Friday, March 14, 2008

How to: Recover from a Failed MyBook (and MyBook II) Firmware Upgrade

I recently suffered the same fate as many others when attempting to upgrade my Western Digital MyBook Pro external drive to the latest firmware revision, 1.08a. Half way through the updating process, directly after erasing the firmware on the MyBook, the updater encountered an error leaving me with a completely unusable drive.

If you're in the same boat and desperate to get to the instructions on how to recover your MyBook, click here.

A quick search showed many others in the same situation as myself, but with no solution to restore the MyBook to a fully working state. As all those in a similar position know, this situation is something of a catch-22; the MyBook cannot be returned as it still has sensitive data on it, and opening it will void the warranty. As the MyBook was now a shiny paper-weight and I had no desire to return the device with my data on it, I took to it with a screwdriver, and then took it apart (I have more recently discovered that there are a couple of guides to doing this - 320Gb Premium Edition, 500Gb Essential Edition) but disassembly is not difficult anyway.

After removing the drive and backing up my data, I examined the MyBook's circuitry and found that the flash memory was a SST39LF200A, which is a Silicon Storage Technology128K x16 CMOS Flash (more reading here). Google also revealed that the controller in the MyBook was an Oxford Semiconductor OXUF924DSb, further hmmmmmGlavin! boffin info here.

You can't flash a firmware without flashing software, so I went in search of anything related to Oxford controllers. Oxford don't seem to be big on releasing anything to the general public, but after a while I found an Oxford firmware updater at the FireWire Depot. Frustratingly the most recent chip that it supported was the 922, and I wasted the rest of the day trying to munge the libraries from Western Digital's 1.08a Firmware Eraser into Oxford's ye olde firmware updater in the hope that I could get the MyBook to be recognised, but to no avail.

The next day I took a different tack and got stuck into looking for a more recent version of the updater, finally digging one up at Dat Optic. Not only did this one support the 924 (does Oxford name all its chips after Porsches?) but it also had an accompanying user manual, not that I'm into that sort of thing.

Anyway, with no further ado, here's how to recover your MyBook from a Western Digital firmware "Update" failure.

7/11/2008 - MyBook II users: the process outlined below will not work for a MyBook II series device. However, a number of users have had success with a slightly modified version that essentially uses the correct firmware for the MyBook II series instead. I haven't tested this myself, but Mo, Scopes and bigharm56ai have all provided methods that should work. Please make sure you read through and understand all the instructions before you attempt to fix your MyBook II.

Before we begin, you will need the 1.08a Firmware update from Western Digital (mirror), and the Oxford Semiconductor Uploader (version 2.17.0100.0001) from Dat Optic (mirror) which you should install. The Oxford Uploader is a Java application so if you don't have Java, get it from Optionally you can also download the manual for the Oxford Uploader (mirror).

Please note: If at any stage during this process the Microsoft Hardware Wizard appears, stating that it has "found new hardware", follow these steps: Choose "no, not this time" when prompted whether the driver should be searched for on Windows Update, and click Next. Select "Install the software automatically (Recommended)" at the next step and again click Next. If the Windows Logo testing prompt appears, click "Continue Anyway", and then click Finish in the hardware wizard.

  1. Extract the file and run MyBook Firmware Upgrade r1-08a.exe. This will start the Western Digital updater and extract the firmware files to a temporaty location. The updater must be running during the following steps as when it is closed it will automatically delete the firmware files we need to fix the MyBook. Don't click any buttons on it and just leave it running.

  2. Connect your MyBook to a USB port on your computer and make sure it is powered.

  3. Start the Oxford Semiconductor Uploader, and click OK to ignore the warning message. If it cannot find any devices, click the "Scan USB" button.

  4. The Uploader should find your drive and state that "A blank USB UF924DSB has been selected". Click the "Select Flash" button.

  5. Choose "Silicon Storage Technology" as the Flash Vendor and SST39xF200A as the Flash Type. Set the Speed to 64nS, then click OK.

  6. Click Upload/Upgrade Firmware.

  7. The Uploader will upload an "Upload Acceleration Fragment" to your MyBook.

  8. When this has completed, click the Scan USB button once again. The Updater should then prompt you to "Select a Configuration File". Choose the file called config_1X.txt in C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Firmware Upgrade\data\UF924DSA. This file and the one in the next step are the temporary files created by the Western Digital Update as mentioned in the first step.

  9. A second prompt will appear, asking you to select a Firmware file. Choose the file called UF924DS_release.bin in the same path as the text file.

  10. The Uploader will then start uploading the firmware to your MyBook.

  11. When it is complete, your MyBook's capacity light should turn on, and the drive should function as normal. Close the Western Digital Updater and the Oxford Uploader. If you have any trouble accessing the drive, reboot your computer and disconnect/reconnect the MyBook's power cable.


MrTruffle said...

nicely done

Sadjad said...

YEEEEEEEEEEEEEES Man! At last someone did it.

You've left me a comment on my blog!21F12BB61B822DFA!221.entry and now I know that problem is solved. But somehow late for me but for sure good for all others.

Anyway, Thanks man for informing me about your solution.

Scott Walter said...

Awesome, thanks a million.

Anonymous said...

Yessss man my MyBook Pro works again!!!!

It is awesome that the firmware update causes an error???

Tony said...


U really helped me out a lot! :)

/with love from Sweden!

Keith said...


Isaias said...

