Maxtor 1TB HD is dead

My Maxtor OneTouch III Turbo external hard disk served me well for nearly a year until it started having hiccups last week. After several attempts to revive it, it seems brain dead. The power supply and fans is still working, but the hard disk is making clicking sounds.
A lot of bad things have happened to my Mac since I upgraded to Leopard. The Maxtor dying may or may not be related to the fact that I was backing up my Mac’s files regularly using Time Machine, which was a very useful tool and much easier to use than Maxtor’s own software. I wonder if it wore out the hard disk especially as I had a lot of files to back up.
The worse thing is that I didn’t just use the Maxtor as a backup system – I had truly run out of space on my 160GB Mac, and moved my Photos and Videos over. Next, I let my kid sister (aspiring filmmaker) install Final Cut Studio on my system. The only catch was that we had to upgrade to Leopard. The upgrade itself was easy, but a subsequent update killed my Airport connection (Internet) and my Missing Sync (synchronisation software for my Windows Mobile phone) service. My M-Audio sound and MIDI card lost its MIDI-OUT capabilities and I later learnt that was because M-Audio products were not yet compatible with Leopard.
Also, to install her software, I needed to create some file space for her, so I moved more files out of my Mac’s hard disk. I copied all my iTunes music to the Maxtor. So yep, you guessed it – I’ve lost all my Music as well as my Photos and Videos! (RIP – in their honour they will all have Capital letters) The only consolation is that my better pics are all on Flickr, and I’ve quickly switched my iPods to Manual Mode so that music files aren’t deleted during syncing.
Thank God I still felt like keeping my Logic files (the most important stuff – all my compositions) on my Mac’s hard disk instead. It was like a premonition. Ironically, after over 3 years the Mac’s hard disk is still working fine, TOUCH WOOD. I really like my Mac and I don’t want to cause any more problems for it. Data and connectivity losses are bad enough already.
Worse, the Maxtor/Seagate support site did not help me address the clicking sound problem and I am sure they will not think of paying for my data recovery bill. I’ve written in to two Singapore data recovery companies for quotes and will see how it goes.
The worst is Googling for my Maxtor’s model name and learning that it got terrible reviews on CNet and even worse reviews on – mostly 1 star. If I had known that at the time of purchase, I’d never have bought it. At least I know I’m not the only one out there suffering; misery loves company.
Even if I can return the Maxtor, I wonder if I’d dare to use another hard disk from this company… Now I am wondering if adding a second hard drive to my Mac will work out better.


  1. Isaak Kwok

    I had the same problems with the Maxtor One Touch III, but mine was the 320GB version. It just ‘died’ suddenly without any warning signs. And I had made another backup. I guess I had some premonition that it would die. Unfortunately, my other backup disk, a Seagate FreeAgent 500GB ‘died’ about a week later. So, I lost quite a bit of photos (RAW format) and other documents. As the Maxtor was still under warranty, I managed to get a 1-for-1 replacement. Now, I save all my documents in 2 different places. I think we need to be a bit more ‘kiasu’ when it comes to data backup/protection.

  2. Singeo

    Hi Vanessa, I recently has some success getting data off two bad hard-drives by putting them in the freezer overnight and then reconnecting them. They both stayed working long-enough to get the data off. Something to do with the parts contracting when cooled. Hope this helps.

  3. ZuL

    Argh… I hate it when this happens! Back in the days (hurr), I used Maxtor harddisks as my Master & Slave hdds… Both conked out on me within a couple of years and I swore never to buy/recommend Maxtor harddisks again… But apparently their hdd are getting better. I have my doubts.
    Western Digital FTW! 😀

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