Repair of Hard Drives

Posted on 2003-02-21
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-26
How do you repair used Hard Drives ? I am trying to setup a used HDD business.
What is the best way to Test Used Disks also to check if they will work properly when formatted and o/s loaded on them.
Question by:abdulrafique
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Expert Comment

ID: 7995130
run complete scan disk on them. you could set it as slave drive and scan it that way as well

Expert Comment

ID: 7995434
I'd probably go for a proper utility like ontrak disk recovery + something that will look at the hardware level of the drive to look at the I/O subsystems.  I don't delve that far into them personally.

Some brand names make disk utilities  that give you a vague idea but not much more than that i.e. seagate seatools.

I'd like to know if there are any utilities out there that are fairly user freindly as well!  As far as I know it takes quite a while to do 1 HDD & ppl that have repaired HDD's in the past have just stipped the PCB out of one where the heads have crashed and popped it into another one
where it's been static damaged.

Scandisk IMHO doesn't cut the mustard.
LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 7995557
"I am trying to setup a used HDD business."

Do you mind if I ask where are you?  Just curious!  Given the price of brand new drives here in USA, it seems unlikely you can make a profit from old ones.  You might be in another country with different economic conditions.
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Expert Comment

ID: 7996148
It depends on what you want to do really, what do you want to offer? Reconditioned hard disks  or recovery of data?

If you are trying trying to make a business by selling reconditioned hard disks I thing magarity is right, there isn't much demand for it and you will not make much unless you have a steady supplier like a liquidation firm to get disks from in bulk.  Also if you are intending to acquire disks from old corporate systems you are going to have to ensure you remove all data from the drives for privacy, and that requires more than just a low level format, it will require specialist software to remove all data from each physical disk block.

If instead you intend to offer data recovery, you going to need a lot of tooling to set it up.  For a start if you are serious you're going to need a clean room environment, because you're going to have to get disks open, remove platters and spin them up on a working chassis, then try and recover/repair the data and copy it onto new hardware.

It depends on the nature of your "HDD business".


Accepted Solution

JOligario earned 200 total points
ID: 7996621
i have been doing repair for a number of years, you need to get some drive testers, which will let you know if the media is within tolerance, servo writer if you plan on changing the media, burnin rack to run the drives over and over fcr a few days, lots and lots of things.

it is not very inexpensive to do so.


Expert Comment

ID: 7997736
John is correct.  Software isn't the way to stress-test a hard drive.  A hardware drive diagnostic tool will not only do complete testing (including thermal recalibration stuff, and all the nice little, sometimes annoying things that hard drives do behind the scenes) but a good one will also offer a DOD erase feature, allowing for TOTAL erasure of the drives.

You wouldn't want to schmooze some bank out of their hard drives, then turn around and sell them (data included) to a hacker.  Besides, assuring people that their drives will be erased to DOD (Department of Defense) specifications is a good selling point for getting drives.  :)


Expert Comment

ID: 9569424
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