There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Thu Oct 20, 2011 6:21 pm

CB5000 wrote:I think it's a bit more than that. I think it's something called the Dunning-Kruger effect where in North American culture, the less competent estimate themselves are more competent than they actually are, while the more competent estimate themselves as less competent than they actually are. It's kind of a reason why the idiots tend to think they are actually a genius, while smart people underestimate their intelligence. Which is why the smart people tend to second guess themselves and double check everything a lot, while the idiots just jam everything together and think they are doing everything right.

Some of the MSI boards for the LGA 1155 socket had some pretty tough retention levers. Did scare me a bit, but I also noticed that the pins that contact the CPU were much stiffer than what I was used to.


I totally agree. It definitely is a deeper psychological issue. It always seems to be the people that describe themselves as being "highly intelligent".
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:04 pm

CB5000 wrote:Some of the MSI boards for the LGA 1155 socket had some pretty tough retention levers. Did scare me a bit, but I also noticed that the pins that contact the CPU were much stiffer than what I was used to.


I think Socket 1155 is a little bit stiff for anyone coming from Socket 775 (though I didn't have 1156 or 1366, so I can't compare that). The first one I did made me a little nervous, but I got used to it.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:05 pm

LoneWolf15 wrote:
CB5000 wrote:Some of the MSI boards for the LGA 1155 socket had some pretty tough retention levers. Did scare me a bit, but I also noticed that the pins that contact the CPU were much stiffer than what I was used to.

I think Socket 1155 is a little bit stiff for anyone coming from Socket 775 (though I didn't have 1156 or 1366, so I can't compare that). The first one I did made me a little nervous, but I got used to it.

Nothing -- and I mean *nothing* -- in PC building in the past couple of decades compares to the sheer terror factor of early Socket A HSFs. No lever... most Socket A HSFs had just a slot for you to insert the tip of a screwdriver to pry the (often quite stiff) clip into place over the retention tabs. One slip and you've put a gouge in your motherboard, destroying it. Apply pressure unevenly and you cracked the CPU core, since there was no metal lid (the back of the bare silicon die was exposed to the HSF). And as if that wasn't bad enough, with the larger copper HSFs you had to make sure you *removed* the HSF before transporting or shipping the system; otherwise, one bump and the weight of the heatsink would snap the plastic HSF retention tabs off, which effectively ruined the motherboard since the retention tabs were part of the CPU socket instead of on a separate bracket!

The original ThermalTake Socket A "orb" cooler was nicknamed "The Core Crusher" for a very good reason! It didn't have the scary screwdriver installation method; instead it had a twist cam mechanism which, unbelievably, was even worse -- there was a very high risk of crushing the core or shearing off the socket tabs during installation, if not both!

Later Socket A HSFs tended to mitigate these shortcomings somewhat, by providing a more secure slot for the screwdriver, ensuring that the heatsink base was large enough for the corners to rest on the foam rubber "bumpers" which were present on all Socket A CPUs, and designing the clips to use all 6 retention tabs instead of just 2.

And of course with the Athlon 64 AMD users finally got a halfway decent HSF retention bracket and a CPU with a protective metal lid, which made broken sockets and pulverized cores a thing of the past...
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:12 pm

Quotation marks are not for emphasis, they are for quotes.

There can't be that many DOA mobos


Fixed.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Sat Oct 22, 2011 11:26 am

just brew it! wrote:
LoneWolf15 wrote:
CB5000 wrote:Some of the MSI boards for the LGA 1155 socket had some pretty tough retention levers. Did scare me a bit, but I also noticed that the pins that contact the CPU were much stiffer than what I was used to.

I think Socket 1155 is a little bit stiff for anyone coming from Socket 775 (though I didn't have 1156 or 1366, so I can't compare that). The first one I did made me a little nervous, but I got used to it.

Nothing -- and I mean *nothing* -- in PC building in the past couple of decades compares to the sheer terror factor of early Socket A HSFs. No lever... most Socket A HSFs had just a slot for you to insert the tip of a screwdriver to pry the (often quite stiff) clip into place over the retention tabs.