Nice!! However, I have fried the board on my hard drive, so a firmwire wont work for me. However, I'm trying to purchase another WD 500gb drive to swap boards with, the only issue is that I have to make sure is that the firmware of both boards match. So my question is, How do I find out what version firmware is on my WD5000AAKS mybook??

ddouglas said...

Indeeed! Your solution is very exciting, however I have the same problem as isaias has as not being able to access the box, I have no way to know the firmware version. Will trying to boot with another case that is functioning further destroy the hardware or drives?

GravyPlaya said...

If you want to bypass the whole process you can take the drive out, and put it in a new enclosure. Voila! Access to your data once again.. No worry about firmware upgrades or anything. It took me only 2 mins to take my drive out and put it in a new enclosure.

do0g said...

Yes, you can remove the drive from the MyBook enclosure and use it in any PC or external enclosure that supports Serial ATA. The problem with this, however, is that you void your MyBook warranty the moment you take it apart - and, of course, you need a PC/enclosure to put the drive into.

Sweeps said...

Help!!!! I have a MyBook Pro II edition 1TB version and have followed your instructions and all has gone well up to stage 8. At this stage when I have to select configuration file and browse to the specified directory the file 'config_1X.txt' is not there but UF924DS_release.bin is. The firmware for the MyBook Pro II is 'Firmware_r104a.exe'

I really hope you can help as I'm completly stuck and have had no response from WD.

Sweeps said...

Update: when I run 'Firmware_r104a.exe' within the directory that is created the file 'Win_uploader ini' contains the information 'Last configuration Information file :C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Oxsemi Uploader\Data\U921S\config_921S.txt
Last firmware binary file :C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Firmware Upgrade\Data\UF924DS_release.bin' of which both files I have found and placed into the Data directory. When I choose 'config_921S.txt' after I've clicked Upload flash' I get the message 'config_921S.txt does not match the selected device.' I hope this info can help you point me in the right direction.

do0g said...

Sweeps, I've just noticed your comment and will have a look for you tonight.

Abitbol said...

Everything worked fine yesterday but this morning i had troubles making work my HDD 320 go Premium edition whereas my brother's one perfectly works (same model).
I tried to update the hdd driver and unfortunately i used the 1.08a ... your work seems fine but on step 3, the uploader still doesn't detect my HDD or Blank Oxford USB device (whereas my PC does) ... i push "scan usb" several times but nothing happens ... what can I do ? Help me please and thanks a LOT for your interest ;)

do0g said...

Sorry about the holdup guys, I'll try to get back to you both as soon as I can.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the hard work. I am also having problems with a My Book Premium II drive. If you can figure out how to fix that it would help me out a ton. Thanks againg

ThomMcK said...

You are truly a genius!!!
I don't know how you figured this out but it worked.
I have been using my "My Book" as a paperweight for the past 6 months as I'd given up on fixing it.
You should win an award or knighthood for this kind of service to the community
Thanks for sharing

MO said...

It worked on MyBook Pro II edition 1TB version just use the above tutorial until you get to step 8. You want to use MyBook_Firmware_r1_08a to get config_1X.txt file but instead of using the UF924DS_release bin file generated by MyBook_Firmware_r1_08a, you want to use the UF924DS_release bin file generated by Firmware_r104a which is the firmware for MyBook Pro II edition 1TB.
Hope this help

Steve said...

Great! You've put a band-aid on the problem. Now wait until it craps the bed again, and cry because you can't get all of your data that you didn't back up!

No really, good work on finding a solution to one of the many problems with this drive. Just be wary... these things are ticking timebombs, with huge problems past just ineffective firmware updates.

Scott said...

do0g, U Da Man! This worked great. Well, after I powered down my USB DVD burner. I actually ran the WD firmware upgrade after this process to see what would happen. I took that time. Thanks again for your help, don't know what I would have done without this.

I see with the latest version (2.17.0100.0001) of the Oxford Semiconductor uploader, there is a file named "SampleUserApp.exe" with a WD logo in the following path (C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Firmware Upgrade) Is this new? Did they create it for those of us who were mislead by WD and their Firmware updater?

Thanks again do0g

Scott said...

Funny, this is the response I received from WD Support:

"With the information you have provided your hard drive is defective and will need to be replaced. Please see below for your data recovery and drive replacement options.

I apologize for the inconvenience, but Western Digital does not perform data recovery services. However, you may use one of Western Digital's authorized data recovery service companies. In order to retain the warranty on the hard drive, you must use a Western Digital’s authorized data recovery service company. Please visit the link below for more information about these companies and our data recovery policy."

Thanks for posting this solution

Yngve said...

Incredible.. You saved my day!!! Thank you soooooo much!

John_Blight said...

I followed the procedure, and the drive light came on, as described, but the drive still isn't recognised.

The strange thing is that we have a PC running Windows Server 2003 that can recognise and use the drive, but none of our other PCs can.

Is there any way of reverting to a previous firmware?

cjou said...

thanks a million!

for a couple of weeks there, I was worried that I was gonna have an expensive paperweight sitting there.

What a relief to get everything working again!

Your instructions are bulls eye, and easy to follow.

You sir, are a genius.

Scopes said...

For the MyBook Pro II follow the directions and download BOTH
firmware files (1.08a, 1.04a)

- Extract (as per directions above) the Confix_1X.txt file from the 1.08 firmware, and the UF924DS_release.bin
file from the 1.04a firmware.

