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  1. #1

    Member Since
    Mar 29, 2008
    Preston, England, UK
    How to recover data from an unrepairable disk

    A couple of days ago, I was swapping out the hard drive in my MacBook (first gen unibody, so hard drive access is really easy) thinking that the machine was off. Turns out it hadn't shut down properly and was just sleeping (I know, I should have double checked, it was a stupid moment...), so essentially I hot swapped the drives and the hard drive I put in did NOT like it!

    Long story short, the hard drive now won't mount or boot. That's fine, I can re-install OS X, but I have some files on there that I want to recover. I have a bootable external hard drive that I have used to boot into and attempted to repair the internal drive, but it gives the following errors:

    "Invalid content in Journal"
    "Invalid node structure"

    ... and then tells me that it can't be repaired.

    My question is: as the disk can't be mounted, and it can't be repaired, is there any way that I can get at the data currently on there, or is it gone for good?

    Thanks for your time

  2. #2

    cwa107's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 20, 2006
    Lake Mary, Florida
    15" MBP, Core i7/2GHz, 8GB RAM, 480GB Crucial M500 SSD
    You'll need more sophisticated tools than what are built into the OS. One of the perennial favorites is DiskWarrior, but DriveGenius may be helpful as well. In either case, they're not cheap - and there's no guarantees that you'll be able to recover anything.

    However, I suspect that just having an unexpected dismount didn't do any permanent damage. It's just a matter of getting the filesystem straight at this point, which DiskWarrior should be able to do.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

  3. #3

    Member Since
    Mar 29, 2008
    Preston, England, UK
    Thanks, I'll give DiskWarrior a try and see what it can do.

    Update: Worked a treat, thanks very much for the suggestion!

  4. #4

    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    iMac, i7 4GHz, 32GB memory, 1TB Blade Drive, OS X.13.4
    Fo what it is worth would not be without DiskWarrior, current version 4.4 will boot Lion. Keep watching the Alsoft web site as no doubt an update will be available with the launch of Mountain Lion. You will be able to download the update and burn to a DVD at the time.
    Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!

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