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Author Topic: Recovering data on external HD  (Read 4995 times)

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Offline ts

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Recovering data on external HD
« on: January 07, 2019, 06:04:16 PM »
Think I lost a hard drive. Its a WD 500GB and it shows up under disk drives in Device Manager but not in My PC. When I right click on it and open properties and select volume there's nothing there. :shrug:
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2019, 07:54:26 PM »
Think I lost a hard drive. Its a WD 500GB and it shows up under disk drives in Device Manager but not in My PC. When I right click on it and open properties and select volume there's nothing there. :shrug:
It is not at all uncommon for the case to fail, but the drive to be fine. If you can get the same item and swap the drives it MIGHT work?

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2019, 09:07:56 PM »
Think I lost a hard drive. Its a WD 500GB and it shows up under disk drives in Device Manager but not in My PC. When I right click on it and open properties and select volume there's nothing there. :shrug:
It is not at all uncommon for the case to fail, but the drive to be fine. If you can get the same item and swap the drives it MIGHT work?

What is the model number?  If it is a full-size 3.5 in drive, you might just be able to pop open the case and install it in your PC.

Before you do that, open Disk Management and see if drive and its partitions show up there.  Windows may be seeing that the disk exists, but not be able to mount the partitions.
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Offline ts

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2019, 08:37:09 AM »
Think I lost a hard drive. Its a WD 500GB and it shows up under disk drives in Device Manager but not in My PC. When I right click on it and open properties and select volume there's nothing there. :shrug:
It is not at all uncommon for the case to fail, but the drive to be fine. If you can get the same item and swap the drives it MIGHT work?

What is the model number?  If it is a full-size 3.5 in drive, you might just be able to pop open the case and install it in your PC.

Before you do that, open Disk Management and see if drive and its partitions show up there.  Windows may be seeing that the disk exists, but not be able to mount the partitions.

It’s a full size. I don’t have any PC to install it in. We have Macs, laptops and a Dell all in one.
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2019, 10:02:41 AM »
Take it to your local computer repair shop and ask for an estimate fee on data recovery.  DO NOT go to Geek Squad.  Ask them to pop it open and see if they can access the drive.

If it's the board in the enclosure that went bad as Morst suggests and the drive is actually OK, it should be pretty cheap.  If the drive itself is bad, then it will likely cost more than you will be willing to pay to recover the data.
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Offline ts

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2019, 10:19:01 AM »
Take it to your local computer repair shop and ask for an estimate fee on data recovery.  DO NOT go to Geek Squad.  Ask them to pop it open and see if they can access the drive.

If it's the board in the enclosure that went bad as Morst suggests and the drive is actually OK, it should be pretty cheap.  If the drive itself is bad, then it will likely cost more than you will be willing to pay to recover the data.

In disk management it shows as disk 2 unknown, not initialized. i'll see what I have in my area for data recovery.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2019, 10:21:07 AM by ts »
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2019, 02:18:43 PM »
Take it to your local computer repair shop and ask for an estimate fee on data recovery.  DO NOT go to Geek Squad.  Ask them to pop it open and see if they can access the drive.

If it's the board in the enclosure that went bad as Morst suggests and the drive is actually OK, it should be pretty cheap.  If the drive itself is bad, then it will likely cost more than you will be willing to pay to recover the data.

This drive is full of master recordings so I would most likely pay to have them recovered if that’s my only option. I’ve been Thinking about getting some SSD’s and start transferring flacs for back up but just haven’t had the time.

Hopefully these other solutions will work. Might try that adapter cable.
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Offline GDfan

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2019, 04:08:26 PM »
The ole freezer trick

https://lifehacker.com/5515337/save-a-failed-hard-drive-in-your-freezer-redux

this is like a last ditch effort. can work for platter style hard drives if the platters get stuck together.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2019, 04:14:16 PM by GDfan »
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Offline ts

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2019, 05:26:57 PM »
Since this is an external can I put the whole thing in the freezer or do I have to remove the enclosure?
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #10 on: January 09, 2019, 01:24:04 AM »
What is the model number?  If it is a full-size 3.5 in drive, you might just be able to pop open the case and install it in your PC.
Most of the WD externals have their own weirdo "OS" on them, so you can't just pull a formatted drive from the case and transplant to a PC to save the data.
But I'm really seriously serious about swapping it into a known-good case from the same model. Hard drives are engineered really well. Those cases are cheap junk.


Since this is an external can I put the whole thing in the freezer or do I have to remove the enclosure?