Yeah, I generally tried staying away from socket A or any AMD chips during that era. We had one of the athons on the test bench at one point during benchmarking and the heat sink fell off and the CPU burned it self to death before we could pull the cord. The tab was partially sheared off and it just popped off after over an hour on the bench. I remember the earliest athlons didn't have any rubber pads on it, and i heard a lot of stories of how people have killed the CPU by cracking it while installing a HSF. The pads helped for certain HSF but yeah... i remember that notorious orb HSF

yeah, I'll take stiff CPU retention levers over everything socket A had to offer. If i remember correctly, LGA 1156 wasn't as stiff.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Sat Oct 22, 2011 11:38 am

CB5000 wrote:We had one of the athons on the test bench at one point during benchmarking and the heat sink fell off and the CPU burned it self to death before we could pull the cord. The tab was partially sheared off and it just popped off after over an hour on the bench.

Yup. Lack of thermal mass (no metal lid on CPU) + no built-in thermal protection + ill-conceived HSF retention mechanism = recipe for disaster. Without a HSF they self-destructed in a matter of seconds.

Clipping the HSF to the socket worked fine in the Socket 7 era, when TDPs were below 30 watts and HSFs weighed only a few ounces. With the escalating TDPs of the Intel/AMD megahertz wars came heavier (and sometimes truly massive!) HSFs, and a re-think was necessary. It's a shame that so many K7s had to die first... :wink:
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:30 pm

just brew it! wrote:
CB5000 wrote:We had one of the athons on the test bench at one point during benchmarking and the heat sink fell off and the CPU burned it self to death before we could pull the cord. The tab was partially sheared off and it just popped off after over an hour on the bench.

Yup. Lack of thermal mass (no metal lid on CPU) + no built-in thermal protection + ill-conceived HSF retention mechanism = recipe for disaster. Without a HSF they self-destructed in a matter of seconds.


Universal Socket A Non-Conductive Shim: A product and rememberance of a time I'm glad we moved on from. Even had a shim for my Coppermine chips of the time due to suffering from the same crappy design. :)

This is a blast from the past from those firey days of CPUs as well.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:37 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:Universal Socket A Non-Conductive Shim: A product and rememberance of a time I'm glad we moved on from.

Heh... only 49 still in stock, get 'em while they last... I imagine they're not going to be getting any more of these once current stock runs out! :lol:
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:40 pm

just brew it! wrote:Heh... only 49 still in stock, get 'em while they last... I imagine they're not going to be getting any more of these once current stock runs out! :lol:

Is your MP system still running?
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Sat Oct 22, 2011 2:03 pm

Captain Ned wrote:
just brew it! wrote:Heh... only 49 still in stock, get 'em while they last... I imagine they're not going to be getting any more of these once current stock runs out! :lol:

Is your MP system still running?

Sadly, no. There's a thread around here somewhere from a couple of years ago about my investigation into whether it would make a good file server to replace my aging Slot A Athlon server. Power consumption (given that it would be running 24x7) and the fact that it wouldn't POST consistently at stock speed any more were the main issues (though I was seriously considering underclocking it to mitigate both). Ultimately, I ended up using a slightly more modern system (Socket 939 Athlon X2 3800+) for the file server upgrade, and mothballed the Socket A MPX system.

I've still got the motherboard and CPUs; I'd kind of like to try figuring out what its POST issue was and resurrect it. My guess is that some of the VCore caps had started to go, even though none of them were bulging or leaking. That system was run really hard (primary desktop and F@h 24x7 for several years), so I don't doubt that the capacitors around the CPU sockets have seen better days. I've got replacement VCore caps for it around here somewhere, buried in the mess; but the Socket A dually resurrection project isn't exactly high on the priority list.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Sun Oct 23, 2011 8:42 am

just brew it! wrote:Nothing -- and I mean *nothing* -- in PC building in the past couple of decades compares to the sheer terror factor of early Socket A HSFs.


Hmm. I think I made a mistake, I was actually talking about the retension mechanism for the CPU, not the heatsink.

I agree, the Socket A and Socket 370 era was nasty. I managed to make it through those years without cracking a CPU core, but we made sure to find a supplier of heatsink/fans that used all three clips on a side at work. I believe in the past several years, I have done what many did and fry a Socket-A CPU by not having positive heatsink contact with it (probably angled).

