Don’t buy a Seagate Momentus XT drive if you have a Mac

I bought this hybrid 500GB drive for my old MacBook Pro and had endless issues with it.  If it wasn’t for the actual laptop beginning to die, I think I would have been able to ascribe more of the issues to the faulty firmware on the HD.

Seagate has acknowledged that the firmware on these drives is deficient because it has random power management issues that are independent of the OS – in practice, this means that the drive powers down randomly and basically freezes the system on a whim.  When it is powered up correctly, it’s a decent fast drive and fulfills its promise of providing some SSD functionality at a slightly elevated standard HD price.

Here’s where things get weird, though.  I put the drive in an external drive housing to try and get some value from it – but it’s unusable because of the random power changes – none of which are addressable or configurable through any kind of UI.  The only answer is to flash the drive’s firmware – OK, fair enough.  Except there is apparently no way to flash the drive’s firmware unless it is mounted as the primary drive on a computer.  Which of course is untenable because the damn thing is crappy and unreliable.

So that’s a $100+ coaster, I guess.  Lesson learned. Not happy with Seagate at all.


About Raoul

With a fairly unusual first name, this is where I have to stress VERY STRONGLY that these posts are my personal opinions and in no way reflect anything at all to do with my employer. For employer-approved content, take a look at my work blog.
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