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Salvageable Hard Drive?

Jeremy

Well-known member
#1
OK. So my brother's laptop decided to commit suicide this week after he accidentally dropped it. His computer worked after it, but it got slower, he had issues, and what not. Finally it just stopped seeing the hard drive. My theory is its a connection within the computer, because after I had him remove and put it back, he attempted to start it up and the hard drive was clicking. I'm not a super huge hard ware person, but am I correct in thinking that there is a possibility that I (or someone better) can get the hard drive working in say another case so that his information may be accessed. I just spent the last 30 minutes talking with him about what his best option is for a new computer (we are Mac people, so it was limited). Found one, and he's already talking to our parents. However, losing all his school work, music (it is on his iPod, so salvageable), etc. isn't ideal. So basically, is a clicking hard drive salvageable?
 

Jaxel

Well-known member
#2
yes, its salvageable... as long as it gets power and spins, you can read data from it if you put a little work into it.
 

Elizabeth

Well-known member
#4
Data Recovery From a Failed Hard Drive - Freezing Method:
Many people have heard that putting a dead hard drive can bring it back to life, and most think it is a myth. There is actually documentation showing that by freezing a hard drive it is possible to recover the data from the drive in some cases. Freezing a hard drive can be used in data recovery, but will only fix the hard drive for a short period of time. If the drive is spinning (you will hear it turning) this is not the method to use, this method is best suited for data recovery cases where the drive is not spinning. If the drive is spinning it not physically damaged so it is a problem that should be approached through other methods.
Step 1: Make Sure You Are Prepared to Recover the Data

There is no point in trying to freeze the old hard drive if you are not prepared to immediately copy the data off of the failed hard drive. You should have a new hard drive already installed in the computer or have a different computer setup and ready to go. As soon as you hook the old hard drive back up to see if it works you'll have to be ready to start copying the data onto a fresh hard drive.
Step 2: Freeze the Hard Drive

Place the hard drive into a Ziploc bag and seal it. To be extra safe you can also place the drive in an anti-static bag then place it into a Ziploc bag. Place the failed hard drive into the freezer for around two hours (you can try doing it longer if two hours does not do the trick).
Step 3: Restore the Files

As soon as you remove the hard drive from the freezer install it into the computer right away as the slave drive and boot it up. If you can access the drive begin recovering the important data right away. If you are able to recover the data using this method the drive will usually work for approximately 20-30 minutes. If the method does work and you are not able to get all of your data recovered before it fails again you can freeze the drive again and try again. If the drive still does not respond you can try freezing it for a longer period of time (24 hours), but you may be out of luck.
There is more info on the site so go read first but my husband and I have used this method to recover quicken files from a dead hard drive and it worked. But we knew what we were going after and we knew we couldn't get the entire hard drive.

Liz
 

fattony69

Well-known member
#5
For this sort of thing, you can use a single cable to another computer will work. I payed Best Buy to do mine since I was lazy. Plus, I got a deal on a new external hard drive.
 

Brett Peters

Well-known member
#6
am I correct in thinking that there is a possibility that I (or someone better) can get the hard drive working in say another case so that his information may be accessed.
Go to your computer store and buy a 2.5" usb case, If the hard drive works then this is a very handy option.

USB2.0  PocketSize Enclosure Kit  for  2.gif


**EDIT

Disregard, I just read that the hard drive is clicking
 

Jeremy

Well-known member
#7
yes, its salvageable... as long as it gets power and spins, you can read data from it if you put a little work into it.
So, most likely a case should do the trick?

Go to your computer store and buy a 2.5" usb case, If the hard drive works then this is a very handy option.

View attachment 10872

**EDIT

Disregard, I just read that the hard drive is clicking
This means...?
 

Jeremy

Well-known member
#8
Data Recovery From a Failed Hard Drive - Freezing Method:


There is more info on the site so go read first but my husband and I have used this method to recover quicken files from a dead hard drive and it worked. But we knew what we were going after and we knew we couldn't get the entire hard drive.

Liz
Although, a clicking sound means the hard drive is spinning, so freezing wouldn't be a good idea?

For this sort of thing, you can use a single cable to another computer will work. I payed Best Buy to do mine since I was lazy. Plus, I got a deal on a new external hard drive.
We are avoiding best buy. My brother's girlfriend did that when her mother board fried and they got about 1/4 of her data (important stuff) and charged outrageous amounts of money.
 

Luke F

Well-known member
#9
He dropped the laptop, then had disk-related issues and didn't think to backup important files asap?

Clicking means the drive is screwed, you can either risk the freezer trick or spend a fortune sending it to a recovery company.
 

Brett Peters

Well-known member
#10
I suggested that you buy a usb case for the hard drive so that you could retrieve the information from it through usb, Then I had realized that the hard drive was clicking so I edited my post as I doubt that my suggestion will correct the clicking.

If you think it might be a connection issue and you have a spare $10-$20 then it might be worth a try

Good luck
 
#11
I suggested that you buy a usb case for the hard drive so that you could retrieve the information from it through usb, Then I had realized that the hard drive was clicking so I edited my post as I doubt that my suggestion will correct the clicking.

