Question Are my docking stations killing my hard drives?


Dec 13, 2017
I have both a Wavlink and Sabrent dual docking station. Lately for some reason my external hard drives in the docking stations have been going inaccessible. Sometimes I can get them back but I've given up and reformatted a couple of half-full 3 TB hard drives to try and get them to work. They download the data from my backups for a while, but then I'll boot up and get an H: drive is inaccessible message and an invitation to format the drive. I just got a brand new one and it went inaccessible on me again. It does it to all 4 drives in random order. I don't know why but it's getting to be a pain. It also says the disk structure is corrupted and unreadable. Sometimes it gives me that but properties shows there's data there. I lost a one terabyte drive just an hour ago that shows 0 bytes on the drive.

I've got a venerable Dell Optiplex 780 (just replaced the CMOS battery) with 16 GB RAM and an upgraded CPU that runs faster than the original. Haven't had trouble with the CPU unless it's responsible for killing the drives. I recovered one tonight. It magnanimously gave me access to the security tab, I took ownership in my username specifically and it pulled up nicely after that. The 1 TB drive with backup files, not so much. It's showing 0 bytes of data on the disk and giving me no access to drive itself unless I reformat. It even balked on that with my 3TB drive at first and then I managed to come at it from the command line. It balked once, then formatted happily destroying the 1.5 Terabytes I had loade last night and all day today.

This is getting old fast. Could it be the SATA HDD docks that are corrupting the drives. I've got 5 external drives to use in the Docks. So far every one of them has turned into a brick. Some are visible but empty. Some are only visible in drive manager. It's a crap shoot bringing them back and whether they hold data depends on the mood they are in.

Any ideas what might be causing this? I need reliable storage. I have a lot of data I'd like to be able to keep off my two onboard drives C & D. The drives are Hitachi, (new 3TB), a Western digital (older drives from previous computer), 3 Seagates (refurbished 1TB and 2TB and 500 GB), and a 3TB serial ATA (brand unknown). I'm running Windows 10 Pro 64-bit.

Mostly I want to know what's killing the drives. You can't eject the when you need to pull one. The last two Windows 10 updates are doing what the last two Windows XP updates did and has introduced freezes and crashes galore (I sense the coming of Windows 11 - Billy must need a new yacht). I wondered if some of those hard restarts (flip the power off wait 10 and then flip it back on reboot), are corrupting the drives' system/index/magic word storage that reads the hard drives.

Anybody else having their external hard drives crashing/becoming "inaccessible".

Tom King

My CPU is an
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9650 @ 3.00GHz
Yorkfield 45nm Technology
if that makes any difference.
Last edited by a moderator:


I have a cables matters dual docking station that i flip the power button on the back off before removing the drive.

In windows 10 you can use the safely remove hardware and eject media like you would a USB drive.