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Old 03-14-2012, 12:49 AM
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Default Customers External HDD Shorted out

Well first ever yesterday plugged the clients external WD HDD to the USB port and Bzzt Pop! The damn thing shorted out, this was after creating an image and synching files/outlook to the said hard drive.

Luckily though I had already transfered the required file backed up from previous system state. The client had a UPS which helped as well as this took the brunt of the hit.

I was annoyed though took it calmly and stated to the customer " there is a large amount of dust on the UPS and the points, this can cause a lot of static". There was a huge amount of dust on the power supply, I had plugged my external in and no problems.

The issue though I think was with the HDD itself, as I had noticed at my workshop that I would get a slight discharge if I touched the casing of the HDD. I suggested to the customer for safety reasons I would suggest to purchase a new external - non powered device. The client was fine with the outcome, I was just pissed at the stupid device shorting out lol.

I have since taken apart the HDD and tested itself on another system and is dead, might try the freezer trick for some fun.
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Old 03-14-2012, 03:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frase View Post
Well first ever yesterday plugged the clients external WD HDD to the USB port and Bzzt Pop! The damn thing shorted out, this was after creating an image and synching files/outlook to the said hard drive.

Luckily though I had already transfered the required file backed up from previous system state. The client had a UPS which helped as well as this took the brunt of the hit.

I was annoyed though took it calmly and stated to the customer " there is a large amount of dust on the UPS and the points, this can cause a lot of static". There was a huge amount of dust on the power supply, I had plugged my external in and no problems.

The issue though I think was with the HDD itself, as I had noticed at my workshop that I would get a slight discharge if I touched the casing of the HDD. I suggested to the customer for safety reasons I would suggest to purchase a new external - non powered device. The client was fine with the outcome, I was just pissed at the stupid device shorting out lol.

I have since taken apart the HDD and tested itself on another system and is dead, might try the freezer trick for some fun.
I just had a similar thing happen but it was with a SATA -> USB converter melting my HD PCB board. I would bet heavily that the freezer won't work and if you need data from the drive I would find the same model HD buy it (or borrow it) swap the PCB (that is the controller card with the power and ide/sata connection) and try it in a system with a normal computer PSU (these seem to be more stable than the portable units). If you can find a PCB that has a Molex connection (the 4 pin power connection) I would use that. When you power the system up watch the drive closely and keep your hand on the PCB. If it starts to feel hot pull plug on PSU power.

If I am working on hardware like this and I am running it on a computer system that I might need to power down immediately I use a second PSU with a power supply tester to power the PSU and then power on the test drive with that PSU. If you need to power down b/c of faulty drive you aren't dropping the whole test system at the same time.

What kind of drive was it? Brand, Size, Capacity, speed? Just curious.
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:58 AM
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The data on the drive was only backup of the clients data, which I transfered to the new install anyway. The PCB method wouldnt be viable as it would the same to purchase a HD to cannibalise it for the PCB. I think the day I have the exact same model of drive laying around is when HDD are no longer used.

Then again if it was important data, I would most likely do this. I cant remember exactly the model was a WD Elements 500GB I think. I have a seperate test bench area setup with a system I generally test on also, which the drive is not detected.

Just an update..

Recovered Faulty HDD - customer extremley happy, didnt charge for recovery
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Last edited by frase; 03-16-2012 at 08:39 AM.
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