I am done with Seagate hard drives. I’m suggesting that to everybody.
In early 2010, I bought a Seagate FreeAgent little guy that held about 500G. By September, it was corrupted and unreadable. I went to Geek Squad in my local Best Buy, which was then Oro Valley, AZ. Steve was awesome, and for the cost of another drive + $99 for the data “transfer,” I got all of my data back in about 2 days. I had the data put on a little silver Western Digital My Passport (750G).
In spring 2011, I decided that I needed a super backup and archive drive for all of my client and music files. I went to Best Buy, and dropped about $200 for a Seagate 2TB drive. I was still floating in the happy days of my Seagate drives from the 1990s, but clearly, these are not those. By July, the drive was completely corrupted and unusable. I went to my local Best Buy, now San Bruno, CA, where Ryan gave me the bad news that they couldn’t recover the data. It had to be sent out to their facility in Kentucky, where they do the serious data recovery.
Meanwhile, I’m in emails with Seagate customer support, who are great ONLY at copying and pasting form replies about how frustrating it can be to lose data. Really! Yes, evidently it can be frustrating to lose 1.2TB of data on a brand new 2TB drive. I’m glad they mentioned that. And what will they do to help? Nothing. How did they feel about this being my SECOND Seagate in a row to go POOF while all of my Western Digital drives never had a moment of failure? They sent me a form email about how frustrating it can be to lose data.
But on top of that, they also let me know that their data recovery can start around $1000 and run up to $2500, and would I like to send my drive in. Absolutely not.
Long story short, Geek Squad in Kentucky just called me. They were able to recover ALL of my data except 54MB. Fantastic! To only lose 54MB out of 1.2TB is amazing. However, it cost me $500 for their “level 2″ recovery service. This means that a $100 or $200 Seagate drive really costs hundreds more, once you factor in the data recovery, not to mention the time lost. It’s October, and my 2TB Seagate drive was failing in July. Geek Squad has had it about 6 weeks.
And yes, they recovered it to a Western Digital 2TB. Seagate can go suck it FIRST for having drives that are evidently prone to failure, and second for giving the worst and most uncaring customer “support” I could have imagined.
Am I doing something so special with these drives? Not that I know of. I haven’t put them in the dishwasher. I use them connected to my main laptop or my netbook to work on files. I would think that they are supposed to store files and let me work on files. I didn’t think I was doing anything special. And yes, I always do a proper eject or total system shutdown before I remove them. So let’s not blame me, please!
What else am I doing now? I’m using SpiderOak to back up to the cloud. That way, if a drive dies, I will have all the important stuff in the cloud. SpiderOak is like Dropbox in that it can backup, sync, and share, but it’s better in that it can handle external and networked drives. You get 2G for free, and then they charge around $10 per month per 100G. Based on what I’m paying for data recovery, I will buy a few hundreds gigs on their cloud to know that I don’t have to do data recovery ever again.