I un-bricked my Seagate Barracuda HD 7200.11 500 Gb, ST3500320AS, S/N: 9QM8QNCP, firmware SD15, which had the BSY error (not found by BIOS).
I bought almost all my hardware from ebay, most of the HW was sent from Hong Kong (to Europe). I used Windows XP, SP 3 and Hyperterminal.
First I tried to use two different USB-to-TLL adapters. The first one, the red in lower part of the picture, was DOA, a dud. The second one worked nicely in loopback mode, but only produced the arrow character (in Hyperterminal) when run against the HD.
The red adapter, a FTDI FT232BM/BL chip, which required a USB cable (A-male to B-female), never worked and was never detected by Windows. The green-blue adapter, a Prolific PL2303 chip worked in loopback only.
When the USB-to-TTL Prolific adapter was used, it produced the ARROW character in Hyperterminal. My guess is that the USB-TTL adapter sent signals at 5 Volts level and required 5 Volts responses, but maybe the HD only could send 3.3 Volts signals, so the Prolific USB-TTL adapter didn't work. So for people having problem with only getting an arrow prompter, switch to an adapter which sends and receives signals around 3.3 Volts.
Now to my solution, mostly following Gradius, with the exception for the placement of the paper piece under the HD PCB.
My torx screws on my HD were so hard stuck that I had to turn my torx screw driver with a wrench. In the picture I've placed my magnetic iron wrench dangerously close to my HD. Don't do this at home. And yes, the HD is placed on my anti-static free bed.
The paper on the HD is a piece cut out from a shoe box, so yes again, I repaired my Seagate HD with a shoe box.
I also used a 2 feet long Molex cable for power (connected to the PCs power supply), here with the HD SATA power cable piece connected at the end. I never managed to separated them after having un-bricked my HD.
I used a MAX3232 RS232-to-TTL adapter on the HD side. I soldered the minus side of the battery holder by a wire to the ground of the screw holder of the RS232 plug on the adapters circuit board. The plus side of the batteries where connected to the VCC pin on the upper side of the RS232-TTL adapter. The ground pin on the upper side of the RS232-to-TTL adapter was used to connect ground to my HD. So I connected two cables to ground on the adapter circuit card, one to the minus pole of the batteries and the other ground to the ground of the HD.
On the PC side I used a USB-RS232 adapter, which I think is based on a Prolific chip (note, this Prolific adapter was USB-RS232, not the failed/arrow USB-TTL prolific mentioned earlier). The USB-RS232 was molded into nice clear green-blue plastic + connected to a short USB A-male to A-female cable.
The prolific USB-RS232 adapter needed a driver installation and I also opened the HW lister in XP (Control Panel/System/HW) and raised the adapter's transfer speed to 38400 bps, serial port COM5.
I used three "1.5 Volts" batteries, which gave a total of 4.01 Volts (not exactly the sum of 1.5 * 3). I guess the voltage has to be between 3.0 - 4.5 Volts for this adapter to work smoothly with the HD.
I used a bloody amount of grinding with sandpaper on my jumper cable ends to make them fit into (over) the HD pins.
In the picture you can also see the shoe box piece and how far I inserted it under the circuit board, and yes I put it under the Head connections, but I suspect that the Motor connection was also broken because the paper was so thick and really raised the PCB.
At first I got a lot of garbage in Hyperterminal, even in loopback mode, when speed was higher than 4800 bps, then I discovered that the batteries were not properly connected. So connect your batteries correctly if you get garbage in Hyperterminal while doing the loopback test!
Here is my Hyperterminal session, I started by pressing CTRL-Z:
Spin Down Complete
Elapsed Time 0.139 msecs
Spin Up Complete
Elapsed Time 6.473 secs
I removed the shoe box piece and tighten the torx screws as Gradius recommended after spin down.
At end I ripped the power connection to the HD and some funny sparks flew and I heard "knittering" sound. Maybe I should have powered down my PC instead? Anyway, I waited 60 seconds before putting back the SATA power cable into my HD. I then disconnected and reconnected Hyperterminal, pressed CTRL-Z, then ran the dangerous command:
Max Wr Retries = 00, Max Rd Retries = 00, Max ECC T-Level = 00, Max Certify Rewr
ite Retries = 0000
User Partition Format 5% complete, Zone 00, Pass 00, LBA 00008DED, ErrCode 000
00080, Elapsed Time 0 mins 05 secs
User Partition Format Successful - Elapsed Time 0 mins 05 secs
I then installed my HD and backed up my data. It worked like a charm.
Then I wanted to update the firmware to SD1A, but found the following:Article from Tom's Hardware on firmware bricking Seagate HDsLocked Seaget forum thread, indicating a complete formware mess
Tom's Hardware writes: "A time of writing, 100 percent of users who attempted the update have bricked their drives with the new firmware, rather than preventing failure."
Does this mean I shouldn't update my firmware on my 500 Gb 7200.11 HD?
Edited by Huygens, 04 November 2011 - 09:06 AM.