I purchased a 750Gb external hard disk by Seagate from BestBuy.
After about 10 months, the drive just stopped working. There never was any sound or any indication (like write or read errors) that the drive was failing. I used this drive for my backups as well as storage for my family pictures wedding movies etc... as well as to hold UBUNTU linux operating system.
After the drive stopped working, I tried all kinds of diagnostics myself and then took it to BestBuy's Geek Squad who did several diagnostic tests and confirmed that the drive was faulty but for sure not crashed. This was confirmed since we could hear the drive spinning up and continue to spin and after a few mins of inactivity it would spind down to conserve power (expected behaviour).
I then contacted the Seagate support who also diagnosed the dirve over the phone with me and concluded that either the dirve was faulty (we replaced all the USB drivers etc...) or the power supply was faulty. That sounded kind of funny since the drive did spin up and power up correctly. The same USB and firewire cables did work with another Western Digital (350Gb) drive I had so the cables were fine too and nothing wrong with my Laptop either.
That's when I called their data recovery services and I was in turn contacted by their Inside Sales Reps. ( I am withholding their names)
After several calls and email exachanges to try and understand exactly what they were going to charge me for and what was their definition of data recovery - I was convinced when they stated:
"We will not charge you anything unless you are completely satisfied with the results of the recovery"
My definition of completely satisfied was the recovery of my daughter's wedding movies and pictures as mentioned in one of my emails to them:
Please proceed with the recovery and I will review the results of the recovery when presented before finally accepting or rejecting it.
I understand that I will owe nothing either if the recovery is not complete or does not include the files/data that I really need.
The list of files they sent me did not include the files I really wanted and was willing to pay for.
However, once the drive was sent to them they insisted on being paid for the data recovery since they claimed to have completey recovered my data. This could not be true since I was missing the most important files.
In any case once they had my drive, they refused to return my drive and inisited on being paid over $800 for the data recovery. They also refused to honour the warranty in which I was entitled to a replacement drive.
In anycase in the end I not only lost all my data, the drive and all the cables, powersupply, UPS charges to mail them the entire box of the hard drive with all the contents and I never got the replacement drive either.
What I should have done (as reported by some other user on this website) is just open the external case and remove the drive and install it in another external (third party case). I am absolutely convinced that there was nothing wrong with the internal drive itself but the external housing and the cables that connect the drive to the case was somehow faulty. However, Seagate it seems are extorting the consumers by either forcing them to pay for data recovery instead of honouring their warranty claims or replacing the external cases with the original drives.
How else is Seagate able to sell factory refurbished drives? My hard disk was probably reformatted and put in another case and sold off as a "factory refurbished" drive.
I feel I was extorted by Seagate. Since then I have purchased two other Western Digital Drives and absolutley no problems at all.
Question: If they were able to perform a complete recovery (with no lost/damaged sectors) then that clearly proves the drive itself was intact. How else can they perform a complete recovery?
Stay away from Seagate's disks (especially their external drives) and their Data Rrecovery services and don't get suckered by their sweet talking Inside Sales Ladies with French Acents.
Ideally going forward, I would buy an internal disk drive and then buy third party cases and turn it into an external drive. That way if my drive was to fail at least I would not be voiding my warranty by opening the external case and I can easily test the hard drive in another case or inside a desktop.