Here you will find step-by-step instructions on how to open a Western Digital My Book Essential USB 3.0 1.5TB version of the external hard drive. We opened this hard drive for purposes of data recovery at our office and ultimately ended up replacing the board in order to get the data out, successfully.
- Flathead screw driver
- Phillips screw driver
- Anti-static protection (We use ESD mat with heel grounders and wrist strap plugged into the wall outlet)
- A desk that’s cleaner than the one in video
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- Pry a flathead screw driver into the top right hand corner, then pull it outwards slightly. Don’t jab the eclosure too deep or you can damage the electronics inside.
- Insert a tweezer or anything that will keep the case from snapping back in.
- Repeat process on all 4 corners until you hear clicking sound on each side.
- Grab the enclosure from the top front edge and gently pull backwards. Drive will slide out without much effort, if you need force then you skipped something or your model is different than this guide.
- Three screws to be removed, two are simple but third one is underneath the LED channel.
- Remove the LED channel tube and gently pulling it out of the black insulating foam. Then remove the third screw.
- Turn the drive around, remove the top right rubber bumper by pulling it outwards. This is the hardest bumper to pull, the rest is easy. Take care not to break the enclosure.
- Take the bottom right bumper out, by the time you’re done with the two bumpers, other two will just fall down.
- Remove the fourth screw which is now exposed. This screw is on the left hand side holding the board in place.
- Slide the board and metal sheet away from the drive.
Now you have a regular SATA 1.5TB hard drive, put it in an actively cooled enclosure or straight into an standard ATX compatible case.