How to recover data from bricked WD My Book World Edition White Light hard disk?


How to copy/save my files from WD My Book World Edition White Light I or II (further as MBWE) hard drive(s) when:

  • MBWE doesn’t boot up at all or
  • MBWE shows failed DataVolume and is not accessible anymore?


  • If status lights are reporting Unable to Boot, just try replacing the battery on the controller board before attempting to recover data from the drive.
  • This guide is intended only for copying data from MBWE that can’t boot anymore. If it does boot but MBWE shows failed DataVolume then go to… (guide in preparation).
  • In case of MBWE II (2 disks array) guide works only for RAID 1 (Mirror) and JBOD modes. Other array modes like RAID 0 (Stripe) and Span (Linear) are not covered here.
  • For RAID definition and its modes refer to the MBWE User Manual (Manage RAID, page 126).


This operation will degrade your MBWE II RAID structure, so you MUST NOT disassembly your healthy MBWE in any case. Once you have already done that and connected one of the hard disks to your PC, follow to this guide to repair your mistake (it’s for WD ShareSpace but works for MBWE too except RAID 5 mode).

Don’t do anything if your data is worth to pay „any money” – go then for the professional recovery services at

Quick How-To

  1. 1 Boot Ubuntu
    from CD/CDRW/PenDrive/HDD. How-To on in Download Ubuntu section. During boot choose Try Ubuntu.

    If you have problems with other linux distributions/versions simply use Ubuntu 10.10, because I tested it
  2. Connect HDD
    you want to backup directly to the computer, using SATA-to-USB adapter (or any other hot plug way, e.g. FireWire, eSATA).
  3. 3 Open Nautilus window
    simply clicking on Examples folder on Desktop (Nautilus is analogous linux app to Windows Explorer or Mac OSX Finder)
  4. 4 Start Multi-disk Drive
    clicking in Nautilus on (1) Computer icon, then (2) find HDD icon called 2 and right click on it, and (3) from context dropdown menu choose Start Muti-disk Drive option.MBWE bricked backup 1
    In popped up requester click Start Anyway button.MBWE bricked backup 2
  5. 5 Browse HDD
    called 2: X.Y TB Filesystem (where X.Y is your HDD capacity) and copy your files to another device. Folders represents your MBWE Shared Resources, so you should easily find yourselfMBWE bricked backup 3
  6. Stop Multi-disk Device 
    when you are done.
    MBWE bricked backup 4

That’s all

Now you can install fresh MBWE firmware following How to fix bricked WD My Book World Edition White Light or install brand new disk? guide.

Other NAS files recovery tools

These are also tools reported by users as helpful (see comments):

  • Remo Recover – recovers data from formatted WD My Book.
  • USF Explorer – recovers lost or deleted files from all types of XFS-formatted storages, including storages of Linux desktops, servers and network attached storages (NAS).
  • Captain Nemo – access Novell, NTFS and Linux drives or images from any Windows based computer.
  • NAS Data Recovery – recovery for XFS- or EXT2FS-formatted NAS devices, e.g. Buffalo, Seagate, Western Digital, DLink, or Iomega. Supports single-drive, RAID-0, RAID-1, and RAID-5 configuration.

Discussion 32 komentarze

  1. Robin Davies

    Just look for places to share this piece of knowledge. Before attempting to recover data from the drive, try replacing the battery on the controller board. After doing this, the My Book World booted successfully after having previously reported „Unable to Boot” on the status lights.

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