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Some Mac drives may be plagued by data loss

updated 01:50 am EST, Tue November 6, 2007

Seagate data loss

Seagate SATA hard drives used in the MacBook, MacBook Pro and Mac mini may be subject to a flaw that can result in massive data loss. TechWorld reports that Retrodata has come across a number of failures involving Seagate Technology's LLC 2.5-in. drives. "The read/write heads are detaching from the arm and plowing deep gouges into the magnetic platter," said Retrodata Managing Director Duncan Clarke. "The damage is mostly on the inner tracks, but some scratches are on the outer track -- Track 0 -- and once that happens, the drive is normally beyond repair."

These drives are made in China, and the afflicted models are loaded with firmware Version 7.01. Model numbers include ST96812AS and ST98823AS. Users can check what firmware revision their drives have by going to System Profiler and looking under Serial ATA look for the revision number.

Some experts, meanwhile, are warning that you would need to see several hundred or several thousand drives with this problem to know for sure whether there is a design flaw. A Seagate spokesperson told TechWorld "This matter has only just come to our attention, and Seagate is looking into it." Apple refused to comment.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. noverflow

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Just happened

    I just had this happen with a hitachi drive on my macbook. I was using it at my desk, when it froze and started making a chunking noise. I took the hard drive out and it was rattling around. Apple replaced the drive, but I lost everything. My last backup was a month prior

  1. eggman

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    uh oh

    Wouldn't you know it - that's my drive model and firmware... and I'm out of warrantee as of two months ago. :(

  1. techtrucker

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Happened to me

    I took the opportunity to upgrade to a 160 GB drive in my MacBook. But that was the first time in years I've heard that click/clunk. Not fun.

  1. mmirage

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    So that's why...

    My drive (the ST98823AS) started to corrupt massive amounts of data a little while back, and I ended up with bad blocks galour. *sigh*

    Granted, I'm loving the new upgraded drive, but I guess I can officially chuck the old one, now.

  1. Peter Bonte

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Hm

    I'm waiting for 'SP1' on disk before i upgrade, i can wait.

  1. OtisWild

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Time Machine

    Looks like it came out just in time.. IIRC you can do a bare metal restore with the DVD or a netboot image..

    (and I swapped my Macbook's disk out for a WD, so far so good)

  1. Zaren

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    UK or worldwide problem?

    Are Apple shipments segregated by region? Could this be a problem limited to machines sold in the UK, or would these hard drives be distributed throughout the system?

  1. Roehlstation

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Re Uh Oh

    So, buy a new one.....Hard disks are cheap I replace hard disks every year whether needed or not

  1. Zaren

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Must be nice

    Roehlstation...

    Not everyone has the skill, time, or money to replace hard drives every year, especially laptop hard drives. I'm currently looking at notifying my department about this problem, and if everyone said "replace my hard drive" every year, our budget would be hosed, and I'd be spending way too much time doing backups and restores.

  1. tindrum

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Stryker on Love Lines

    Stryker was just talking about how his iMac hard drive took a dump. wonder if it was one of these drives.

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