The Hard Drive that came back from the dead?


Senior Member
Jan 14, 2009
So I had Vista installed on a 200gb Maxtor SATA hard drive and about 3 months ago it started making loud noise like beeps at one point it even made a cool melody of beeps. Anyways shortly after it started doing that I got a BSoD while using Vista. I couldn't boot up and the drive wasn't recognized when I booted up my Windows Xp drive. Then I used a disc recovery program to get everything I lost back, but I left the Hard Drive sitting on my counter.

Here's where it gets interesting. Last month I picked up the drive to see if there was anything I missed that I could pull off it using the recovery program. However I never needed to use the recovery program. It showed up in My Computer and I just Cut and Pasted everything off. I then formatted and its been in my Case ever since. I even had another Windows Xp OS on it at one point and it booted fine. I used this drive to hold data while messing with partitions on my main 300gb drive, but only for a short time.

My question is this. Did my HD actually fail or was it just Vista screwing up. Ever since the first inccident no beep or noises have come out of the drive except during boot when all drives make that one noise. I need a drive to back up some data while using Windows 7 so I would like to know if its safe to use this drive or not?

tl:dr; I thought Hard Drive failed but I plugged it back in last month and it worked perfectly and has ever since. Is it safe to use and was the failure actually something else?

Thanks for any help.
How old is the drive?

I'd be very leery about putting important information on it, as those beeps and noises may indicate it is going to fail.

I did a recovery from the factory partition, then re-attached my slave drive and got the infamous clicking noise. Couldn't see it in the BIOS, so I couldn't recover anything using my forensic imaging software. I stuck it in the freezer on the advice of two very knowledgeable PC experts to free up the bearings. Didn't work.

I then took it to a local place that does disaster recovery and the bill was going to be over $2,000.00 to retrieve the information. And they couldn't guarantee what information was recoverable. I was willing to pay up to $800.00, so I'm left with a totally useless drive that contained more important files and programs I had downloaded from the Internet years ago that are long gone.
How old is the drive?

I'd be very leery about putting important information on it, as those beeps and noises may indicate it is going to fail.
Is fairly old. 5 years I'd say. Anyways it hasn't made any noise since the so called "failing" it did.
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Seriously did anybody bother to read what I wrote?

The troubleshooting isn't gonna go anywhere because currently the drive is completely fine...
Well, you might check if it really is fine.
To do this, open a command promt (just hit the windows key and type cmd, then enter) and enter "chkdsk [DRIVE LETTER]: /r" (if the hard drive is mounted as D:\, this would be "chkdsk d: /r"). This checks the hard drive for errors of any kind, including corrupt sectors. However, you might want to watch a nice movie as this process takes a lot of time.
It was 100% okay according to chkdsk. So I'm gonna assume that means I can back my stuff up on it. Thanks for the help.
try and check it with this also maybe, beside s.m.a.r.t. apps
HDD Regenerator is a unique program for regeneration of physically
damaged hard disk drives. It does not hide bad sectors, it really
restores them!

For more information visit : Dmitriy Primochenko Online
real handy small app :p


I had a similar thing occur with a Western Digital Caviar SE16 (WD5000AAKS) in my 20" Aluminum iMac. I was in the middle of some web browsing and some music in iTunes when all of a sudden the music started skipping and Safari was "beach balling" like crazy. Since I hadn't restarted in about 30 days, I figured a process went on the fritz and I was just better off restarting.

...well, it never came back up.

I tried to Target Disk the iMac ...nobody home

I pulled the drive and connected it to a SATA to USB adapter. It mounted after 15 minutes of hard disk activity, but would only allow me to copy about 500MB of data before the drive would just unmount and power down. Thank God for Time Machine....but anyway...

A month later, I had some non-critical data that I forgot I exempted from backup that I really had no desire to download again and thought I'd try and grab it 500MB at a time. Except this time the drive mounted immediately and I was able to copy 120GB of data and run 12 hours of WD diagnostics with no problems whatsoever.

I had already replaced the drive with a WD Caviar Black 1TB (love this drive BTW), but WTF?! A drive that was obviously "toast" just decides that it hasn't spent all 9 lives, 30 days later?

I had possibly figured heat/warping, but the time between pulling the drive and taking it to work for recovery on our IDE/SATA to USB adapter would have been more than enough time for the drive to cool.

Static electricity, heat, or firmware bug? 30 day sick leave? :D
If I were you I would print this post out and save it somewhere for the next time it all comes crashing down like a house of cards you can prove to yourself that it works out well once in a while.
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