Question Samsung D3 Station drive problem with OS X


Sep 3, 2019
So I'm having a problem with a Samsung D3 Station 3TB external drive - I think it may be beyond help but would appreciate any more knowledgable insight

It stopped responding, ie. no longer showing up on my desktop. The external PSU appeared to be working (checked with multimeter), so I opened the unit and removed the 3.5" drive from its attached circuit board, and put it in a hard drive dock, hoping to read it that way.

But instead I get a popup that says "The disk you inserted was not readable by this computer". OS X Disk Utility tells me that the drive has a Master Boot Record, no reference to any formatting.

It seems a bit odd that a board failure - I assume the board was the problem as the PSU seems to be working and the drive probably – would mess with the drive, so is there any chance that replacing that board will sort things out? (Yup, I am grasping at straws a little here… generally I'd assume that the drive was no good, but unfortunately there's some unbacked-up data that I'd like to recover if possible, so I want to be sure)


If it is the exact same make and model. Rarely a straight swap is possible, really just on drives a few decades old. Often times it'll require transferring the firmware ROM, NVRAM or Controller swap. This can go between advanced soldering skills to requiring a BGA rework station.

If a data recovery utility won't work. It's best to send it off to a professional data recovery firm. Not your local computer repair shop. There's just a handful of professional data recovery labs. As it requires expensive equipment, specialty expertise and a clean room. For a proper job done with the best chances of recovery.

As you list MBR. I assume a PC format. If you are trying to do this from a Mac. You need one of the few data recovery utilities for Mac which can read PC formats. Stellar Phoenix is one I know of.

You also need a drive to recover too. That drive should be larger than the drive being recovered and blank. To ensure no interruption in recovery.