Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive - Storage

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  1. Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    Hey guys. I've got a real problem on my hands. Basically all my work
    for the last 4 years at University, along with countless amounts of
    data I've accumulated over the years stored on my hard drive might be
    lost. The drive suddenly stopped working properly 2 nights ago, and
    I've spent the weekend since trying ot recover what data I can.

    The first thing I should address is the issue of backups. Any
    meaningful backup has simply not been possible due to the high volume
    of data, and the very finite budget I live on as a student
    constraining me to only having one hard drive. A conveneient place to
    store around 9GB of data just doesn't exist for me. I guess hindsight
    is a wonderful thing, but at the moment I'm stuck without my data.

    Anyway, recovery of my work is of course a top priority, so I could do
    with some advice on how I should proceed from here? Firstly, I'll
    explain the situation in more detail:

    Causes for Concern:
    ------------------------------

    - I get a "Disk Read Error" whenever I try to boot up the hard drive
    as a Master.

    - When I boot it up as a Slave, I can boot into XP from the other hard
    drive, but it takes a very long time to boot up and load XP. Once in
    XP, I cannot read the contents of the drive (which I can verify as
    I've just given it one last try) and I get a message telling me to
    format the drive.

    Causes for Optimism:
    --------------------------------

    - On occassion the drive has been more co-operative and I have been
    able to copy over a small fraction of my work with the drive as a
    slave either in XP or in DOS. However, very quickly the operating
    system comes up against a file it cannot read, and eventually gives up
    the copying.

    - The drive is always detected by the BIOS

    - There are no clicking noises or other strange noises coming from the
    hard drive, which suggests to me the fault may not be mechanical.

    Going Forward
    ----------------------

    A friend of mine who has more experience with PC repair ran a program
    called Restorer2000, but the drive contents couldn't be read by
    Windows, so the program didn't have much success either. However, it
    was able to read a few files from my Windows partition, but my work
    partition was completly unavailable. A number of read errors were
    quoted in locations. These locations were given as a string of
    numbers, either about 7-8 digits long, and 11 digits long. The exact
    values I can't recall.

    My next step has been to look for some companies that specialise in
    data recovery and see if they will have more luck by perhaps taking
    the drive apart and extracting data from the platters themseleves.

    Anyway, the main point of this post is to gain some a better idea of
    what has happened to my hard drive, based upon the above symptoms.
    From there I can see if paying ~500 to recover a 40GB partition is
    likely to be successful.

    The drive is a Western Digital WD800JB 80GB ATA hard drive.

    Kind Regards,

    Matthew Boulton

  2. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    Matt wrote:

    > Hey guys. I've got a real problem on my hands.


    Yep, the main problem is between your ears.

    > Basically all my work for the last 4 years at University, along with countless
    > amounts of data I've accumulated over the years stored on my hard drive
    > might be lost. The drive suddenly stopped working properly 2 nights ago,


    Pretty smart move not having that backed up.

    > and I've spent the weekend since trying ot recover what data I can.


    Pretty smart move risking making things worse.

    > The first thing I should address is the issue of backups.


    Yep.

    > Any meaningful backup has simply not been possible due to the high volume of data,


    Pig ignorant lie.

    > and the very finite budget I live on as a student
    > constraining me to only having one hard drive.


    Another pig ignorant lie.

    > A conveneient place to store around 9GB of data just doesn't exist for me.


    Another pig ignorant lie. Thats only a couple of DVDs.

    > I guess hindsight is a wonderful thing,


    And so is having enough of a clue to work out what fits fine on a couple of DVDs.

    > but at the moment I'm stuck without my data.


    Then its stupid to be risking making things even worse.

    > Anyway, recovery of my work is of course a top priority, so I
    > could do with some advice on how I should proceed from here?


    The only thing that makes any sense at all is professional recovery.

    > Firstly, I'll explain the situation in more detail:


    > Causes for Concern:
    > ------------------------------


    Nothing viable between the ears.

    > - I get a "Disk Read Error" whenever I try
    > to boot up the hard drive as a Master.


    > - When I boot it up as a Slave, I can boot into XP from the other hard drive,


    Hang on, you just claimed that you could only afford one drive.