If you think it might be a connection issue and you have a spare $10-$20 then it might be worth a try

Good luck
That's also what I've done over the years with my old laptop hard-drives as well. I put them in a case and then retrieve the old info I need and then just use them for backups or storing music or whatever. :)

-Chris
 

Jeremy

Well-known member
#12
T
I suggested that you buy a usb case for the hard drive so that you could retrieve the information from it through usb, Then I had realized that the hard drive was clicking so I edited my post as I doubt that my suggestion will correct the clicking.

If you think it might be a connection issue and you have a spare $10-$20 then it might be worth a try

Good luck
Thanks. I will be looking into that ASAP.
 

Digital Doctor

Well-known member
#13
he attempted to start it up and the hard drive was clicking.
Clicking means the drive is screwed, you can either risk the freezer trick or spend a fortune sending it to a recovery company.
Clicking is not spinning, it means the hard drive is dead.
The freezing thing could very well work.
Recovery is in the $500 range otherwise.

Ontrack won't help a clicking hard drive.

With 2 gigs of dropbox.com free, no one should lose really valuable data anymore.
 

Jeremy

Well-known member
#14
He dropped the laptop, then had disk-related issues and didn't think to backup important files asap?

Clicking means the drive is screwed, you can either risk the freezer trick or spend a fortune sending it to a recovery company.
A four letter word comes to mind. I haven't actually seen the computer (He lives 4 hours away), so I will look at it when he comes home.

Clicking is not spinning, it means the hard drive is dead.
The freezing thing could very well work.
Recovery is in the $500 range otherwise.

Ontrack won't help a clicking hard drive.

With 2 gigs of dropbox.com free, no one should lose really valuable data anymore.
A little late now, but he isn't very tech savy.
 

AnthonyCea

Well-known member
#15
Ontrack won't help a clicking hard drive.
Wrong !!!

They will take it apart if you have the cash and get the data !!!

http://www.ontrackdatarecovery.com/hard-drive-recovery/


Data recovery involves more than just replacing parts. Ontrack Data Recovery services use cutting-edge hard drive recovery tools and processes that come from heavy investment in R&D and 20 years experience. A sample of the expert techniques used include:
  • In case of mechanical failure, hard disk recoveries are performed in dust-free cleanroom environments where they are carefully dismounted, examined and processed.
    • Hard drives are imaged. A copy of the disk is made and transferred to a new system.
      • Ontrack Data Recovery tools can “force” the drive to read around the bad area.

    • NOTICE: Trying this on your own or through an inexperienced provider may lead to further damage to the drive.
 

Steve F

Well-known member
#16
I have tried the freezer trick before on a clicking drive with no luck except I got to see the Windows logo screen and then it froze and wouldn't do anything more. I froze the drive the last time for around 4 hrs. Wrapped in a towel and put it inside a ziplock baggy.

I actually sent a estimate request to Ontrack and got a response that it would be minimum $695 and upwards to $1500.

Thing is I am really pondering it as the drive was from my wife's pc that she had kept a timeline of our first baby from around 4 months pregnant to around 9months old. The drive just started clicking and would not boot, the drive wasn't but a couple months old. Windows Live One care seems to not have backed it up correctly or the backup is corrupted as I cannot even retrieve the backup.
 

AnthonyCea

Well-known member
#17
LOL, saving files to hard drive on old Windows machines seems to be a waste of time, I had one with 3 years of work on it, then I downloaded M$ anti-spyware beta and it then rendered the hard drive unreadable to Windows, but I could see the files running on Mepis Linux as dumb as that sounds.

M$ antispyware beta rendered the file allocation tables unreadable to Windows, so you had better back up everything to an external hard drive now days, you can buy a 100 gig unit for 50 bucks on ebay.

At that time about 5 years ago or longer I was not backing up anything, now I do, but I still have the old drive, in fact I have about 8 of them stacked up here.

I am thinking about installing some data recovery software on a box when I have the money to see if I can pull the files myself.

http://www.wdc.com/en/products/external/desktop/

Got a few of the above units.
 

bambua

Well-known member
#20
LOL, saving files to hard drive on old Windows machines seems to be a waste of time, I had one with 3 years of work on it, then I downloaded M$ anti-spyware beta and it then rendered the hard drive unreadable to Windows, but I could see the files running on Mepis Linux as dumb as that sounds.

M$ antispyware beta rendered the file allocation tables unreadable to Windows, so you had better back up everything to an external hard drive now days, you can buy a 100 gig unit for 50 bucks on ebay.

At that time about 5 years ago or longer I was not backing up anything, now I do, but I still have the old drive, in fact I have about 8 of them stacked up here.

I am thinking about installing some data recovery software on a box when I have the money to see if I can pull the files myself.

http://www.wdc.com/en/products/external/desktop/

Got a few of the above units.
I just bought an external 1 tb drive from CDW, western digital for 109.99, using it as my time machine drive for my Mac Book. Anything that's import, read I can live with out, I backup to jungledisk, it's not free, but their software is great and having the backup encrypted on the cloud makes me happy.

https://www.jungledisk.com/
http://www.cdw.com/shop/products/default.aspx?edc=1855930

Incidentally I also push my forum and wordpress backups up to jungledisk as well, makes a great offsite backup incase your host goes belly up.

As for the laptop drive as others have said if it hits the clicking point that's really bad mojo, if stuff is critical on it, it's probably time to talk to the experts.