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Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 Troubles


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Just wanted to say thanks to all, who compiled this information here.

I have successfully recovered my Seagate 7200.11 500GB from BSY-state following the steps of Gradius2's direct guide and using the Schmartboard+Jumper-Cable suggestion of fatlip, so I didn't have to solder anything (never done that *cough*).

Just one thing, maybe I've missed it here, because there are so many replies, but you MUST NOT press Ctrl+Z after removing the plastic/paper card (and thus reconnecting the PCB board contacts). You only have to press Crtl+Z at the beginning and after the 10 second ON/OFF of the HDD.

Thanks again, saved all my data with a very nice do-it-yourself internet guide :) (even though the pictures at the direct guide don't seem to work, even after log in)

Edited by buddertoast
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  • 1 month later...

Hi everyone

I have a problem with my Barracuda 7200.11 500GB that is like a bad sector problem.

I could recover many of my data but my most valuable data didnt be recovered.

The problem is almost exactly in the half of the hdd (I mean bad the 2% sectors starts about 49% to 51% of the capasity)

When I want to recover those files The system hangs or I have the blue page.

What can I do myself? Is there any hardware I can create and read sectors by that hardware?

or any strong software?

Best Regards

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What can I do myself? Is there any hardware I can create and read sectors by that hardware?

or any strong software?

I doubt there is anything you can do.

If a sector is bad, it is bad, if only a few sectors are bad and this prevents reading a bigger chunk of otherwise good sectors, you have some probabilities.

You can try a "file based" recovery, PHOTOREC:


Or a sector based DD:


the latter has more chances, due to it's interesting approach, but still don't expect a miracle.


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guys, i have the same probs with my seagate. i think the bsy-thing.

is here someone who can give me some information where i can get this tll232-converter in germany?

maybe i can find someone who want to sell his equipment, plz message me :)

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looks like I joined the many,my 1TB 7200.11 failed a couple of days ago.

I have emailed support and they told me to return the drive for replacement. I told them that I would take the drive out of the box to attempt recovery, I was told that I was ok to do this.

I have since read the full thread and am trying to get Seagate to do free data recovery.

I'll keep you posted on how I get on with them and in the meantime I will be sourcing the parts for the fix.

Thanks for all the hard work that's gone into this thread guys.


UPDATE 17th September 2009

I have today spoken with Seagate again Via instant chat ans thelephone, UK Based phone number 00800 472 4283

Seagate are assuring me that although my drivr failed in exactly the same way other with the not recognised in bios have described that my drive is not within the serial number range of the affected drives and will therfore not recover my data free of charge.

I've included a copy of my chat with Seagate.

Please wait while we find an agent to assist you...

All agents are currently busy. Please stand by.

Hello. How may I help you?

Stephen Tansley: I have an issue with my hard drive failing, it failed as is evident on the much documented problem with the seagate 7200.11 range

Eli S: How did the drive go out?

Stephen Tansley: I was told by David Fields that my particular drive was not affected by this issue

Stephen Tansley: drive was working fine up till shutdown, then at reeboot drive was not recognised in bios

Eli S: And what is the serial number, Mr. Tansley?

Stephen Tansley: S/N 9QJ0LQ8B

Stephen Tansley: David told me that Seagate would exchange the drive but would not cover Data

Eli S: and this is a FreeAgent Desk?

Stephen Tansley: it is

Eli S: ok. What the agent told you previously is correct. That issue only affected internal drives, not ones that were earmarked for external drives

Eli S: Do the plates still spin in the enclosure?

Stephen Tansley: IHow can this be? a drive is a drive, inside this is still an ordinary OEM drive

Stephen Tansley: the plates appear to spin for 1 second then idle for 2 seconds

Eli S: Have you opened upt he drive, or?

Stephen Tansley: I have opened the outer box to allow access to the drive to enable me to connect to pc via sata to try to recover data

Eli S: Ah, I understand

Eli S: Was the drive recognized?