    > but it takes a very long time to boot up and load XP.
    > Once in XP, I cannot read the contents of the drive
    > (which I can verify as I've just given it one last try)
    > and I get a message telling me to format the drive.


    > Causes for Optimism:
    > --------------------------------


    > - On occassion the drive has been more co-operative and
    > I have been able to copy over a small fraction of my work
    > with the drive as a slave either in XP or in DOS. However,
    > very quickly the operating system comes up against a file
    > it cannot read, and eventually gives up the copying.


    Thats normal with any drive that has quite a few bads.

    Thats not a cause for optimism at all.

    > - The drive is always detected by the BIOS


    All that means is that it isnt completely dead.

    In some ways thats a better prospect because a logic card swap can be all you need.

    > - There are no clicking noises or other strange noises coming from
    > the hard drive, which suggests to me the fault may not be mechanical.


    Nope, all that means is that that drive recalibrates quietly.

    > Going Forward
    > ----------------------


    > A friend of mine who has more experience with PC repair ran a
    > program called Restorer2000, but the drive contents couldn't be
    > read by Windows, so the program didn't have much success either.


    > However, it was able to read a few files from my Windows
    > partition, but my work partition was completly unavailable.


    > A number of read errors were quoted in locations. These
    > locations were given as a string of numbers, either about
    > 7-8 digits long, and 11 digits long. The exact values I can't recall.


    What matters is how reproducible the numbers are. If they vary every
    time you try that, there is either loose material floating around inside
    the sealed chamber or there is a bad connection to the heads etc.

    > My next step has been to look for some companies that specialise in
    > data recovery and see if they will have more luck by perhaps taking
    > the drive apart and extracting data from the platters themseleves.


    Thats what you should have tried first given that
    you have no backup and the data is so important.

    > Anyway, the main point of this post is to gain some a better idea of
    > what has happened to my hard drive, based upon the above symptoms.


    Its either had a head crash and so there is loose material floating around
    in the sealed chamber, or there is a flakey connection to the heads etc.

    > From there I can see if paying ~500 to recover a 40GB partition is likely to be successful.


    Nope.

    > The drive is a Western Digital WD800JB 80GB ATA hard drive.


    How repeatable are the read error locations ?



  3. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    > > Any meaningful backup has simply not been possible due to the high volume of data,
    >
    > Pig ignorant lie.
    >
    > > and the very finite budget I live on as a student
    > > constraining me to only having one hard drive.

    >
    > Another pig ignorant lie.


    I understand you're not in my position, but I take it you're not used
    to living on 4,000 a year to make a comment like that.

    >
    > > A conveneient place to store around 9GB of data just doesn't exist for me.

    >
    > Another pig ignorant lie. Thats only a couple of DVDs.


    DVD's aren't something I can update conveniently on an minute-by-
    minute basis (or any kind of regular basis), which is how often this
    data is beibng updated when I'm working. Also I don't have a DVD
    recorder.

    > Hang on, you just claimed that you could only afford one drive.


    The other drive is my parents 20GB drive from their computer.

    >
    > > Anyway, the main point of this post is to gain some a better idea of
    > > what has happened to my hard drive, based upon the above symptoms.

    >
    > Its either had a head crash and so there is loose material floating around
    > in the sealed chamber, or there is a flakey connection to the heads etc.


    > How repeatable are the read error locations ?


    They were very repeatable, it was always the same locations that
    couldn't be read.

    I agree with your earlier comments that the drive should be left well
    alone now before I hand it over to a professional firm, and I wish I
    had done so earlier. But the prospect of being able to recover my
    data, given I had no idea how severe this was, so I could make a
    backup to my parents hard drive made sense at the time. Paying 500
    isn't something I can do without a second thought.

    Do you recommend any firms that have done good work for you in the
    past?

    Kind Regards,

    Matt


  4. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    Matt wrote:

    >Anyway, recovery of my work is of course a top priority, so I could do
    >with some advice on how I should proceed from here? Firstly, I'll
    >explain the situation in more detail:


    Install the HD as secondary - and another HD to copy recovered files
    to.

