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Hard Drive Crash/failure


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#1 Gothmog

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Posted 12 January 2006 - 03:33 PM

HI, it seems like I have read and answered a couple of these problems myself. Now I would like to know what options you think I have.

The Problem: Right after I returned to my desk, after a short break, I heard my (second) HD start like a ticking time-bomb and the HD orange LED stayed on while the system locked up. I turned the comp. off the wrong way, waited and rebooted to get the BIOS to check the drives. THe primary slave, my secondary drive, was bad... turned off unplugged HD power and now I am here.

What I want to know is whethere I'll ever be able to recover data from that drive. It is a Maxtor 8 Gig, so i could dump all the data onto my main drive. I'll get the serials for the drive after I power down. Does anybody think that it might be in the first stages of failing because this was so sudden? It is my backup drive so it doesnt get used regularly, but I did use it a few times the past couple days. However it sounded and operated normally.

A further irony of this story is that this drive was a replacement by RMA to maxtor for a drive that had failed in 2001 (the original was purchased in ~1999)

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#2 stidyup

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Posted 13 January 2006 - 03:13 AM

It could be completely dead, however you may still be able to get the data off.

Run the maxtor hdd diagnostic utility on the drive and see what it reports.

You may be able to get access to your drive for a short time if you do the following. Place the hdd in a airtight bag, squeeze out all the air and place it in the freezer. If heat has caused the failure you may get the drive back for a short time, so make sure that you have everything ready to copy the data off when you plug it back in as you may only get one shot at getting the data. However a word of caution there is a risk of electrocution if water droplets freeze on the drive. However I've done this trick many times without a problem, but you do this at your own risk. If you have a room fan, have it pointing at the hdd when you plug it in, also if you have a hdd cooling fan attach that. You need to keep the hdd as cool as possible so you get the max time to copy your data off before it fails again.

The other option is to find a identicle maxtor hdd and swap the controller cards, this may also get the data off. However if the data is important and your willing to pay data recovery specialists such as Ontrack should be able to get the data off the drive. However this won't be cheap and the more you play with the drive trying to get the data the more costly it may prove.

#3 Gothmog

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 01:37 AM

okay thanks,
I figured as much, I'll try freezing it as a last effort. I have access to a food Vacuum sealer. Do you think that would be better, worse or the same as a regular ziploc?

As far as the diagnostic, I will try and find my old disk or download it again, but I'm not sure that will work b/c the BIOS startup gets stuck on the problem drive, (primary slave) gives up and gives the error msg and then the drive is not available to the system.

#4 stidyup

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 03:10 AM

I usually a normal plastic bag that can be sealed at the top and squeeze out all the air. But if you have a bag you can vacuum seal that would be better.




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