3 TB My Book Essential dropped and now - PC won't see drive

Ok - I realize this may make most who read this roll their eyes - but I’m desperate - so I thought I’d give this a shot…

My wife and I were on vacation and while in the motel room I had my laptop on the bed and my 3 TB My Book Essential External Hard Drive connected to it…my wife moved a chair and the cord connecting the drive to the AC Adapter and thus to the AC Outlet got caught and the Hard Drive got pulled to the floor

It only fell about three feet and at first I didnt think any damage occured

But after a while the Laptop was no longer seeing the Hard Drive

The power light on the Drive was still on but the Laptop wasnt seeing it

Hoping (and praying) that the USB cord connector was merely damaged, I bought a new USB cable for the Drive - alas - no change

So…this drive is nearly full (3 Terabytes) of data I REALLY dont want to loose

I have never had a similar problem, and Ive never had to send a hard drive (ext or int) to a company that extracts data from a damaged hard drive but of course I hear its expensive

Does anybody have any ideas or suggestions?

I emailed WD Support three days ago and have not recieved  a reply

Please - any help or ideas you can offer - I would be eternally grateful


It’s probably physically damaged and beyond do it yourself fixes. Probably professional data recovery is the best choice if the data is worh the price. Dropping voids the warranty.


Speaking from direct practical experience - I second the idea of a pro data recovery service. This may be a simple internal connector fix, or it may be a complex head-crash scenario requiring extensive work in a cleanroom lab. Depends exactly how it hit the ground and where the heads were at the time of impact. But since this disk contains important information and if you don’t know *precisely* what you’re doing then it’s best to get a pro involved. These services see hundreds of disks like this every day.

Some services charge as little as $300.00 and some as much as $2,000. It all depends on the company and the amount of damage and what parts are needed to effect repair. Some places will evaluate the disk for $50.00 and apply it to the recovery cost. Either way, the $300 company uses advanced equipment like the big boys. The big boys charge more because they tend to cater to the business crowd that needs a recovery effected overnight, or perhaps before the accident even happened!! heh!!

Disks that contain important information are nothing to mess around with. They are electro-mechanical marvels built to finer tolerances than the most expensive Swiss watch; and controlled by electronics equal in complexity to your CPU. Furthermore, the actual writing of the data bits to the surfaces inside is based on quantum mechanics. QM is an area of physics in which we don’t know how everything works - just that it does.

Until we know precisely the mode of failure I wouldn’t try to power this up anymore. If there is a head problem, running it will cause additional damage to the data and make recovery more expensive or not possible altogether! Power it down and put it on the shelf till you decide what to do with it.

And in the future, always be sure to have two copies of your data at all times in two locations. This means purchasing a 2nd disk and perhaps storing it at a relative’s house or safe-deposit box. Backups are as fundamental to computer operations as oil changes and gas are to the operation of your car. Without that oil change and backup, something will go boom sooner or later. An extra $100 bucks spent on a backup device *WILL* save you grief and perhaps hundreds more on data recovery if and when the time comes, like now.

Do let us know what happens here, and best of regards!