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94 of 103 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast, quiet, solid
My use for these drives is to replace a couple of aging five year old 80GB drives in Windows XP and XP Media Center machines. Those drives are still running fine, however, for the price, I had absolutely no reason not to upgrade them at this time.

I came across this drive middle of last week and Amazon was selling it new for $29 - I was scratching my head...
Published on February 20, 2011 by Howard

versus
59 of 59 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If your drive is not recognized...
I purchased several of these drives to use as spares for servers that had the previous generation SATA II 3.0 Gb/sec WD3200AAKS drive. Well as luck would have it, I've had some failures of those old ones and went to replace them, only this drive was not recognized by the computer. After a day of digging, turns out there is a buggy Intel SATA II controller out there in...
Published on December 12, 2011 by DH


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59 of 59 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If your drive is not recognized..., December 12, 2011
By 
DH (Tampa, FL) - See all my reviews
I purchased several of these drives to use as spares for servers that had the previous generation SATA II 3.0 Gb/sec WD3200AAKS drive. Well as luck would have it, I've had some failures of those old ones and went to replace them, only this drive was not recognized by the computer. After a day of digging, turns out there is a buggy Intel SATA II controller out there in many makes and models of computers that does not properly interact with this particular drive, causing the drive to remain at the 6.0 Gb/sec interface speed and the controller at 3.0 Gb/sec; i.e. no communication possible.

The fix is to place a jumper across pins 5 and 6 which will force the drive to SATA II speeds and make it show up. Unfortunately it doesn't come with any jumpers, so hopefully you have an old computer lying around you can steal one out of.

The same article on WD's site that gave me the fix also said it was possible to perform this fix using a software program they offer called WDSpeed but they refused to give me a copy for some reason and said I had to go buy some jumpers.
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94 of 103 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast, quiet, solid, February 20, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB SATA III 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive - WD5000AAKX (Personal Computers)
My use for these drives is to replace a couple of aging five year old 80GB drives in Windows XP and XP Media Center machines. Those drives are still running fine, however, for the price, I had absolutely no reason not to upgrade them at this time.

I came across this drive middle of last week and Amazon was selling it new for $29 - I was scratching my head thinking "what's the deal" and "what's wrong with these drives"? Sure, even though they were above $25, Amazon was still charging for the shipping - so I took two to bring the per drive shipping down slightly. The old 3Gb version of this drive was selling for over $40 - so again, scratching my head about this. Maybe it was a pricing mistake? Whatever - it was a great price.

The drives arrived yesterday, same standard OEM packaging all of my six other WD drives have come in over the past 9 months. I used Clonezilla to clone the old drives on to the new, it went smoothly without any issues. I'm storing the old drives just in case these new ones have any issues I won't have to rebuild the system drives from scratch.

I know that the motherboards in my machines cannot make use of the 6Gb throughput, however, these drives are definitely faster than what they're replacing - older WD drives which indicate they are 7200RPM and 3Gb. Specs on the older drives indicate performance shouldn't be all that different, but it is, and for the better. I won't question it.

The drive indicates you can jumper pins 5 and 6 to limit it to 3Gb, but I didn't understand the benefit of doing it, so I left it unjumpered and it's working well.

To summarize - these drives are fast, quiet, and so far are performing excellently. I'm very happy with them thus far.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Quality. Great all around drive., July 16, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB SATA III 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive - WD5000AAKX (Personal Computers)
This hard drive is the best mid-range hard drives out there. We run a computer repair shop and THIS is the drive that we always use as a replacement in customers computers.

For 500GB, you just can't beat the price. In my 15 years of business I have seen a few hard drive companies come and go, rise and fall. Maxtor was the beast hard drive of all time (until Seagate bought and crushed them). Now, Western Digital holds the best drive, as Maxtor once did.

If you are looking for a great all around basic hard drive, then this is for you. If you are looking for speed and performance such as needed with a "gaming rig" then choose Western Digital BLACK series.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars worthwhile PC Upgrade, August 26, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB SATA III 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive - WD5000AAKX (Personal Computers)
We have a Windows XP PC with 250GB hard drive that was getting full with photos and videos. We therefore ordered this inexpensive upgrade to triple the capacity to 750GB total. We ordered the same Western Digital Caviar Blue hard drive as the original since our old drive has been quite reliable over the past 4 years. [Western Digital also makes Green drives that are cooler and quieter, but supposedly not so reliable; and Black drives for gaming performance that we didn't need.] The new 500GB hard drive, as stated, is "bare". That means 2 cables are needed along with it - a data cable, and a power cable. We found this out by contacting Western Digital Tech Support who were quite helpful. We ordered these cables from amazon.com as well: B0001Y8UI4, and B00009YFTI. The ambition was to do this at home; but realized upon opening the PC box that it wasn't so easy - the connections were not easy to figure out including jumper to lower the speed of the new drive from 6Gb/s to 3Gb/s - that Western Digital had warned us about to be compatible with the older PC. Fortunately, a local computer repair shop agreed to do it for only $50 [the same components purchased from them would have been twice as much as amazon.com!] as opposed to Best Buy Geek Squad that wanted over $200 for the same labor. Now, the programs are on the old hard drive [C:] and the data is on this new drive [E:]. The hardware is not a problem; it is working fine as it should. The problem is with software handling the transition of the data. The document folders were an easy fix - change designation from C: to E: for each user. But some programs have been a pain: For example, iTunes had to be directed to E: drive and in the process of rebuilding its library, duplicated all files and also lost the playlists. It is now a headache to manually fix 200GB of iTunes library data since, as we all have experienced, there is no support when it comes to software [Help forums haven't responded]. But I believe we are good to go for another few years after this.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Dead after 3 months, January 31, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB SATA III 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive - WD5000AAKX (Personal Computers)
I think the title says it all. Performed adequately during its short lifespan. But even with backups, its demise represents at least 20 hours of work getting the system to its pre-crash state. I've bought a ton of WD Drives, but this one was a complete loser.