    Then use one of the Boot CD's below to recover your files, each has
    the tools you need (I like the Hiren's CD)

    Hiren's Boot CD
    http://thepiratebay.org/search/hiren/0/99/0

    Or

    Ultimateboot cd
    http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/
    --
    http://www.theonion.com/content/file...20.article.jpg

  5. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    Matt wrote:

    >>> Any meaningful backup has simply not been possible due to the high volume of data,


    >> Pig ignorant lie.


    >>> and the very finite budget I live on as a student
    >>> constraining me to only having one hard drive.


    >> Another pig ignorant lie.


    > I understand you're not in my position, but I take it you're not
    > used to living on 4,000 a year to make a comment like that.


    You're wrong. And anyone with a clue can backup
    to DVD when living on that sort of income.

    >>> A conveneient place to store around 9GB of data just doesn't exist for me.


    >> Another pig ignorant lie. Thats only a couple of DVDs.


    > DVD's aren't something I can update conveniently on an minute-by-minute basis


    You dont need to do anything like that to have a viable backup.

    > (or any kind of regular basis),


    Bare faced lie.

    > which is how often this data is beibng updated when I'm working.


    Even if you only backup say once a week, the most you will
    lose is one week of data, not the entire 4 YEARS of data.

    > Also I don't have a DVD recorder.


    They cost peanuts. Buy one, stupid.

    >> Hang on, you just claimed that you could only afford one drive.


    > The other drive is my parents 20GB drive from their computer.


    And anyone with a clue could have backed up to that.

    >>> Anyway, the main point of this post is to gain some a better idea of
    >>> what has happened to my hard drive, based upon the above symptoms.


    >> Its either had a head crash and so there is loose material floating around
    >> in the sealed chamber, or there is a flakey connection to the heads etc.


    >> How repeatable are the read error locations ?


    > They were very repeatable, it was always the same locations that couldn't be read.


    Thats bad news, because it means there is no simple fix that will eliminate the errors.

    Professional recovery can certainly recover what is recoverable in that situation.

    > I agree with your earlier comments that the drive should be left well
    > alone now before I hand it over to a professional firm, and I wish I
    > had done so earlier. But the prospect of being able to recover my
    > data, given I had no idea how severe this was, so I could make a
    > backup to my parents hard drive made sense at the time. Paying
    > 500 isn't something I can do without a second thought.


    Sure, but you should have had that further thought and realised that
    when you have no backups at all for 4 years of irreplaceable data,
    its very risky to try recovering it yourself with data that important.

    > Do you recommend any firms that have done good work for you in the past?


    I've never needed to use anyone because I always have full backups.
    And havent even needed to use them except for convenience either.



  6. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    Matt wrote:
    > Hey guys. I've got a real problem on my hands.


    Read some pages and listen to some podcasts and see if you believe
    whether or not you should spend $90 on SpinRite
    http://www.grc.com/sr/spinrite.htm industry's #1 hard drive data
    recovery software -- To learn about SpinRite's history and much of its
    technology and capabilities, please see our existing, extensive,
    SpinRite web area and documentation.

