Liquid Damaged HTS721010A9E630 Data Recovery

PCB Liquid Damaged HTS721010A9E630

HTS721010A9E630 Hard Drive This recovery was on a liquid-damaged HTS721010A9E630 hard drive from HGST. It is a 2.5-inch budget drive frequently found in Laptops. HGST was acquired from Hitachi by Western Digital back in 2012, so these are Western Digital drives. Liquid Damage On PCB This particular drive came into us after the client had brought their liquid-damaged laptop to a repair shop for repair. The repair shop found that the hard drive was not responding on any of their computers, so they recommended the client take the drive to us for recovery. The data on the drive was especially important because the computer was used for QuickBooks. As any small business owner will tell you, QuickBooks files are very important. Data Recovery Steps For Liquid Damage I don’t see a lot of liquid-damaged drives, but the steps for recovery are usually pretty straightforward. The first step is to open the drive up in a clean room environment to see if any of the liquid entered the drive itself. As with most liquid-damaged cases where … Read more

My Passport WD10JMVW – 11AJGS2 Dropped Data Recovery

Western Digital WD10JMVW Dropped Data Recovery

Dropped WD10JMVW Hard Drive Symptoms I received this WD10JMVW hard drive out of a My Passport from a client that had stopped working after being dropped. There were very important image, audio, and work documents on the drive when it was dropped, so they brought it in for data recovery. They reported that the drive was making a ticking sound when plugged in, but would never be recognized fully by any computer they connected it to. WD10JMVW Diagnosis When a drive has been dropped, my first worry is always that the heads have been damaged and could be causing media damage when the drive is powered on. For this reason, I start with an inspection of the dropped WD10JMVW hard drive in my clean room to check for any damage to the heads or platters. This particular drive looked great under the microscope. There were a few really minor areas with damage from what was likely the instant the drop happened, but no major scratching was present. The heads were damaged and needed to be … Read more

Recovering Data From WD5000AAKS Western Digital Drive

WD5000AAKS Data Recovery

This WD5000AAKS model hard drive came into us from California with the symptom being listed as the drive just stopped working out of the blue. It is an older drive from 2007 (can you believe it has been 15 years already?), so age-related issues will not be a surprise during this project. Diagnosing the WD5000AAKS hard drive The first step was to open the hard drive up and complete a visual inspection in the cleanroom. Everything looked pretty good physically, so I connected the drive up to the PC-3000 to continue with the diagnosis. Firmware modules 32, 34, 21, and 22 were all bad. As you may remember me covering elsewhere on this blog, bad module 32 is a common issue with these drives, but in this case, it feels like the issue might be more than just firmware. I believe the issue is likely failing heads and possibly too many bad sectors in the firmware area of the drive to be able to repair the firmware issues as I usually would. I ordered a … Read more

120GB Intel SSDSA2CW120G3 Data Recovery

1053 SSDSA2CW120G3 Data Recovery

The SSDSA2CW120G3 Drive Issue This 120GB Intel SSDSA2CW120G3 came in with the issue description that it had just stopped working. It had important files on it that were not backed up, so the client was looking to get as much data back as possible. The drive had already been to another shop that attempted to run software-based data recovery applications on it, but they were not able to get back any of the important information. The shop that looked at it sends drives it is not able to recover to us. We have a great track record of recovering their customer’s drives, so this client was excited to hopefully get their important information back. 8MB bad CTX SSD Diagnosis Once I received the SSDSA2CW120G3 drive, I started with testing to see if there was a power-based issue. Sometimes with solid state drives the issue is just that the power is not getting through the board as it should, but on this one, the drive did power on and I could see the issue was the … Read more

WD10SMZM Western Digital Data Recovery Project

WD10SMZM-59WKCS0 Recovery

This 1TB Western Digital external drive came in with a WD10SMZM model hard drive inside. It had already gone to Geek Squad as well as another computer repair shop. Geek Squad was not able to get any of the data off the drive, and the computer repair shop recommended us after they were also unsuccessful in getting back any data. These newer Western Digital external drives have a USB port built onto the PCB. This can cause some complications, so the first step was to swap out this PCB with an unlocked PCB. I did not have this particular model PCB in stock, so I had to wait for the part to arrive from China. Once the PCB arrives I swapped it out and started the process of testing the WD10SMZM drive. I did find some issues with firmware which I was able to clear, then continued with testing the hard drive’s heads. All heads tested good, so I continued with getting the drive ready for a full clone. Setting the firmware on the drive … Read more

