Top critical review
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Beauty Skin Deep --- Not for Reliable Storage
on April 6, 2011
PROCESS OF RMA:
I made an Advanced RMA from Western Digital Website on Wednesday and received a "Recertified" product on Friday. That was really quick so I give them credit where it's due. However, since it was an Advanced RMA[means they ship product before receiving the damaged one], they kept a hold on my credit card for "market value" of the "Recertified Drive". They hold on $110 Plus Tax that looked a little bit more considering even the newer ones are available for price under $100.
However, I would encourage any one who has to return theirs for a replacement to go for Advanced RMA route. It will get u a drive within 2 days and also a "Certified Box" that u can use to return the damaged drive!!!
As far as the condition of the drive is concerned, it has "Recertified" printed at the back where the S/No is written. The hard drive came in sealed plastic[even the original one didnt come in sealed plastic lol] and from appearances, it looks exactly a new one and u can only tell it is a recertified one after viewing the label. So, I am impressed with the recertified product.
COMPONENTS I RECEIVED:
Hard Drive, Power Adapter and USB Cable[That's a bonus since they only want u to return hard drive and power adapter. So, thank u WD]
I have transferred 250 GB of data to this drive on Friday night. I used free version of TerraCopy and the copy process looked faster and there were no lags what so ever. So, again the drive looks good as of now. Again, I thanks WD for this.
WILL I PURCHASE ANOTHER WD ?
Probably not. Just because of the reliability and the fact that I may end up with a recertified product barely after fewer months is non-convincing. Plus, the stance of WD as far as Data recovery is concerned is not convincing.
WHAT WILL BE MY NEXT HDD?
I am in search of another external HDD and based upon reviews so far, I think whatever i purchase it's a loss/loss deal. Almost all external HDDs have bad reviews. What has happened to the manufacturers? I found "experts" praising LaCie and yesterday I searched for them and found "user" reviews about both the product and support "horrible". I have an extremely great Seagate FreeAgent Desktop that I purchased in June 2008 but that model is no more available and the so called "newer" models have horrible reviews. I have Toshiba Canvio Plus but I am not happy with its speed. Its the slowest among all the drives I ave[though it is also USB 2.0]. I have seen iOmega's reviews to be second to WD. May be I take a chance for IOmega since SSDs are right now out of my price range. If someone can suggest a good drive, it will be appreciated :)
[...]NOTE: If the review looks too lenghty, just read MY ADVICE portion[...]
I purchased this hard drive because of enormous number of +ve reviews. The first one that arrived kept hanging during data transfer, kept connecting/disconnecting from PC and I had to replace it[thanks amazon][but my mistake i overlooked the unanimous complaints of FAILED HDD AFTER FEW MONTHS even after this first drive's strange behavior]
The product in appearance is very elegant. Looks a black piece of slab that I really loved. There is no noise of any kind and heat emission is also excellent[very low heat print]
However, this drive is not for real life usage. It's as unreliable as any thing can be. I know hard drives tend to fail however, the first one I received started showing that sign just within few days of usage and the replacement drive died on me after 5 months :(
I had 1.5 TB of Data being stored on this drive. I was willing to format these drives and to re-arrange my data and memories[marriage pic/family videos etc.]. The data I copied to this drive was from following hard drives:
500 GB Seagate FreeAgent
500 GB Toshiba Canvio Plus
320 GB WD Passport [Also showing signs of Death]
Backup of internal HDD of 3 laptops[small footprints]
I don't trust hard drives and that's the reason I was willing to format other drives one at a time and then copying back its data. My luck or bad luck, I didn't get change to format and clean other drives and this drive worked flawlessly and kept my happy so much that I decided to format others simultaneously :(
past weekend, I formatted all the other drives[to get a fresh start for them] and I was comfortable that I had all my data on this drive. But, [proving worst things might happen at worst possible time] this drive suddenly stopped showing on my Laptop. I was extremely worried but thought it might be a bad USB cable or may be my laptop needs a restart. After restarting the laptop, I received a notification that an External USB Drive is being unplugged from Laptop. The Drive was placed on a sound position from Day 1 and there was no movement of any kind. I thought it might be b/c of a poor USB Cable[USB Cables tend to die easily]. So, I change the cable. But, nopes. Nothing happened. I then again restarted my system and the drive seemed to be detected by the system[the last time] but it gave an "Initialization Error" message and forced me to "Initialize" the Drive. Since I have a data recovery software from Seagate that works darn good[but only on drives that are detected by system], I selected "Initialize" and then the system gave me "I/O Initialization Error" and the drive gone from My Computer, Computer Management and Device Manager.
I tried to connect the hard drive to my other 3 laptops[Toshiba A305-S6905, Dell XPS 15, Dell Latitude D830] but none of them detected it.
The strange thing was the fact that the drive was powered on but the White Indicator Light was "Constantly Blinking". There was NO CLICK OF DEATH SOUND. So, I hoped it might be a problem with usb connection/circuitry within the drive.
I contacted Western Digital and asked them if they can fix my drive. They refused and told me they can only "replace" it with "a recertified one" and that's it. They also informed me "It's not recommended to attempt data recovery by going to third party b/c it may violate the warranty". Since I still assume the hard drive's problem is not the BAD MEDIA but a BAD CONNECTOR, I insisted them to let me send it to them and they can "fix" it. They refused. THANK U VERY MUCH WD
Just ended up creating an Advanced RMA and am now waiting for a replacement drive. I am not happy b/c now I have to grab all my stuff again and perhaps some of them is lost forever[my marriage pic/ family pic etc.]. I bade the worst mistake of relying on it while formatting other drives.
Even if you are lucky enough to get a good piece, don't trust on it. Have some other drive too and keep ur data on at least 2 locations[I had them on 3 but i formatted 2 of them to make clean non-defragmented copies and that was my mistake]. Also, do check the "Limited Warranty Time period". WD gives only 1 year that can explain "internal" quality of their product and how much they trust on its "RELIABILITY".
Also, do check other 1 and 2 star reviews. I made a mistake to overlook them versus tons of 5 star reviews but those reviews are CORRECT. You will find most of them being about "FAILED IN 3/4/5 MONTHS" that speaks about the general pattern with this drive. This is definitely a SKIN DEEP BEAUTY and that's it.
My complain to the company:
Have some ethics. Customers trusted your product and you should have ethical liability to at least give them [even a charged one] an option to recover their data or at least try to fix their hard drives if it has only cosmetic issues[AGAIN SEE I SUSPECT IT IS A BAD CIRCUITRY PROBLEM AND NOT A BAD MEDIA SINCE I AM NOT HEARING ANY CLICK OF DEATH SOUND]. This will be a good will gesture for those who might have lost a lot just b/c they trusted your BRAND