If my enclosure fails, can I put my current drives in a new enclosure and access my data?

My question is, if the enclosure on my new My Book fails, will I be able to RMA the enclosure and put my current drives into the replacement enclosure, and access my data? Does it matter which RAID level I am using?

Here is the background for my question:

I had a 1TB Raid-1 configured My Book World Edition II (blue rings) which suffered an enclosure failure. At the time of the incident, I was told by tech-support that mounting the existing “possibly good” mirrored drives in a new enclosure would still not give me access to my data, because part of the data is dependant on the specific enclosure which was then inoperative. I was advised that my only option was to contact a data recovery service.

I understood that the Raid-1 configuration which I was using on that My Book would allow me to rebuild my data if either disk went bad. And, unfortunately, I assumed that if the enclosure of the My Book failed, I could just swap my data drives into a new enclosure, and they would function with no issues. After much time and effort by both myself and the WD Tech Staff, this turned out to not be true. I chose to abandon my data and RMA the entire device.

Now I have a new My Book and I ask my question, based on that prior experience.

The User Manual for my new device indicates what happens to my data if either of my drives fails and is replaced - based on which version of RAID that I am using. However, it does not say what happens to my data if the enclosure fails.

Model WD20000H2NC-00

My Book World Edition II 2TB (White Light)

I have an MBWII (blue rings) running RAID1 (mirrored). Recently the maint web page told me drive A had failed and thus I couldn’t access any of the data. While waiting for a replacement drive to arrive I took the good drive out and using a SATA caddy I attached it to a PC. The PC had ext2 drivers installed which allowed me to mount the data partition readonly and access all the data I needed from the PUBLIC folder. So, I don’t know if you can put them in a new enclosure, but you can certainly get at the data.

My enclosure died a week ago. I took it to a data recovery person who said he was unable to retreive my data.

I played around with it myself and have discovered if you put the whole lot into a freezer for an hour, I have been able to use it for about five minutes at a time to copy files onto my PC. It is very time consuming, but better than losing loads of data even the so called experts can’t retreive. Good Luck.

Thank you for the ideas and suggestions. In my case I found out that when the Enclosure died, my disk also was corrupted. We did not go the route of data recovery, but tried to do the recovery ourselves by connecting it to a windows box and a linux box. No luck. So that was a total loss. However, WD tech support did assure me that if the enclusere of my replacement fails, “And the drives are still good” I will be able to get the data from the disk. Their response is below:

Dear Jeff,

Thank you for your reply.

If the enclosure fails and the drives are still good, you just need to submit an Advance RMA. Once you get the replacement drive, switch the internal drive to the good enclosure and you will get to your data.


Western Digital Service and Support