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I have 3 questions.

Just purchased the Western Digital Elements 2TB USB 2.0 Desktop External Hard Drive.

After reading all the information on the internet, it seems like it is usually a 4K sector size Advanced Format drive.

It says "p/n:WDBAAU0020HBK-01" on the enclosure; HD Tune, SIW etc say "WDC WD20EARS-00MVWB0", firmware "51.0AB51"

The HDD also gives the following information:

Number Of Disks : 4 Number Of Heads : 8 Rotational Speed : IntelliPower Bytes Per Sector : 512 Multiple Sectors : 16

I am confused regarding:

  1. the number of discs being 4 as I read it being a 3x666GB HDD.

  2. "Bytes Per Sector" being reported as 512

    Hence, is this drive a 4K sector size Advanced Format drive?

    Is there a dependable way of checking so?

  3. I see that there are lots of reports about this specific drive "WD20EARS-00MVWB0" failing.

Is there a dependable way of checking if the drive will fail in the next 2/3 months?

I have enough free sapce on other drives and do not need to use this drive right away - instead I am willing to stress test the drive if it would help me get meaningful details about the drive's reliability and life.

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2 Answers 2

the number of discs being 4 as I read it being a 3x666GB HDD.

Where did you get that info?

"Bytes Per Sector" being reported as 512

Even a 4K sector size drive appears as a 512byte sector drive(due to emulation) to the PC

  1. I see that there are lots of reports about this specific drive "WD20EARS-00MVWB0" failing.

A stress test may help, but as long as you can write data to the entire drive, and read it back, you'll just have to watch for signs of failure and take the appropriate precautions

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Google gave me the info. How do I confirm if it's a 4K drive? –  PoorLuzer Dec 1 '10 at 4:24

The hard drive inside seems to be a WDC WD20EARS-00MVWB0. Consequently,

Is there a dependable way of checking if the drive will fail in the next 2/3 months?

No.

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It's an external drive as I mentioned, and thus I cannot look at the bare drive without voiding warranty. Is there a dependable way of checking if this drive is formatted to a 4K sector size? –  PoorLuzer Dec 2 '10 at 20:08

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