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Old 11-27-2009, 03:06 AM   #4141
richsadams
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Originally Posted by musiclover408 View Post
I wanted to ask the "experts" before I spend this kinda cash. I found this on eBay and it seems like a good deal especially with the lifetime service included. I have read a little bit elsewhere that drives with 2tb can be some trouble.

Here's the link to the auction.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...m=220515246817

Can you tell me if this is a good deal or not or is it better to get an XL and a DVR expander external drive? Suggestions and help please.

Thanks!
Disclaimer: I am NOT an expert...just a TiVo enthusiast. Note that the ebay seller is installing two 1TB hard drives rather than a single 2TB drive. So the difference between buying an actual 1TB TiVo HDXL with a 1TB WD My DVR Expander really comes down to price and warranties. The ebay unit will not carry a TiVo warranty. I haven't looked at one of the seller's units, but I'd wager that he simply added the second drive in the same way an eSATA drive would be added, but made it an internal install instead. There are some other folks here that have done the same thing with success. I am always more comfortable with a single internal hard drive rather than two.

Is it a good deal? A brand new TiVo HD is $249 from TiVo or about $215 from Amazon or Buy.com at the moment. Adding 2 1TB drives yourself would run about $160 or so. Straight-out (not upgrading, etc.) lifetime service is $399. So a DIY is cheaper and if you kept the original drive you could always put it back in and as long as you didn't notify TiVo about what you had done, your warranty would still be intact.

A TiVo HDXL is $499 from TiVo or about $399 from Amazon or Buy.com. A 1TB WD My DVR Expander is about $130 from Amazon or Buy.com. Lifetime Service is still $399. From a comfort level, everything is under a one-year warranty or TiVo's warranty can be extended to three years for an additional $39.99. In total a good deal higher than the ebay offer, but a little apples and oranges.

The ebay seller has an excellent rating and if you can live without the standard TiVo warranty and suport and don't want the hassle of cobbling everything together yourself it's a reasonable deal IMHO.

FWIW the part that most often fails in TiVo is the hard drive. TiVo's Lifetime Service is tied to the unit (motherboard) so you can replace the hard drive (or other components) as often as you'd like while retaining the Lifetime Service.

Also, based on numerous posts about the 500GB My DVR Expanders failing at about 1 year to 18 months...I'd opt for a larger internal drive any time. But again, the ebay unit has two hard drives and there's no warranty on the TiVo itself (the WD GP hard drives being used have a 3-year warranty). I'm comfortable replacing hard drives myself. YMMV.

I'm sure others will chime in, but hopefully that helps. Best of luck and let us know what you decide and why...always good to know. TIA.

Last edited by richsadams : 11-27-2009 at 03:36 AM.
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Old 11-27-2009, 05:51 AM   #4142
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I am not sure it is a WinMFS bug, more a situation of circumstance.

...
When I removed the new drive and put it back on the computer and fired up WinMFS, it took 2 seconds for MFSadd to expand the drive. I now see all 157 hours of recording time.

As for WinMFS, slick... nicely done for a utility that the author does not charge a dime for. There some awfully smart folks that donate there talents to the betterment of this user community.
yes it's a glitch/bug.

when it ask to expand and you click yes it is actually doing MFSSuperSize instead of MFSAdd to expand to use to full hard drive size potential. if you clicked on the Supersize option it would have told you it was already turned on. And yes it is easy to fix after you find out it didn't properly expand by pulling the drive and reconnecting and doing the MFSAdd function......

I sent Spike a pm on the mfslive forums about it. but so far no update to correct it.

i also asked him how to send a donation/paypal$ for his great work but never got an answer.
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Old 11-27-2009, 08:36 AM   #4143
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AH.... then I agree. Expand the drive should mean expand the drive.
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Old 11-27-2009, 10:44 AM   #4144
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Originally Posted by richsadams View Post
Noted that MacMall is offering the Fantom 1TB Green eSATA drive for $59.99 AR. (Rebates end December 1st) That's the lowest price I've seen to date.

http://www.macmall.com/p/4927517?sou...8&dpno=7532251

Series3 users have had long-term success with this drive and it can be attached via plug and play.

EDIT: Looks like OnSale.com is price matching the same drive:

http://www.onsale.com/p/product~dpno...F?source=BWBCJ

BTW I've had experience with both vendors (or maybe they're one in the same?) and they both did a good job of being on time with good packing.

NOTE: This drive will NOT work as an expansion drive via plug and play with the TiVo HD or HDXL models.
Will this install the same as the - Western Digital My DVR Expander 1 TB -
on my Series 3? Plug and Play? What's the best cable to use?

Thanks,
bruce
2 year old Series 3 software v 11
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Old 11-27-2009, 12:03 PM   #4145
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when it ask to expand and you click yes it is actually doing MFSSuperSize instead of MFSAdd to expand to use to full hard drive size potential. if you clicked on the Supersize option it would have told you it was already turned on. And yes it is easy to fix after you find out it didn't properly expand by pulling the drive and reconnecting and doing the MFSAdd function......
Hmmm...that's interesting and not my experience with the latest (or any previous) version of winMFS. Following the instructions all of my drives have always expanded and then clicking on Supersize has always worked. I've never had to go back to do anything. But I have seen others post that they have so I can't be sure why. Did you post on MFSLive Forum directly? Spike is very good at responding to posts. I'd guess he gets a heap of PM's and might not have time to answer them all.

Good info in any case. Let us know if you hear anything.
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Old 11-27-2009, 12:11 PM   #4146
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Will this install the same as the - Western Digital My DVR Expander 1 TB -
on my Series 3? Plug and Play? What's the best cable to use?

Thanks,
bruce
2 year old Series 3 software v 11
Yes, Series3 TiVo's will accept most eSATA drives via plug and play (refer to the faq for the recommended list). Be sure to connect it properly and follow the on-screen instructions. There is a warning screen that will appear stating that the drive is unapproved, do you want to proceed? Three thumbs up (IIRC) to continue and you're golden.

The drive comes with an eSATA cable and AFAIK no one has had any problems with it. You could buy the recommended SIIG Serial ATA external cable as a backup if you wanted.
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Old 11-27-2009, 01:43 PM   #4147
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Hi Rich,

I went to Amazon and am looking at the Western Digital My DVR Expander 1 TB. I read the reviews and there were quite a few Tivo people that had problems with that drive. Many posted that the drive died after a years use.

I came to the forum here and saw your post about the Fantom 1TB Green eSATA drive. I am interested a reliable drive and if I can save money that's fine but I am willing to pay a bit more if there is something with a proven track record of reliability.

Is there a drive that costs a little more that might be a better answer or should I go with the Fantom?

Thanks,
bruce
2 year old Series 3 software v 11
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Old 11-27-2009, 02:25 PM   #4148
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Hi Rich,

I went to Amazon and am looking at the Western Digital My DVR Expander 1 TB. I read the reviews and there were quite a few Tivo people that had problems with that drive. Many posted that the drive died after a years use.

I came to the forum here and saw your post about the Fantom 1TB Green eSATA drive. I am interested a reliable drive and if I can save money that's fine but I am willing to pay a bit more if there is something with a proven track record of reliability.

Is there a drive that costs a little more that might be a better answer or should I go with the Fantom?

Thanks,
bruce
2 year old Series 3 software v 11
Hi Bruce. You can certainly spend more but AFAIK the Fantom has been doing quite well for a couple of years now for folks that have them. It has a two-year warranty, twice that of the WD.

One consideration for any hard drive is heat...heat is the enemy of hard drives. The Fantom and the WD My DVR Expander are not fan-cooled. If the drive is going to be placed in an enclosed area w/o much or any ventilation it would be wise to buy an eSATA drive with an integrated cooling fan or put one together yourself using one of the recommended hard drives and the recommended fan-cooled Antec MX-1 enclosure. If it will be in an area that has decent air circulation (away from other heat generating components) the Fantom's aluminum drive enclosure is reported to dissipate heat just fine.