I would not do anything until you have a blank drive to put all the data onto... And another one to back it up onto!
« Last Edit: January 09, 2019, 01:25:44 AM by morst »

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #11 on: January 09, 2019, 05:51:12 PM »
I would definitely not do the freezer trick while it is in its enclosure as if it isn't completely sealed, you risk condensation getting in.

I also have never seen this trick actually work.
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2019, 06:06:51 PM »
I would definitely not do the freezer trick while it is in its enclosure as if it isn't completely sealed, you risk condensation getting in.

I also have never seen this trick actually work.

Took it to a local PC repair store. They estimated 75 - 125. Gave the OK.
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Offline mountaintaper

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2019, 01:57:32 AM »
Think I lost a hard drive. Its a WD 500GB and it shows up under disk drives in Device Manager but not in My PC. When I right click on it and open properties and select volume there's nothing there. :shrug:

You know Nicky is Mr. Fixit. Call him.

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2019, 02:00:16 AM »
I would definitely not do the freezer trick while it is in its enclosure as if it isn't completely sealed, you risk condensation getting in.

I also have never seen this trick actually work.

Worked for me the one time I had a drive fail 10 or so years ago.  I even left it in the enclosure.

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #15 on: January 10, 2019, 06:01:27 AM »
I would definitely not do the freezer trick while it is in its enclosure as if it isn't completely sealed, you risk condensation getting in.

I also have never seen this trick actually work.

Took it to a local PC repair store. They estimated 75 - 125. Gave the OK.

That's not bad.  Good luck!
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #16 on: January 10, 2019, 10:50:31 AM »
I would definitely not do the freezer trick while it is in its enclosure as if it isn't completely sealed, you risk condensation getting in.

I also have never seen this trick actually work.

Worked for me the one time I had a drive fail 10 or so years ago.  I even left it in the enclosure.

I don’t think I’m at the freezer point yet. Isn’t the freezer trick for platters that are stuck together? The repair guy is hoping it’s just a bad board in the enclosure. The WD OS can fail.
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #17 on: January 10, 2019, 09:14:32 PM »
That's not a bad price for the repair if it includes the replacement board, and you don't want to do it yourself.


Here's a video which shows how to open the case on those drives. If you are gentle, you can even do it without breaking the clips.
https://youtu.be/kMpTh7IE0m8

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #18 on: January 11, 2019, 06:28:30 AM »
I would definitely not do the freezer trick while it is in its enclosure as if it isn't completely sealed, you risk condensation getting in.

I also have never seen this trick actually work.

Worked for me the one time I had a drive fail 10 or so years ago.  I even left it in the enclosure.

I don’t think I’m at the freezer point yet. Isn’t the freezer trick for platters that are stuck together? The repair guy is hoping it’s just a bad board in the enclosure. The WD OS can fail.

Platters can't stick together.  There are spacer rings between them.  The freezer trick is supposed to help with the heads, which glide very slightly over the surface of the platters.  These can become misaligned and ride too close which causes the dreaded "head crash".  You don't see this issue as much as you did in older drives, but heat and heavy use always made the problem more likely to occur.
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #19 on: January 13, 2019, 10:27:04 AM »
The guy I went to was a joke. Worse than Best Buy. All he did was run a couple recuva type scans. So I’m gonna try the 300datarecovery site. If I pass the chances form it might be worth sending it out.
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #20 on: January 13, 2019, 01:51:29 PM »
The guy I went to was a joke. Worse than Best Buy. All he did was run a couple recuva type scans. So I’m gonna try the 300datarecovery site. If I pass the chances form it might be worth sending it out.
Have you considered finding a similar drive and just swapping your data drive into the other case? It is REALLY LIKELY to be the case that is bad, not the drive.

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #21 on: January 13, 2019, 02:57:29 PM »
The guy I went to was a joke. Worse than Best Buy. All he did was run a couple recuva type scans. So I’m gonna try the 300datarecovery site. If I pass the chances form it might be worth sending it out.
Have you considered finding a similar drive and just swapping your data drive into the other case? It is REALLY LIKELY to be the case that is bad, not the drive.

Yes, I went over everything with this guy. I guess he pretended he knew what I was talking about. He was supposed to do all sorts of things and all he did was run a couple scans.  :shrug:

I’m not sure I can do the case swaps myself.
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #22 on: January 13, 2019, 05:37:37 PM »
I just scanned the thread so sorry if I missed this but have you checked the drives "smart" reading?  Even if drive doesn't show in this pc it should show with smart check.  basic hard drive health test.  download the zip version.  it's portable so you don't even install.  just unzip and check

https://crystalmark.info/en/download/#CrystalDiskInfo


if it shows any "caution" or worse the drive is failing.  Note that if it is failing and not just the enclosure I would stop all attempts yourself! 


