post #31 of 31
Originally Posted by cdoublejj;11685400 
Excuse me OPEN AIR will kill the drive.

Entirely wrong - hard drives are not hermetically sealed. The drop, probably on a corner, and with a bent up arm assembly, would be very difficult to ressurect, since the data on a multiple disk assembly would not be written contiguously on a single surface of one disk, but stacked on the various surfaces, since most drives are set up to step through the heads, with the data contained sequentially in "cylinders". (This is not always true with RAID however).

If the head hasn't crashed out and damaged the surface, the drive might be readable. "Air" will not kill a drive, excessive dust or grease will. Cigarette particles are the worst, since they are not only sticky, they are also the perfect size to wedge in the air gap between the spinning platter and the head.

However, this is less of a factor on modern drives. Modern drives are servo controlled and voice coil actuated, so the drive will "automatically" adjust for any imperfections. They also have magneto-restrictive heads, which are lighter, less massive - and modern disk surfaces are more resiliant when it comes to incidences when the head rests on the surface. On old drives, with stepper actuated heads and standard heads - such things lead to great destruction.

When it comes to "dust" - the idea is that once the adjustments have been made, the cover should be put on. Then, when the drive is run up, any "dust" will fling off and stick itself into the filter. Long term use is probably not advisable - especially since a new drive is so inexpensive. In the old days, when drives were very expensive, such drives would be pressed into use until they had actual death. But that was when a low end drive was $750 for 20MB - drives are like $70 for 500GB - so such hardware hacking is really only in the interesting of hacking/learning, or that you need to extract some data because you have no backups, and will probably end up chalking this as a lesson, that having stuff on CD-Rs or keychains or whatever, is a really good idea.

And if anyone thinks "open air" will kill a drive, I will show you a drive that I opened and repaired over twenty years ago, that still works in a legacy system setup where it regularly runs customized software that has no equivalent and can not run on "modern" machinery.