And then there was the guy (if you ever worked at a compy shop, we all know "that one guy") who came in, telling us his Socket A mainboard was DOA, when perhaps if he'd removed the little blue sheet of protective plastic film from his heatsink/fan before installation, he wouldn't have a fried Athlon XP processor, a heatsink with charred melted bits of black (formerly blue) plastic on it, and (due to said situation) potentially a problematic mainboard.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Sun Oct 23, 2011 9:22 am

LoneWolf15 wrote:Hmm. I think I made a mistake, I was actually talking about the retension mechanism for the CPU, not the heatsink.

I knew that... the thread has just meandered a bit. Sorry for the detour!

LoneWolf15 wrote:I agree, the Socket A and Socket 370 era was nasty. I managed to make it through those years without cracking a CPU core, but we made sure to find a supplier of heatsink/fans that used all three clips on a side at work.

Yup... I ended up doing pretty much the same thing. IIRC Taisol had a good one... and I used Thermalrights on my Socket A dually. A decent 6-point clip was the key to not killing the core.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:52 pm

LoneWolf15 wrote:And then there was the guy (if you ever worked at a compy shop, we all know "that one guy") who came in, telling us his Socket A mainboard was DOA, when perhaps if he'd removed the little blue sheet of protective plastic film from his heatsink/fan before installation, he wouldn't have a fried Athlon XP processor, a heatsink with charred melted bits of black (formerly blue) plastic on it, and (due to said situation) potentially a problematic mainboard.


An acquaintance of mine came to me after unsuccessfully installing the CPU, telling me that the CPU won't fit in the socket (his first build). He didn't remove the protective plastic cover sitting on the LGA1155 socket. He tried to jam the CPU on top of the protective cover, and he ended up bending the retention lever trying to jam it in there. I carefully straitened the lever out removed the protective cover, installed the CPU, plugged in the peripherals the CPU miraculously worked after the amount of abuse the socket and the chip took. I think this really says to how far socket and CPU design has come as far as how durable it is now.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Mon Oct 24, 2011 2:40 pm

ASUS P5Q Pro, undocumented "feature:" If the SATA connectors are not used in numerical order, the PSU won't start. Since that is not the most convenient arrangement it was not my first choice. Since it was not documented, I was lucky to make the right guess (it wasn't the first thing I tried). IMO, someone who did not think of that and returned the board as DOA would be behaving reasonably.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Mon Oct 24, 2011 2:42 pm

just brew it! wrote:Nothing -- and I mean *nothing* -- in PC building in the past couple of decades compares to the sheer terror factor of early Socket A HSFs.

This is truth. I cracked the edge of the die on my Athlon XP 2100+ - amazingly it STILL WORKED. Still works to this day actually. :lol:

That, and I managed to install my CPU cooler reversed once (with the little shelf on the WRONG side of the socket 462 socket) and amazingly it didn't fry itself when I booted it up.


The other terrifying thing were the heavy-ass heatsinks. I still shudder a bit when I look at the Aerocool DP-102 sitting on the shelf in my office. It was heavy enough that I had to secure it to my PSU to avoid ripping the socket right off of the board. I did a test earlier this year with a dead mobo and I literally dropped it less than 1/4" down onto a table and the DP-102 ripped the socket right off of the board.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Mon Oct 24, 2011 9:41 pm

The saga on my DOA hard drive listed earlier continues...

I just got a replacement drive. At first, I was like "Cool" --WD replaced the Caviar Blue 500GB with a Caviar Black 500GB, so I figured they didn't have any Blues for the moment and gave me a nice little upgrade. Then (I normally don't do this, but for some reason this time I did), I plugged both serial numbers into WD's warranty status page.

Original drive --waranteed through 10/16/2013
Replacement drive --waranteed through 2/17/2012...(long pause)...WTF?

So now I get to submit a lovely trouble ticket to WD and find out what happens.

I've been reading NewEgg's reviews, and I'm wondering the same thing about hard drives as this thread does about mainboards --can there really be that many DOA ones? I mean, it is easier for poor shipping to cause failure, but it's hard to believe the number of complaints I see on WD and Seagate drives. Some people have blamed that on manufacturing quality changes when moving production to Thailand, but not being a production engineer, I have no idea, and I'd be prone to doubting it.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:37 pm

Sounds like they gave you a 4 year old refurbed Black... ouch!
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 12:48 pm

LoneWolf15 wrote:I've been reading NewEgg's reviews, and I'm wondering the same thing about hard drives as this thread does about mainboards --can there really be that many DOA ones? I mean, it is easier for poor shipping to cause failure, but it's hard to believe the number of complaints I see on WD and Seagate drives. Some people have blamed that on manufacturing quality changes when moving production to Thailand, but not being a production engineer, I have no idea, and I'd be prone to doubting it.


