Question about Seagate FreeAgent (ST305004FDA1E1-RK) 500 GB USB 2.0 Hard Drive

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External Harddrive Not Recognized, May be hardware problem

I apologize if I am posting this as a repeat of a problem but all the posts I read did not answer my questions, I have a unique problem I believe.

I own a SeaGate Freeagent Desktop 500GB external harddrive. This device does not have a power switch. It uses an AC outlet plug, and it powers up once it connects to the computer via mini-USB. Lately, when I have been connecting the harddrive to my Dell Insiprion 1700, it is not recognized by the computer, but it does power up. When I disconnect the harddrive from the computer, the power light does not go out, which it is suppose to do once it is disconnected from the computer.

I have tried several ways to fix this. I went into disk management to see if the drive was recognized but it was not. I also replaced the mini-usb cable and I also tried to use the harddrive on two other computers but to no avail, the problem still persists. Any ideas would be appreciated.

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Have you tried using the Seagate support troubleshooter available here?
Sounds like maybe an internal switch in the drive may have failed, if it no longer detects the usb connection disconnecting.
You could try uninstalling/reinstalling your usb controllers from device manager (see here) but that's a shot in the dark...
just a few ideas...maybe none helpful

I hope this information allows you to resolve this issue. If you need further assistance, please post back with a comment to this thread.
If I've managed to answer your question or solve a problem, please take just a moment to rate this post....thanks!

Posted on Jul 24, 2009

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When unplugging your exdternal hardrive using USB, always "Eject" that device such as your HDD.

Connecting it to another USB port (if not done yet) is an alternative.

Connecting to another computer might be a good solution and see if it will be recognized.

Re-installing the manufacturer's driver migth do the trick (if it has a driver because normally, nowadays it is Plug and Play).

Checking connectors for obvious damage will also solve this problem.

Last but not the least, these external hardrive will mal-function just like any other electronics. If it is covered by warranty, ask the manufacturer to replace it otherwise just buy a new one. The only drawback is your files or data written in that HDD.

Good Luck!!!

Posted on Jul 24, 2009

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The reason your monitor is in screensaver mode, (Read your other problem too), is there is no video signal coming to it.

No Signal

This is because the Netbook isn't sending one.

It isn't sending one because apparently you have graphics problems. Problems with graphics hardware.

So no, there is no Sync, or settings to change on the monitor.

(It is Not a video/graphics card. Your laptop uses Integrated Graphics. Intel HD 3000 Graphics )

However the point is moot now. Netbook is being sent in.

Point now is getting the info off the Harddrive, before some geek looses it.
(I'm a computer geek too, so that was no slam)

Remove the Harddrive. Then install it in an external enclosure.

You've seen an external enclosure, if you have seen an external harddrive.
You can buy just that 'outside case', too.

The external enclosure has a USB cable going to it.
The USB cable goes inside the enclosure, and connects to a small circuit board, with an interface on it.

The harddrive plugs into the interface.

The external enclosure comes apart VERY easily. Manufacturers make it easy to open the external enclosure, and install the Harddrive.

Usually a 2 piece case. One screw to open. Remove cover, plug Harddrive in, replace cover.
Plug USB cable into a USB port, on a working computer.

This is one example that will work with your Harddrive,

[Harddrives are measured across their width.
A laptop harddrive is 2.5 inches across in Width. 2-1/2 inches.
A desktop harddrive is 3.5 inches across in Width.

Three technology styles of Harddrive, are presently being used;
1) IDE (PATA),

2) SATA,

These two types of Harddrives use mechanical parts. For example a Spindle, Spindle Motor, and Platters,

3) SSD,

No mechanical parts. Just electronic components. (Solid State)

Your laptop uses a 2.5 SATA harddrive ]

Going on..................

I haven't had any direct dealings with this laptop. Or the Aspire V5-171 version.
I see no Service Manual listed.

Searching the internet for Harddrive replacement info though, I ran into that there is a large panel on the Bottom of the Netbook; which has a single Philips head screw in the middle.

