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I recently got a brand new WD 1 TB Caviar Blue HDD. While trying to use Clonezilla to clone the contents of and old drive to it, I got a screenful of errors (see below). Trying it in another PC with different cables and all that jazz was of no use. Booting up a live Ubuntu USB gave a similar message during startup, and then Ubuntu refused to acknowledge the existence of the drive. My Windows 7 installation also gave up trying to recognize it.

This is the message I get from Clonezilla, repeated every few seconds. For the record, at the time this was the only HDD plugged in.

ata1.00: exception Emask 0x0 SAct 0x1 SErr 0x0 action 0x0
ata1.00: irq_stat 0x40000008
ata1.00: failed command: READ FPDMA QUEUED
ata1.00: cmd 60/08:00:08:00:00/00:00:00:00:00/40 tag 0 ncq 4096 in
         res 41/40:00:08:00:00/00:00:00:00:00/00 Emask 0x409 (media error) <F>
ata1.00: status: { DRDY ERR }
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 8
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 1

The message here seems pretty clear (you can only read err so many times before you get the hint), but I'm wary of immediately giving up on the drive because it's literally brand new. Is there any chance at all the drive isn't faulty?

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This is essentially a duplicate of External Western Digital hard drive (USB) not fully mounting and at least one other, but I'm going to add info: Download the WD Data lifeguard diagnostics to test the drive.

New drives have failure rates in the range of 5-10%, so, yes, as a brand new drive, it may well be failing. The problem is in the hardware, in this case possibly the cache on the drive.

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