Data Recovery or HDD Repair?

By pawn3d ยท 5 replies
May 2, 2008
  1. HARDWARE: HITACHI Travelstar from thinkpad 41. (

    SYMPTOMS: Knocking; No operating system found.
    OVERVIEW: Apparently, the machine was dropped, resulting in the following error upon booting: "Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:
    <windows root>\system32\ntoskrnl.exe

    After expanding the file from an XP installation disk, I ran chkdks /r and it said there were errors that couldn't be fixed and the HDD started knocking. It knocks at a rate of 1 knock/sec. I restarted the machine and it says there's no OS and the knocking continues.
    Some guy told me to dl and run download the IBM - Hitachi Drive Fitness Test and another guy told me to pop it in an external enclosure, but aren't both of those options pointless if the drive is knocking? Doesn't that mean the drive head is toast? If yes, how do I fix the drive head, or...?

    P.S. I can operate a soldering iron if need be.
  2. tuant

    tuant TS Booster Posts: 202

    I would rather just save the time and purchase a new HD. Even if you are able to fix it, the drive will most likely become defective pretty soon. Then when that happens, recovering data will become an issue.
  3. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    That's funny :)

    No once it starts knocking it's basically gone. I don't believe you need to test with other programs in this situation.

    You could unplug the HardDrive and plug it into another computer, to try to recover any files, data.

    Otherwise it's purchase a new HardDrive time.

    Edit:Taunt got in by 1 minute
  4. pawn3d

    pawn3d Banned Topic Starter

    It's not a choice of either or, it's both. I need the data.
    Affirmative, captain.
    It's already an issue.
    there must be a way to repair the heads.
    would that really do anything?

  5. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    Not for the Hard Drive itself, for the recovery of your data Yes
  6. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +10

    If you do NOT run the drive unnecessarily, you can install it in a 2.5 inch external USB enclosure then drag and drop all your data to any good working drive. You have to know where your eMail and accounting packages store their data, but this is a relatively easy fix...
    Once you start, do not stop until done, as that drive can quit an ANY moment.
    As a special precaution, I suggest you use an external enclosure with its own power supply. We find that the Addonics, Thermaltake, and Vantec EzSwapEX work particularly well. You have to read the fine print when you order to be sure it has an external power supply. See Newegg, Directron, TigerDirect, and Outpost all sell them among many others.
    When you set it up, you can actually see all the files and folders in your old drive listed as D: or E: or whatever the next drive is... using Windows Explorer.
    Be sure you have adequate space on the new drive, and take good notes as it gets confusing when the folders pile up.
    The drives without an external power adapter work well, but might not be able to handle a problem in the Hitachi as the bearings heat up.
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