Then the rest of the directions work fine.

Great Work and many thanks!

Jon said...

You Rock ASS i had a 1 TB mybook II and it is now working thanks to you after my flash upgrade F'd up

THANK YOU!!!!!!!!

I for sure owe you a beer!

Slavko said...

Great job.

Everything was ok when folowing the directions, till I find out that I should use UF924DS_release.bin file from the r1.04a firmware for My Book Premium Edition II (1TB).

Now I can not use the disk and I can not even start over because with Oxford Semiconductor because USB is not recognized.

Somehow I should erase firmware. Have any idea what to do?

Anonymous said...

I tried everything as stated. I have a my book premium II 1 TB. Now I have the SST39"VF"200A and the software sets the flash type for the SST39"xF"200A would that be a problem and Is there an upgrade to the Oxsemi Uploader I installed version "Win_Uploader_Install_2_17_0100_0001"
Now when I grab the config file and then the UF924DS_release.bin my light goes out and if I grab the files from the Oxsemi Uploader folder in programs then the light comes on but it does nothing. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Folks I Got it If your still having problems try this. download both utilities the 1.80a and the 1.04a. Install the Oxsemi Uploader utility, after installation, before it ask you to restart the computer extract the 1.08a and the 1.04a files in a different folder then take the files in the 1.04a Firmware Upgrade\Data folder and copy them and place them in the C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Oxsemi Uploader copy the .dll file here and the other files C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Oxsemi Uploader\Data <---here. then restart the computer. Now this was my problem I was being lazy and using my 1394 cable for power and using my USB cable for the data but that is a NO NO, use the USB cable and the power cord. Then run the program just as stated. and there it should fix those who are still having problems. I had my book premium II as a paper weight just like a lot of folks but now I'm back up and running thanks to these post. Western Digital Sucks, Dude you rule. Thankx a million!!! If there is anyone working on sending out information informing people about the WD and what their products have put us through and then not being able to fix their own mistakes. Then hit me up.

Eric said...

I have a problem but I don't think it is firmware related. I have the 320 gb model and my PC just won't recognize the drive. It cuts on, and lights up and everything. I have taken it apart but I don't really know what to do next. Does this sound like a drive that can be saved?

any suggestions?

ic4andi said...

I tried following this guide until I ran the My Book Firmware Updater and got a window called Uploader that said "Failed to lock USB mass storage disk drive".

prova said...


Thank You SO MUCH!!!!!

Don Insalata said...

too late for me, cause I did the "screwdriver" version how to deal with it and after recovering my data I gave the disk back to the reseller (without him knowing I voided the warrant by opening the device, haha). but if it works, your THE man :o)

William said...

I am so very thankful for your post. I tried to run the firmware upgrade wizard from WD by itself and it turned my MyBook Premium 320Gb Drive into a paperweight.
I shelled out $14.95 for WD support so they could tell me that I need to replace the drive!
I wish I would have found your post earlier...I would have been more than happy to give you the $14.95 :)
THANKS for all your hard work know that I will tell everyone I know about your wonderful post and wealth of knowledge!
I cannot say thank you enough.

Damon said...

I have the same problem, but with a seagate free agent pro. Anyone have any idea what the correct flash setting is and where I can find the the config files (the txt and bin)?

Jason said...

I have the same problem, as some of the other posters, but with a My Book Pro II 2TB.

The 1.04 Firmware mentioned above isn't available from WD Support, so after feeling the glow of optimism, I am left with a non-functioning brick.

Clearly this issue will continue to plague WD My Book users and it's simply unacceptable. No acknowledgment or warning has been posted by WD and it is clearly time for a class action option to be discussed more seriously. It is over a year since that firmware was posted, and that's potentially a HUGE number of screwed customers.

Data storage isn't something which should be dealt with in such a cavalier fashion, especially by one of the giants of that industry.

do0g said...

Jason, if you read through the comments above you will find a method for recovering your MyBook Pro II. If I get a chance I'll append it to the main post, but for the time being the information is all there in the comments.

Jason said...

Downloading the Firmware for the My Book Pro II 1.08a (windows) and extracting the firmware from the .exe worked ... (flashed with Oxford Semiconductors uploader)

The firmware update seems to calm the fan down a bit.. Too early to tell i it fixes anything else useful.

Question ... how many of WDC's firmware uploaders are afflicted with this bug? Since the firmware seems ok once it's on the drive.


Jason said...

Thanks Do0g! If only WDC cared as much as you do!

Jason said...

(BTW ... did a find for 2TB and 2 TB ... came up blank! ... which comment has those details, aside from mine?)

Mihnea said...

hi, i have the same problem as damon.
I got a seagate freeagent pro 500 GB and after trying to update my frimware i have now a "oxford USB device, running upload acceleration fragment" connected on my USB. The device itself doesn't power up anymore and i'm pretty desperate as i have all of my work done in the last year on it. Could anyone help me recover the data? Pleaseeeee
Than You

do0g said...

Jason: As far as I know, you should be able to use the My Book Pro II firmware mentioned, not specifically for the 2Gb.

mihnea: Getting the "upload acceleration fragment" on there is a good start. If you can adopt a similar approach to the one shown here with a seagate firmware update for the drive you may have some luck. Otherwise you can always open up the device and connect to the drive directly. Good luck!