Another consideration is that TiVo won't provide "support" for anything but the WD My DVR Expander. That really doesn't mean much more than if you had some trouble with the Fantom (or any other "unapproved" eSATA drive) and called TiVo they would probably not be able to help. IMHO that really means very little as in general eSATA drives work or they don't. There's very little that TiVo can do from their end if there's a problem. WD's support amounts to an RMA if the drive fails in the first year and that's it. Just something to think about.

I guess if I were in the market for an eSATA drive for my Series3 I'd be more than comfortable buying the Fantom.

Last edited by richsadams : 11-27-2009 at 06:16 PM. Reason: Tyop...d'oh!
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Old 11-27-2009, 03:16 PM   #4149
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thanks for the info. I'll probably end up going that direction.

bruce
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Old 11-27-2009, 07:21 PM   #4150
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Hmmm...that's interesting and not my experience with the latest (or any previous) version of winMFS. Following the instructions all of my drives have always expanded and then clicking on Supersize has always worked. I've never had to go back to do anything. But I have seen others post that they have so I can't be sure why. Did you post on MFSLive Forum directly? Spike is very good at responding to posts. I'd guess he gets a heap of PM's and might not have time to answer them all.

Good info in any case. Let us know if you hear anything.
hey rich,

yes when i first ran into the glitch i posted on mfslive. posted the MFSInfo and Spike quickly gave me the solution that my drive was not expanded and to reattach and just do the MFSAdd, which worked just fine then.

also posted on this thread page 87 post 2598 about my issues and that Spike had given me the answer and gotten through the first S3 upgrade.

ran into the same glitch when i upgraded my next S3 and then my TiVo HD but i had the answer so no biggie.

......3x same glitch so it could be me not following instructons right .......but saspms and other have issues too as you've seen too.
i think i used 9.3f beta, i haven't checked to see if spike has any updates out since then

Last edited by Dssturbo1 : 11-27-2009 at 07:36 PM.
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Old 11-27-2009, 07:49 PM   #4151
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hey rich,

yes when i first ran into the glitch i posted on mfslive. posted the MFSInfo and Spike quickly gave me the solution that my drive was not expanded and to reattach and just do the MFSAdd, which worked just fine then.

also posted on this thread page 87 post 2598 about my issues and that Spike had given me the answer and gotten through the first S3 upgrade.

ran into the same glitch when i upgraded my next S3 and then my TiVo HD but i had the answer so no biggie.

......3x same glitch so it could be me not following instructons right .......but saspms and other have issues too as you've seen too.
i think i used 9.3f beta, i haven't checked to see if spike has any updates out since then
Good to know. It does come up fairly often so whatever is happening it happens to too many people and some kind of "fix" is in order, either with the software, procedures, instructions or ... Thanks for keeping after it.

Of course, it's hard to fault someone that does so much at absolutely no cost I guess. Just glad Spike is so dedicated. I'd hate to go back to the old hand-coding days.
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Old 11-27-2009, 08:34 PM   #4152
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I'd hate to go back to the old hand-coding days.
Or even the older punch card days! :shudder:
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Old 11-28-2009, 01:11 AM   #4153
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Or even the older punch card days! :shudder:
Oh come on...that's just an urban myth...right?
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:34 AM   #4154
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Can you imagine how much paper it'd take to transfer an MPEG movie via punch card? Or even paper tape? Imagine if we never had DVD's or even video tape, but instead movies were rented and sold to the home on punch cards... We'd need a *lot* of "Be kind, don't shuffle" stickers.
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Old 11-28-2009, 09:13 AM   #4155
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Can you imagine how much paper it'd take to transfer an MPEG movie via punch card? Or even paper tape? Imagine if we never had DVD's or even video tape, but instead movies were rented and sold to the home on punch cards... We'd need a *lot* of "Be kind, don't shuffle" stickers.
Those are some images!!! Someone could probably figure it out. How much data could you get on a punch card?
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Old 11-28-2009, 09:33 AM   #4156
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Success - Upgrade - WD10EVDS

Successfully upgraded my Tivo HD last night with the WD10EVDS using the preserve recordings method. I had no problems at all including the mfssupersize option. Tivo now shows 157 hours as the capacity.