    --
    Mike Easter


  7. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    Matt wrote:
    >
    > Hey guys. I've got a real problem on my hands. Basically all my work
    > for the last 4 years at University, along with countless amounts of
    > data I've accumulated over the years stored on my hard drive might be
    > lost. The drive suddenly stopped working properly 2 nights ago, and
    > I've spent the weekend since trying ot recover what data I can.
    >
    > The first thing I should address is the issue of backups. Any
    > meaningful backup has simply not been possible due to the high volume
    > of data, and the very finite budget I live on as a student
    > constraining me to only having one hard drive. A conveneient place to
    > store around 9GB of data just doesn't exist for me. I guess hindsight
    > is a wonderful thing, but at the moment I'm stuck without my data.
    >
    > Anyway, recovery of my work is of course a top priority, so I could do
    > with some advice on how I should proceed from here? Firstly, I'll
    > explain the situation in more detail:
    >
    > Causes for Concern:
    > ------------------------------
    >
    > - I get a "Disk Read Error" whenever I try to boot up the hard drive
    > as a Master.
    >
    > - When I boot it up as a Slave, I can boot into XP from the other hard
    > drive, but it takes a very long time to boot up and load XP. Once in
    > XP, I cannot read the contents of the drive (which I can verify as
    > I've just given it one last try) and I get a message telling me to
    > format the drive.
    >
    > Causes for Optimism:
    > --------------------------------
    >
    > - On occassion the drive has been more co-operative and I have been
    > able to copy over a small fraction of my work with the drive as a
    > slave either in XP or in DOS. However, very quickly the operating
    > system comes up against a file it cannot read, and eventually gives up
    > the copying.
    >
    > - The drive is always detected by the BIOS
    >
    > - There are no clicking noises or other strange noises coming from the
    > hard drive, which suggests to me the fault may not be mechanical.
    >
    > Going Forward
    > ----------------------
    >
    > A friend of mine who has more experience with PC repair ran a program
    > called Restorer2000, but the drive contents couldn't be read by
    > Windows, so the program didn't have much success either. However, it
    > was able to read a few files from my Windows partition, but my work
    > partition was completly unavailable. A number of read errors were
    > quoted in locations. These locations were given as a string of
    > numbers, either about 7-8 digits long, and 11 digits long. The exact
    > values I can't recall.
    >
    > My next step has been to look for some companies that specialise in
    > data recovery and see if they will have more luck by perhaps taking
    > the drive apart and extracting data from the platters themseleves.
    >
    > Anyway, the main point of this post is to gain some a better idea of
    > what has happened to my hard drive, based upon the above symptoms.
    > From there I can see if paying ~500 to recover a 40GB partition is
    > likely to be successful.
    >
    > The drive is a Western Digital WD800JB 80GB ATA hard drive.
    >
    > Kind Regards,
    >
    > Matthew Boulton


    Matt,

    The more you play around with that drive (which has bad sectors and
    possibly failing read/write heads) the WORSE you are going to make it.

    Those "strings of numbers" you see are the sector location where bad
    media has been located.

    Switch the drive off, keep it powered off, and get it to someone who
    knows what they are doing.

    Spinrite and its ilk are fine if you have a _purely_ logical problem;
    for all other causes of failure, you'd best be buying some snake oil.

    I see countless drives come in for recovery that have been obliterated
    due to the owner taking advice from another who has absolutely no real
    knowlegde of data recovery.

    Switch that drive off immediately, and it it done professionally.


    Duncan
    --
    Retrodata
    www.retrodata.co.uk
    Globally Local Data Recovery Experts

  8. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    On 30 Mar 2008 Odie Ferrous wrote in 24hoursupport.helpdesk

    > Matt wrote:
    >>
    >> Hey guys. I've got a real problem on my hands. Basically all my work
    >> for the last 4 years at University, along with countless amounts of
    >> data I've accumulated over the years stored on my hard drive might be
    >> lost. The drive suddenly stopped working properly 2 nights ago, and
    >> I've spent the weekend since trying ot recover what data I can.
    >>
    >> The first thing I should address is the issue of backups. Any
    >> meaningful backup has simply not been possible due to the high volume
    >> of data, and the very finite budget I live on as a student
    >> constraining me to only having one hard drive. A conveneient place to
    >> store around 9GB of data just doesn't exist for me. I guess hindsight
    >> is a wonderful thing, but at the moment I'm stuck without my data.
    >>
    >> Anyway, recovery of my work is of course a top priority, so I could do
    >> with some advice on how I should proceed from here? Firstly, I'll
    >> explain the situation in more detail:
    >>
    >> Causes for Concern:
    >> ------------------------------
    >>
    >> - I get a "Disk Read Error" whenever I try to boot up the hard drive
    >> as a Master.
    >>
    >> - When I boot it up as a Slave, I can boot into XP from the other hard
    >> drive, but it takes a very long time to boot up and load XP. Once in
    >> XP, I cannot read the contents of the drive (which I can verify as
    >> I've just given it one last try) and I get a message telling me to
    >> format the drive.
    >>
    >> Causes for Optimism:
    >> --------------------------------
    >>
    >> - On occassion the drive has been more co-operative and I have been
    >> able to copy over a small fraction of my work with the drive as a
    >> slave either in XP or in DOS. However, very quickly the operating
    >> system comes up against a file it cannot read, and eventually gives up
    >> the copying.
    >>
    >> - The drive is always detected by the BIOS
    >>
    >> - There are no clicking noises or other strange noises coming from the
    >> hard drive, which suggests to me the fault may not be mechanical.
    >>
    >> Going Forward
    >> ----------------------
    >>
    >> A friend of mine who has more experience with PC repair ran a program
    >> called Restorer2000, but the drive contents couldn't be read by
    >> Windows, so the program didn't have much success either. However, it
    >> was able to read a few files from my Windows partition, but my work
    >> partition was completly unavailable. A number of read errors were
    >> quoted in locations. These locations were given as a string of
    >> numbers, either about 7-8 digits long, and 11 digits long. The exact
    >> values I can't recall.
    >>
    >> My next step has been to look for some companies that specialise in
    >> data recovery and see if they will have more luck by perhaps taking
    >> the drive apart and extracting data from the platters themseleves.
    >>
    >> Anyway, the main point of this post is to gain some a better idea of
    >> what has happened to my hard drive, based upon the above symptoms.
    >> From there I can see if paying ~500 to recover a 40GB partition is
    >> likely to be successful.
    >>
    >> The drive is a Western Digital WD800JB 80GB ATA hard drive.
    >>
    >> Kind Regards,
    >>
    >> Matthew Boulton

