MyBook not recognized


Here is my tale:

I have a 1TB MyBook Essential, where I store all sorts of data (important & not important). I also have a 1-year-old kid that loves pulling cables. You know how this ends.

Yesterday, after falling from it’s table, my drive stopped working. I tried all the default troubleshooting steps: change USB port, change cable, change PC, etc, Windows couldn’t recognize the drive.

Watched a YouTube video on how to dismantle the case (yes, I lost my warranty, it is good for nothing outside North America anyways), assembled it on a Desktop, booted up Linux for a better diagnostic of the drive. The drive worked flawlessly (no data loss yet, yay!), SMART was fine, but no partition could be found. I was about to get some data recovery software when it struck me: the drive is hardware encrypted by the board on the case, even though I never set up a password, so no, no software would be able to recover any data on the disk.

Fortunately (maybe) I bought two MyBook Essential 1TB together: one for me, one for my mother (that never really used it).

My question is: if I replace the case (or just the board) of my disc, will I be able to read the encrypted data? Or is the key unique for every board-disk combination (i.e., the chip on the board has a different key, or it is based on the serial number on the disk)? Or this is a case of resoldering whatever is broken on the original board?

Thanks for your atention.


After re-reading the message, I think I wasn’t clear on the question: it is not the disk board I want to replace, it is the CASE board, or use the disk on another similar case.

I believe it’s the board with the USB port on it. Changing them might work since they were bought at the same time. There is no guarantee they change the boards a lot. With a fall there is no certainty about it working again anyway.


fpvolquind, the warranty of your drive is good, even if you are not in the North America.

How to replace a product outside of the United States and Canada :

I’ve read the terms and conditions for the warranty, and probably this drive isn’t eligible for it, since no warranties cover accidental damage. Sending the product over mail would cost me more than a new one. WD doesn’t provide circuit boards or even the case boards, even though a lot of topics on this forum are about the broken USB-SATA bridge boards, so I don’t think WD itself can help me on this situation.

In short, yes, I voided the warrany on my MyBook and will void another one to try to get my data.