Remove the screw, remove the large panel.
This is supposed to be in the User's Guide, but cannot seem to download it right now to see.

It will be in replace the Memory. Ram Memory.

The Harddrive should sit in a compartment area all it's own.
The Harddrive itself will be in a sheet metal Caddy. Harddrive Caddy.
Remove a screw, or screws; to remove Harddrive, and Harddrive Caddy.

Once screw/s are removed, L@@K at the Harddrive.
There should be a piece of 'silk strap', to pull on.

Keeping Harddrive flat, and down in Netbook, pull on the strap; and pull the Harddrive across towards the OUTSIDE of the Netbook.

You are unplugging it.

You DO NOT want to lift straight up on the strap, as you will bend contact pins.
Once the Harddrive is slid over, then lift at an angle; and remove.
Lift up on the Back of the Harddrive.
This is the opposite side of the one that plugs in.

Open the external enclosure case, slide the harddrive in; then close the external enclosure case. (Referring to Tigerdirect example. Other external enclosures will be different)

Plug the USB cable into any working computer's open USB port.
Look in My Computer/Computer. (WinXP/WinVista - Win 7)
The external harddrive will be shown.
DOUBLE-click on the drive letter it is next to.

Have problems with that post back in a Comment.

Your Netbook, is supposed to be just an ACER Aspire V5-171 series of Notebook PC; with a Chrome logo on it.

For additional questions please post in a Comment.


Mar 05, 2013 | Acer Computers & Internet

2 Answers

Seagate st90000u2 160gb no longer recognized by home laptops


First, please disconnect all USB devices and then perform the following steps:

Click "Start" button, type "devmgmt.msc" (without quotation marks) in the "Search" bar and press "Enter". Click "Continue" if necessary.

In Device Manager, double click to expand "Universal Serial Bus controllers", right click on the Host Controller, click "Uninstall" and click "OK".

Repeat the step 2 to uninstall all items under "Universal Serial Bus controllers".

Then, restart your computer and Windows 7 will reinstall all USB controllers automatically.

for xp

click start control panel administrative tools computer management device manager scroll down universal serial bus controllers you could see a yellow question / exclamation mark? ! or a red X

you will need to update/reinstall drivers

right click to reinstall drivers

if you can see your usb but its not working

ports(com&lpt)right click update driver

sometimes the wires inside the cable will be damaged due to bending or stretching or placing heavy equipment upon the cable

just replace the cable of the hard disk, when you plugged the external disk drive you got that windows could recognize the USB device change the cable everything should work fine again,

if you can see your usb drive but its not working

ports (com&lpt) right click update driver if this fails to fix the problem

check the USB leads that attach to the motherboard usually red white green black make sure they are securely seated and have no dust build up on them dust will cause static and a lot of unforeseen problems to a computer and its parts

if this fails to fix the problem
Downloads to Recover Your Files and Save Your Bacon and 10 Best Free Hard Drive Utilities.

Some addition links found on Google

hope this helps

Aug 10, 2012 | Computers & Internet

1 Answer

My WD Book was spinning and clicking constantly, so i unplugged the USB and the power source from my laptop. After plugging back in, it is no longer recognized on My Computer -- I've rebooted 2x. My...

Let's hope the spinning and clicking was caused by a bad circuit board in the WD Book, and not the Harddrive inside it.

To explain;
Inside the plastic external enclosure (Case) of the WD MyBook is an ordinary harddrive as used in a laptop, or desktop computer.

There is a small circuit board inside the case, that the harddrive plugs into. (Or there are wires from the small circuit board, to the harddrive)

The other end of the circuit board, has a USB cable attached to it.
The circuit board is an Interface Board.

It is this small interface circuit board that USUALLY goes out.
Harddrives are pretty tough, but they are a mechanical device, and are rated in hours of usage. They can fail.

What I would suggest is to buy an economical external enclosure.
Has the circuit board, USB cable, and everything needed, just needs the Harddrive.

Installing is easy. There are instructions included.

Now we come to the technical portion.
What size harddrive is it, and what technology does it use?

1) There are two sizes of Harddrives. They are measured across the Width.

