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Disaster Recovery - Hurricane

By al.parker ·
Need hints to individuals who are trying to recovery their computers/pheripherials from water/dirt/pollution damage from hurricanes?

The hardware was receovered what's next?

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Yeah, that too

by WindsorFox In reply to Give the Hardware a good ...

Yep, we've done that too. Hosed a few Dells with fresh water and let them bake in the sun for a few days. Two out of three worked on that one.

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Clean Water

by richards_unsubcribe In reply to Good idea, poorly express ...

If your stuff is soaked with dirty or salt water, immeadiatly rinse it off it with clean water... DO NOT allow them to dry first. You have nothing to lose's wet now so the best is just rinse it off and get the dirt and salt residue off it. Then let dry for several days... a hair dryer might help speed the process. Yes... keyboards and mice are probably toast... not worth the bother anyway. Monitors? Maybe... lots of high voltage in the CRT monitors so after rinsing in clean and fresh water let it dry it out well or the HT will arc over... then the flyback.HT is toast. LCD? who knows... Water will probably migrate into the display substrate... Hard drives are sealed in an intert gas... at least the platters are... so if wet rinse off in fresh and dry well over several days... if it works I'd immeadiatly download any sensitive data onto another drive.

PC boards are suprisingly resiliant to water... we used to wash freshly made PC boards in a dishwasher to get the water soluable flux off them then stacked em up like dishes to air dry.... so boards like mother boards, sound and video cards will probably survive if rinsed in fresh water and carefully dried.

Again... if possible do not let them dry before dunking them in fresh!

How do I know this? I used to work in the logging industry as a radio tech... many an ICOM portable radio... usually still turned on, popped out of an engineers pocket and straight into the river... embarassed he usually went "fishing" for his hand held radio .. and he usually he got wet. I used to put the radios on the heat register for the weekend and voila... change the speaker on Monday and as often as not, it worked.

Good luck ... my .02

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reading is fundamental

by macoco In reply to Good idea, poorly express ...

I think you read too much into this post...but if you're right, they are taking applications wt Halliburton...where have I heard that name before?

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I am just opportunisti as the next guy.......

by mhambrecht In reply to Dont touch the machine in ...

But come on even I am not low enough to start considering advertising to the victims of this disaster as a way of drumming up business. However, I think this could be opportuity for your company to get some free publicity by donating some of your time and wonderful resources to helping small business and individuals who need data receovery. I mean how many businesses might be saved by such gestures. We certainly don't need another aftermath like that of 9/11. I mean there was nithing left to recover then, however, this time there is. New Orleans may not be New York but there could be significant economic backlash. We in the IT industry know more than most the value our service could have in making or breaking the recovery from this disaster.

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Hardware not worth the time and effort

by lazerous200 In reply to Dont touch the machine in ...

I would just pull the hard drives and send them in for data recovery. Trying to rescue the machines will probably make the data unrecoverable. You can try to save the boards by cleaning them with FluxOff. We use Fluxoff quite extensivly and it does not hurt the electronics. If they are salvageable that is the only way to fly. I work in an Is Repair shop. Do Not Use WD40 because it is a conductor and you will burn the boards for sure as soon as you apply power.

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some additional thoughts ....

by michael In reply to it is possible

Most data recovery compies suggest that you NOT dry out the drives and that you place thin in a sealed plastic container and get them to a recoveryt site as quickly as possible.

Allowing the components to dry out may cause oxidation and affect the drive mechanism itself, hampering the recovery and addinf to the cost of restoration.

AS far as hardware itself goes in regards to pc and cards, if not covered by some sort of insurance plan, you can try and dry tem out, I'd be carefui in using solvements, etc to assist wirth the drying process as they mayb affect the component(s) or the board.

Best of luck ...

Michael Balenzano
BEC Technology Solutions

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WD40 works on electonics

by P2TechSup In reply to it is possible

I know by expierience that WD40 will work on electonics and not cause damage. I personnaly don't recomend using it on a $20k server. We used to use it to clean electronic volume controls way back when sliding volume adjustments were common. The slide used to get dirty and WD40 was cheaper than tuner cleaner. Even sprayed it on while turned on... Look Mom, no frizzy hair here ;-)

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Well first thing is to remember that you are not just dealing with water

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Disaster Recovery - Hurri ...

There is Mud and God only knows what else inside these things. It is something that you have to smell to believe and then you'll know what I mean.

Then you have to consider at what stage the equipment is at if it has been pulled out of the water and left for days I would be junking everything and only grabbing the HDD's and sending them off for Data Recovery.

However if they are still under water there are some steps that you can take to save the units.

First remove them from the water and submerge them in clean water until you are ready to start working on them DO NOT ALLOW THEN TO DRY OUT!!!!!!

When you are ready to start first remove the covers be it on a printer/Monitor/ computer or whatever and then remove the unit from the water and hose out all the muck that is inside it. You will find a lot of mud and other rubbish has found its way into these units. Remember to do the same to the Power Supplies with the computers as well and not just the cases as you'll create a Short Circuit if you do not clean out the Power Supplies as well as the rest of the computer. HDD's have air holes in them so I wouldn't even consider attempting to recover them just send them away in Clean Water to get the data Recovered.

After you have cleaned all of the built up rubbish out of the cases you can then leave the units in the Sun to Air Dry for several days remembering to not allow them to remain in the elements after nightfall. You should also liberally give them a good dose of WD 40 or something similar to prevent corrosion but only after the bulk of the water has dried off the M'Board and other parts. Remember that a M'Board that has been underwater for weeks will have absorbed a lot of water and may even delaminate if not handled properly so clean them out and then drown them in WD 40 RP 7 or whatever as this will displace most of the surface water and place a coating over the electrical connections.

For Floppy Drives I would just be junking them as they are not worth the time and effort in cleaning out and the same applies to CD/DVD Drives all Readers Recorders & Rewritable types. Also do not forget the Power Supply when you do this.

After the initial clean out and Water Displacement dismantle the units to component level and clean them again with Electrical Cleaner until things run clean nd then hit them again with WD 40 RP 7 or what ever else you have handy depending on Brand Names where you live.

We did this in 1974 when there was a flood here to several Main Frames so things where a little different we used a Fire Hose to clean them out with initially and had bought several 5 Gallon drums of WD 40 and as the water went down we hit them all with the fire hose to clean out the much and then shoveled out the muck from the buildings.

The ones that we got to as the water receded worked perfectly but after 3 days of no longer being submerged these units where written off as they could not be salvaged. The ones that we did save and got to immediately worked for the rest of their Taxable Life without increased breakdowns and where as reliable as new units that we fitted to places that we couldn't immediately get into to clean out and waterproof the hardware. We didn't bother to much about individual workstations as the real money was in the Main Frame Rooms but every workstation in the Main Frame Rooms was salvaged and worked perfectly when we did the same to it as we did to the Main Frames but of course we junked the Keyboards as they just where not worth the effort and waste of time as we could replace them cheaper than spending several hours labor recovering.

I hope that is of some help to you.


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Air holes in HDD's?

by richards_unsubcribe In reply to Well first thing is to re ...

Hal... thought HDD platters were sealed in an inert gas like nitrogen to prevent corrosion... often see a rubber gasket around the covers and a million screws... they quit doing that?

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Re: Air holes in HDD's?

by rammukund-at-yahoo In reply to Air holes in HDD's?

Yes air holes. They are protected by foam or fibrous dust filters.

The o-ring seals and zillion screws are to keep the enclosure dust-proof.

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