Mihnea said...

thanks for the reply. I already opened up the harddrive and connected it internally. Sadly it is no longer too portable:) The seagate firmware created the problem in the first place, i think. As for the updater i used the oxford one. Well, now i must buy me a new portable device and i assure you it will not be a seagate anymore:))

LoveUSA said...

I am so happy ... this worked and saved my from throwing away a perfectly good drive. I asked for tech support via email and still no answer after 5 days. I'll never buy another Western digital, and I think they purposely prompted us to download and update the firmware so they could make a ton of money selling new drives and tech support. This should go into the courts as a class action! I will post this scam on and Also the Better business Bureau and Federal Trade Commission. Anyone know a good class action lawyer?

do0g said...

Well, personally, I don't blame Western Digital. They have only designed the case and the drive on the MyBook, both of which are of fantastic quality/performance. The actual circuitry providing the USB/firewire IO which suffers from the firmware update failure problem is made by Oxford Semiconductors, who provide the chips in the majority of these external enclosures.

A major problem is that most people aren't aware that updating firmware is nothing like writing to a disk, or updating a file, and is fraught with difficulty. The perception of the dangers involved have decreased so much over the years, as the tools and software to do so have become more commonplace in the public domain, that everyone (including myself) now takes it for granted that it will work. In reality, updating firmware is a risky business that should only be undertaken when it absolutely HAS to be.

As for Western Digital, I would imagine that the only reason they haven't provided a fix for drives that have failed firmware updates is simply because they cannot. I'd suggest that the licensing arrangement they have with Oxford is such that they are given limited software support, and that leaves us all out in the lurch when things go wrong.

WD, after all, offer full replacements for failed drives, which is a great service - why would they do this instead of offering a fix utility unless they were restricted from doing so in some way? It would make a lot more commercial sense for a software repair utility which replicates the steps here, instead of the considerable expense incurred from replacing a drive which is physically still working.

MrTruffle said...

Great write-up, I just wish the instructions for the 2TB MyBook Pro II were a little more clear. After thinking I had a firmware update failure (problem started right after a half-baked firmware update) I've found the actual problem was that the enclosure had stopped sending the proper power to drive A. Symptoms include the outer blue LED ring being solid, the inner ring being off; drive not being detected as attached hardware; sound of one drive spinning up. Once I disconnected the drive that wasn't spinning up, it detects the device just fine and the array shows as degraded in the WD array management utility.

So, my solution was to open the enclosure up down to the board and piggy-back the dead power connector onto the one that was working. Obviously this may kill the device in time since it's now pushing twice as much power through the lines which weren't designed for it, but it's been a week so far and this has gotten my drive up and running.

A better solution to this power problem would be to send external power to the drive that needs it, but I was too impatient to order the parts, a AC/DC converter with a PATA connector end and a PATA to SATA converter (couldn't find AC to SATA power anywhere); and a short SATA data cable with an elbow joint on one end.

So, if you have similar symptoms, try disconnecting both drives and connecting the enclosure to your computer to see if it recognizes it. I suppose it's possible that the firmware upgrade failure is somehow responsible for the power issues I've had, but that's pretty difficult to prove.

vasman said...

I just fixed my 2TB PRO II drive with your method.

Not only I fixed the drive, but also got the most recent firmware to it. And also I restored it perfectly well, so that the drive is detected correctly with all WD tools and software. Here is how:

- Take the config_1.txt file from firmware 104 version

- Take the .bin file from the most recent firmware 108a (1.02)

- In the config_1.txt FILE, at the very bottom, there's a section that looks like:


- Change that ABCD0123456789 to whatever your real serial number is

Everything else according to the guide. This case your drive won't get the default serial number, so I guess if anything else happens, you'll still be able to return the drive to the vendor and they may not notice you've screwed with firmware :)

vasman said...

And there's one more thing.

If you done something wrong and would like to start over, the Oxford Uploader tool may not see the drive, since it is not a blank oxford usb device any more.

What i did is this:

- created a copy of the Oxford Uploader application folder

- extracted "Data" folder from the Western Digital firmware update

- removed everything in the "Data" folder of the Oxford Uploader

- copied Data contents from Western Updater into Oxford Uploader

- ran Oxford Uploader and at this point it sees the drive and you'll figure what to do next

I am on a Mac and used a Mac version of Oxford uploader and Western Updater. May not be the same easy in windows.

And yes. Drivers must correctly install in Windows for the "Blank USB Device" and for the "Blank USB Device running in acceleration mode" when they are detected, otherwise Oxford Uploader can't find the drive.

Arne said...

I had the exact problem when upgrading to 1.08. I have a MyBook Pro II 1TB. I am unable to find the config_1x.txt. Can someone please post the config file??

Vincent said...

Can someone post the 1.04a firmware file please or the UF924DS_release.bin
file from the 1.04a firmware update? This because WD doesn't have this 1.04a firmware update listed on their site nor can I find it with Google.

I have the MyBook World Edition 2 and want to give this "hack" a go since it doesn't startup anymore (HD's spin but no blue lights..) and 1 HD died. I want to recover the others HD data asap. Im afraid the 2nd HD will die shortly.

WD shame on you.

For the MyBook Pro II follow the directions and download BOTH
firmware files (1.08a, 1.04a)

- Extract (as per directions above) the Confix_1X.txt file from the 1.08 firmware, and
Then the rest of the directions work fine.

Great Work and many thanks!

MKbis said...