    >
    > Matt,
    >
    > The more you play around with that drive (which has bad sectors and
    > possibly failing read/write heads) the WORSE you are going to make it.
    >
    > Those "strings of numbers" you see are the sector location where bad
    > media has been located.
    >
    > Switch the drive off, keep it powered off, and get it to someone who
    > knows what they are doing.
    >
    > Spinrite and its ilk are fine if you have a _purely_ logical problem;
    > for all other causes of failure, you'd best be buying some snake oil.
    >
    > I see countless drives come in for recovery that have been obliterated
    > due to the owner taking advice from another who has absolutely no real
    > knowlegde of data recovery.
    >
    > Switch that drive off immediately, and it it done professionally.
    >
    >
    > Duncan


    You could just redo your last 4 years at University.



    --
    D?

  9. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    I was going to suggest that but hopefully he'll buy a seagate hard drive
    instead of a western digital one when he repeats those 4 years.

    Duende wrote:

    > On 30 Mar 2008 Odie Ferrous wrote in 24hoursupport.helpdesk
    >
    > > Matt wrote:
    > >>
    > >> Hey guys. I've got a real problem on my hands. Basically all my work
    > >> for the last 4 years at University, along with countless amounts of
    > >> data I've accumulated over the years stored on my hard drive might be
    > >> lost. The drive suddenly stopped working properly 2 nights ago, and
    > >> I've spent the weekend since trying ot recover what data I can.
    > >>
    > >> The first thing I should address is the issue of backups. Any
    > >> meaningful backup has simply not been possible due to the high volume
    > >> of data, and the very finite budget I live on as a student
    > >> constraining me to only having one hard drive. A conveneient place to
    > >> store around 9GB of data just doesn't exist for me. I guess hindsight
    > >> is a wonderful thing, but at the moment I'm stuck without my data.
    > >>
    > >> Anyway, recovery of my work is of course a top priority, so I could do
    > >> with some advice on how I should proceed from here? Firstly, I'll
    > >> explain the situation in more detail:
    > >>
    > >> Causes for Concern:
    > >> ------------------------------
    > >>
    > >> - I get a "Disk Read Error" whenever I try to boot up the hard drive
    > >> as a Master.
    > >>
    > >> - When I boot it up as a Slave, I can boot into XP from the other hard
    > >> drive, but it takes a very long time to boot up and load XP. Once in
    > >> XP, I cannot read the contents of the drive (which I can verify as
    > >> I've just given it one last try) and I get a message telling me to
    > >> format the drive.
    > >>
    > >> Causes for Optimism:
    > >> --------------------------------
    > >>
    > >> - On occassion the drive has been more co-operative and I have been
    > >> able to copy over a small fraction of my work with the drive as a
    > >> slave either in XP or in DOS. However, very quickly the operating
    > >> system comes up against a file it cannot read, and eventually gives up
    > >> the copying.
    > >>
    > >> - The drive is always detected by the BIOS
    > >>
    > >> - There are no clicking noises or other strange noises coming from the
    > >> hard drive, which suggests to me the fault may not be mechanical.
    > >>
    > >> Going Forward
    > >> ----------------------
    > >>
    > >> A friend of mine who has more experience with PC repair ran a program
    > >> called Restorer2000, but the drive contents couldn't be read by
    > >> Windows, so the program didn't have much success either. However, it
    > >> was able to read a few files from my Windows partition, but my work
    > >> partition was completly unavailable. A number of read errors were
    > >> quoted in locations. These locations were given as a string of
    > >> numbers, either about 7-8 digits long, and 11 digits long. The exact
    > >> values I can't recall.
    > >>
    > >> My next step has been to look for some companies that specialise in
    > >> data recovery and see if they will have more luck by perhaps taking
    > >> the drive apart and extracting data from the platters themseleves.
    > >>
    > >> Anyway, the main point of this post is to gain some a better idea of
    > >> what has happened to my hard drive, based upon the above symptoms.
    > >> From there I can see if paying ~500 to recover a 40GB partition is
    > >> likely to be successful.
    > >>
    > >> The drive is a Western Digital WD800JB 80GB ATA hard drive.
    > >>
    > >> Kind Regards,
    > >>
    > >> Matthew Boulton

