Do I Need A Data Recovery Specialist?

I turned my PC off, went to bed, started it in the morning and it stopped at the BIOS POST screen. It stated there was some sort of S.M.A.R.T error, that data loss was imminent and I should backup my data immediately. The drive no longer would boot into Windows. I plugged the drive into another PC to see if I could access it as storage. The PC started, there was no BIOS POST screen shown, and the monitor was on but displaying a black screen. I turned off the PC, unplugged the drive, turned the PC back on, and the computer POSTs and behaves normally.

No idea what is up with this drive. I don't need much data off of it, maybe 100MB. Do I need to take it to a specialist to do this or is there something else I could try on my own?
I just read about Hot Plugging and it turns out my Motherboard has settings for it. So I thought I would give that a try. While I was down there plugging it in, I could hear a repeating sound that almost sounds like beeping. I assume this indicates a mechanical issue of some sort. I have turned off my drive for the time being. Hot plugging did not cause the drive to show up in Windows. I am thinking it isn't even operational at this point. I have turned of my drive for the time being.
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The important part is your USER DATA, nothing from Windows. This allows you to use ANY technique or media you please.

You will need to
  1. replace the HD/SSD,
  2. install or recover an OS
  3. and then reload the files you were able to save from the first system.

I do not recommend drag-n-drop to the new media as it consumes space on the faulty media and has every possibilty of failing long before it complets
I broke down and contacted a specialist to have my drive looked at. The read-write heads have settled on the platter surface and have become stuck to it. The beeping sound I described is the motor trying to turn, but is being stopped from spinning. This is the most expensive type of hard drive repair because it requires opening the drive. It is also possible the drive will require repair before the data can even be retrieved. He said it would be $500 if the drive didn't require repair and $1,000 if it did. So at this time I am just accepting my losses and learning a hard lesson. In the future I might have the data retrieved but that kind of expenditure is simply beyond my capability at this time.


settled on the platter surface and have become stuck to it
This is a VERY OLD type of condition -- the spindle bearing throws off oil and when the heads "park", the drive has problems on restart (sticktion). This was CORRECTED YEARS ago so IMO the diagnois is questionable.

The sticktion does NOT inhibit rotation -- just arm seeking which is necessary to allow booting, so hit the Power-On/Off several times to verify the drive spins or not