Your Hard Disk Has Failed and Suddenly You Cannot Access Your Data.. What Can You You?

First of all, don’t panic. Data loss is very common, but in nearly all cases, the data can be recovered by a trained technician. Only in the most severe cases of platter damage, magnetic degradation or a file over-write will the data be labelled as unrecoverable. With over 10 years of data recovery experience Data Recovery Doctor¬†has seen nearly every scenario of data loss and our successful rate of recovery speaks for itself.

Here are a few tips to help you minimize further data loss and increase your likelihood of data recovery on some of the more common types of data loss:

  • If your system has “crashed” and you can no longer access the operating system or see the drive in the BIOS, then shut the system down immediately and do not run any further power through the drive by attempting reboots. This is considered a physical problem with the drive and is an extremely sensitive issue. If the headstack inside your drive has been damaged, you may cause further additional damage to the platter/s of the drive, upon which your data is stored. Contact a DRD representative and describe your problem.
  • If you have deleted a file or files or accidentally formatted your drive, then the most important thing to remember is to NOT write or install ANY new information onto that drive. Deleting files simply removes the locating tag of the file, but the file is still intact on the drive. If you add new data to the drive, you may over-write your lost data; losing it forever. Using advanced software, DRD technicians can re-assemble the binary code and restore your files.
  • If your partition has become corrupted, the most important thing to remember is NOT to attempt a re-install of your operating system or add new data to the drive. Again, DRD technicians can use specialized software and techniques to repair the partition and/or extract your data.
  • If you have deleted a partition, do not attempt to restore it by formatting the drive as this will only result in the addition of an empty partition. It will not recover your data.
  • If you believe you have been infected with a virus, shut the system down and contact a DRD technician. We may be able to help you identify the threat it poses to your data.
  • If you experience a single file corruption, be sure not to attempt creating a new file with the same name as this will partially over-write the file and will greatly decrease our ability to recover fully.

Remember, these are just a few of the more common reasons for data loss. Any attempts that you or even an IT technician make to recover the file or drive may result in a decreased quality of our recovery efforts or even make it impossible for us to recover the data. If you have any doubt, just ask yourself this question. “Am I prepared to move on without that data?”. If you answered no, then contact a DRD representative by phone 0207 516 1077¬†before making any attempts at a recovery. Data recovery is a highly specialised branch of computer science and should be left to those with experience and training to complete it successfully.

Laptop and notebook drives are much smaller and more fragile than their desktop cousins, consequently they require a more delicate and exacting touch to repair and recover. However, the steps listed above for what you, the user, can do to minimize further data loss remains basically the same, with the exception of:

  • Unless the drive was designed to be removed by simply sliding out of the casing, do not attempt to remove it yourself.
  • If you can remove the drive easily, be sure not to put any undue stress on it by applying pressure to the housing on the drive.
  • Take extra care when packaging a laptop drive for shipping, so as not to incur any further damage before reaching one of our labs.

In the majority of cases, we will collect your laptop and then we will remove the hard drive ourselves in order to recover data. A DRD technician will be the best person to advise you on what is best to do.