For hard drives, poor shipping used to really do a number on them but recent drives are made a lot better now. When they are powered down, they can take a lot of g-forece and vibration and still function properly. Newegg tends to package bare drives wrapped in a thick layer of bubble wrap and or plastic case with spacers and cushions, so the likelihood of the drive experiencing close to 300G's is low unless the shipper does a rugby kick to get your drive to the door from the street. When the drive is operating, the drive can only handle less than 1/10th the G's before the drive is damaged. So the tower falling over on a hard surface, dropping the tower while it's running, etc etc can damage it pretty badly.

One of the biggest culprit I suspect is static. Mechanical failure takes a while for it to happen, and even after a bad drop, the drive usually still functions but with bad sectors. If the circuit board dies, it dies instantly, and many drives have exposed circuit boards that can die instantly due to shock.
Even after grounding my self, I still try to avoid even coming close to touching the circuit board... but I've seen a lot of people that "man-handle" the drive and smear their greasy hands on the circuit board while installing the drive. I think a lot of people underestimate the damage static can do to electrical devices. I've even seen "professional" system builders do the same thing and leave greasy fingerprints on the chips, and various components inside the computer. There are ways to design a circuit board to be resistant to static damage, but internal computer parts aren't designed that way, because static isn't a threat once it's built. Many high quality cellphone boards are static resistant. I zapped a old LG Env main board with a tesla coil for about 20 mintes, and surprisingly, everything still worked.

I've also seen some people try to install the hard drive while the system is on and kill the drive. Other times the PSU was bad and over volted the hard drive and killed it with a small puff of smoke
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:04 pm

CB5000 wrote:For hard drives, poor shipping used to really do a number on them but recent drives are made a lot better now. When they are powered down, they can take a lot of g-forece and vibration and still function properly. Newegg tends to package bare drives wrapped in a thick layer of bubble wrap and or plastic case with spacers and cushions, so the likelihood of the drive experiencing close to 300G's is low unless the shipper does a rugby kick to get your drive to the door from the street.

Newegg has improved their OEM HDD packaging a lot. As of a couple of years ago, they would often just wrap a single piece of bubble wrap around the drive (leaving the ends mostly exposed), and chuck it into an oversized box with insufficient padding.

Once the drive is unpacked, you would be surprised how easy it is to produce enough Gs to damage it. A drop of only a few inches will do it, provided it is onto a hard surface; if the deceleration at the end is nearly instantaneous, you don't need to be moving very fast to produce a *lot* of Gs!

CB5000 wrote:When the drive is operating, the drive can only handle less than 1/10th the G's before the drive is damaged. So the tower falling over on a hard surface, dropping the tower while it's running, etc etc can damage it pretty badly.

If the drive is spinning, the fall doesn't even need to be onto a particularly hard surface. My office mate accidentally tipped over his tower (which was under his desk) a few months back, by tangling his foot in the keyboard cord. It landed on its side on a *carpeted* floor. The HDD started experiencing read errors later that day and had to be replaced.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 3:10 pm

Is it possible for these modern platters to lose some of their coercivity?

I've had at least two drives that developed bad sectors, the drive tools remapped them, and said drives never had a fault again up until I finally retired them.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 3:38 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:Is it possible for these modern platters to lose some of their coercivity?

I've had at least two drives that developed bad sectors, the drive tools remapped them, and said drives never had a fault again up until I finally retired them.

I think the drive would need to become unreasonably hot for that to become an issue. More likely some glitch caused the drive to corrupt the sector, or a stray dust particle inside the drive physically nicked it.

In my experience, usually once a drive starts to develop bad sectors the problem snowballs.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:48 pm

just brew it! wrote:
Ryu Connor wrote:Is it possible for these modern platters to lose some of their coercivity?

I've had at least two drives that developed bad sectors, the drive tools remapped them, and said drives never had a fault again up until I finally retired them.

I think the drive would need to become unreasonably hot for that to become an issue. More likely some glitch caused the drive to corrupt the sector, or a stray dust particle inside the drive physically nicked it.

