top of page

Tech How-to: LaCie Rugged Portable Hard Drive Disassembly

​Hi - it's great to see you here. This is one of our most popular posts. If it ends up being helpful for you, please consider supporting this independent, ad-free website by making a donation via Paypal or Buy Me A Coffee. You'll find these links at the bottom of this page, as well, and a big "thank you" goes out to our amazing supporters.

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. Pics and descriptions are just below; a video version of this process is further down the page.

LaCie Rugged hard drive with NOT MOUNTING note attached - photo by KilmerMedia

Tools needed:

- 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.

removing an orange rubber bumper sleeve from a LaCie portable hard drive - photo by KilmerMedia

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.

prying up the aluminum tabs on a LaCie Rugged hard drive during disassembly - photo by KilmerMedia

The "warranty void" tabs overlap from the opposite direction.

breaking the warranty sticker on a LaCie Rugged external hard drive - photo by KilmerMedia

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.

removing the hard drive from a LaCie Rugged case - photo by KilmerMedia

The data connector might be snug, but give it a pull (which also might require a little wiggle).

disconnecting the SATA connection on a LaCie Rugged portable hard drive - photo by KilmerMedia

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.

Seagate HDD removed from a LaCie Rugged hard drive shown plugged in a dock - photo by KilmerMedia

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.


The video version:


"LaCie Rugged Portable Hard Drive Disassembly"

Written by Justin Kilmer, Scrutinized by Janine Kilmer

All images and media on this site are © by Justin Kilmer, unless otherwise noted.

If this post has helped save you time or money, or if you're grateful for the literal hours I put into crafting each page, consider helping us grow this site by donating any amount via PayPal below:

If you would rather make a purchase, check out our photo prints at Fine Art America.

This post was last modified, with better pics and updated descriptions, in Aug. 2023.


1 opmerking

02 sep. 2023

This is great and gets right to what I needed to know.... TY!

bottom of page