swapping out sata HD's

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by andiwm2003, Feb 13, 2010.

  1. andiwm2003 macrumors 601

    andiwm2003

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #1
    so I had an external 500GB Western Digital MyBook and it is full. So I bought a 1TB Western Digital MyBook. The 500GB was in a case with esata, USB and FW800 and the new 1TB had only USB. So I swapped the 500GB and the 1TB so that my 1TB disk can use the FW800 interface.

    However the disks are not recognized as formatted disks with data on them. I have to initialize both of them although both are sata disks and work in their original case just fine. Only when I swap them out I have to format them.

    I did this for the new 1TB disk in the esata/FW800 case because it was new and empty and it works just fine now. But the old 500GB HD is full of data and I don't want to format it.

    How can I tell my mac that this disk is already formatted? Why can't I just swap SATA disks between SATA cases?:confused:

    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. andiwm2003 thread starter macrumors 601

    andiwm2003

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #2
    sorry to bump this but i can't find anything via google. it's a mystery to me why a sata drive is only recognized in its original enclosure........
     
  3. AppleNewton macrumors 68000

    AppleNewton

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Location:
    1 Finite Place
    #3
    Hm...never having tried this, something tells me its some sort of built in firmware of the enclosure/controller board of the external drives.

    try initializing the 1TB drive in the 500GB case and put it back in its case and copy data?
    Im not sure how or if there is another way to do it. other than perhaps investing in a DIY external enclosure..
     
  4. andiwm2003 thread starter macrumors 601

    andiwm2003

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #4
    yeah, i guess you're right. there is something that links the HDD to the controller in western digital drives. i found some windows users reporting similar problems and they have to reformat (after assigning a drive letter manually in windows n the first place).

    i have only 2.5 inch external drives around. it's inconvenient but I guess I'll have to put the 500GB back in it's original case, get the data onto my mac, swap the drives and put the data onto the 1TB drive.
     
  5. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #5
    That's interesting... I just got a WD Passport 2.5" external drive, and I cloned a Windows computer's internal drive onto it, and then replaced the old Windows drive into the enclosure, and the enclosure accepted the other drive just fine.
     
  6. andiwm2003 thread starter macrumors 601

    andiwm2003

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #6
    Well, i have found only a handful of windows forums where users had problems similar to mine and they were all MyBook HD's. It could also be that the enclosure from a two year old 500GB is very different (in electronics/firmware) from a today's 1TB.

    It's annoying but at least the disks are fine and I can just get the couple of GBs from the old disk I need and the reformat.

    The new 1TB disk comes with some "smart" software that shows up as an extra CD in OS X. I don't know much more because I always format new HD's anyway to get rid of those stupid software gimmicks the manufacturers put on to "differentiate" from the competition. Maybe the firmware looks for this additional crab unless you format in this particular enclosure (and the firmware puts again some additional crab on the HD during format).
     
  7. andiwm2003 thread starter macrumors 601

    andiwm2003

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #7
    just an update:

    bought a thermal take 2HDD sata dock that lets you plug in the 3.5" HD and connect via USB or eSATA to the mac. works like a charm and my disk comes up with all partitions and all data. it seems to be western digital enclosures that can't handle all disks even when they are from werstern digital. thanks western digital!
     
  8. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #8
    Wow, interesting update. It's good to know. I mean, I guess they never advertise that you can remove and swap the drives from their enclosures, but it's still surprising.
     

Share This Page