Seagate issues with 7200.11 series escalate

By Justin Mann on January 19, 2009, 11:34 AM
Seagate has had quite a bit of trouble with their 1.5TB 7200.11 drives. The drives, which gave the company a notable lead in drive capacity over their rivals for some time, have come under fire for the second time now since they were first shipped. The newest complaint is actually more of the old, in that the drives are suffering from mysterious freezing issues. The failures are apparently happening across the entire 7200.11 lineup not specifically the 1.5TB units, though that particular unit was already under scrutiny for its popularity and for Seagate's apparent silence on the issue early on.

A fixed firmware was posted late last year, which Seagate claims fixes the issue. They've also offered data recovery services to anyone who loses data as a result of the problem, though they say in the same breath that the problem doesn't cause data loss to begin with. The offer of data recovery has come up just recently, making many wonder if the problem is bigger than Seagate claims it is. Data recovery is something that hard drive vendors have typically never offered, even when drives have outright failed completely within the warranty period they have specific disclosures protecting them from just such an instance.

Why the offer? Is Seagate attempting to boost PR in anticipation of a wave of cascading failures? I certainly hope not I have several of the drives myself. The complaint sure isn't a new one, as Seagate has been dealing with it for many months, but things have picked up recently, and the addition of Seagate offering free data recovery can indicate worse things to come.




User Comments: 6

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Rage_3k_Moiz said:
The problems seem rather pronounced on the 1TB and 1.5TB editions of the drives. First Seagate loses the 5-year warranty and now their drives dip in quality. I have no reason not to prefer WD drives over Seagate ones now.
tengeta said:
Except that WD is even crappier.
howzz1854 said:
i know which particular model of the 7200.11 that the article is talking about. it's the 320GB version. the failure rate of that drive is staggering even tho the proclaimed performance rating on the drive is as incredible as 99MB/s read. about more than 2/3 of people who bought that drive encounter total failure. one guy bought six of them at once and only "one" survived after a month. the other 5 all failed. none the less, there's still no response from seagate despite the onslaught of complains.
tonydi said:
"A fixed firmware was posted late last year, which Seagate claims fixes the issue. They've also offered data recovery services to anyone who loses data as a result of the problem, though they say in the same breath that the problem doesn't cause data loss to begin with." There's no discrepancy with those statements.The problem doesn't cause data loss, it causes the drive not to boot up. The data isn't lost, it's just that the user can't get to it with their computer. I'm sure Seagate pops in a functioning PCB and then pulls the data off.
ArcticBirdman said:
I sure hope they honor the free recovery as I just sent my 1TB in on RMA due failure. I still have one more which I hope to update firmware before it also fails.
tonydi said:
Oh man, this just get better and better! Seagate released new firmware on Monday and it BRICKED all the 500GB models it was applied to! They then pulled the firmware and haven't made any public statements but there are tons of mighty unhappy campers in the Seagate customer forums. Once again, the data is still on the drives and apparently whenever new firmware is made available, all will be well again. I can't imagine how much this whole fiasco will damage their longer term sales and brand loyalty.
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