Being the resident tech whisperer in my office, a hard drive appeared on my desk the other day, with a concise note on it: "NOT MOUNTING". I've dealt with this many times before and, years ago, documented the teardown of a drive similar to the one being written about today. That old post takes the cake for having more views than anything else I've ever written. Since that one has helped out so many people, it just makes sense to go through the steps with this newer drive. The idea should be the same, but at least this drive has a port people still use - USB 3.
- small flathead screwdriver
First of all, if your drive is still under warranty, the best approach is to send it in for repair or replacement. This guide requires you to break the "warranty void if broken" sticker.
Discharge any potential static buildup by touching something that's solid metal nearby - a doorframe, lamp, etc. It's simple but is an important part of the routine, to safeguard your electronics. It's also best to avoid wearing staticky clothes, like wool and polyester, when doing this sort of work.
To begin disassembly, remove the rubber bumper.
Next, take the screwdriver and, very gently, start bending the outer tabs upward. A little bit goes a long way - the tabs only need to be freed from those they're interlocked with below. Bend too much, and the tabs can snap off.
The "warranty void" tabs overlap from the opposite direction.
Take a look at the ports, and note which aluminum panel doesn't touch the faceplate (see the arrow below). That panel is the one that can be easily removed, as long as there's enough clearance between all the tabs.
Pull on the drive near the (SATA) data connector at the top, and it should swing right out.
The data connector might be snug, but give it a pull (which also might require a little wiggle).
From here, the drive will be loose. My next steps were to remove the rubber bumpers from each corner and plug the drive into a handy-dandy dock. The drive mounted, but Disk Utility (included on every Mac) indicated a corruption issue. Fortunately, I was able to copy all the data over to a new drive.
Disassembly complete! For anyone that needs to hear it, be sure to routinely back up your data, and archive the really important stuff in multiple places, including both on-site and off-site locations, if possible.
Written by Justin Kilmer, Scrutinized by Janine Kilmer
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