Stephen Tansley: no, bios still fails to recognise drive

Eli S: Have you checked that the controller is enabled in Bios?

Stephen Tansley: all sata controllers enabled in bios, bios recognised other 2 sata seagate drives 9both 7200.10)

Eli S: one moment, let me check one more thing

Stephen Tansley: ok

Eli S: I've checked a couple of other things, and it is not affected by firmware, thus it has to be some other issue

Stephen Tansley: will Seagate recover the data at no cost to me?

Eli S: I could give you information about a data recovery group, if you are interested in recovering your data, Mr. Tansley

Eli S: No sir. Data recovery is not covered by the warranty

Stephen Tansley: I will not be using a paid service to recover my data, if Seagate will not do this free I will use an rs232 device to recover the drive myself as I strongly believe this problem is caused by the firmware issue

Stephen Tansley: I have read other documented cases where seagate have said this issue did not affect a drive and when checked the drive was suffering from the documented issue

Stephen Tansley: I believe Seagate are still unsure which serial no range is in fact a problem

Stephen Tansley: I also belive this drive was shipped by seagate knowing that there was an issue

Eli S: I do apologize you are having this issue today, Mr. Tansley

Eli S: But is there anything else that I could assist you with today?

Stephen Tansley: could you give me a UK contact phone number as I wish to take this issue further

Eli S: One Moment

Stephen Tansley: also do you have a complaints or legal department that i could contact

Eli S: 00.800.4732.4283

Eli S: That is the number for the UK, Mr. Tansley

Eli S: Is there anything else I could assist you with today?

Stephen Tansley: Thank you for your assistance, I shall phone the number you have given me

Eli S: You're welcome. Have a nice day, Mr. Tansley.

I am just about to place an order for an rs232 device which I think will do the job



Edited by Sneakybob
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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi all,

I'm looking for a Seagate barracuda PCB:

barracuda 7200.11 1000 Gbytes

- S/N: 9QJ1TT42 - ST31000340AS

- P/N: 9BX158-335 - Firmware: SD15

- Date code 09074 - site code: KRATSG

- WWN: 5000C5000DAAD518

if someone know were is one just mail me!!

Thanks too all!

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I didnt know about this problem until I read this thread! Seems they had fixed it in later firmware version. I have SD46 firmware revision on my ST3500320AS 500GB HDD. Havent faced any problem from the day I have purchased it :).

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  • 2 months later...

my seagate 7200.11 just stopped working. It's really odd though, it will recognize at first and I can scan with some recovery programs and then all of a sudden it will just disappear and nothing can see the drive anymore. I was using this as my backup drive....I had images....music....movies.....everything on it. I will never buy another seagate product again. I work as a network admin and you better believe I know a lot of people and will tell everyone I can the same thing. I guess seagate really doesn't care about us consumer based customers though. Ohhh and Seagate apparently says that according to my serial number I am not in need of the firmware update.

Edited by hubb_99
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I just did the procedure to recover data on my seagate and it actually worked (thank you very much to the author)

my question is:

has anyone continued to use the drives after this procedure?

I am pulling all my data off of it and putting it on my new western digital hard drive but am just curious if anyone has continued to use these with any success.

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I just did the procedure to recover data on my seagate and it actually worked (thank you very much to the author)

my question is:

has anyone continued to use the drives after this procedure?

I am pulling all my data off of it and putting it on my new western digital hard drive but am just curious if anyone has continued to use these with any success.


The problem is seemingly in the actual firmware.

Some details are in the main thread, starting here:


for roughly three pages.

The issue in itself is stoopid enough:

when you power on the drive and internal LOG was left to entry 320 or any value satisfying the expression 320+n*256 the drive bricks itself.

