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Quantum QM31300CX-A Data Recovery Information


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These are some real problems experienced by QM31300CX-A and Quantum hard drives in general that we see in our lab. We are not affiliated in any way with hard drive manufacturers. All the information below is based solely on our experience and we do not make any claims regarding reliability of the specific model. We see mostly failed drives in our lab and therefore we don't have complete statistics.

The drive doesn't spin up (probably burnt logic board). The drive originally came as an external USB drive. I believe I must have mistakenly plugged the wrong power adapter, and must have first burnt the USB to IDE board, as the drive wasn't recognized by the PC but was still spinning. But after having tried unsuccesfully several times, the drive stop spinning altogether. I also tried using another USB to IDE board. Their was no spinning, although the PC understood a HD drive was attached (but couldn't access any volume).
J.K.M.
Lincoln, Nebraska, USA

Most common problem for Quantum drives is bad sectors. After some period of time magnetic media that covers the platters starts to degrade and magnetic domains can't be turned in a desired direction by writing element of the head. This is how bad sectors appear.
When the drive starts reading data from such unreadable bad sector it could start freezing, scratching and sometimes even clicking: . This leads to further damage to the heads and surface, and may result in further data loss. As soon as you start experiencing such symptoms stop the drive immediately and send it to our data recovery lab for evaluation. Any further attempts would just add up to the problems. In our lab we use special imaging hardware tools that are capable of reading raw sector data ignoring checksum check. That's usually the only way to get as much data as possible from these LBAs.

Another quite common symptom Quantum drives have is clicking or knocking sound. The drive usually spins up, clicks a few times, spins faster, clicks again and spins down: . Most often this a sign of a bad head, but before doing any clean room work, it is very important to perform accurate diagnostics and eliminate a chance of possible firmware corruption that sometimes could also cause clicking.

There had been a power outage overnight and I got "Operating system not found" on my computer in the morning. I bought an "IDE to USB" cradle but it would not read or spinup or be seen under the drivers section or as a disk. I assumed that the controller card was bad so I bought and identical disk (Quantum(model QM31300CX-A)) and moved the new PCB over and it spins up and is seen by the BIOS as a USB mass storage and comes up as a disk. I hear it spin and it sounds like the reader does the normal click like ready to read so I'm assuming that the firmware on the negative cyclinders is corrupt or something.
K T
Denver, Colorado, USA

Quantum hard drives are also well-known for their firmware problems. If one of the firmware modules becomes corrupted, the drive fails to initialize correctly and stops working making the data inaccessible. In such case the drive is either

  • not found in BIOS at all
  • shows up with wrong S/N or capacity,
  • or fail to read any data or boot up operating system.
If you attempt to boot up from such drive or read any data from it you would get "Primary Master Hard Disk Fail" or "No operating system found" or "USB Device malfunctioned" error or something similar.

If you experience any of the symptoms described above with your Quantum QM31300CX-A please feel free to contact us to get upfront quote on data recovery from your failed drive.

If you hear your Quantum hard drive making some other unusual noises visit our Hard Drive Sounds page for more examples.

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