wannacry
Data Recovery Noob
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Aug 11, 2019 8:13 pm

I need advice for recovering a hard-drive? please read!

Wed Aug 28, 2019 6:43 pm

About half a year ago I realized that my external hard-drive that I bought on amazon was malfunctioning, I had noticed there was a connection problem even before that, it would connect and disconnect rapidly sometimes, but I didn't think much of it cause my files were still there. then 1 day I tried to open my files which had saved in there (video files), and they couldn't open, but it wasn't just like a straight-right-away error message--it was loading and loading, like there was something there, it just couldn't open, and when I tried to “safely remove hardware” It would not allow me to, even with all windows closed it would say “please close programs using the drive”.. I had to just pull the USB out. I unplugged and re-plugged it several times, to see if I could find a way to open the files (and I tried everything like moving the file to C drive to open, or using a different computer, nothing worked)... every-time I tried the files appeared differently, like sometimes it would just not be there, (actually every time the folder would come up empty at first), sometimes there'd only be like half of them, and then the rest would load, but then there wouldn't be the names or thumbnails, sometimes just the names not the thumbnails, sometimes names and thumbnails, but not dates or info, sometimes there was everything included accept it wouldn't play... it would open the video player and the video player would load a bit and then would give up.. My hard drive seems like it has Alzheimer’s and it is having trouble pulling up different parts of the file but I am sure there is a way to recover the files because I know it’s in there somewhere, the data wasn’t wiped, I think it just doesn't know how to use the data to play the video because the video is somehow corrupted ...

I want to get the drive recovered, but I most importantly don't want to give the drive to someone who hooks it up to a computer and unsuccessfully tries a whole lot of things to recover the data, and then after all that the drive may self-destruct even more and make the problem even harder to solve… I feel that every-time the drive is powered on, it’s probably somehow screwing itself up even more, Plus the whole issue with the unstable connection (which is what I believe caused the malfunction in the first place) will probably find a way to screw it up further.. So before anyone tries to recover the data with a computer, I want to have the drive completely cloned, but I don't know how that can be done, I am thinking I could buy the exact same model and then ask a hardware expert to scan the drive with a machine and clone the data onto the other drive, it might even be better to have 2 or 3 other cloned drives just to be safe… The last thing I want is to pay some person at the data recovery company to darn up the drive permanently, if that happens then I can’t even bring it to a real good data recovery expert..

In the future when I have more money I’d want to hire like a real smart computer expert, who is smart and creative, someone who treats data recovery like Sherlock Holmes treats crime solving, treating every situation differently, not following a procedure... I don't trust the 9-5 working folks in a data recovery company who don’t really care about your data cause they’re still getting paid at the end of the day. Right now though, I have not much money and I can't wait forever because I hear that hard-drives lose their magnetic energy if not powered on for a while, and it could lose your data even after a year of sitting in storage, I don't want that to happen. I feel that I can't wait any longer; these files are so incredibly important to me, I can't afford to lose them. They are like all I worked on for many years. So, please tell me, what would you do? How would you handle this? Thanks for reading & Thanks for any advice or help.

(P.S. I have about 1,500 USD saved up and that's all I'm going to have for a good while, I have no job because I am disabled but I won't get into that... so what would you do, if you had 1,500 dollars and broken drive?)

Again I really appreciate any replies, even If you are not an expert.. I am posting this on like 12 other forums so any reply is helpful even if you don't know much. Thanks.

User avatar
Jared
Forum Admin
Posts: 3743
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:32 pm
Location: Providence, RI
Contact: Website Facebook Twitter Skype YouTube Google+

I need advice for recovering a hard-drive? please read!

Thu Aug 29, 2019 5:35 am

What model is the drive? Your initial description sounds like either a firmware malfunction or possibly just bad sectors in the file system structures. If I knew the model I'd have a better idea what the likely situation is.

I can't speak for other labs, but here we typically charge a flat $450 for such cases.