A 2.5 inch harddrive is a laptop size harddrive.
(2 and a half inches across in width)

A 3.5 inch harddrive is a desktop size harddrive.

Once you open the WD MyBook case, and measure, you will know.
Pretty easy.
Looking at the harddrives label, will tell you if it is an IDE (PATA) model, or a SATA model.

If no nomenclature is readily apparent looking at the label, there will be a model number on the label.
Put the model number in your search bar.


250GB SATA harddrive. Also is a laptop size harddrive.

If you cannot find the information, just post the Model Number in a Comment, and I'll find out.

Example of a 2.5 SATA external enclosure,

Example of a 3.5 SATA external enclosure,

Example of a 2.5 IDE (PATA) external enclosure,

Example of a 3.5 IDE (PATA) enclosure,

The information on how to open a WD MyBook case, is not something the external harddrive manufacturer states.
For this we'll have to rely on videos that are made,


There are also other related videos to the right.

For additional questions please post in a Comment.


Oct 09, 2011 | Computers & Internet

2 Answers

WD 500G HDD suddenly un-readable; changed name to local disk, says I need to format in order to use it. I have tons of important stuff on there.

Could you confirm if the problem with the drive not being recognized is a problem with the USB cable? I have a 250GB passport and it worked fine with my XP. Once I decided to reformat it to NTFS and tried to do so by plugging into my new windows7 laptop the problems started.

Aug 21, 2011 | Western Digital My Passport Essential...

1 Answer

My lacie drive fell off desktop and is not recognized as readable by my Mac. What chance do I have of recovering the data?

Inside that LaCie external harddrive's enclosure is a regular SATA harddrive.
The kind that fits in a desktop computer (3.5 inches in width), or laptop. (2.5 inches across in width)

Open the external enclosure (Case) of the LaCie, remove the harddrive, and install it into a suitable external enclosure.
(Laptop size, or desktop size)

The external enclosure has a USB cable also. Just plug it into any available USB port on your desktop computer.

Do I know for a fact that the harddrive is okay, and this will fix the problem?
No sir/maam I do not.

But IMHO this is the first diagnostic method to use.

IF the harddrive is a desktop sized harddrive, it could be installed in your desktop computer as a Slave drive.
However the above method is so much easier, and it allows your harddrive to be an external harddrive once more.

Inside the external enclosure of the LaCie external harddrive, is a small circuit board that the Harddrive plugs into.
It is this small circuit board that receives the damage in most cases.

If the problem is the Harddrive itself, a professional data recovery shop will;

A) Try a new, or good used harddrive circuit board.
Check to see if the harddrive's circuit board received the damage.

B) If the circuit board proves to be good then the next step is to remove the Platters inside.
The room used is a Clean Room.
A room that is 99.9 percent dust free. (In most cases)

The Platters are installed into the case of a compatible harddrive, that has the Platters removed.
Then as much information as possible is copied off.

There are other methods data recovery specialists use also.

[A Harddrive is built in a Clean Room. 99.9 percent dust free. The technicians wear a Clean Suit, that resembles what a doctor would wear in an operating room.
They enter the work area after going through a corridor, fitted with air jets at various levels.

If a harddrive is opened up in a room that is not a Clean Room, the harddrive's 'life expectency' drops to a day, or a few hours. The dust 'kills' them ]

Observe the other videos also.

Examples of both a SATA 2.5 external enclosure, and a SATA 3.5 SATA enclosure,
(The Harddrive's width is measured in inches. (2-1/2 inches for a laptop drive, 3-1/2 inches for a desktop drive)

SATA 2.5 external enclosure,

SATA 3.5 external enclosure,

For additional questions please post in a Comment.

Jul 02, 2011 | LaCie Hard Disk design by Neil Poulton...

1 Answer

My daughter just dpopped my hard drive on the floor and now it's not recognised on my pc....any help!!?? It's a verbatim 640 GB

The Verbatim external harddrive may be damaged beyond warranting repairing, either from you, or a professional computer shop.

