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Data Recovery From Hard Drive


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#1 Viking62

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 03:36 PM

A while back I posted about dropping my laptop and not being able to get it to power up.Never did get it to work. I since got a new one but would like to try to get the data off my old hard drive. Most importantly pictures that are not backed up anywhere else. :blush:
The laptop is a Dell Latitude D520 running Windows XP. I have a Dell PC also running Windows XP. I tried unplugging the hard drive on my PC and plugging in the hard drive from the laptop but could not get it to boot. Should this have worked? I can't remember exactly what it did but I also tried booting it in safe mode to no avail.
Sorry for being so vague. Guess I'm looking for an easy way to access the old hard drive assuming it isnt damaged.
Any help would be appreciated. Mike

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#2 James Litten

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 05:31 PM

James

Can you plug it into the computer as a data drive in addition to the drive that is already in it or does it not have enough SATA ports on the motherboard?

What model is the desktop PC?

James

#3 Viking62

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 05:55 PM

The PC is a Dell Dimension E520. Near as I can tell there is only one SATA port on motherboard.

#4 James Litten

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 06:16 PM

I think those have two sets of two SATA ports on the motherboard. Two by the memory sticks and two near the back panel (I think).

If you find one that you can use, do you have a SATA data cable to use and do you see an extra SATA power plug hanging off of the power supply?

If not, I guess some options would be...

Buy a SATA USB bridge to hook up the drive to a USB port (they cost like $20).
OR
Replace the boot drive with the old drive like you tried before and boot to a Linux LiveCD of some sort (I like PartedMagic) and copy the files to a USB flash key or upload them to someplace on the internet/network.

Let me know which way you want to go if you need any help or directions :)

James

#5 Viking62

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 06:32 PM

Yes you are correct. There are two ports, one with hard drive the other with disc drive plugged in and two empty ones somewhere around middle of board.
I do not have another cable. Could I use the one from the disc drive. It is orange in color while the cable for the hard drive is blue?
If not I can buy one.
Thanks for helping.

#6 James Litten

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 07:42 PM

Yep, as long as it fits (don't force it if it doesn't :) )
You'll also need to plug in a power cable. Look at the existing hard drive and you'll see what I mean. I'm pretty sure that the optical drive uses a different type of power cable connection so while you can use its data cable, I'm not sure that it has the proper power cable. There should be one available coming from the power supply.

James

#7 Viking62

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 05:48 PM

What should I expect to happen? I managed to get it connected and plugged in to SATA4 because it was unused. This port was disabled so I enabled it in set up. Now it appears to be reading the drive and reporting alot of "file record segment"s are unreadable.
It has been running for about an hour reading files.
Thanks Mike

#8 James Litten

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 06:14 PM

Hi

Are you running chkdsk on it?
If so, did it start chkdsk automatically or did you choose to do it?

That might make some data harder to recover but I can't say for sure whether or not stopping it in the middle of running would be good or bad.

In chkdsk that error often means that there are bad sectors on the drive. If this error is happening in something other than chkdsk, let us know.

When it is done, get your files off of it ASAP starting with the most important files first. If you have any difficulty, let us know.

James

#9 Viking62

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 06:28 PM

Yes it is running chkdsk. It started automatically. It seems now like it may have stalled. It was periodically reporting the % complete and unreadable files but has not moved for an hour or so. Not sure what to do.

#10 James Litten

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 06:52 PM

Hi

That is an indication of physical damage so if the data is VERY important, you want to turn it off, disconnect the drive and contact a professional data recovery service.

If you want to go ahead and try to do it yourself, you can shut chkdsk down if it appears frozen and then when you restart, skip it by pressing the spacebar when it asks if you wish to skip it (if it asks).

Then see if you can view the files and copy the important ones ASAP.

If not, you may have better luck with booting from a Linux LiveCD, then viewing and copying the files.

If that still doesn't work, then you will need to consider other data recovery options. Let us know.

James

#11 Viking62

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 07:07 PM

I'm thinking maybe I'm in over my head. I shut it down and restarted. Same thing runs chkdsk. I dont know how to stop it or even skip it (doesn't offer that option). The computer that it was in got dropped. I'm betting drive has physical internal damage. I'll look into a pro recovery.
Thanks for your help. Mike.




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