Any professional data recovery shop will have firmware repair and hardware imaging tools like PC-3000 and/or DeepSpar Disk Imager which can be used to safely image drives in such condition. Just avoid going to a computer repair shop that only dabbles in data recovery. Most of those guys are just running some free/cheap software and don't have a proper setup. It's quite rare for a real data recovery company to be bothered with virus removals and other computer repair stuff. Look for a company that only does data recovery.

If you tell us where you're located, perhaps we can recommend a good company in your region.

wannacry
Data Recovery Noob
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Aug 11, 2019 8:13 pm

I need advice for recovering a hard-drive? please read!

Fri Aug 30, 2019 8:39 pm

Jared wrote:What model is the drive? Your initial description sounds like either a firmware malfunction or possibly just bad sectors in the file system structures. If I knew the model I'd have a better idea what the likely situation is.

I can't speak for other labs, but here we typically charge a flat $450 for such cases.

Any professional data recovery shop will have firmware repair and hardware imaging tools like PC-3000 and/or DeepSpar Disk Imager which can be used to safely image drives in such condition. Just avoid going to a computer repair shop that only dabbles in data recovery. Most of those guys are just running some free/cheap software and don't have a proper setup. It's quite rare for a real data recovery company to be bothered with virus removals and other computer repair stuff. Look for a company that only does data recovery.

If you tell us where you're located, perhaps we can recommend a good company in your region.


Thanks for the reply, it's a Toshiba 1 TB external hard-drive I bought on amazon.com

User avatar
Blizzard
Experienced DR Tech
Posts: 255
Joined: Fri Jun 24, 2016 12:06 am
Location: GA - USA
Contact: Website Facebook Twitter

I need advice for recovering a hard-drive? please read!

Sat Aug 31, 2019 10:20 am

Like Jared said, this is probably not a worst case recovery and will most likely cost less than $500 to recover. Obviously diagnosing a hard drive failure on a forum has limitations and you won't know for sure until it's examined by a professional.

jol
Data Recovery Pro
Posts: 679
Joined: Thu Jan 29, 2015 11:31 pm

I need advice for recovering a hard-drive? please read!

Sun Sep 01, 2019 11:31 pm

I've seen u have posted ur question all over the net

some of the advices you've been given is a bad ided to follow

send it to a pro n dont think every 1 is against u

wannacry wrote:Source of the post I don't trust the 9-5 working folks in a data recovery company who don’t really care about your data cause they’re still getting paid at the end of the day.

take for example @Jared
he is not getting paid if the job in not done
cuz he works for no 1 but himself

he is located in RI (not far from NYC)

wannacry wrote:Source of the postIn the future when I have more money I’d want to hire like a real smart computer expert, who is smart and creative, someone who treats data recovery like Sherlock Holmes treats crime solving, treating every situation differently, not following a procedure...

don't even think about that
every computer expert doesn't have the slightest idea how HDDs (or any other media) works
N the real smart computer expert you'll find will do just that:
wannacry wrote:Source of the post...someone who hooks it up to a computer and unsuccessfully tries a whole lot of things to recover the data, and then after all that the drive may self-destruct even more and make the problem even harder to solve…

User avatar
Jared
Forum Admin
Posts: 3743
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:32 pm
Location: Providence, RI
Contact: Website Facebook Twitter Skype YouTube Google+

I need advice for recovering a hard-drive? please read!

Mon Sep 02, 2019 11:07 am

Jol is absolutely right. Hiring a "computer expert" to "Sherlock Holmes" a HDD for data recovery would be like hiring a rocket scientist to perform brain surgery on you. Doesn't matter how much an expert he might be in his own field, it doesn't give him the qualifications for the other field.

Computer guys typically have zero real knowledge of actual data recovery. Most of them are still telling people to try stupid stuff they heard on YouTube (e.g. put your HDD in the freezer). I've rarely met one who even understood the very basics of how a HDD works.

It's very much it's own field, so you want an expert in that field.

I agree that the 9 to 5 employees at data recovery companies might suck. It's why I'd never recommend you go to one of the larger labs with big advertising budgets. But, there's plenty of smaller labs (us included) who only have a couple of us that ever touch the drives. As our pay hinges entirely on getting back the data, we're very motivated to make each case a success.

Return to “Hard Drive Data Recovery”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests