Hard Drive Went click click click

Casshern2

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Mar 22, 2008
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Well, as a cautionary tale to others, if you're thinking of cloning your spinning HDD to SSD do it as soon as possible and don't wait for a perceived deal on one to save $10. Just do it. My primary box crashed, losing tons of material waiting to be offloaded to BD50 and a storage HDD. I was seeing the price on Amazon on an SSD would come down and it never did...and now here I am.

As off chance, has anyone ever recovered a disk that clicked and never booted up?
 

Porni

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Feb 29, 2012
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I don't understand, did you drop it?
So the drive is not displayed in any way by any software?
Have you tried other connectors, cables?
It could also be a problem with the power supply.
 
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SamKook

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All the hdd I had that started clicking I never managed to recover anything from once they stopped being detected and copying file off of them before then had a lot of corruption.

Might be possible to open in a clean chamber and transfer the platters to a similar disc, but probably not a viable solution for an everyday guy and that requires some expense as well as extreme precision I would assume, never tried it myself.

You can try to install a live recovery thing like System Rescue in case it can detect it better. I think it was the software photorec that can recover stuff without needing to access the partition table(but you lose the metadata like the file name because of that) so if that's why it's not detected, maybe that can recover some of it.

That's why I store most of my stuff on a storage server with a ZFS array of drives that offers redundancy. If one drive dies, the data can be recovered still, but haven't had a drive die on that yet even though it's been running about 10 years now.
 

Casshern2

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Mar 22, 2008
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I don't understand, did you drop it?
So the drive is not displayed in any way by any software?
Have you tried other connectors, cables?
It could also be a problem with the power supply.
Not dropped, maybe just its time to go. I took a shower, got in bed and heard the clicking from outside my closed door bedroom. When I went to inspect my monitor had a classic "reboot and select proper boot device" black screen. That was it.
 
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Casshern2

Senior Member...I think
Mar 22, 2008
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All the hdd I had that started clicking I never managed to recover anything from once they stopped being detected and copying file off of them before then had a lot of corruption.

Might be possible to open in a clean chamber and transfer the platters to a similar disc, but probably not a viable solution for an everyday guy and that requires some expense as well as extreme precision I would assume, never tried it myself.

You can try to install a live recovery thing like System Rescue in case it can detect it better. I think it was the software photorec that can recover stuff without needing to access the partition table(but you lose the metadata like the file name because of that) so if that's why it's not detected, maybe that can recover some of it.

That's why I store most of my stuff on a storage server with a ZFS array of drives that offers redundancy. If one drive dies, the data can be recovered still, but haven't had a drive die on that yet even though it's been running about 10 years now.
Today I looked under the hood (right or wrong) after seeing a number of YouTube videos showing some successful attempts to fix such a thing. Sure enough, like all the videos, the head was in the middle of the platter. So I gently moved it back to the rest position and tried again. Three times. Nothing yet.
 

SamKook

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The main worry when opening it up would be that some spec of dust get inside, which would crash the head if it went on that.

I haven't had a hdd start clicking in probably over 2 decades so haven't had a chance to try to fix one with the knowledge I have today.
 

Hanyululu

Member
Sep 3, 2017
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15
I feel your pain! This literally happened to me 3 weeks ago. 4 TB drive started clicking like a snare drum. I watched 50 youtube videos - and opened it up. And like you, I saw the arm out of place. Agh. Game over. I had spent months organizing (finally) all of these videos and music files. Bam! Now all gone. Sure, I have many of these on other external drives, but this was the Golden Child of all the hard drives. Damnit! Oh well….
 
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Casshern2

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Mar 22, 2008
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I feel your pain! This literally happened to me 3 weeks ago. 4 TB drive started clicking like a snare drum. I watched 50 youtube videos - and opened it up. And like you, I saw the arm out of place. Agh. Game over. I had spent months organizing (finally) all of these videos and music files. Bam! Now all gone. Sure, I have many of these on other external drives, but this was the Golden Child of all the hard drives. Damnit! Oh well….
Geez no doubt.
 

JAVinsight

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May 12, 2022
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I had this problem many times because I never bought new HDDs since last year, instead buying refurbished HDD at half price. I believe it can survive atleast 2yrs.
when it start making frictional noise & rebooting, I stop using the HDD to avoid further damage, until buying a new one. also I checked smps condition.
Using old HDD as secondary drive. cleaned the connection points & pcb backside with rubber eraser for no dust deposits. so it can contact well.
I put the drive in various angles & positions outside the cabinet, tried each position with restart. once it was detected copied the files one by one. corrupted files stucks when copied. I redownloaded later.
I believe the problem could be the shift in disk rotation, but I never put hands on mechanism. or went to recovery.
may be you think its unusual & time swallowing. but it worked for me every time, & worth it compared to data loss.
currently new barracuda is on. but not refurbished. lol.
 
