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HDD failure- Magnetic Surface Degradation


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#1 chaostoday

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Posted 27 February 2015 - 11:49 PM

I have a Dell Inspiron 1545 with a Samsung HM500JI HDD.
The computer failed to boot giving me error code 0142
MSG: error code 2000-0142
Self test unsuccessful for HDD
Status 79

I made the mistake of not posting this first to the forum and instead sent the drive out to a data recovery company who indicated that it had magnetic surface degradation and would cost me $650 to recover.
What else could I have done?
Is there anything I can do if I can get the drive back?

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#2 Platypus

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Posted 28 February 2015 - 12:18 AM

If the diagnosis is correct (and there's no real way to confirm other than get a second opinion from another data recovery expert), then there's almost certainly nothing more you can do. Degradation of the magnetic surface material (such as occurred with the IBM Deskstar/Deathstar) isn't something a private individual can deal with. If the data company believe they can achieve recovery, then I suspect it has not affected the data area of the drive, but rather the service area and/or track zero, rendering the drive unusable.

 

If it is only the partition table on track zero that has been damaged there could be a possibility that capable recovery software can work from the backup copy of the partition table that is maintained on a drive, and recover from undamaged areas of the drive. If damage goes beyond just the partition table, the drive can be completely inaccessible to recovery software, and only hardware specific recovery procedures available to recovery specialists can get around this.


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#3 chaostoday

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Posted 28 February 2015 - 12:31 AM

If the diagnosis is correct (and there's no real way to confirm other than get a second opinion from another data recovery expert), then there's almost certainly nothing more you can do. Degradation of the magnetic surface material (such as occurred with the IBM Deskstar/Deathstar) isn't something a private individual can deal with. If the data company believe they can achieve recovery, then I suspect it has not affected the data area of the drive, but rather the service area and/or track zero, rendering the drive unusable.
 
If it is only the partition table on track zero that has been damaged there could be a possibility that capable recovery software can work from the backup copy of the partition table that is maintained on a drive, and recover from undamaged areas of the drive. If damage goes beyond just the partition table, the drive can be completely inaccessible to recovery software, and only hardware specific recovery procedures available to recovery specialists can get around this.


Thanks for the reply. Then what if the drive damage is isolated to the partition table? I only care about the data. Not the programs.
The data recovery software sounds much less expensive than the $650 quote I was given.

#4 Platypus

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Posted 28 February 2015 - 12:43 AM

The only way to know is to get to try recovery software on the drive. The big problem there is if the drive is suffering progressive degradation, using it will make it worse and if your own recovery attempts fail, it could destroy enough of the drive to make it then unrecoverable even by the recovery company...


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#5 elm417

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Posted 03 May 2015 - 11:13 AM

If the diagnosis is correct (and there's no real way to confirm other than get a second opinion from another data recovery expert), then there's almost certainly nothing more you can do. Degradation of the magnetic surface material (such as occurred with the IBM Deskstar/Deathstar) isn't something a private individual can deal with. If the data company believe they can achieve recovery, then I suspect it has not affected the data area of the drive, but rather the service area and/or track zero, rendering the drive unusable.
 
If it is only the partition table on track zero that has been damaged there could be a possibility that capable recovery software can work from the backup copy of the partition table that is maintained on a drive, and recover from undamaged areas of the drive. If damage goes beyond just the partition table, the drive can be completely inaccessible to recovery software, and only hardware specific recovery procedures available to recovery specialists can get around this.


Thanks for the reply. Then what if the drive damage is isolated to the partition table? I only care about the data. Not the programs.
The data recovery software sounds much less expensive than the $650 quote I was given.

Chaostoday, did you have any luck?? I was told the exact same thing in regards to the $650 but I KNOW for a fact that prior to sending in, the only issue I had was the PCB.

#6 mjd420nova

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Posted 03 May 2015 - 04:22 PM

I picked up a couple of 500 GB drives at a local flea market and the diagnostics came up with the same error code of 0142 but I wasn't familiar with it.  The error code on boot from a donor machine was 79, that one I had heard of...  It pointed to the hard drive controller as the fault.  I swapped the control card off the second  unit and tried again.  Booted to a MS logo and stalled, I expected that.  Swapped the card back to its first place and it tried to boot an XP PRO but stalled, shucks, two good platters only one good control card.  Media degradation is just the result of the controller not operating properly and not the magnetic media on the platter "fading away".



#7 Platypus

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Posted 03 May 2015 - 07:45 PM

Media degradation is just the result of the controller not operating properly and not the magnetic media on the platter "fading away".

I'm not sure you've got the right idea there. "Media degradation" is the term used to indicate a physically degraded state of the data storage surface of the platter, whether caused by an external influence (e.g. head crash due to being dropped) or by chemical or mechanical degradation of the magnetic layer. Some references below discuss this: 

 

http://datacent.com/datarecovery/hdd/hitachi

http://crashcorp.com/data-recovery/hard-drive-recovery

http://tierradatarecovery.co.uk/hard-drive-platter-damage


Edited by Platypus, 03 May 2015 - 08:07 PM.

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