I have a my book home edition 1 tb, and unfortunatly i tried to update the firmware :(
now the drive doesn't react

i tried to use the oxsemi uploader
i put all the data folder from the firmware folder for my product ( and win_uploader_dll.dll in the oxsemi uploader folder
the oxsemi recognise the drive only with the 1394 connection, but when i start to upload the firmware, it says me "could not open firmware file"

Now, what can i do? someone could help me pls :(? if someone has the aswer to
resurrect the HD, pls reply here or send me an email (

Minton said...

My Book Premium II is user serviceable. One additional easy work around if you have the My Book Premium II -- Buy another drive (identical model) on Ebay and replace the drives with your drives -- especially important if you are running in Raid 0. I recovered all my data and bought a new enclosure and junked the WD My Premium II. I am about to sell the one I bought on Ebay. Easy solution without downloads and I recovered a full 500 gb of data.

Minton said...

My Book Premium II is user serviceable. One additional easy work around if you have the My Book Premium II -- Buy another drive (identical model) on Ebay and replace the drives with your drives -- especially important if you are running in Raid 0. I recovered all my data and bought a new enclosure and junked the WD My Premium II. I am about to sell the one I bought on Ebay. Easy solution without downloads and I recovered a full 500 gb of data.

Noah said...

Hi I got a My Book Studio 1Tb. Same firmware problem, I got all the way to step 8 when i have to select the config_1X.txt file. but as i select it, it shows me an uploader error "Path...\config_1X.txt does not match the selected device". Can someone please help me. My email Thank you in advance

VASMAN said...

2 Vincent:

Get 1.04a firmware here:

Its a self-extractor, so extract it with WinZip or WinRar

Arne said...

I am unable to find the config_1x.txt. I can't find it inside the firmware archives either. I have even searched the whole C drive for it, within hidden and system files.

Does someone have the config file for mybook pro ii 1tb?

LvP said...

Hello, a few months ago I restored a My Book Pro 500 GB using this great tutorial.
Unfortunately I now have another firmware crash but with a My Book STUDIO 1 TB disk, but I can't figure out how to adapt this tutorial to fix this disk.
Any help please ?

LvP said...

(Trying to restore with WD_MB_Studio_1034_1_03)

Diegoo said...


Unfortunatly, I have done the same mistake, and updated my WD MyBook Pro Edition II 1To this month with the firmware 1.08a.1.02 ... and it's hang.

I can't find the config File (config_1X.txt) for WD Pro Edition II. It's not anymore available in the firmware I download. Can someone send me this file (

Many Thanks ...

Best Regards

ghghhgfd said...


""vasman said...

And there's one more thing.

If you done something wrong and would like to start over, the Oxford Uploader tool may not see the drive, since it is not a blank oxford usb device any more.

What i did is this:

- created a copy of the Oxford Uploader application folder

- extracted "Data" folder from the Western Digital firmware update

- removed everything in the "Data" folder of the Oxford Uploader

- copied Data contents from Western Updater into Oxford Uploader

- ran Oxford Uploader and at this point it sees the drive and you'll figure what to do next

I am on a Mac and used a Mac version of Oxford uploader and Western Updater. May not be the same easy in windows.

And yes. Drivers must correctly install in Windows for the "Blank USB Device" and for the "Blank USB Device running in acceleration mode" when they are detected, otherwise Oxford Uploader can't find the drive.""

Thats exactly what happened to me only in xp. The copying of files as mentioned causes :
ERROR : flash AM29LV010B Config sector ==Bottom sector
Scan usb does not find my device anymore and windows find it as unknown device
Please help me
I have 500 mybook Home edition

Diegoo said...

Hi ghghhgfd,

Try to use Firewire because for me, it was not detected with the USB.


ghghhgfd said...

The thing is when i scan through firewire it doesnt find anything and through usb oxford says error enabling/disabling the device. Of course wd upgrade gives : generic library error. funny thing is it can be recognised in xp through firewire but not through usb and when connected with esata it is found as mybook scsi device and works slower that the others !! Is there anything i can do at this point ?

ghghhgfd said...

Since oxford wont work anymore but disk is found properly as mybook in xp through firewire, does anyone have a way to force/apply firmware through firewire and restore other connection? Has anyone done the upgrade somehow through firewire?

Michael said...

Hi all, I have tried to update a My Book Studio II (2TB) on both Windows Vista & XP to the latest firmware form WD (WD_MB_Studio_II_1010_1_02.exe). When I run the file form WD I get an error "Update Failed. Please try again."

When I run the Oxford utility, it never finds the USB device, and when I ask it to Scan USB, I get an Uploader Error "Error enabling/disabling the device".

Oddly enough, I am able to use the device fine in windows connected to USB, but I noticed slow xfer speeds using the eSATA connecting which is why I went looking for an upgrade.

Any help would be great!

Mark said...

WD MY Book Home Edition 1 TB bought from Costco last week. Converted to NTFS file system and loaded the device with data. Then I attempted a firmware update, which failed, and my desktop computer no longer recognized the drive. I tried the advice in this BLOG and I called Western Digital with no success.

I removed the second (backup drive) from my desktop computer (WD 160 GB) and then removed the 1 TB drive from the Home Edition enclosure. I placed the jumper across pins 1 and 2 on the 1 TB drive, same as located on the old 160 GB drive. I installed the 1 TB drive in my computer and booted it up. The drive was recognized on bootup and in control panel/device manager, but it did not appear in MY Computer or Windows Explorer.