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SamKook

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I just use NAS drives like WD reds(in my 10 year old server) or, more recently, enterprise drives like Seagate Exos(my first time in forever not buying WD drives, hoping all goes well with those since they're only been in used for a bit over a year in my new server) since they're optimized for datacenters which means they're made to store data(not constantly deleting/modifying and writing new stuff) so optimized for that and more tolerant of vibration.
 
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Taako

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May 25, 2017
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Well, as a cautionary tale to others, if you're thinking of cloning your spinning HDD to SSD do it as soon as possible and don't wait for a perceived deal on one to save $10. Just do it. My primary box crashed, losing tons of material waiting to be offloaded to BD50 and a storage HDD.
Whoa sorry about that. I hope you can recover it by chance:vodoo:
 
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Porni

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Feb 29, 2012
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I just use NAS drives like WD reds(in my 10 year old server) or, more recently, enterprise drives like Seagate Exos(my first time in forever not buying WD drives, hoping all goes well with those since they're only been in used for a bit over a year in my new server) since they're optimized for datacenters which means they're made to store data(not constantly deleting/modifying and writing new stuff) so optimized for that and more tolerant of vibration.
In my opinion, it is an overpayment for a longer warranty
 

Taako

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May 25, 2017
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Not dropped, maybe just its time to go. I took a shower, got in bed and heard the clicking from outside my closed door bedroom. When I went to inspect my monitor had a classic "reboot and select proper boot device" black screen. That was it.
Imagine hearing that outside your closed bedroom door and thinking its Kayako Saeki
Screenshot_1.jpg
 
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SamKook

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In my opinion, it is an overpayment for a longer warranty
It might be, but I never lost a drive since I started overpaying so I'm good with it. Don't think I've ever used drive for as long as those reds with no issue whatsoever.
 
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Porni

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Feb 29, 2012
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It might be, but I never lost a drive since I started overpaying so I'm good with it. Don't think I've ever used drive for as long as those reds with no issue whatsoever.
Well I've never lost anything at all, since I got a PC in 2006 I still use my first 128gb Samsung for backup

I already have one MaxDigital and it's been running for 9 years.
 
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SamKook

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It helps that you started after maxtor was sold because I've lost every single drives of that brand but one.
 

Hanyululu

Member
Sep 3, 2017
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I feel like I am putting duct tape on my 1975 Ford Pinto. i have several external hard drives. I can’t upgrade now, so I have to keep this Pinto running! Any suggestions from everyone to keep this Pinto rolling along?
1. I keep my laptop, and the hard drives, running 24/7. Is this a terrible thing to do? Is turning everything off every night better?
2. Are there any basic maintenance steps to keep these hard drives running smoothly? Something special / different to recommend?
The drive that turned into the Click-o-matic was under warranty (less than a year old). But I didn’t feel comfortable returning this drive jacked full of downloaded materials (including JI). So it’s in the drawer. Damnit!
 

Casshern2

Senior Member...I think
Mar 22, 2008
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I feel like I am putting duct tape on my 1975 Ford Pinto. i have several external hard drives. I can’t upgrade now, so I have to keep this Pinto running! Any suggestions from everyone to keep this Pinto rolling along?
1. I keep my laptop, and the hard drives, running 24/7. Is this a terrible thing to do? Is turning everything off every night better?
2. Are there any basic maintenance steps to keep these hard drives running smoothly? Something special / different to recommend?
The drive that turned into the Click-o-matic was under warranty (less than a year old). But I didn’t feel comfortable returning this drive jacked full of downloaded materials (including JI). So it’s in the drawer. Damnit!
I ended up finding another HDD I had removed from a newer PC I had ( a clean one, only safe browsing ) and cloned it out to an SSD like below, less than $50 US. I slapped that in my old PC where I have my Blu-ray burner, so, no if anything fails it will hopefully just be the hardware and not the SSD. I would at least recommend cloning out. I still keep mine on 24/7.
 

SamKook

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If you can't back up your data(something like backblaze is pretty cheap), monitor your drives health with some S.M.A.R.T. software for your OS. They usually show a sign that they're close to having potential issues and this'll tell you.

The hard drives turn off after some amount of time by default when not accessed so even if they're plugged in, that doesn't mean they're running.
 
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chupachups

Member
May 9, 2010
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ZFS or RAID is the answer

I had something like 12TB of movies on a NAS...one drive died on me

but because I was running it with ZFS Z1, all the data was accessable...I even pulled the dead drive out before I copied everything off the NAS, replaced the drive, rebuilt the NAS in about 10 mins
 
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