In my experience, usually once a drive starts to develop bad sectors the problem snowballs.


I once had a drive that had a couple of bad sectors and the number of bad sectors never increased. It turned out that these were logical bad sectors rather than actual physical damage. There are various formatting and disc repair/checking software that will fix these logical bad sectors which are just spots in the HD which the HD thinks are bad. From what I heard these can happen from sudden power outages, surges, firmware bugs, etc that causes read errors. After I ran the software, the bad sectors were fixed and my bad sector count went from 11 to zero.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:10 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:Is it possible for these modern platters to lose some of their coercivity?

If the magnetic material on the platters was heated to its Curie Point (make something hot enough and it will lose its magnetic properties), the looneymum frame of the drive would already have melted.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:43 pm

Ahh, I did not realize the Curie point was that high...
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:51 pm

just brew it! wrote:Ahh, I did not realize the Curie point was that high...

Curie point depends on the metal and the type of magnetic alloy/oxide it is. I'm not sure what kind of magnetic material is on the platters but it's probably some kind of a metal oxide so some where between 300C~700C. If it was pure cobalt it would be about 1100C. Yeah definitely hot enough to melt things in there.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 6:00 pm

CB5000 wrote:
just brew it! wrote:Ahh, I did not realize the Curie point was that high...

Curie point depends on the metal and the type of magnetic alloy/oxide it is. I'm not sure what kind of magnetic material is on the platters but it's probably some kind of a metal oxide so some where between 300C~700C. If it was pure cobalt it would be about 1100C. Yeah definitely hot enough to melt things in there.

What little I can Google suggests the magnetic layer is an alloy of cobalt, chromium, and platinum. Given their resistance to chemical attack, I'd wager that the Curie point verges on that of pure cobalt. Pure iron oxide's Curie point is 692C according to Wikipedia.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 6:06 pm

Wild considering one area of research to extend the life of hard drives.

Heat-Assisted Magnetic Recording
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 6:14 pm

Ryu Connor wrote:Wild considering one area of research to extend the life of hard drives.

Heat-Assisted Magnetic Recording

Which is using heat to reduce the coercivity to make writes move faster, yet keeping under the Curie point. It was the basis for magneto-optical (or "floptical") disks back in the day, promising 120MB or so in the 3.5" format, a/k/a the old LS-120 disk.
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:12 pm

just brew it! wrote:Sounds like they gave you a 4 year old refurbed Black... ouch!


Actually, it's kind of an interesting setup they've got; I got a note back from WD. RMA return drives have a warranty until they receive your return drive. Once they receive my defective drive, the warranty from it gets plugged into the drive they sent me (if it is longer than 90 days). It ensures that if you had a defective drive a week before warranty ran out, you'd have enough time to make sure the new one isn't bad, but gives you full remaining warranty if it is longer than that. It also limits their liability if you don't return the defective drive.

Interestingly enough, the past few WD drives I've gotten as returns don't appear to be refurbs. My understanding is that they are (or at least, used to be) required to note a drive is refurb-ed on its label. I haven't seen that with my past several WD drives; I know I regularly used to see it on Seagate refurb product, and I thought I did on WD drives as well. The Caviar Black I got is a current drive model (WD5002AALX), with a manufacturing date of September 28, 2011.
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LoneWolf15
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Re: There can't be "that" many DOA mobos

Postposted on Wed Oct 26, 2011 12:41 am

Captain Ned wrote:Which is using heat to reduce the coercivity to make writes move faster, yet keeping under the Curie point. It was the basis for magneto-optical (or "floptical") disks back in the day, promising 120MB or so in the 3.5" format, a/k/a the old LS-120 disk.

AFAIK the LS-120 used the laser just for tracking, not as part of the writing process.

LoneWolf15 wrote:Actually, it's kind of an interesting setup they've got; I got a note back from WD. RMA return drives have a warranty until they receive your return drive. Once they receive my defective drive, the warranty from it gets plugged into the drive they sent me (if it is longer than 90 days). It ensures that if you had a defective drive a week before warranty ran out, you'd have enough time to make sure the new one isn't bad, but gives you full remaining warranty if it is longer than that. It also limits their liability if you don't return the defective drive.

Ahh, OK. That makes sense.
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