  1. IF you have a working drive AND you upgrade it's firmware AND the firmware is NOT bugged, the drive will last on average like any other one.
    The fix is made in two steps:
  2. unbrick a bricked drive making it working
  3. loop to 1. above

Point is that due to the TOTAL and UTTERLESS lack of any form of brightness, courtesy, politeness and open-mindedness from the Seagate people, BOTH in the Technical and Support services AND on their Forum, there is NO way to know for sure:

  • IF any given new firmware is appropriate to the specific drive
  • IF any given new firmware release solves the problem (without introduceing OTHER bugs)

What they tell people with a bricked drive is more or less:

  1. you are NOT affected by the problem (which means in plain English: you are a liar, your drive is not bricked)
  2. if you send the drive in we will replace it, should we find it to be defective
  3. under the Warranty Terms, recovery of your data is not provided, you should have backed it up
  4. if the drive gets lost on the way to us or on the way back it's your problem
  5. we may send you back at our exclusive discretion (and we won't tell you in advance whether you will get back):
    • your drive revived with all data intact (not because we will recover the data, but only if the data happens to be there, and we won't even tell you if this is likely to happen or not)
    • a refurbished drive
    • a new drive

[*]Since we won't admit that there is a problem, it is obvious that we cannot tell you that firmware xxxx will fix that problem (that only exists in your mind)

As I see it the product is not worse or better than that of the competitors, every firm has had (or will have) a "badly born" model or series, but definitely the Support sucks.

Reality (and as proven by the number of reported successes) is:

  • an average technician can fix the issue in no more than 15 minutes and NO data will be lost
  • a complete n00b can fix it in a few attempts/several hours and NO data will be lost
  • it is utterly stoopid to send drives back and forth if not actually needed (have you ever seen the delicacy with which UPS or FedEx - or any other courier for that matter - manage parcels?) as you have the concrete risk of damage or loss during this stage

In my opinion if they had

  • printed DON'T PANIC in large, friendly letters on their Web Site
  • told people not to worry, that their data and drive could be recovered allright
  • admitted the hiccup
  • apologized for the inconveniences
  • provided documental evidence of the reason of the problem and of the way they fixed it in later releases
  • outsourced the recovery to local (say) TV repairers or Computer Shops for (say) US $10 apiece, asking Customers to bring personally the drive in the shop, and collect it after a couple of days, they would have :yes::
    • saved lots of money
    • saved lots of fuel and packing/shipping costs (a small contribution to the fight against entropy)
    • had a plethora of admired Customers that would have LOVED :wub: them for the rest of their life (no matter if their drive is good or not)

The way they chose they have had ALL their sentient customers really, really mad at them :realmad: (again no matter if their drive is good or not).


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What really makes me angry is that I know I have the firmware version SD15 that is having the problems but Seagate won't give me the firmware update. I had to search the net for an update from Dell that contains the update ISO. Buncha basterds. I can officially say that I am anti-Seagate. Another classic example of a company pushing products on the market when they had obviously not done any quality control on it. Also if you look at the soldering on the chips.....not very good either.....even if I do get the firmware updated I would not trust this drive.

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What really makes me angry is that I know I have the firmware version SD15 that is having the problems but Seagate won't give me the firmware update.

Sure, to them you are a liar :ph34r: as your drive is NOT affected by the problem (What problem? :w00t:) ;)


Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: You know, I'm a rather brilliant surgeon. Perhaps I can help you with that hump.

Igor: What hump?



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Hi Hub 99; I am happy to hear you solved your problem; I have about 8 7200.11s maybe; I had to apply the rs232 fix on one and the rest of the affected versions I upgraded the firmware. I have not had any further issues with my seagates.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Seagate 7200.11 S/N 5qkomphm, st3750630as, p/n 9bx146-621, hp24, date code 09124, site code wu, wwn:5000c5000e8c733d. wgbu: 460315-002, ct:2ahzh0183wk3gv. Same symptoms as described- slower startups, started freezing all within 3 days of final bricking. Talked to hp support and said it was an obvious hard drive failure and that I needed a new one. No mention of seagate problems. Found this site and many others all describing exactly what happened to me. What a sham! HP said I needed to replace with identical same hard drive from seagate-seems stupid to do so. Can I substitute?

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