    > >
    > > Matt,
    > >
    > > The more you play around with that drive (which has bad sectors and
    > > possibly failing read/write heads) the WORSE you are going to make it.
    > >
    > > Those "strings of numbers" you see are the sector location where bad
    > > media has been located.
    > >
    > > Switch the drive off, keep it powered off, and get it to someone who
    > > knows what they are doing.
    > >
    > > Spinrite and its ilk are fine if you have a _purely_ logical problem;
    > > for all other causes of failure, you'd best be buying some snake oil.
    > >
    > > I see countless drives come in for recovery that have been obliterated
    > > due to the owner taking advice from another who has absolutely no real
    > > knowlegde of data recovery.
    > >
    > > Switch that drive off immediately, and it it done professionally.
    > >
    > >
    > > Duncan

    >
    > You could just redo your last 4 years at University.
    >
    > --
    > D?


    --
    Regards Tony... Making usenet better for everyone everyday



  10. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    On Sun, 30 Mar 2008 18:54:05 -0700 (PDT), Matt wrote:

    > I agree with your earlier comments that the drive should be left well
    > alone now before I hand it over to a professional firm, and I wish I
    > had done so earlier. But the prospect of being able to recover my
    > data, given I had no idea how severe this was, so I could make a
    > backup to my parents hard drive made sense at the time. Paying 500
    > isn't something I can do without a second thought.
    >
    > Do you recommend any firms that have done good work for you in the
    > past?
    >


    As you appear to be in the UK, suggest you try:

    www.retrodata.co.uk

    They've done a couple of recovery jobs for me, successfully and for
    relatively affordable fees. Duncan (aka Odie Ferrous) is associated with
    Retrodata.
    [I have no business interest in Retrodata, other than as an occasional
    trade customer]

    BTW: Don't be upset by Rod's rants, he's from Australia.

  11. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    >
    > 3.
    > Go to a warez newsgroup and DL a cracked data recovery program,
    > there are quite a few and they are posted to those groups on a
    > fairly regular basis. I have DL's hundreds of warez (I refuse to
    > spend 50 or 500 dollars on something I am just moderately
    > curious about and will delete after 10 minutes of looking at its
    > ugly interface) and I only ever /once/ found a call-home file.
    > So don't be concerned about spyware/viruses etc. Of course, you
    > SHOULD scan the download just in case, but I DO mean "just in
    > case".
    >
    >


    This is encouraging theft.

    Why should I give away hours of my work free of charge?

    My approach is to try and give a good demo, if you don't like it,
    fine, its free. If you do like it, then you can buy it.

    If you just help your self to a car from a garage, that is theft, even
    if you do return it. Software is the same.


