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RickMabus 07-14-2011 12:01 AM

Crashed hard drive/data recovery
 
Hello all. My wife has an imac which is about 3 years old. Just a short bit ago it would not boot, no nothing, nada. We took it to the apple store which was a disspointing result. We were told the hard drive was unrecognizable by the store and they put a new drive in. I now have the old drive mounted in a lacie enclosure, and went to connect it as an external hard drive for grins. The newly rebuilt computer would not recognize it. We have a back up which is one year old and the biggest disspointment is loosing about a years worth of kids pictures. We are considering a recovery service but I am worried about waisting time and money. What do you all think on this? Also would I be better served trying to do my own recovery with special software? If so what software do you all recommend.

On a side note. We had been PC'ers for a long time always with questionable service without a doubt. We now have two iphones with batteries on the fritz. I was told tonight on the phone with customer care (in another country) that I needed to be prepared to pay to be told I only needed to add an ave to my address to hook up my phone. I am also now realizing the quality going into our mac hard drive is no different than a PC as apple tried to explain to me that that some hard drives fail in 6 months. I hope apple will take a lesson from the dell story as this is headed for a bad ending. I am just really disspointed.

Lifeisabeach 07-14-2011 12:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RickMabus (Post 1265353)
Hello all. My wife has an imac which is about 3 years old. Just a short bit ago it would not boot, no nothing, nada. We took it to the apple store which was a disspointing result. We were told the hard drive was unrecognizable by the store and they put a new drive in. I now have the old drive mounted in a lacie enclosure, and went to connect it as an external hard drive for grins. The newly rebuilt computer would not recognize it. We have a back up which is one year old and the biggest disspointment is loosing about a years worth of kids pictures. We are considering a recovery service but I am worried about waisting time and money. What do you all think on this? Also would I be better served trying to do my own recovery with special software? If so what software do you all recommend.

DiskWarrior is widely considered the gold standard in recovering data from crashed hard drives. But it is pricey and you can't try before you buy.

Another option is Disk Drill. It will cost you nothing to scan your drive and it will tell you if it can recover anything, but you will have to buy it to do so.

RickMabus 07-14-2011 01:58 PM

In that respect, this hard drive is only important because it has at least one year of my kids life documented on it. With that perspective in the spirit of screwing it up, am I better off just sending it to a group and planning on paying out the nose to let the pro's handle it?

chscag 07-14-2011 02:18 PM

I would try the software recovery route. You've certainly nothing to lose by trying that method first. Unfortunately, Disk Warrior does not have a trial version but as mentioned Disk Drill does.

Also, Data Rescue 3 has a trial version which you might try. If any of them work, buy a license.

Professional data recovery is very expensive and is not a given that all your data can be recovered. If you decide to go that route, shop around and get estimates first.

chas_m 07-17-2011 10:13 AM

I have to disagree with my esteemed colleagues. If the drive has actually CRASHED, data recovery services are the ONLY HOPE you have of recovering those kid pictures. DiskWarrior and DR and all the rest can do NOTHING if the disk can't be found, and trying to use recovery software to fix a hardware problem can actually make the data recovery process more difficult.

Call DriveSavers, tell them your story, prepare to spend $2K getting the pictures back (if they're worth it to you).

Lifeisabeach 07-17-2011 10:28 AM

I have to side with Chas on this. I personally have never actually had a drive crash on me, so I can't speak with any experience, but if you are willing to pay a recovery service, your chances are much better. If you start experimenting with software on your own, you may make things worse as the drive degrades further. However, the do-it-yourself route may well be a fine choice if the cost of a pro is prohibitive.

Command Alt Ego 07-17-2011 11:21 AM

My feeling is, you should (if you can afford it) take the HD to a recovery service, instead of first trying recovery software. The main reason is, as was stated earlier, the less meddling you do with your crashed HD, the better your chances of a recovery service getting your data back.
And please start making regular backups from now on - you can avoid this painful situation in the future. I wish you the best in your situation!

cwa107 07-17-2011 02:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RickMabus (Post 1265353)
On a side note. We had been PC'ers for a long time always with questionable service without a doubt. We now have two iphones with batteries on the fritz. I was told tonight on the phone with customer care (in another country) that I needed to be prepared to pay to be told I only needed to add an ave to my address to hook up my phone. I am also now realizing the quality going into our mac hard drive is no different than a PC as apple tried to explain to me that that some hard drives fail in 6 months. I hope apple will take a lesson from the dell story as this is headed for a bad ending. I am just really disspointed.

You are correct, hard drives are made by hard drive manufacturers - not PC makers like Dell, Apple, et al. So, you could very well be using a Dell computer with a Western Digital hard drive and an Apple with that same exact hard drive.

And all hard drives are mechanical devices - so much like with a car, it's not a question of "if" it's going to fail, but "when". Some tend to be more reliable than others, but that doesn't change the fact that it's a crap shoot and your data is your bet.

This is why savvy computer users have been backing up for years. Fortunately, with technologies like Time Machine and inexpensive external hard drives, it's never been easier.

Remember, there are only two types of computer users in this world: those who have lost data and those who will...

zarathu 07-17-2011 02:27 PM

With great software like Time Machine or even better software like SuperDuper, and with 300 gig HD's only $100, anyone can have a complete back up system for cheap. But beyond that, which I do, I also put all special photos and software on DVD's and put them away somewhere. This is something everyone should do in additon to regular back up, and its even cheaper.

cwa107 07-17-2011 02:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zarathu (Post 1266854)
With great software like Time Machine or even better software like SuperDuper, and with 300 gig HD's only $100, anyone can have a complete back up system for cheap. But beyond that, which I do, I also put all special photos and software on DVD's and put them away somewhere. This is something everyone should do in additon to regular back up, and its even cheaper.

Just keep in mind that not all writable optical media is created equal and some types have very limited stability. All optical media will eventually break down, but I have seen discs that are less than 10 years old fail to mount after sitting undisturbed in a case. For this reason, I recommend something like a mirrored NAS for long term storage of important things like pictures.

Dysfunction 07-17-2011 02:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cwa107 (Post 1266857)
Just keep in mind that not all writable optical media is created equal and some types have very limited stability. All optical media will eventually break down, but I have seen discs that are less than 10 years old fail to mount after sitting undisturbed in a case. For this reason, I recommend something like a mirrored NAS for long term storage of important things like pictures.

Yep! Even good optical media has limited life expectancy, and this has much to do with the storage environments.

FWIW commercially PRESSED optical media lasts longer than burned media.

zarathu 07-17-2011 06:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dysfunction (Post 1266858)
Yep! Even good optical media has limited life expectancy, and this has much to do with the storage environments.

FWIW commercially PRESSED optical media lasts longer than burned media.


My mac super drives never seem to be sensitive enough to mount anything more than 3 years old. But my older Big Pioneer drive seems to read anything, even stuff that never shows up anywhere else. Depends on the drive too.

chas_m 07-18-2011 08:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zarathu (Post 1266854)
With great software like Time Machine or even better software like SuperDuper, and with 300 gig HD's only $100

You can get a 1TB drive for less than that, and a 2TB drive for not much more than that (just saw one up at Costco for I believe $129).

Quote:

But beyond that, which I do, I also put all special photos and software on DVD's and put them away somewhere. This is something everyone should do in additon to regular back up, and its even cheaper.
Smart move.

cwa107 04-15-2014 05:14 PM

Like moths to a flame.... this is attracting spammers. So, we're gonna lock it up.


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