How to clear Security Frozen state?

I’m trying to test and erase some WD drives so I can verify they are healthy enough to reinstall the OS on some servers. The drives are various WD Gold Enterprise Storage and WD Red NASware units.

I’ve been using WD drives for years and I’ve previously used Digital Data LifeGuard Diagnostics for doing this, but I noticed that it has been deprecated, so I downloaded the new Dashboard application. It looks a lot more modern, but it seems to be a step backward in capability.

The problem I’m having is when I connect the drives to dashboard, it says “Security Frozen” and it won’t let me erase the drives. I also noticed that the feature for upgrading firmware is not there, presumably also because of the “Security Frozen” state. When I mouse-over the question mark, it says:

“Security displays the security state of the device. In order to control the security state of the device, use software like Windows BitLocker or your system BIOS.”

I searched on the internet and found quite a few case of this situation but no explanation of how to clear it. I have worked on a lot of computers over the years and I can’t recall a single computer that supported erasing a drive from within the BIOS.

The server did not have BitLocker enabled and the drives were not encrypted or password protected. There is no support for such a thing in the BIOS, so there is no reason why they should be in a “Frozen” state.

Since I could not use Dashboard to erase them, I used windows Disk Manager and Diskpart. Neither of these tools comment about security state. I used Clean All in Diskpart, so the drive was completely zeroed. Yet even after rebooting the computer, Dashboard still thinks the drives are “Frozen”.

I tried chatting with WD and the person was handwaving and clearly had no idea what to do.

How can I clear the security state?

I’ve never been faced with this problem. Maybe you could try MiniTool Partition Wizard and just delete the partition and then create a new one…worth a shot it’s free…

I’ve deleted the partitions so the drive is completely blank, then tried creating and formatting a volume. Nothing clears the security frozen state.

does your system have TPM installed?

Hi, did you ever solve this?? I’m currently facing the exact same issue.

I took 2 WD Red drives out of an old QNAP NAS and zero’d them. One of them works perfectly fine but the other is in the “security frozen” state just like yours. I’ve tried all the relevant apps on PartedMagic but none of them can see it or will even freeze trying to.

Very annoying.

I have several older WD enterprise drives that I wanted to erase and update the firmware. That’s how I found out about this problem. Not only is it impossible to erase a frozen drive, but it’s also impossible to check and update the firmware. I opened a support ticket with WD. Not surprisingly, they blamed it on the PC and Windows OS (i.e., everyone except WD).

I read somewhere that if a drive is mounted as removable, it won’t be frozen. My system board supports e-SATA, so I bought a powered e-SATA interface. This did not make any difference with Windows. Even suspending and resuming the computer with the drive connected using e-SATA no matter what I tried, the drive stayed frozen.

I had a spare SDD, so I installed ubuntu on it. Initially, I connected the drives using the regular SATA interface and they were frozen, but when I connected them using the e-SATA interface, they were not frozen.

I used hdparm to erase the drives. Here is a link: Advanced: Erasing SATA Drives by using the Linux hdparm Utility. If the drives are frozen, you may be able to unfreeze them by suspending and resuming the computer. As I said above, when I tried this on one of the drives, it worked. It seems consistent that if the drives are connected using e-SATA, they are not frozen. With the drives unfrozen, I was able to securely erase them. However, when rebooted the computer with Windows, the same drive that was unfrozen and erased was frozen again, even using the e-SATA interface.

I hope that helps.