02/08/2012 -- Follow-up
I used Western Digital automated RMA site to exchange drive for a new one at a shipping cost of $5.50. Although new drive could communicate with controller, it failed basic BIOS S.M.A.R.T. tests. To insure problem wasn't with system/controller, I tried same operations with another drive--worked fine. Tried new/bad drive in another system-failed in same way. Called WD customer service. I asked if there were QA issues with this drive. The agent told me there
was no problem with the drives, but since they used an outside shipper, they had no control over whether the drive was damaged during shipping. I could see where this might be a valid argument for third party transactions, but when WD controls the whole supply chain from factory to door, this makes no sense. If the product is not properly packed by shipper, time for WD to get a new shipper. Then the agent asked me for the serial number of the new drive. When I gave it to him, he said that the serial number did not match the drive they sent out. We went over and over the serial number, and he said it wasn't even close.
While he put me on hold, I went back through email from WD, and found the drive ship notice, which contained the serial number of the new drive--it was identical to the serial number I had been giving the agent! When the agent came back on the phone, he said that since the serial numbers didn't match, someone would call me tomorrow to resolve the issue. I told him about the email I had found. I said I wanted to speak to a supervisor. 20 minutes later, the supervisor came on, and said that the serial number reported by the agent was off one digit from the one I gave him. I said that I had repeatedly given him
the correct serial number. I told supervisor other things agent had told me re. damage during shipping. If it were possible I would change my 1 star to a 0 star rating.

Supervisor offered to upgrade me to Caviar Black 750GB for free, and provide free return shipping for DOA new drive. I agreed, but my confidence in WD products and customer service is shaken. I spent over an hour on the phone on this issue. Hopefully, I'll have better luck with the new drive. I'll write another follow-up when it arrives and I've tested it.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Value Line hard drive .. Don't expect much, May 23, 2012
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This review is from: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB SATA III 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive - WD5000AAKX (Personal Computers)
As a computer repair business owner I have to let customer demand limit my choices in inventory. I have purchasing the blue line for a few years now and have to say that reliability has been a huge issue. I have been buying WD drives since they used to have a 5 year warranty. Now it is either 1 or 2 years. You will only get about 25 months on one of these drives. Of course there are drives which have much greater life expectancy, but hard drive prices have really spiked in recent months. Therefore, against the better judgement of myself, the professional, my customers demand the low grade hard drives as it is half price of the more reliable.

One other note - like other amazon bare drives, the packaging is completely inadequate to protect the drive from the rigors of shipping. If you really really need one for a job - better order 2. I have had to return several hard drives shipped from amazon in this inferior packaging.

The blue seems to be a set up from the green, which I have found to failing at an alarming rate; In terms of both seek times, reliability, and overall performance.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Emits Significant Heat, July 22, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB SATA III 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive - WD5000AAKX (Personal Computers)
I purchased a 500GB unit since I don't really need much storage. I simply REPLACED my older 160GB Hitachi with this newer 500GB WD drive. Since installation, the average temperature on my multiple-core microprocessor has risen at least 10 degrees Fahrenheit so this drive runs significantly hotter than the Hitachi. In warmer environments, this emission of heat could cause problems. During the day, I find the temperature on the cores rising to ~ 140 degrees F whereas the average temperature was ~ 125 degrees F before replacement of the Hitachi. Naturally, I still recommend this drive, but beware of the heat.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Good Drive For Security System - Highly Recommended, March 6, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB SATA III 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive - WD5000AAKX (Personal Computers)
This Western Digital 500 GB Hard Drive installed easily and works perfectly in my Zmodo Surveillance System with 8 Weatherproof IR Cameras PKD-DK0865-NHD. A 500 GB drive was the smallest size I wanted to use since that will provide roughly 168 hours of recording time in my security system. The drive is fast enough to keep up with the video feeds and is not very noisy when in use.

This works well for my needs!

Highly Recommended!

CFH
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Bulk", not "Retail", October 31, 2013
By 
BigBird (Philadelphia, PA) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Product description should say "bulk" -- that is, no cable & no jumpers & no directions. It is NOT retail packaging. Just FYI -- it's not clear from the description. As far as the disk, Western Digital makes great products. And, you can download Acronis software from their web site. As far as I can tell, that software is very good too, although it's not fully functional. The fully functional version is an extra-cost option from Acronis. The free WD version was fine for my purposes. Make sure you take the time to create an Acronis restoration CD and test it. The procedure is very well documented in the Acronis User's Manual. The time to make sure you can access & restore your backups is while your system is running fine -- not after it crashes.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Weak HDD, November 3, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB SATA III 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive - WD5000AAKX (Personal Computers)
Died after 1 week. It had 26 bad blocks and started to freeze every 3 min after the first problem. Amazon's tech support tried different ways to replace it and I got a Hitachi 500Gb but I had to pay ~10$ more, plus the delivery. However, they gave me an amazon credit for this. All in all, this is the 3rd WD I owned. The first one died after 3 years, got it replaced with a refurbished WD through the warranty program, and 2nd one lasted 2 years. I hope Hitachi will last longer. I have a 70 Gb Hitachi as a backup, which is 5 and 1/2 years old, tested with S.M.A.R.T and has no problems yet!. I hope the new one will last as much as this little one. Initially the S.M.A.R.T test showed thousands of bad blocks but after one day all tests returned 0. Anyway after 1 month, the HDD is working with no problems, and is very quiet! I recommend Hitachi, forget WD Caviar Blue 500 GB. for now.
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