Saturday, June 23, 2007

Opening up and disassembling a Seagate FreeAgent Go 160GB

I cracked open my Seagate FreeAgent Go recently to get to the hard disk that I wanted to stuff into my MacBook Pro. But since there did not seem to be any instructions or tips from folks who have done it ... I just took a deep breathe and went ahead with the surgery.

The Seagate FreeAgent Go doesn't have any screws or the like to hold the thing together. So I simply had to pry it apart.

So here is it disassembled:

You will notice that the top cover simply clips onto the bottom cover. So to open it, note the positions of the 7 plastic clips. 3 on one side and four on the other. I started with the side with 3 clips (left side, as shown on the picture below).

Simply slide something hard (flat head screwdriver? credit card? you will destroy your credit card though) in between the top and bottom cover close to where one the clips are, hear a nasty pop/click, and work through the other two clips. Once one side is out, you can work through the other side.

Once the cover is off, the rest is easy. Just disconnect the red and black cable that controls the light. Next, take the hard disk out, along with the connector. Undo two screws below which hold the circuit board to the hard disk and then disconnect the circuit board from the serial ATA connector.

Yank off the four plastic bumpers at the side of the hard disk - they are simply glued on. Don't get the sticky parts dirty so you can stick them back. There's a screw below each of the bumpers that you will have to undo, and voila, you have your hard disk ready to be put into the notebook!


Denton said...

Thanks much for the take apart guide - the only decent one I could find! I needed a drive for a Compaq Evon (laptop). My error, though ... my laptop needs an IDE interface [sigh].

In any case, good guide. Thanks!

LB said...

Glad it was of use!

infiniteworld said...

Awesome, just what I was looking for. Thanks!

infiniteworld said...

Awesome, just the info I was looking for. Thanks!

LB said...

Wonder why everyone wants to take apart their freeagent go... :)

Derek said...

thanks for the guide! was trying to swap the seagate drive with the fujitsu drive inside my macbook. doesn't seem like it can be done easily.

the bottom of the seagate drive is not enclosed in any casing. not sure what would happen if i just put it inside the macbook.
the seagate drive has 4 black rubber 'nob's glued to the sides where the four torx screws are on macbook's drives. i guess i would need to rip out the rubber nobs?

any suggestion?

LB said...

derek, as written in my post, you will need to yank those rubber bumps off the seagate's drive. mine were sticky enough to be stuck back on.

haven't done a macbook, but if its anything like PC notebooks, I suspect there's some kind of hard disk carrier which you'd have to transfer from the original HDD to the new one. Usually a simple matter of undoing the screws and the carrier should come off.

good luck!

just noticed my photos on this post are all missing. let me sort that out.

Derek said...

success! swapped my internal macbook drive with the seagate drive.

i was expecting the process to be open up the cases and unplug and plug. now i know there're a few more steps involved. the macbook comes with a bit of 'mounting hardware' attached to its drive and the seagate has a bit of those as well. those 'mounting hardware' need to be detached first, swapped and then everything work. thanks again!

LB said...

congrats derek! now your macbook has a new lease of life.

Anonymous said...

Hi, many thanks for this faq.
I wonder, is it possible to put 320 giga hdd (2,5) into the case from freeagant go 250 giga?

LB said...

Not sure if the bigger hdd will work but afaik, there shouldn't be a problem as long as its SATA!

XStylus said...

FYI: Instructions on how to disassemble the redesigned Freeagent Go series of drives (especially the 500gb) is located here:

macdad said...

Awesome Guide!!!

pilgrim said...

A little more detail just to help make it as clear as possible:

"Just disconnect the red and black cable that controls the light."

I found that all I needed to do was carefully slice a gap in the tape holding it to the top of the drive, and slide out the wires, then I could tilt the end of the drive assembly nearer the light up, so that the USB port on the other end could be slid out. Then you can slide the connector for the red and black cable off.

"disconnect the circuit board from the serial ATA connector."

Slide the circuit board straight away from the hard drive to remove it from the connector.

Thanks for this guide!

Doris said...

My mini usb socket fell apart. I tried gluing it back on... worked for a while, then it fell off again. Bought an external case, and after following your directions (which I couldn't find anywhere else) I HAVE MY DOCUMENTS!

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much. Well illustrated article.

Bhakthi Liyanage said...

You are the man.....thanks dude

Anonymous said...

Helpful as hell, thanks!