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 Post subject: HDD platters - Effects of long term exposure to air?
PostPosted: July 14th, 2018, 21:27 
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Joined: July 14th, 2018, 20:35
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Location: Me house
Let's say you removed the cover to a HDD and left it somewhere, indoors. You never powered it back on or anything, didn't touch it or scratch it. Let's say you left it like 10 years. Would the moisture and/or dust over the duration of the 10 years cause enough corrosion on the nano level to destroy the data? If you were able to clean the platters and reassemble in a clean room, would data be recoverable?

I know that, dust + spinning + head = death
Wondering if, dust + moisture + time = death?

This is purely hypothetical, I don't have a HDD thats been exposed for 10 years that I need recovering! I do have one I took the lid off the other day, span it up and ran a screwdriver down it, looked pretty cool. (drive was broken, from 2004 i think, and had nothing on it). But seeing it there and the amount of dust its gathered already, got me thinking...


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 Post subject: Re: HDD platters - Effects of long term exposure to air?
PostPosted: July 15th, 2018, 2:07 
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Location: Canada
if you will able to remove dust - recovery is possible.


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 Post subject: Re: HDD platters - Effects of long term exposure to air?
PostPosted: July 15th, 2018, 5:07 
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Joined: December 19th, 2006, 8:49
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Moisture would take care of the platter magnetic materials and your data would be eaten by the mould ...

Humidity/moisture would be your problem not "dry dust" that could be blown by air .... Moisture/humidity would make your dust to stick to the platter and the micro-organisms at microscopic level like mould, bacteria, etc would take care of eating the platter materials including your data.

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 Post subject: Re: HDD platters - Effects of long term exposure to air?
PostPosted: July 15th, 2018, 17:05 
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Spildit wrote:
... your data would be eaten by the mould ...

Agree. If you want to see this for yourself, then leave a floppy diskette in a humid environment for a few months.

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 Post subject: Re: HDD platters - Effects of long term exposure to air?
PostPosted: July 16th, 2018, 21:55 
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Joined: July 14th, 2018, 20:35
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Interesting about the mould/bacteria, never crossed my mind, makes sense tho. How visible would this damage be? I'm guessing only under a microscope? I have seen damage to CDs and floppies due to time, but these are made of very different materials to platters.


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 Post subject: Re: HDD platters - Effects of long term exposure to air?
PostPosted: July 17th, 2018, 16:47 
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It would be visible and it would damage the HDD platters ...

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 Post subject: Re: HDD platters - Effects of long term exposure to air?
PostPosted: July 17th, 2018, 19:50 
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Joined: July 14th, 2018, 20:35
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Spildit wrote:
It would be visible and it would damage the HDD platters ...

So if i were to leave a hard drive out, exposed, I would be able to see damage after a period of time? I don't disbelieve you that there would be damage, but I can't say I've ever seen an indoor aluminium object with visible damage after a long period of time. There's tarnishing, but that's a completely different process. I know it's a stretch, but I don't suppose there's any photos anywhere?


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