I purchased the drive from buy.com on 17 Nov 09. I believe the manufacture date was 10-Oct-2009. I can verify if anyone really wants to know. I meant to write it down, but was excited to see if it worked so closed up the Tivo before I remembered to do it.

The original drive was attached to a SATA port. The new drive was in a external drive housing hooked up via a USB cable. The process of copying everything to the new drive took less than two hours. Before I shut down my Tivo I went in to my deleted programs and permanently removed all that were there. (Assumption- It would have copied those over to the new drive also if they were still there.) My Tivo had about 15 hours of HD programming on it when I made the copy.

Thanks to everybody for all their contributions here and especially Spike for WinMFS!
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Old 11-28-2009, 12:51 PM   #4157
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Successfully upgraded my Tivo HD last night with the WD10EVDS using the preserve recordings method. I had no problems at all including the mfssupersize option. Tivo now shows 157 hours as the capacity.

I purchased the drive from buy.com on 17 Nov 09. I believe the manufacture date was 10-Oct-2009. I can verify if anyone really wants to know. I meant to write it down, but was excited to see if it worked so closed up the Tivo before I remembered to do it.

The original drive was attached to a SATA port. The new drive was in a external drive housing hooked up via a USB cable. The process of copying everything to the new drive took less than two hours. Before I shut down my Tivo I went in to my deleted programs and permanently removed all that were there. (Assumption- It would have copied those over to the new drive also if they were still there.) My Tivo had about 15 hours of HD programming on it when I made the copy.

Thanks to everybody for all their contributions here and especially Spike for WinMFS!
Nice job! Good idea about the deleted recordings as well.

Did you happen to try a soft reboot - restart TiVo from the menus? Just want to be sure the soft reboot issue with the other drives hasn't migrated to the EVDS. If there is an issue, knowing the manufacture date would be valuable but to date that model has been fine.

Welcome to the club and enjoy!
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Old 11-28-2009, 03:34 PM   #4158
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Those are some images!!! Someone could probably figure it out. How much data could you get on a punch card?
Well, the 80-80 cards could hold 80 bytes of data. They were also great for writing notes on them as they fit well in a shirt pocket!
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Old 11-28-2009, 06:47 PM   #4159
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Well, the 80-80 cards could hold 80 bytes of data. They were also great for writing notes on them as they fit well in a shirt pocket!
I still have a couple of boxes of cards, some punched, left over from when they became obsolete at my work. They are useful for several tasks around the house.
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:31 PM   #4160
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I still have a couple of boxes of cards, some punched, left over from when they became obsolete at my work. They are useful for several tasks around the house.
, I remember that we got a bunch of Mohawk Key to Tape machines. That was a BIG deal! Remember a dropped box of cards?

Let's see, how can I put this back OT? Hmmmmm...I know, I still never tried "fixing" my 160GB drive that fails after a few hours. I want to write all zeros to it and then do a restore. It would be great to see if I can fix the drive!
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Old 11-28-2009, 11:24 PM   #4161
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Let's see, how can I put this back OT? Hmmmmm...I know, I still never tried "fixing" my 160GB drive that fails after a few hours. I want to write all zeros to it and then do a restore. It would be great to see if I can fix the drive!
Oh, nice try.
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Old 11-29-2009, 09:12 AM   #4162
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Nice job! Good idea about the deleted recordings as well.

Did you happen to try a soft reboot - restart TiVo from the menus? Just want to be sure the soft reboot issue with the other drives hasn't migrated to the EVDS. If there is an issue, knowing the manufacture date would be valuable but to date that model has been fine.