I went into the computer BIOS and set the drive to LBA, and when I booted up the drive was recognized in MY Computer with all of the files intact. I have an older desktop computer with a PCI Bus.

When I talked to WD Support on the phone, I suggested that they inform customers using their web site NOT TO UPDATE THE HARD DRIVE FIRMWARE unless absolutely necessary.

mednerd101 said...

Hi everyone, when I use the Uploader the uploader cannot find any USB devices. What should I do. Please advise, thanks.

NOTE: I have my external HDD connected directly to one of the USB ports on my laptop.

Thanks again.

WeSam Abdallah said...

Thanks for the instructions. Great blog.

Just a note to everyone, This model of MyBook uses a Oxford OXUF934DSB chip inside for serial bridges. I recently messed up my MyBook with a firmware upgrade from WD and have been looking for a firmware unloader from Oxford semiconductors (currently PLX) The firmware update tool from Western digital is piece of s***. Its just a wrapper UI tool to use the Oxford API.
The problem really is with the tool WD developed to use Oxford API framework. WD tool was written by a lousy developer apparently. It's a shame when you see a big company like WD hire armature to write big releases like this. That one/few developers must have cost the company "WD" millions in MyBook returns, customer support hours and eventually bad reputation for software updates.

Michael said...

*cheer* I got mine working finally!

I decided to give this another try after backing up all of my data to other drives...

I followed most of what "bigharm56ai" did to get Oxford working & once it saw my drive, I followed the steps 1 to 11. I think putting the files (bin, dat, dll, ini) in the following folder is what enabled Oxford to see my drive:

C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Oxsemi Uploader\Data

In my case, the WD upgrade package failed before erasing the current firmware version, so when I got to the screens steps 4 & 5, I left the "Flash Type" as it was realizing that it was likely different from "do0g" as the unit I have is a My Book Studio Edition II (2TB) as I said above. I have not opened the case either, so I had no idea which SST chip was inside.

Once the new firmware was loaded, for giggles, I tried to run the update downloaded from WD. Much to my surprise, it worked as intended leading me to believe the problem is in the factory firmware.

There must be some kind of glitch in the factory firmware or the upgrade team has been releasing patches that weren't communicating with the factory version due to misinformation or poor coding...

Thanks everyone and good luck!

AliiNui said...

I really gotta thank this blog. It is a life saver.
I had the same issue as Michael. I have the "My Book Studio II (2TB)" and I needed to update the firmware due to "failure to re-enumerate 1394 (FireWire)" issue. Of course WD's tool would not work. Using the information in this blog I was able to get to the point where I received the error message "Failed to start service : The system cannot find the file specified." I got it to work by realizing that the Oxsemi Uploader installed service files to the System32 directory. These files needed to be updated with the WD firmware package files for the flash to work.

Here are my steps I used.

*Before starting I needed to backup my "My Book Studio II (2TB)", destroy the partitions and uninstall the "WD Drive Manager" (it did not work till I did this).*

1. Applications needed.
WD_MB_Studio_II_1015_1_03.exe ""
jre-1_5_0_18-windows-i586-p.msi (I believe any version of java jre will work. This is the one I had.)
Win_Uploader_Install_2_17_0100_0001.exe (Oxsemi Uploader. link at top of blog)
2. Extract WD_MB_Studio_II_1015_1_03.exe (WinRAR will extract it). You will get a folder titlied "Firmware Upgrade". This will be used in steps 5,6,7.
3. Install jre-1_5_0_18-windows-i586-p.msi.
4. Install Win_Uploader_Install_2_17_0100_0001.exe. Do not reboot.
5. Copy the files from "Firmware Upgrade\Essentials" to "C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers" overwriting the files.
6. copy the files "\Firmware Upgrade\data\" to "C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Oxsemi Uploader\Data\" overwriting the files.
7. Copy the file "\Firmware Upgrade\data\win_uploader_dll.dll" to "C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Oxsemi Uploader\" overwriting the file.
8. Reboot machine.
9. Start the Oxford Semiconductor Uploader, and click OK to ignore the warning message. click the "Scan USB" button. The Uploader should find your drive.
10. Click Upload/Upgrade Firmware. A prompt will appear, asking you to select a Firmware file. Choose the file called "Firefly-2Q-1.015_Release.bin" located in "C:\Program Files\Oxford Semiconductor\Oxsemi Uploader\Data\UFS936DS". The Uploader will then start uploading the firmware.
12. When it is complete, your "My Book Studio II (2TB)" capacity light should turn on, and the drive should function as normal. Now you can close the Oxford Uploader. If you have any trouble accessing the drive, reboot your computer and disconnect/reconnect the "My Book Studio II's (2TB)"power cable.

I hope this information helps people the same way this blog helped me.

Thanks everyone

Anonymous said...

I appreciate the hard work and all the info...But maybe I am too tired trying to get my stuff to work but I did not see anything referring to a Mybook WE with ethernet interface.

I have the WD10000G032 (1TB) with 2 blue rings and a ethernet port and a USB port to daisy chain other drives I guess.

any pointers on how to get this to work again, what software to download besides what is listed. anything!!!

I 2 was in the middle of a firmware update when this garbage died. at this point all I want to do is get my stuff back. I may buy something different. If I get to work just like was fine, but I am so frustrated the WD helpless desk and the lack help.
Thanks in advance.

