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Crashed Hard Drive?

By Despforhelp ยท 5 replies
Mar 5, 2009
  1. I want to first start off saying I have little to no experience dealing with hard drives and how they function. I have a Sony VAIO laptop that I purchased almost a year ago. My one year old daughter pulled my laptop off of the table onto the floor and now it was telling me that it cannot read disk press ctrl+alt+delete to restart over and over. I did troubleshooting with Sony but because the computer wouldnt get to their recovery screen they said my data was lost. I'm in desperate need of my data as all the financial info for my company is on it (via QB, not backed up!!).

    I took the hard drive out of the computer and got a 2.5 SATA External case and hooked it up to a working computer and started downloading every data recovery software that was free to try to retrieve data. Only one worked and it got....none of the files I need! What it managed to get I dont even understand! So after that I hooked it up to my dell laptop in an attempt to use KNOPPIX. I managed to make the KNOPPIX disk and get to the I guess KNOPPIX screen but I didnt have a clue what to do next. The working laptops hard drive showed up, the external hard drive I was going to use to transfer any recovered data to showed up, but the crashed hard drive didnt. Hooking the crashed hard drive in to the working laptop did however pull up a screen saying that my disks needed to be checked for errors. It scanned the crashed hard drive twice and started deleting and fixing stuff but the compter still didnt recognize the drive upon startup.

    THEN I removed the crashed hard drive from the external case and put it back into the laptop it goes in in an effort to try to pull up KNOPPIX that way. It worked but I still could not see the drive. So I shut it down and restarted, managed to get to the sony recovery screen, scanned the drive and it passed all the tests saying there were no errors on the hard drive! Good news? No, because it still wouldnt start up and now I'm pretty sure that the hard drive isnt even starting up because the laptop gets stuck at the VAIO screen. Sometimes it says Boot MGR cannot be found, other times it says OS cannot be found.....but now.....it says nothing! IT DOES NOTHING! I THINK I'M SCREWED!! AM I?
  2. LinkedKube

    LinkedKube TechSpot Project Baby Posts: 3,482   +44

    More than likely yes you are. You've already done what most will suggest. The disk check was performed, that's why its reading no errors once you ran the sony disk check option.
  3. Taff

    Taff TS Rookie Posts: 38


    Rarely, the disk checking process makes things worse from a data recovery point of view.

    My 'last-ditch' attempt to recover data from this drive would be to use 'Recover My Files' - ya gotta pay for it though. Be aware and check before buying - it only recovers certain types of files (from memory, I think QB files are one of them), please check before parting with your cash. http://www.recovermyfiles.com/ Try the test version, I'm not sure of the best settings for you to use as my version must be 4+ years old.

    Good luck,

  4. Despforhelp

    Despforhelp TS Rookie Topic Starter

    How can this software help me if the drive isn't even starting up and its not recognized by the computer I hook it up to?
  5. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

  6. Taff

    Taff TS Rookie Posts: 38

    Not recognised by Windows Explorer, ie, given a drive letter?

    Or not recognised by Device Manager?

    If the former, that software is likely to be able to access the data. It works over many (not all) external USB cases - I've not tried over Firewire or with the more recent versions of the software.

    If the drive doesn't always start, it may be one of the very rare times when the 'freezer trick' might work for long enough for you to pull more data off. I don't think RMF or most of the other recovery software will help you then, you'll need direct file/folder access, ie Windows Explorer, to pull the data over as fast as possible, not have the drive heated up by lengthy scans before offering any options.

    I would normally point someone to the free software but in this instance, I don't know any that might be of any use.
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