Beeping Western Digital Easystore WD20SMZW Hard Drive Recovery

1150 easystore WDBKUZ0020BBK

I received a quote request from a client who had been into a local computer repair shop with a failed Western Digital EasyStore external hard drive. Inside the hard drive was a WD20SMZW 2.5″ 2TB hard drive. This particular model has a USB port built into the printed circuit board, instead of a standard SATA connector. The client told me they brought the drive into the repair shop because it stopped working suddenly. They said there was a sound like a beep coming from the drive, but that the computer would not recognize it at all. The shop they brought it to attempted to run software-based data recovery tools on the drive, but they couldn’t get it to scan the drive at all. The repair shop told them to try us, as we have been successful in recovering data from other drives they were not able to successfully recover in the past. We work with a lot of shops that offer our services to their clients. We have a few referral programs available, so if … Read more

SD Card Recovery – Fix Corrupt Memory Card and Recover Data

Sandisk Ultra Plus micro SD 1

SanDisk Ultra Plus 32GB Micro SD Recovery Micro SD memory cards provide convenient and cheap storage for DSLRs and other portable devices. In some cases an SD memory card may be corrupted accidentally or damaged in some way, causing loss of stored photos, videos, audio files, or other important data. In this case, the micro SD card recovery was required because the card had issues with bad sectors. Common signs & symptoms of a corrupt or damaged SD card The most common sign of a corrupt or damaged SD card is that the sd card will not show up on your computer when you plug it in. If you have important data stored on the card, you will likely need to have data recovery performed to get those files recovered. Another symptom of a failing micro SD card is that it will unmount during use. If your memory card is showing this intermittent symptom, you will want to backup your important file to a different storage device like an external hard drive before you need … Read more

Western Digital WD10JPVX Data Recovery


This WD10JPVX Western Digital hard drive came from inside an external enclosure. The client had used it to store their important photos and some sermons, so when it stopped working they knew they needed a professional data recovery service to help. The client first brought the hard drive to a computer repair shop that also advertises data recovery services. This is one of the computer repair shops we work with to help with the recoveries when they aren’t able to complete them. In this case, they were not able to get the WD10JPVX drive to work at all with the recovery equipment they had. The shop recommended the client discuss the case with me to see if it was a drive I would be able to recover. After discussing the drive I told the client it was likely we would be able to recover it. The drive wasn’t making any weird noises and had not been dropped. It had also started acting slow and erratic before it stopped working altogether. WD10JPVX Diagnosis Once I had … Read more

The Importance of Knowledge in Data Recovery

1141 Opened ST1000DM003

In this post, I wanted to share a client’s story that, unfortunately, is not all that rare in this industry. There are a lot of computer repair shops and even some data recovery shops that don’t exactly know what they are doing when it comes to data recovery. They may have outdated knowledge or knowledge in a particular area, but if there are gaps in their knowledge and they don’t know it, the results can be disastrous. My brother-in-law referred one of his friends to me who had a hard drive full of photos and important work documents that had stopped working out of the blue. The drive had stopped showing up and he needed the data from the drive. The client had taken the entire computer into a computer repair shop to see if they could get it working again. The repair shop told him that the drive was bad and asked if he wanted data recovery services. He approved the data recovery process but was told a while later that the drive was … Read more

WD2500BEKT Western Digital Scorpio Black Drive Recovered

WD2500BEKT Data Recovery 1

This Scorpio Black Western Digital drive was not showing up for the customer when they tried to access the important photos and work documents that were stored on it. They had initially brought the drive into their local computer repair shop, but the shop told them the drive was not recoverable without advanced lab recovery. The shop they brought it into used to send people to one of the big data recovery companies. The big recovery company had an average quote of about $1500. When they decided to give us a try and start sending customers to us instead, they were pleased to find that their clients said yes to the recovery 10x more often, and our average recovery quote is closer to $400. Not only do they end up earning more commission over the year from sending their clients to us (smaller commissions per client, but more clients say yes, so they end up way ahead), but their customers are pleased that they got a referral that saved them a ton of money and … Read more