Apple hard drive failure, teaches an important lesson

07Jul, 2010

Recently we have had a slew of MacBooks come into the shop all having the same issue with hard drive failure. After taking their macs to the apple store, where they are told the drive has failed and there is nothing they can do.  The customers then approached Charm City Networks for their data recovery needs. After inspecting the hard drives and not hearing any physical issues with the drives, we were able to mount the drives on a local windows file system and access them. After copying a few files over during the recovery process, a few errors would pop up showing read/write errors not allowing all the files on the drive to be recovered. Luckily we were able to copy over most of the users documents and media, but any remnants of the old OS were irrecoverable.

After the two more macs came in with the same symptoms, and several phone calls with similar concerns,  we started to notice a pattern. Researching the commonality of the issue  we turned up a few things.

According to Apple found on

“Apple has determined that a very small percentage of hard drives that were used in MacBook systems, sold between approximately May 2006 and December 2007, may fail under certain conditions. ”

After scouring through the forums a bit more, we found that many other models (other than the model listed by Apple)  had  the same issue, many of which have the identical hard drive installed.

Apple in the case of the 13-inch black and white MacBook models listed in the recall, will replace the hard drive free of charge. However will not recover or back up your data in any form. This in turn will leave the user stranded, since Apple is keeping the old hard drives after replacement,  killing the chances of recovery.

In  any case, the Lesson learned here is always back up your data! If  your mac or pc is acting slow or files start showing up as corrupt, we recommend backing up your data immediately. Whether it be an external hard drive,  thumb drive, or online backup service such as Carbonite  or Nordic Backup.

Can you afford to lose all your financial records, music, email, contacts, or your even those wedding photos? A small investment can save you from a huge nightmare and make the transition to a replacement or new PC or Mac a piece of cake.