Trees and Doughnuts said...

To whom is may concern,

I'm not sure if this will help anyone, but I'll post my SUCCESSFUL data recovery from a Western Digital MyBook 500GB on a Mac OS X PowerBook running Snow Leopard.

- For some strange reason, the interface decided not to work anymore. After lots of reading it seems that the interface ICs are lacking. The hard drive itself was ok.

- I used the command-line tool 'diskutil list' to discover that the Mac OS really did connect to the drive, just not mount it. The native program 'Disk Utility' also found the drive and its components.

- The MyBook file system is an ext3 file system. This is a Linux RAID file type.

Tools Used:
- The MyBook hard drive removed from the case.

- An external enclosure.

- Software: MacFuse (

- Software: fuse-ext2 (

- I installed both the MacFuse and fuse-ext2 software. I have not yet reboot the computer.

It is currently copying the data from the MyBook hard drive to the new SeaGate external drive as I write this.

- I then mounted the hard drive volume (remember that the Mac already knows about the partition, it simply doesn't know what to do with it) via the command 'sudo fuse-ext2 -o ro /dev/disk1s4 /Volumes/WDD_Crap/'.

Description of Command:

'sudo' is just that.

'fuse-ext2' is the program name.

'-o ro' tells the program to mount as Read-Only. Apparently this software is still in development and the read-write isn't recommended.

'/dev/disk1s4' is the location of the slice (partition) of my particular external hard drive. Your disk number (disk1, disk2, etc) will vary. Also, the slice number (s1, s2, s3) will also vary. It will probably be the largest slice (partition) on the drive.

'/Volumes/WDD_Crap/' the directory name that I mounted the filesystem to.

- I then manually found the directory via 'Go -> Go To Folder' in Finder.

- Currently copying the data one directory at a time. I tried doing the whole thing at one go but got an error. Probably a buffer issue.

Ok, best of luck to you!

J. Kuhl

Netos said...

Super ca à marché. J'ai un MyBook Pro II.
Alors j'ai fait tout comme décrit au début, sauf que le fichier config_1X.txt n'est plus dans le nouveau Firmware de chez WD (Qui a buggé mon disque), je l'ai trouver dans de
NB: Astuce que je ne pensait pas au début... Une fois décompréssé on a un .exe, faire de nouveau clic droite et décomprésser.
Chercher config_1X.txt,l'ouvrir et remplacer:
par votre n°serial sur l'étiquette de votrer disque

Encore merci mille fois!!!!!!!!!! ( )

jag said...

I have the same problem with a My Book studio 500 Gb drive. Crashed during firmware upgrade to 1034. I can extract the firmware file for v1034 out of the file download from WD.

Unfortunately there is no config.txt file in there and you need this to ulpoad the firmware to the device again. The Studio range use an Oxford 934 chip inside not a 924, so you can't use the config.txt file used in the article above.

Is there a kind soul out there with a working My Book studio drive you can install the uploader and not flash but just click on modify configuration and save what it shows as a text file? It would be worth doing just in case a firmware upgrade goes wrong for you in the future - heaven forbid!

This is the only thing holding back a fix for the my book studio.

Anonymous said...

Hi, same here as Jag wrote: no cinfig file found for the MyBook 500Gb. Any ideas??

Kolyambo said...

I did it! I'm going to drink vodka! The author thanks huge!

rickwt said...

I have a My Book Pro II 1GB and it will not power up. When I plug the power cord in, the blue LED's are very faint. The power adaptor's green LED is on. My drive is configured as RAID 0. Any help would be appreciated.


Maxpower said...

Hello - fantastic guide, I had a bricked MyBook 500Gb. My unit has a triple interface (USB/eSATA/Firewire) with an Oxford UF934DSA chipset. I needed to create a custom config file to get the WD firmware to upload. You can pick it up here;

Hope it helps someone.

Cagri said...

I have a 1Tb MyBook Studio ( ), the new ones with a fancy screen and smartware application.

During the firmware update, as is very common, it unmounted itself and never mounted again to a SNowl Leopard intel based Mac. I tried to connect it and do a firmware update via windows 7 Pc but the update program shuts itself. Is it possible any of the really genius guys here give any advice for this type of HDD on how to flash it?
Thanks in advance

Jasnik82 said...


Eventually fixed my book 500mb .
I had to use the latest version of the 3.03.0000.0004 to see the device. Old version did not work .
Also selected
Silicon Storage Technology SST39xF020 - 8 bit (45 nS read access)
to flash device.
With firmware version from WD of 1034_1_03.
Model this worked on = WD5000H1CS
with a UF934.
Hope this help others.

Robert said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Robert said...

This is great stuff! I'm trying to revive a 500 MB My Book that I bricked trying to do a firmware upgrade (should have left well enough alone). I see Jasnik82 had to use version 3.03.0000.0004 to see the drive (I have the same model). I tried to download this version from the website but I keep getting a corrupt file that won't unzip.

Can anyone help me out by posting an alternate link to this file? Thanks.

spartakd said...

I have MyBook Mirror Edition (WD10000H2U-00).
When all the tasks and start the firmware update (931DS - U931DS_firefly_2U_v1.011.bin) I get an error - "Firmware is too big to fit into the flash device".
What should I do?

schramme said...


does someone have the information for the oxuf943se? This chip is build into the WD My Book Studio and I have the Firmware problem. Oxford Uploader recognises the drive (and chip) but I can't find the config file for it. Also I need the config for the Winbond 25x40avnig flash module.