The tech you took it to should have removed the drive to scan it.  pulling a drive from an enclosure is easy (unless it's a my passport type).

Quote
The guy I went to was a joke. Worse than Best Buy. All he did was run a couple recuva type scans.

I do computer repair for a living.  I know my limit on data recovery as do most techs.  Hopefully he did more than recuva but unless it's a clean room situation then software based is all most local guys will attempt.

I have heard very mixed results about the 300datarecovery place.  I have sent work here with good results.

https://www.recoveryforce.com/pricing/
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #23 on: January 13, 2019, 05:39:32 PM »
if it is the enclosure put it in one of these.  hell I would remove the drive either way and try it.  if it's not detected contact the link I posted.....



https://www.amazon.com/Thermaltake-Hot-Swap-External-Docking-Compatible/dp/B01GF0OYI2?th=1

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #24 on: January 13, 2019, 06:41:47 PM »
if it is the enclosure put it in one of these.  hell I would remove the drive either way and try it.  if it's not detected contact the link I posted.....



https://www.amazon.com/Thermaltake-Hot-Swap-External-Docking-Compatible/dp/B01GF0OYI2?th=1
Gordon has an excellent point about using the built in SMART diagnostics to find out if the drive is still ok, even if you can't read the data directly that way.


As I mentioned earlier in the thread, WD externals have their own peculiar "OS" which will prevent you from just copying the files off via SATA. That's why I keep saying to get the same type of enclosure for the "brain swap."


ps I live in earthquake country, so I prefer a flat dock like this https://www.amazon.com/ORICO-Tool-Free-External-Lay-Flat-Enclosure/dp/B00A5323NO/ref=asc_df_B00A5323NO/
« Last Edit: January 13, 2019, 06:43:46 PM by morst »

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #25 on: January 13, 2019, 06:56:31 PM »
The "my passport" type have the USB soldered to the drive instead of a standard SATA port. So if it's one of those don't bother pulling the drive.
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #26 on: January 13, 2019, 07:17:20 PM »
The "my passport" type have the USB soldered to the drive instead of a standard SATA port. So if it's one of those don't bother pulling the drive.
I quit buying the 2.5" MyPassports because the versions made starting in the past 3-4 years do lack an actual SATA port, so you won't be able to use the drive inside in a SATA dock.


I found out you can do brain transplants on the little ones too, you just have to be SUPER precise about matching everything down to logic board firmware version!  :o


I can't find the exact instructions but here's a video for how to open the MyPassport drives if you need to:
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #27 on: January 13, 2019, 08:01:37 PM »
I’ll update this tomorrow when I get it back. I’ll post a pic of the HD. thanks for all the advice!
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #28 on: January 26, 2019, 09:19:32 AM »
I ended up sending the drive to Recovery Force in Canada per Gordon’s suggestion. Great company with great service and reasonable pricing. They had a full recovery and the data is already on its way back to me.

Thanks Gordon!
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #29 on: January 26, 2019, 09:52:26 AM »
I ended up sending the drive to Recovery Force in Canada per Gordon’s suggestion. Great company with great service and reasonable pricing. They had a full recovery and the data is already on its way back to me.

Thanks Gordon!

Glad it worked out!
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #30 on: January 26, 2019, 09:55:42 AM »
^^
Good to hear this!
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #31 on: January 26, 2019, 11:27:30 AM »
Was it the case or the drive?

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #32 on: January 26, 2019, 01:53:50 PM »
Was it the case or the drive?

Media, firmware and file system damage. File system damage was caused by the local repair shop trying to initialize the encrypted drive.
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #33 on: January 26, 2019, 03:52:39 PM »
didn't see it was encrypted!  glad it worked out!
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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #34 on: January 26, 2019, 10:16:23 PM »
Was it the case or the drive?

Media, firmware and file system damage. File system damage was caused by the local repair shop trying to initialize the encrypted drive.


 :o :o :o :( :( :(

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Re: Recovering data on external HD
« Reply #35 on: January 27, 2019, 04:45:32 PM »
In a rare flip flop of economics, that Canadian company seems to be about $200 less than what I paid for a recovery of similar magnitude. So much for buying local.  'Glad  you got it sorted out.

Yea they are legit and good with great prices!  That said It can still get very expensive depending on level of recovery.
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