I have a hard drive that just died on me last night. This is my personal at home server drive. I did have a current backup, but it was data only. I am very grateful that I had that or else I would have lost 6 years worth of pictures of my 6 year old daughter.
The data has been restored already to a different computer.
Now, what I am wondering is if I can get the rest of the info off the hard drive by replacing the pcb board. The drive contained 3 virtual machines including a Linux web server, a Windows domain controller and another file and print server. I can rebuild all of these if I have to, but I found a place online out of Canada that sells the pcb boards for $50. I realize it is a gamble and am willing to take that gamble if there is at least a 50% chance of getting the data back intact.
The drive was running in a ESXi server for the last 2 years. Last week, all of my VM's just stopped responding. No local console or anything. I rebooted the ESXi server and they all came back up with no problem.
About 3 hours later, all the servers died again. I went to look at the events on the VMWare console and it said the datastore was unreachable. I rebooted again and looked at the bios. It said the drive plugged in was a 1000Gb unknown drive. VMWare would not recognize anything on the drive.
After a final reboot, I checked the bios again and it said no unknown device and unknown size. I opened up the case and I could hear the distinct and faint clicking noise of a failed hard drive.
The drive itself is a Seagate Barracuda1TB drive. It is about 2 - 3 years old.
From what I have described, does this sound like a bad pcb, or does it sound mechanical?