Please help :)


Jeff J said...

I am trying to recover a My Book Studio II, i have everything se the config i have generated from my other working studio. but when i go to load the config i get an unknown exception. does any one have any ideas what i can try?

Leonardo Mendoza said...

If you are looking for the latest Oxford Semiconductor firmware uploader for Mac OS X, I found some download links on this site:
Mac Intel:

Mac PPC (G5):

*NOTE* you need to have a mac that runs a version of OS X that still supports PPC like Tiger or Leopard.

Copy the libwin_uploader_dll.jnilib to /usr/lib/java
and you should be able to run the uploader app.

For some reason my 1TB WD My Book Studio for Mac (this is the one with the e-ink LCD display) could not be detected using the USB port. But it can be detected using FireWire.

The uploader app identifies the controller as UF922. When I upload the initial firmware, it erases the old firmware and uploads the new one but it displays the following message: "switch the device out of force flash mode and reset it"

Reading up on the force flash section in the Oxsemi Uploader manual: and the
OXUF922 data sheet:, this is what it says about exiting force flash mode:

Force Flash mode shall be exited under the following conditions
1. The chip is reset either through a PON reset or the setting of the reset bit in the Flash Port register
The switch_on_timeout is enabled at reset, or when force flash mode is entered via the pin, or when the CPU writes to the SOT register enabling it. This requires a 31 bit data match to ensure no accidental setting, and a bit to enable or disable the feature.
When flash_loading is true, in addition to the pin muxing control, the following conditions are also true
1. The CPU is held in reset
2. Sync_reset is generated 2 clock cycles after the reset bit is set in the flash_port. This takes the chip out of force flash
mode and enables the CPU.
3. 1394 Bus Reset shall not cause the chip to exit Force Flash mode

I have no idea on how to fix this. If any one has any success fixing this particular My Book Studio version, please post your solution.

Gregor Čepek said...

I also have My Book Studio II with broken firmware:(

I followed guide from written by "AliiNui" but I don't know how he was able to upload bin with out config file?

I actually tried to write my own config, but I always get error "unknown exception in getconfigfromfile".

I was also searching for some updated version of Oxford Uploader - it looks latest version was 3.06 , but I couldn't find any way to download it.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you and best regards,

Hakan Atakir said...

I cant utpdate firmware
wd fw-updater keep saying 'please connect only one my book'
and oxemi uploader cant find any usb and select flash button not active...any new solotion for update manually?

Leonardo Mendoza said...

I was able to use's wayback machine ( to download old drivers. Just input the outdated URLs and look at archived snapshots of the pages. Most of the download links should also work.

Ignacio de Córdoba said...

Hi there,
after managing to upgrade the flash to my 1TB MyBook Pro II, it is back working but the MyBook Raid Utility won't recognize it. Also USB is not working, just Firewire (¿?) Probably the config file I used has changed some of its's parameters. Could somebody send a configuration file or its data for a MyBook Pro II to ? Thanks a lot

Notary Sojac said...

I suspect something has changed with all the Java updates that have come out since version 3 of the Uploader was unearthed in 2008:

"7/13/13 1:52:40 PM uploadergui.Application[724] dlopen(/usr/lib/java/libwin_uploader_dll.jnilib, 1): no suitable image found. Did find:
/usr/lib/java/libwin_uploader_dll.jnilib: mach-o, but wrong architecture"

When I launch uploadergui.jar (or any of the other .jar files in there) I just get a narrow empty window named UploaderError and the OK button you can not click. Have to Force Quit out of the app.

Vincent Vuong said...

Same as everyone else I've tried to update My Book Premium II to latest firmware and failed half-way through and now my My Book is not working. I just get a solid blue light doing nothing. I've followed all the instructions here but Oxsemi Uploader still can't detect my drive. Any ideas?

leogec said...

If somebody interested how to recover a WD My Book Studio II I have the files for it:

1. You need the latest Oxsemi Uploader which has OXFS936DS support (thanks to OWC):

2. Set the flash type to Silicon Storage Technology SST39xF040 - 8 bit

3. You need a config file for the chipset:

4. Press the update firmware and select the config file first then select the WD's binary file which you extracted from the official WD update program.

If you need more help. Just post here and let me know.


P.S.: Fuck WD as they refused to help me when their update tool trashed the firmware on my unit. I shall never buy another product from them.

4estation said...

I'm trying to flash wd my book over port 1394
But oxford semiconductor navosmom paragraph does not offer pick firmware
what do I do?
Please give a link to firmware 1.04

Erik Pavlik said...

I have the same issue but with a WD My Passport 1 TB Ext HDD....Will the same procedure work? I also have the option of being able to source another exact drive if this is a better easier solution.

fughk ewe said...

WD can suck a big cock. Fukcing assholes. None of this shit works anymore

longspringman said...

the link to the oxsemi uploader was for a 32 bit system do you know where to get the 64 bit version

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James R said...

I had the same problem when updating the firmware on my western digital my book essential 2tb external hdd, i searched for hours and found this fix!!!!!!!!

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Yashar Sh said...


where can I find newer version to "Oxford Semiconductor Uploader" ?
do have any link to uf934dsa bin and config file ?

I will be thankful if anyone could help me.

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