    Michael
    www.cnwrecovery.com

  12. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    Matt wrote:
    > Hey guys. I've got a real problem on my hands. Basically all my work
    > for the last 4 years at University, along with countless amounts of
    > data I've accumulated over the years stored on my hard drive might be
    > lost. The drive suddenly stopped working properly 2 nights ago, and
    > I've spent the weekend since trying ot recover what data I can.
    >
    > The first thing I should address is the issue of backups. Any
    > meaningful backup has simply not been possible due to the high volume
    > of data, and the very finite budget I live on as a student
    > constraining me to only having one hard drive. A conveneient place to
    > store around 9GB of data just doesn't exist for me. I guess hindsight
    > is a wonderful thing, but at the moment I'm stuck without my data.


    I know what you mean, dude. I had a car once, but I could not afford a
    parking place on my grad-student wages, so I left it in the middle of
    the street, and somebody ran right into it. Not my fault, eh? Can
    somebody tell me how to fix it?
    --
    Cheers, Bob

  13. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive



    Pennyw...@derrymaine.gov wrote:
    > Matt wrote:
    >
    > >Anyway, recovery of my work is of course a top priority, so I could do
    > >with some advice on how I should proceed from here? Firstly, I'll
    > >explain the situation in more detail:

    >
    > Install the HD as secondary - and another HD to copy recovered files
    > to.
    >
    > Then use one of the Boot CD's below to recover your files, each has
    > the tools you need (I like the Hiren's CD)
    >
    > Hiren's Boot CD
    > http://thepiratebay.org/search/hiren/0/99/0
    >
    > Or
    >
    > Ultimateboot cd
    > http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/
    > --



    I've seen the UBCD tools, where you can create an image of a hard
    drive, would that be what he is looking for,
    and how does one do that as far as connecting the two hard drives
    together?

  14. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    monkey_cartman@yahoo.com wrote:

    >
    >
    >Pennyw...@derrymaine.gov wrote:
    >> Matt wrote:
    >>
    >> >Anyway, recovery of my work is of course a top priority, so I could do
    >> >with some advice on how I should proceed from here? Firstly, I'll
    >> >explain the situation in more detail:

    >>
    >> Install the HD as secondary - and another HD to copy recovered files
    >> to.
    >>
    >> Then use one of the Boot CD's below to recover your files, each has
    >> the tools you need (I like the Hiren's CD)
    >>
    >> Hiren's Boot CD
    >> http://thepiratebay.org/search/hiren/0/99/0
    >>
    >> Or
    >>
    >> Ultimateboot cd
    >> http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/


    >I've seen the UBCD tools, where you can create an image of a hard
    >drive, would that be what he is looking for,
    >and how does one do that as far as connecting the two hard drives
    >together?


    Personal preference, I like to be able to boot the system that has a
    bad drive. your options increase many fold.

    With the claim of the bad sectors, I figured he would have to grab
    what he could, a disk image far from possible, yet he could place an
    image to the third drive.

    I've never done a disk image, 40Gigs is just too much to back up,
    anything of importance has been backup'd, in the OP's case I would
    just install a new installation to a new drive.
    --

    Linux Developer Gets Laid
    http://www.bbspot.com/News/2000/9/linux_laid.html

  15. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    Pennywise@DerryMaine.Gov wrote:

    >With the claim of the bad sectors, I figured he would have to grab
    >what he could, a disk image far from possible, yet he could place an
    >image to the third drive.


    Missed one point, Hiren's CD has SpinRite, as Mike Easter mentioned
    your best bet on a badly damaged drive.


    --

    Linux Developer Gets Laid
    http://www.bbspot.com/News/2000/9/linux_laid.html

  16. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    "mscotgrove@aol.com" wrote:

    >If you just help your self to a car from a garage, that is theft, even
    >if you do return it. Software is the same.


    No it's not, people miss a car if it's gone, Software is reproduced
    and nobody cares; but the author. the better the software the more
    it's pirated, just ask Adobe about Photoshop.
    --

    Linux Developer Gets Laid
    http://www.bbspot.com/News/2000/9/linux_laid.html

  17. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    On Mon, 31 Mar 2008 06:11:10 -0700, Pennywise wrote:

    >>If you just help your self to a car from a garage, that is theft, even
    >>if you do return it. Software is the same.


