Seagate HDD Unlocking Instructions

Seagate drives unlocking manual. Step-by-step instructions how to remove User and Master passwords.


Unlocking Seagate Hard Drives

Recently I have noticed that a lot of people (mostly X-Box users) for some reason want to unlock their drives. Since breaking of hard disk drives (HDD) is my second hobby, I figured out that the unlocking can be done in several ways. Now I am going to describe couple of them. The method described here removes any password (Master or User), but it can only be applied to certain models.

Method 1: Unlocking a Seagate drive by using Master password

A lot of people refer to a utility called ATAPWD. I must say that there is much better alternative: MHDD. This tool is VERY powerful, but be careful with it! Better read the doc...

Anyway. Run it, select your locked drive, then type the following command: ID. It should give you some information about your HDD, and if it is locked then you will see corresponding message.

Now type UNLOCK and press enter.
Program will ask you if you want to use master password or user password. Enter 1 here.

Now it asks you to enter the password. Now please note: you have only 5 tries! You have to re-power the drive after every 5 tries. So, now enter the password. It is one of the following (type exactly as shown here):

  • Seagate (and after this word type 25 spaces. Yes, press your space key twenty five times).

Last two are good only for xbox drives.

You will have to try all of them. After you enter a password and press Enter, look at the very first line of your monitor (ERR, INDEX, DREQ, BUSY, etc). If 'ERR' is NOT RED, then you did it! You found the password! Now, there is the second step:

Type DISPWD and press enter
Choose master password again by entering "1"
Enter your password once again.

Now the drive is unlocked.

If this failed, then there is another way.

Method 2: Unlocking by using Seagate firmware update tools

What is special in these updates is that you can unlock your drive by applying an update (a sort of bug in the updating process).

I have prepared several boot floppies so you can just create a floppy and boot from it. Firmware updating process launches automatically.

The following models are covered:
U5: ST340823A, ST330621A, ST320413A, ST315311A, ST310211A, ST38411A;
U8: ST34313A, ST36811A, ST38410A, ST310222A;
Barracuda ATA 4: ST315313A, ST320011A, ST330011A, ST340016A, ST360021A, ST380021A, ST313021A

Method 3: Unlocking with commercial unlocking software
Added June 25, 2007

It appears that one company managed to crack these and many other hard drives. Their service isn't free, but for most hard drives there is no alternative.

Cheap HDD unlocking: HDD Unlock Wizard
Not cheap unlocking (but this one saves your data): Repair Station

Enjoy! :-)

Contact me if you have found more ways and want to share them!



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