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Repair information on hard drives or hard disks. Hard drives are magnetic data storage devices. They are used in most desktop, laptop, and server due to their low cost and high data density.

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Old WD Hard Disk doesn't spin

I have an old Western Digital Hard Disk (20GB) Dated 26 Dec 1999. I got it out of an old Compaq and I'm trying to see if it works. It has been sitting for over 15 years (in humid/hot environment) so it might be stuck. I took the board off of the drive and nothing looks damaged. Is there a way I can measure the control board to see if power is being sent to the drive motor? Keep in mind this is not a SATA disk.

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Probably a SCSI drive. I have had luck by gently tapping the side with a hammer. Also try putting it in the freezer for an hour or so.

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@mayer Thanks for the reply. Should I try tapping it while power is connected or disconnected? Also, would condensation build up from the freezer? Or is that not an issue?

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First tap it with the power off, then try it on. As long as the drive is not hot when going in the freezer you should be OK. But it wouldn't hurt to bag it first.

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Ok, so I tried doing that and its still not doing anything. I notice one of the chips on the pcb is getting hot but that's all. There is a 3.3v area that I tested using a multimeter and it is correct. I think it might be something with the controller. I'll post some pictures of the board.

What voltage, if any, should I be getting on those main 4 pins that connect to the HDD motor?

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@carsman248

Don't know about the voltages but here's a link that shows how the motor works.

Usually it is a 3 phase stepper motor operated by a controller.

The link describes how to operate a motor removed from a HDD but it is controlled the same way when in a HDD

What is the model number of the HDD? There may be schematics for it somewhere online, although the only ones I've found for similar sized i.e. 20GB, ATA drives show only the IDE controller section and not the motor drive section of the HDD

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@jayeff Ok, I posted a picture of the front of the HDD but the model might be covered by the Compaq sticker so I'm not sure what the model exactly is.

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@carsman248 by the image you posted your HDD is a WD200AA-60ANA0 Western Digital Caviar 20GB 5400RPM ATA-66 2MB Cache 3.5-inch Internal drive. It is an IDE drive. What voltages do you get on the connector? Post some pictures of the PCB and point out which IC gets hot. See if there are any marking on it. It is possible it heats up because your drive is to gummed up.

The connection should be one Common and three signal lines (it's a stepper motor so it works a little different since this is a 3phase motor). Voltage should be 5V16V depending on the PCB I start checking for 5V first and expect 12V. Do you have any identifier on the motor. Do not just connect a power supply to your motor...... if anything you need something like this https://www.digikey.in/en/articles/why-a... and remember you can purchase controllers https://www.banggood.in/3pcs-5V-12V-DC-B... like this

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