HDD Regenerator identifies bad sectors but fails to repair them (Western Digital My Book Essential Edition External Hard Drive (500GB))

[qanda]This thread is about the Western Digital My Book Essential Edition External Hard Drive (500GB). Click here to see full specs[/qanda]Hi,
My My Book external disk collapsed. I ran HDD Regenerator using my central pc and the program proceeded slowly but safely. Each bad sector was repaired, and then, the next bad sector got its treatment. Still, since running the program left me without my main pc, I moved the operation to another pc. Here’ the program acts strangely. Instead of repairing each bad sector on the fly, it identifies the bad sectors (thousands of them), and doesn’t even try to repair them.
What’s wrong?

Hi,

bad sectors on a HDD cannot be repaired. The most common “repair” method is, to mark that sector as bad and use a spare sector for the data (if possible). Since the amount of spare sectors is limited, there are limited “repairs”. More errors are only reported.

Next thing to consider is, that many HDD checking tools don’t work nicely with externally connected drives.

Michael

If it is out of warranty, it might be a good idea to open up the housing and mount the drive inside a computer and try again. However - once a drive has developed bad sectors, and in particular so many that it reports them, which, as mciahel pointed out, means it has run out of spare sectors, it is very likely that the number of bad sectors will continue to grow.
My advice is that BEFORE YOU DO ANYTHING ELSE you make a backup if you haven’t already done so. It would be preferable to do so with something that enables you to do so while having the disk read-only - this is possible by for instance using a Linux boot CD (or DVD). Download WD diagnostics software or check the disk with smartctl from Linux. While I don’t have any Western Digital disks myself, I expect that it should be possible to check SMART data from their diag tool (alternatively, there are probably Windows software that can display this as well). If you see SMART reporting bad sectors, the disk must be replaced.

Michael,
Thanks for your response, but, somehow, it doesn’t fit my situation.

  1. I ran HDD Regenerator and this dead HD and my main pc, The program did recover ALL bad sectors encountered. There were thousands of them!
  2. I ran this same program (same CD) on this same HD, using another pc, and the program behaves in a completely different fashion.
    Therefore, there must an incompatibility between the new pc and either the drive or the program or the combination of the two.
    Looks like I need a response from an experienced HDD Regenerator user. If you have this experience, please drop me a tip. If not, any contribution from an experienced user will be welcome.

[QUOTE=Aramchek;2222201]If it is out of warranty, it might be a good idea to open up the housing and mount the drive inside a computer and try again. [/QUOTE]
Well, it’s still under warranty, but prior to exchanging it, I would like to recover my data and backup it.

My advice is that BEFORE YOU DO ANYTHING ELSE you make a backup if you haven’t already done so .

Unfortunately, as I wrote, the HDD regenrator session is intended exactly so as to make backupping possible.

Download WD diagnostics software or check the disk with smartctl from Linux. While I don’t have any Western Digital disks myself, I expect that it should be possible to check SMART data from their diag tool (alternatively, there are probably Windows software that can display this as well). If you see SMART reporting bad sectors, the disk must be replaced.

I tried the WD diagnostic tool but it led me to nowhere. Only HDD Regenerator showed recovery power.

[QUOTE=chermesh;2222217]
Unfortunately, as I wrote, the HDD regenrator session is intended exactly so as to make backupping possible.[/QUOTE]i just looked at their website:

It does not hide bad sectors, it really restores them!
This is erhm - voodoo. Sorry to say that.
Maybe this tool even made any further backup possibilities impossible.

Otherwise, dd_rescue from a Knoppix DVD would have been an option.