    Not quite mate. i dunno about the US, but here in the UK theft is defined
    by statute as taking property with the intent of permanently depriving
    the owner of that property. It isn't theft if you put it back (although
    in theory if you do that you could be charged with using the petrol if
    you didn't also replace that which had been used).

    For this reason the charge would be 'Taking a vehicle without the owner's
    consent' or TWOC as it is better known (what used to be called
    'joyriding' is now better known as 'twoccing' in some places over here.

    When charged with TWOC the most common accompanying criminal charge would
    be driving without insurance. Unless you are explicitly on the insurance
    policy for a vehicle and drive it (even with the owner's consent) you are
    guilty of driving without insurance.



    --
    Liverpool. European City Of Culture 2008
    http://www.liverpool08.com

  18. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    On Mar 31, 3:06*pm, Aardvark wrote:
    > On Mon, 31 Mar 2008 06:11:10 -0700, Pennywise wrote:
    > >>If you just help your self to a car from a garage, that is theft, even
    > >>if you do return it. *Software is the same.

    >
    > Not quite mate. i dunno about the US, but here in the UK theft is defined
    > by statute as taking property with the intent of permanently depriving
    > the owner of that property. It isn't theft if you put it back (although
    > in theory if you do that you could be charged with using the petrol if
    > you didn't also replace that which had been used).
    >
    > For this reason the charge would be 'Taking a vehicle without the owner's
    > consent' or TWOC as it is better known (what used to be called
    > 'joyriding' is now better known as 'twoccing' in some places over here.
    >
    > When charged with TWOC the most common accompanying criminal charge would
    > be driving without insurance. Unless you are explicitly on the insurance
    > policy for a vehicle and drive it (even with the owner's consent) you are
    > guilty of driving without insurance.
    >
    > --
    > Liverpool. European City Of Culture 2008http://www.liverpool08.com


    Maybe it was the wrong analogy. However, if you got up one morning
    and your car was not were you left it, your first statement would
    probably be 'My car has been stolen'.

    Michael (in UK).

  19. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive

    Matt wrote:

    >>> and the very finite budget I live on as a student
    >>> constraining me to only having one hard drive.

    >>
    >> Another pig ignorant lie.

    >
    >I understand you're not in my position, but I take it you're not used
    >to living on 4,000 a year to make a comment like that.


    You can't find a cheap second drive to plug-in and backup-to, but you
    can afford to risk losing YEARS worth of important data, huh?

    Man, that's some clear thinking. Sheesh.


  20. Re: Recovering Data on a Failing Hard Drive


    Rod Speed wrote in news:65b8mqF2edpc5U1@mid.individual.net
    > Matt wrote:
    >

    [snip]
    >
    > > > > Anyway, the main point of this post is to gain some a better idea of
    > > > > what has happened to my hard drive, based upon the above symptoms.

    >
    > > > Its either had a head crash and so there is loose material floating around
    > > > in the sealed chamber, or there is a flakey connection to the heads etc.


    Or bad powersupply.

    >
    > > > How repeatable are the read error locations ?

    >
    > > They were very repeatable, it was always the same locations that couldn't
    > > be read.


    > Thats bad news, because it means there is no simple fix that will


    > eliminate the errors.


    As in getting the data back, sure.
    As in making the errors disappear, that's not a problem.

    > Professional recovery can certainly recover what is recoverable in that
    > situation.


    Ooh, that's almost as informative as saying that "Professional recovery
    can certainly not recover what is not recoverable in that situation".

    >
    > > I agree with your earlier comments that the drive should be left well
    > > alone now before I hand it over to a professional firm, and I wish I
    > > had done so earlier. But the prospect of being able to recover my
    > > data, given I had no idea how severe this was, so I could make a
    > > backup to my parents hard drive made sense at the time. Paying
    > > 500 isn't something I can do without a second thought.

    >
    > Sure, but you should have had that further thought and realised that
    > when you have no backups at all for 4 years of irreplaceable data,
    > its very risky to try recovering it yourself with data that important.
    >
    > > Do you recommend any firms that have done good work for you in the past?

    >
    > I've never needed to use anyone because I always have full backups.
    > And havent even needed to use them except for convenience either.



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