Failed WD Passport USB 3

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by SnapperUK, Aug 13, 2015.

  1. SnapperUK macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2007
    Location:
    London
    #1
    Hey,
    I have been keeping my iTunes library on an external drive for several years. Have almost never had problems. Biggest one is not having drive to hand when expectedly have time to watch something.
    Until today, The WD Passport 1TB I am currently using is not mounting.
    I am not hearing any particular clicking although I do suspect that it may have taken a tumble care of the children.
    Please spare me a lecture on backing up- I know! This truly is the only 1TB of about 80TB worth of stuff that isn't backed up locally and to the cloud, mainly because it is home stuff not work stuff.
    It probably isn't the end of the world if I never get it back, I will just have to spend more countless hours re-ripping my Blurays. All my music is safe 'cos I have iTunes Match and Apple Music.

    But is it a lost cause?

    The HD has the USB interface on the board and does not have any SATA controller. Could it be that controller that has gone down rather than the actual drive? What are the chances of a recovery pro managing to get it all off?
    Is there any home work around that could do it?
    Thanks
     
  2. CoastalOR macrumors 68000

    CoastalOR

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon, USA
    #2
    I think the first thing is to see if Disk Utility can see the external drive. The Disk Utility app is in the Applications>Utilities folder. If it can see the drive then select the drive in the left Disk Utility window then click the Repair Disk button. Let us know what happens.
     
  3. SnapperUK thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2007
    Location:
    London
    #3
    It does not show up in Disk Utilities. Have tried on a mid 2015 MBP and Mid 2013 MBA.
     
  4. SnapperUK thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2007
    Location:
    London
  5. CoastalOR macrumors 68000

    CoastalOR

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon, USA
    #5
    The only other simple thing I can think of is to try a different USB cable (there are different models of the WD Passport 1TB, I'm assuming your model only has USB).
     
  6. TechpumpkinWD macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    #6
    Hi there,


    The first thing you can do is make sure that there isn't any faulty hardware involved. If the HDD is suffering power deficiency it might act like that. Try using a different short USB 3.0 cable, make sure to connect the drive straight to one of the USB ports on the Mac and not through a USB hub. You can download WD Drive Utilities for Mac http://products.wdc.com/support/kb.ashx?id=FMJnHz and use it to test the HDD health. Hope that helps.
     
  7. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #7
    OP wrote above:
    "What are the chances of a recovery pro managing to get it all off?"

    They often can do this but it will be VERY expensive -- VERY much so. Is spending 700-1,000 worth it to you?

    In the future, best thing is to keep a backup of your "primary external storage".

    Drives fail.
    As it looks like yours did...
     
  8. thedeske macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    #8
    Disk Warrior could help, but I agree - sounds like the WD is toast. I've used many in the series and they do go down. Some last a long time.
     
  9. Luap macrumors 65816

    Luap

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2004
    #9
    Ive had 2 or 3 of those WD drives fail in a similar way..
    You'll probably find that the actual HD inside the case is fine. Its the controller stuff that dies. I just tore open the case, removed the hard drive and put it in a new case (they are cheap).
     
  10. SnapperUK thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2007
    Location:
    London
    #10
    I do suspect the controller. I have just had a new WD Passport delivered from Amazon to cannibalise the controller. But the board design has change a bit and isn't compatible. I am now bidding on a couple of older versions on eBay that hopefully will have the same control board.
    Is there another way of doing it?
     
  11. thedeske macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    #11
    A dock
     
  12. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #12
    A dock isn't going to work with a drive that has an integrated USB3 connector on the controller board :/
     
  13. SnapperUK thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2007
    Location:
    London
    #13
    Thanks...Wish it was that easy.... Have docks and would have tried that first by no SATA on drive only integrated USB. Question is... Is swapping a like for like controller the only way of doing this?
     
  14. thedeske macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    #14
    Sorry - my bad
     
  15. matreya, Aug 16, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2015

    matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #15
    Apparently not the way to do it due to encryption using a key derived from the individual chip on the controller board. So it seems you can never retrieve your data... I know I'd never rely on a WD drive as the only copy of my important data.
     
  16. TechpumpkinWD macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2014
    #16
    I'm sorry to say that, but changing the controller board won't restore access to the data. If you find a matching PCB the HDD will work, but it will show as unallocated. Most My Passport drives use hardware encryption that is tied to a chip on the original controller board, without it the data won't be accessible. What is the exact model of the HDD?
     
  17. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #17
    ^^THIS is why I prefer to custom-build my external hard drives by buying bare drives and OWC external enclosures. It's more expensive, but if the notorious USB3 mini-b connector breaks I can just pull the drive out and put in a new enclosure.
     
  18. indiekiduk macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2005
    Location:
    Glasgow, Scotland
    #18
    I've had 2 USB 3.0 cables and 1 USB 2.0 cable fail. Either the drive doesn't spin up or it spins up but there is no data connection. All of these cables were from Western Digital. Replaced the cable and the drives are fine and DriveX shows them with no errors and the SMART status shows no spin up failures.
     

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