Failed - WDC WD7500BPKX - Caviar Black 2.5" HDD

About 6-7 years ago I bought a WDC WD7500BPKX WD Caviar Black 2.5" HDD. At the time, it was one of the nicer HDD’s on the market.

I installed it in my laptop, and definitely enjoyed the performance boost of having a 7200 RPM drive vs the then-standard 5400 RPM drive. I thought I was the ■■■■!

Fast-forward about 3 months: I find some data corrruption/disk error via Windows error notification. “Okay, that’s weird,” I thought to myself. These things do happen. So, I try to repair the errors and the partition table gets fried. I think, at the time, GPT was a newer implementation. I write a GPT table over top of the MBR that is on there (or some such mistake) and end up with an unusable drive. ■■■■! I don’t return the drive, because I know I wrote the partition tables wrong.

The drive sits in the closet for about 3 years. Around this time I discover ‘gdisk’ on linux. I am able call on the backup tables, and overwrite the botched tables; restoring the ability to read and write to the drive. I pop the drive in an external enclosure and begin using it for data backups and transfers. Not very long into the drive’s new life, I hit another data corruption error. Well, shoot!

Basically, this was sold to me as a defective drive. I have seen numerous complaints about this particular model failing early on. I’m sorry, Western Digital, but never again. Did. I. Purchase. Western. Digital.

Not only did I write to complain and vent. I would like to know if ANYONE has found a way to fix the WDC WD7500BPKX? It seems to work sometimes, and other times not. I have placed 100GB on it and pulled it off, successfully, just yesterday in an emergency. Other times I can’t transfer 1GB to it (I understand this is likely due to the location on the platter that is being written/read). I thought HDD’s are supposed to mark bad sectors and blacklist them. I think the system tells me that there are 88 bad sectors, right now the S.M.A.R.T. reporting is saying that there are no issues with the drive, yet when I run the S.M.A.R.T. tests, they fail.

Screenshots taken on 3/7/2021:

My hope was always that, one day, the technology would emerge that would allow me to fix the drive. That possibility is looking slimmer and slimmer with the advent of flash technology. Will I ever purchase WD again? Will I recommend WD to my clients (I’m an IT tech)? Should I let one bad experience determine my outlook on an entire company? Probably not.

Get WD Data Lifeguard and erase the disk completely. This should activate the pending sector to be cleared. Then the should be ready to return to service.

I have used Lifeguard previously on this drive, great idea though.
I was able to initiate an ATA secure erase; it is running now. Hopefully it doesn’t brick the disk!

Steps taken to resolve the issue:

1.) Boot host system with linux live usb to perform ATA enhanced erase.

# hdparm --user-master u --security-set-password password /dev/sdx
# hdparm --user-master u -security-erase-enhanced password /dev/sdx

2.) Write GPT table with gparted

Thanks to @Vegan for the solution:

3.) Boot into Windows PE environment (Hiren’s Boot CD)
4.) Use WD Data Lifeguard > right-click on ailing drive > Perform Tests > Erase > Full Erase
5.) Reboot and run S.M.A.R.T. short-test in WD Dashboard app.

**NOTE: Steps 1&2 are likely unnecessary to resolve ‘Current Pending Sector Count’ warning

disk looks ok now but be I use windows aside from a SSD that my web server runs from which uses linux lamp stack

Nice! I run a LAMP stack on Clear Linux. Local Wordpress stuff. What distro are you using?

ubuntu server 20.04 lts