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Hard Drive Crashed

By runderwood29 ·
A co-workers hard drive crashed while watching a movie. I removed the hard drive, and placed it in my computer, but no luck. I replaced the hard drive controller board with an exact hard drive controller board, still no luck.

I really need to recover the last 5 years of this co-workers life. Any ideas on how I can extract the files off the hard drive without paying hundreds of dollars. My co-worker is a teacher.

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by cmiller5400 In reply to Hard Drive Crashed

Have you tried the drive mfr's testing utility? Is the drive recognized on boot? If not it may be beyond your recoverable efforts. If you really need the data you may need to look into data recovery firms. If it is recognized during boot, then there are software programs that may be able to recover the data. Good Luck!!

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by darts32 In reply to Hard Drive Crashed

If this is the last five years of his life I recommend paying the hundreds of dollars for a recovery.

Other than that, as a last resort and I mean this, put it in the freezer for about a half hour or so and insert back in the PC. May not have much time so make a backup of data quick. About a 60% sucess rate.

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by darts32 In reply to

Data recovery centers try or

Make sure whatever company you use has free evaluations of the drive and a no data no charge policy. Also get a written quote for the charges before sending the drive. Recovery of the drive will be between $1000 or $2000.

Sucess rate is around 75% to 85% for this option.

Everyone always has to learn once to do backups of data. I stress it everytime I setup a PC for someone.

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by w2ktechman In reply to Hard Drive Crashed

First I would mention that the above answers are good and should be looked at. Playing with it may cause more problems.
But here are a few alternatives to look at
1st, does the BIOS recognize the drive? If not, the jumper settings may be incorrect for a slave drive.
Second, does the drive spin up? If not, check the power. If it does not spin up, and the power and data cables are correct, then the drive is unrecoverable without taking it to a drive recovery shop.
If it does spin, does it make a lot of noise when accessed? If so, you could be grinding the head and platter, take it to a drive recovery shop.
If not, then when the system boots, what is the error when moving to theis drive? If it states that it needs to be formatted or that it cannot recognize the partition, again the shop.

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by mjd420nova In reply to Hard Drive Crashed

Seems all the answers are already given for the
most probable causes. There is one thing to try,
if the drive doesn't spin, disconnect all the
cables(data & power) to the drive, holding the
unit horizontal, rotate in your hand, twist it
while holding flat, then try the power cable,
and power up. Also try to apply power while
rototating as before. I've recovered many
drived that way, so back up quick, as the next
power cycle may be the last, and then it's
minimum $200. to recover the data at a
reputable service center. A lot depends on the
drive type.

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by zlitocook In reply to Hard Drive Crashed

You never said if the drive even boots, Dose the Bios see the drive? Do some trouble shooting first, reconnect the drive and see if it is seen by the bios.
Never try replacing the controller board unless you are sure it is the problem, you could cause more damage.
First try booting into safe mode and using the last known good configeration, if that dose not work you can do a repair from there.
If your computer is an XP system it may see the drive but if it is an NTFS and yours is not you may not be able to see the drive.
Never start with the hardest thing to do, use the idea KIS, keep it simple.
Put the drive back the way it was and make it the main drive by using the jumpers on the drive. Set your bios to boot to it and see what happens.
If it says it can not boot or invaled boot disk, boot to a XP cd and select recovery.
Just email me and I will send you the compleat way to do this. It is more then I can type here.

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by Bork Blatt In reply to Hard Drive Crashed

A very good value HDD recovery tool is SpinRite from Steve Gibson. It isn't free but it is a lot cheaper than having a data recovery firm examine the drive, and you can use it as a preventative maintenance tool as well.
Obviously the HDD has to be in enough of a workable condition to perform a low-level format.
Find it at

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by hughiemcginley In reply to Hard Drive Crashed

Short and sweet if you put his drive as a slave in your machine as secodary master and it is not picked up in the bios then you must turn to a professional recovery company some will do the job on mb recovered price or similar. If you mess anymore with it you could knacker it altogether. Can I say one word of advise BACK-UP

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by russellrl2 In reply to Hard Drive Crashed

You have submitted any feedback to indicate whether the drive is spinning up or not. After you make that determination you can proceed to the next step. If it won't spin and you are talking about a big disk (40GB or larger), you can count on paying over a $1,000. If it spins, you can purchase software to recover it. specializes in this kind of software. It is a little expense (less than recovery service) up front but the annual renewals are cheap. This software has more than paid for itself at my work place.

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by runderwood29 In reply to Hard Drive Crashed

This drive in not recongized, nor does it boot up. The drive is a 40GB Western Digital, and I tried the freezer thing, no luck there, either.

Thank you all very much for your comments. How about suggesting some good and inexspensive data recovery companies.

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