Welcome to the club and enjoy!
No issue with the soft reboot. (Messages & Settings -> Restart or Reset System -> Restart the Tivo HD DVR)

Actually one little hiccup. When the Tivo restarted both tuners were tuned to the same channel. I did it twice and made sure each tuner was tuned to a different channel. After the restart both tuners were tuned to the channel that was showing before the restart. This is not a big deal, but it wasn't what I was expecting.
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Old 11-29-2009, 11:34 AM   #4163
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No issue with the soft reboot. (Messages & Settings -> Restart or Reset System -> Restart the Tivo HD DVR)

Actually one little hiccup. When the Tivo restarted both tuners were tuned to the same channel. I did it twice and made sure each tuner was tuned to a different channel. After the restart both tuners were tuned to the channel that was showing before the restart. This is not a big deal, but it wasn't what I was expecting.
Thanks for the follow up. I can't recall the channel situation for new installs or upgrades...guess I never paid much attention. AFAIK whatever you saw isn't an issue though as long as things are functioning normally.

Enjoy!
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Old 11-29-2009, 03:28 PM   #4164
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I think the 2 tuner on same channel is normal as it happens on mine (unmod'd) when I have it rebooted.
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Old 11-29-2009, 03:46 PM   #4165
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Oh, nice try.

I guess I may just wait 'til I need it. I had used the one I took out of the Unit I upgraded to 1TB, and the "bad" unit has now been working with that 160GB drive. I keep thinking I will leave well enough alone now! However, my sig says I don't do that very well!
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Old 11-29-2009, 05:39 PM   #4166
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I had to remove the WD Tivo Expander Drive on my S3 and presently have a 1tb WD10EVDS hard drive on order as a replacement for the internal drive.

Has anyone tried to convert their old WD Tivo Expander Drive for use as additional storage for their PC etc. I bought an esata to usb adapter and plugged the drive into my Windows Vista PC but could not get the PC to recognize the drive so I could reformat it. Will [i] have to remove the drive from it's enclosure first?

Thanks.
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Old 11-29-2009, 07:21 PM   #4167
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Has anyone tried to convert their old WD Tivo Expander Drive for use as additional storage for their PC etc. I bought an esata to usb adapter and plugged the drive into my Windows Vista PC but could not get the PC to recognize the drive so I could reformat it. Will [i] have to remove the drive from it's enclosure first?
I pried open my WD Expander, removed the drive, and reformatted it on my Mac for use as an internal drive or in an external enclosure. (It was a job to get it out, as the Expander is not designed to be opened.) For reformatting, I plugged it into a Thermaltake external dock connected by USB, and it was recognized by the Mac.
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Old 11-29-2009, 09:52 PM   #4168
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I pried open my WD Expander, removed the drive, and reformatted it on my Mac for use as an internal drive or in an external enclosure. (It was a job to get it out, as the Expander is not designed to be opened.) For reformatting, I plugged it into a Thermaltake external dock connected by USB, and it was recognized by the Mac.
Thanks for the heads up. I guess I'll have no choice but to also pry it open and then take it from there.
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Old 11-30-2009, 12:28 AM   #4169
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Has anyone tried to convert their old WD Tivo Expander Drive for use as additional storage for their PC etc. I bought an esata to usb adapter and plugged the drive into my Windows Vista PC but could not get the PC to recognize the drive so I could reformat it. Will [i] have to remove the drive from it's enclosure first?
I know a number of folks have "re-purposed" the hard drive from their Expanders, but like hearncl I'm pretty sure most if not all were pulled from their enclosure. Based on posts more often than not it's the enclosure that's the problem, not the actual hard drive itself. That may be why your PC isn't recognizing the drive.
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Old 11-30-2009, 01:07 PM   #4170
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I know a number of folks have "re-purposed" the hard drive from their Expanders, but like hearncl I'm pretty sure most if not all were pulled from their enclosure. Based on posts more often than not it's the enclosure that's the problem, not the actual hard drive itself. That may be why your PC isn't recognizing the drive.
Thanks again for the info. I've resigned myself to the fact that I'll have to 'rip' the drive from the enclosure. If I'm unable to get to first base with drive after that, then I may start to pull out what hair I have left.

By the way, I did attempt to run the WD diagnostics on the drive but was unsuccessful. After about 30/40 seconds the diagnostic program would just freeze. I suspect that once I remove the drive from it's enclose this probably won't happen again.
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