Allow me to explain the construction of an external Harddrive, plus the Harddrive located inside the case, and what may have resulted from the fall.

Basic construction of an external Harddrive, (IDE or SATA)

1) Plastic external case. Also referred to as an External Enclosure. Usually comes apart in two halves.
2) Small circuit board located inside, with an interface that the Harddrive plugs into.
3) Harddrive. IDE or SATA. Can be a 2.5 laptop harddrive, or a 3.5 desktop harddrive that is used.

[A laptop harddrive is 2-1/2 inches across in width. A desktop harddrive 3-1/2 inches.
If you have the Verbatim Leather Wallet 640 External HarDDrive it has a 2.5 inch laptop harddrive inside. The harddrive is a SATA unit.

View of an average 2.5 inch (Laptop) 640GigaByte harddrive,

(The harddrive inside the Verbatim external harddrive enclosure, may not have a clear see-through cover to observe the internal workings )

The back end of the harddrive has contact pins. These pins line up with an interface.
The interface is a block with matching socket holes for the contact pins.
(Or more than one interface may be used)

The interface 'block' may be attached directly to the circuit board, that is inside the Verbatim external enclosure (Case), or may be attached to cables (Wires) that are then attached to the circuit board.

A) Point; The circuit board may have a crack. (Copper circuit trace is torn, or more than one)

[Circuit Board. Also known as PCB. Printed Circuit Board. Crude description of construction is a laminated board with very thin copper wires on it.
This information details out the construction of PCB's, ]

If cracked the circuit board MAY be repaired. Finding the open circuit, (Broken circuit trace. 'Copper wire'), may be VERY tough.
The circuit board may be replaced. From the factory will cost $$$$, and perhaps the loss of information that is on the harddrive.

To my knowledge the needed circuit board is not sold to the average consumer. This would mean obtaining another like Verbatim 640GB external harddrive, and using it's circuit board.
Not feasible.

More feasible; The harddrive would be removed, an inexpensive external enclosure procured, the harddrive then installed inside, then the USB cable from the external enclosure is attached to a working computer, and personal information is then copied off.
(Hope you're not an English teacher, and reading the above, lol!)

B) Basic construction of a Harddrive:

1) Inside the hollow empty metal shell of the Harddrive are two motors.
The Spindle motor, and the Actuator motor.

There are 3 to 6 Platters inside the Harddrive. (Perhaps more in today's Harddrive's)
The Platters resemble CD or DVD disks, and are usually composed of metal or glass.
The Spindle motor drives the Platters.

EACH Platter has a magnetic media applied to it's top surface, and bottom surface.
The magnetic media is arranged in a pattern of 0's and 1's.
1 being ON, 0 being OFF.

(The magnetic media is arranged in Sectors and Tracks much like a CD or DVD disk)

The Read/Write Head arranges the magnetic media. The Write portion of the Read/Write Head does this. (The Read portion does as it implies. It reads the information on the Platter)

There is a Read/Write Head on the Top, and on the bottom surface for EVERY Platter.

When the computer is off the Read/Write Head is in a parked position, and away from the Platter.
When the computer is on, the Read/Write Head is 'hovering' right above the surface of the Platter.
The distance of the Read/Write Head to the surface of the Platter is VERY CLOSE.

The Read/Write Head is attached to an Actuator Arm. This arm swings the Read/Write Head back, and forth across the surface of the Platter.
(When operating, the Actuator Arm can swing the Read/Write Head back, and forth across the Platter at Hundreds of Times a Second!)

Point; If the Verbatim 640GB was plugged into your computer with the computer on, and then dropped, one or more Read/Write Heads could have crashed into a Platter. (Or Platters)
This would result in wiping off some of the magnetic media, and may have rendered the Harddrive useless.

I know. I'm just a ray of sunshine.

I would suggest removing the harddrive out of the Verbatim's case, and installing it into a matching external enclosure, to try to remove any needed data.
OR take it to a professional service that recovers information from damaged harddrives.

An external enclosure is cheap,

This is to just check out the harddrive, and see if it's still functional.

For questions, or clarification to what I have stated please post in a Comment.

