Western Digital hard disk WD3200AAJS

WD3200AAJS – Pinnacle firmware failure

In Blog, Hard Disk Drive Recovery Case Study, Successful recovery by Administrator

Common fault: WD3200AAJS firmware failure.

This case study relates to a HDD in which the owner reported that the HDD was not detected by any computer, and the HDD would not make any tapping or clicking sounds. The hard disk drive came from a desktop computer and had not suffered any physical shock.

  • Model: WD3200AAJS-22B4A0
  • Serial: WMAT14471671
  • Firmware: 01.03A001
  • Capacity: 298.09 GB (625 142 447 sectors)

Corrupt firmware modules

The fault relates to particular firmware modules which cannot be read correctly, or which are corrupt. The case study below is what CDR considers to be the ‘easier’ version of the failure to fix. This is because the HDD does enter a RDY (ready) state when the disk is powered on. In some cases, the HDD remains ‘BSY’ (busy) and it is necessary to alter the firmware in a more significant manner than that detailed in the video or use a donor printed circuit board (PCB) to allow access to the data.

The earlier stages of the video detail how access is obtained to the service area where the firmware modules are stored. Once access is restored there is a demonstration on how ‘Data Extractor’ is used to make a recovery of the data on the failed HDD.

This job was considered to be a ‘firmware failure’ for the purposes of pricing. CDR includes the cost of any required donor parts within the quotation. A full recovery of the customer’s data was made.

Below: A video detailing how CDR recovers data from a failed WD3200AAJS Pinnacle series hard disk drive.