My HD has finally died thanks to my overheating Dell laptop, but I just need to get important photos off before I toss it. I put it in an external box and made a bunch of noise then stopped moving. The freezing trick got it up and running again, but when it almost gets to speed a loud vibration stops it and it tries again and again until it just gives up.
When hard drives begin to die you have a limited number of chances to get data off before they become inoperable. There may be nothing you can do at this point.
There are data recovery services, but you’ll spend quite a lot of money through them…well over $1000 in many cases.
Kerry56 is right about the HDD; the only way to recover data now is to physically dismantle the drive in a clean room and use specialist hardware to read the disk platters one by one (or similar).
I know this won’t help you, but to anyone else who reads this thread:
DATA YOU ONLY HAVE ONE COPY OF IS DATA YOU DON’T CARE ABOUT!
Backup everything including your backups.
thank you, and I know…ran out of space and didn’t have the money to buy more and the 4gb card on the camera was full and needed to dump it (only temporarily) to take more pics… knowing the HD was old and showing the signs… it just beat me to it. Now the pics are lost… we are just tying to figure out if they are worth the cost of paid recovery. I was hoping there was still something out there I could try.
If you take the drive apart and try lubing the motor (with a syringe, using the most infinitesimal amount of lube, 3 in 1 or Sewing machine oil) on (in the race) the bearing that is tight, you may be able to get it to spin long enough to retrieve your data. Spin it manually before you fire it up. I did this once. It worked. If you use over the slightest amount necessary, it will spread and you may have to clean the discs. When I took the HD back apart, some oil had spread, but it did not affect the data recovery. I promptly dispatched the “Western Digital” piece of junk. I had 2 WD’s go bad on me, both just out of warranty. Lube the arm too, at the pivot point. Done correctly, if it fails, you could still have a professional possibly recover the data.
Good advice, Zathros!
Are you sure about that, peeps? The disk heads on a modern hard drive float a matter of micrometers above the disk surface which makes a piece of dust look like a boulder. One bit of dust between the head and the disk surface and it’s goodbye to any data on that track and possibly any others that the head moves over as well.
The point of the inquiry was the possibility of recovering data that was recoverable. Not saving the hard drive. The data where the scratch is would not be read, but the rest would be recoverable. This is not a theoretical suggestion. It is something I have done. I have also, using my in circuit capacitor meter *, which measures the ESR of the cap, replaced caps and got hard drives working long enough to be able to get data that others gave up on. With the surface mount technology, it is often almost impossible to fix these things, but sometimes, before you throw the thing out, there are some things you could try. Of course, if you back up your data, you won’t have this problem. That’s 20/20 though,and offers no solution.
This is what I use. Nasa uses it on the Space Shuttle. The same unit. You do not have to unsolder the cap to use it. I also have a leak tracer. Fixing electronics to component level is a pain in the butt, but not too bad if you have the tools. I pass on what I have learned freely, as I have learned much from here.
By the way, Subaru owners, if your Mass Airflow Sensor goes bad, re-solder the (4)pins on the circuit board, they often crack. This can save you hundreds of dollars.
You so funny!!
Putting the drive into a USB enclosure and using another notebook computer with a file management program
already up and running MAY allow you enough time to read the drive while it’s still in the freezer (at the cold end of your USB cable:)
Personally in a situation like that I tend to use an old file management program called ZTree because it allows me to be highly selective about what files I’m trying to recover. which saves on very limited run time.
More often than not I’m doing this on a customer’s computer and pictures and financial records
are always what they are most concerned with… though I’ve rescued some fairly large music libraries.