Apr 24, 2011 | Verbatim Computers & Internet

2 Answers

No blue light on my WD320gb essentials external hard-drive

It is my belief that the circuit board for your Western Digital external harddrive, has failure problems.
Simply put, the circuit board is No good.

I don't know your computer hardware expertise, so please bear with me, if I detail the following information in basic format. It is my intention to explain the basics of how a harddrive works, (Internal or External), so that my solution may be understood in general terms.

What you see right now is an external case. Inside the case is a desktop style harddrive.
(3.5 inches in width)

Inside the harddrive are round Platters, that resemble a CD disk. Depending on the harddrive, there are 3 to 6 Platters. Information is stored on the platters, by means of arranging a magnetic media on both sides of each platter. (There is magnetic media on both sides of each platter)

The magnetic media is arranged by Read/Write heads. These heads are attached to an 'Arm'. The Arm moves the Read/Write head back, and forth, across the platter.
(Like the arm of a phonograph player)

There are Two Read/Write heads for Each platter. One above the platter, one below.
The Write option of the Read/Write head, arranges the magnetic media, for the information put on the platter.

The Read option of the Read/Write head, 'Reads' the information stored on the platter.

All of the above named components are inside a hermetically sealed case, which has an opening to equal pressure with the atmosphere outside of it. There is a special filter in this opening.

All of the above named components are installed in that hermetically sealed case, while in a Clean Room. This room is 99.9% dust free, and the assemblers wear special suits that would make NASA jealous.

The harddrive case Can be opened, But SHOULD NOT be opened! Once the case is opened in anything but a special Clean Room, the harddrive will only last for a few hours.

At the bottom of this case is a Circuit Board. A PCB. (Printed Circuit Board) This circuit board is made specifically for THAT style, size, and type of harddrive, for it's manufacturer. (Western Digital)

This circuit board is a Control Board, for the components I named off above. The circuit board has components on it that can fail very easily. (Electrolytic Capacitors are the ones with the highest fail rate)

It is this component that I believe has failed. You have the option to buy the same type, style, size, and model of Western Digital harddrive, and borrow it's circuit board.

The circuit board is attached with screws to the bottom of the main harddrive case. There are small connectors to disconnect, and that's it.
Remove the circuit board from your defunct one, install this one. I would transfer all of your important information, then trash this harddrive. Replace the circuit board back into the one you bought, and use it.

(Your external harddrive case opens like a clamshell. It's made of two halves. There are screws that hold the two halves together. 4 of them. The screw heads are hidden under the labels of the case)

I apologize for the length of this solution, and hope you can make sense of it.

A new harddrive, and borrowing the circuit board from it, will be MUCH cheaper than having a data recovery shop recover your information! (Generally they charge $75 an hour, and it usually takes a while. You can buy a new harddrive for Much less,

The above is an example. It is Not a direct example. You need to view the model number that is on the case's label, for the harddrive inside your external harddrive enclosure. You need THE same one)

Sep 10, 2009 | Western Digital Elements powered by WD 320...

1 Answer

Harddisk data not acceseble

please give some more details on the machine and OS u are using, sounds like you have got windows installed and the external harddisk is being recognized as an unknown hardware device.
you may face following problems:

- either you need special drivers for it suiting to the windows version u are using(google!)
- or your PC still has only the 1.1 USB ability
but the external hd is 2.0 USB and that's producing trouble


in windows XXX:
-make sure you are logged in as an administrator
-then you may try to find the harddisk using the windows explorer or
-left-click'start' goto 'system' then 'hardware'. double-click now and perform a search for new hardware
- does windows find the harddisk now?
- let it install the drivers, unplug usb-device, reboot, reconnect and now it can be found like any other harddrive

good luck - if still facing the problem, please post another request on fixya and give more details on your pc and the harddisk..

Apr 17, 2009 | Computers & Internet

2 Answers

Simple tech 500gb usb hard drive

Youve damadged the harddrive, is the harddrive spinning or making any noise?

Jun 16, 2008 | SimpleTech SimpleDrive Pininfarina 500GB...

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