggests my earlier theory that its the PCB at fault not the drive was possibly right.

I’m going back to the shop tomorrow but i will be asking for a refund if they’ll give me one or another drive, but it sure as s**t wont be a WD.  I’m going back to maxtor.  The 2 HDDs in my box and my 2 exHdds (a 1Tb and a 160Gb) are as well. the 2 internal drives are 8 and 5 yrs old respectively, and i have 2 more unused on the shelf that are still viable.  This PC is running on average 14-16 hrs a day, and sometimes runs for several days non stop. 

Their reliability kinda kicks WD well and truly in the poor end of the bracket wouldnt you say.

sorry to hear that mate, perhaps WD can replace it for another model…

Hi well its a fact new drives dont last as long as the old ones. But  maxtor is now seagate so have fun.  I would have returned the drive first sign of trouble.

well, it wasnt seen as trouble at first.  I used an external rescue HDD caddy to set the drive up and clone the partitions off the original slave direct onto the new drive.  it all went A-OK, with no probs.   I eventually put it down to one of those things between the SATA on the MOBO and the drive.   there hasnt been a MOBO firmware upgrade since 2005,  and though it should have detected it no matte what i tried nothing worked. 

I’ve hooked it up to the same external caddy i first used as i write this and its showing me 2 partitions, one formatted and one not.  Very few of the files shown are classed as ‘good’ (ie can be recovered) but theyre all shortcut links or TXT files all of 1k in size.  Nothing, and i mean nothing greater than 1K is recoverable out of 110,000 files despite the filenames, folders, and doc sizes all being present:-( 

What puzzles me is what caused the drive to go into meltdown!  Ive notified the shop and its going back tomorrow. I expect a new drive after theyve checked this one, but i’m uneasy and would prefer a different make. 

Thanks for the tip on seagate / maxtor - missed that.

i’m risking the wrath of sod typing this, but just a quick update.  after stopping the scan after an hour, the system has ID something like 23000 files (out of 68000 and a few) of varying types and sizes that are currently being recovered.   this just goes to confuse me even more than before…

ho hum.

i bought this same model 2 months before and i already RMA it 4 times ,even i got certified repaired one last time but after 10 days its got lots of bad sector along with os freezing :cry: