Hard Drive Recovery Service
Hard Drive Failure & Recovery
Most people use terms like ‘memory’ and ‘hard drive space’ as if they are the same. Technically, they are different: Memory is known as RAM. You use memory as you open programs and files.
The hard drive is where you store the files. Windows, music files, photos, and word documents use the hard drive space as their storage center. It’s like a file cabinet, as each file is created and modified, the hard drive experiences wear and tear. It’s also a physical device spinning around at 5,400 or 7,200 spins per minute when a computer is turned on, so the more it is used, the more it wears out.
Sooner or later all hard drives fail – and when they fail, it is totally up to chance. On average, it takes approximately 2 to 3 years of constant use before a hard drive needs replaced.
WARNING SIGNS TO LOOK FOR:
- Either gradual or sudden; the computer takes longer to boot up.
- Saving files or opening files takes forever.
- High-pitched whining, loud clicking or grinding coming from the drive [a normal operating drive will make a smooth “whirling” sound as is spins up or down].
L.E.D.s That Never Go Off – very common
- If the hard drive LED light used to come on intermittently and now glows constantly. [Open up “Task Manager” and look at the CPU performance if the computer is not “thinking/working” and yet the hard drive LED light is running a marathon.]
- Even simple tasks seem to light up the Hard Drive LED light for a while – this is a sure sign!
- The mouse cursor is unmovable and keyboard input is ignored.
- Nothing works and a restart is required to recover the computer.
Frequent lock-up during booting. When it happens a lot during startup, it could mean a serious problem. Check your system events log for NTFS or disk errors.
Randomly Missing Files
- Be watchful – the next file to go missing may be an integral system file that the entire operating system hinges on. Be sure to have your files available on a backup system or external hard drive.
- Stuff like: ‘boot drive’, ‘device not found’, ‘drive cannot be accessed’, ‘hard drive is not formatted’, ‘Delayed Write Failure’, ‘Operating system not found’ or ‘Missing Operating System’.
- The Blue-Screen-of-Death i.e. ‘STOP 0x0000007B’, ‘0×00000024’, and ‘inaccessible boot device’.
- When Windows says you are running out of hard drive space and you’re not even close to it.
- If the hard drive free space jumps around a lot.
- Ignore the problem, thinking it will get better.
- Run disk defragmenter too often, the program is rigorous, it will only age a hard drive faster
- Delete random files in hopes of making it run better
WHAT TO DO:
- Get a Battery backup with surge protection, I use a APC battery backup
- Have a backup system in place, both local and offsite for best coverage
- Consider replacing hard drive every 2-3 years to maintain top speed and performance
Be careful: Power surges/failures and shutting down improperly can cause breakage. By default, Microsoft Windows enables “write caching” on the disk. They claim that write caching speeds the computer up, but in a sudden shut-down situation, this normally means data corruption.
If your hard drive crashes and you didn’t use a backup system, you just lost a bunch of data. If you have backups, you are looking at a minimal irritation of having to set up the entire computer again. Either way, you will need a new hard drive to run your main computer.
Once installed, we set up the new hard drive as usual and re-install all of your software. Then we restore all your backups and you are good to go. Trash the old drive that crashed – the data is not retrievable in most cases. For those of you with sensitive data, throwing it out is okay, but I recommend you hold on to the drive in a safe place. To make sure it’s ruined: open up the hard drive and scratch the insides with a screwdriver, burn it or apply a magnet to the opened drive.
People who lose a hard drive usually have not had their data backed up and they often have years of data on their computer.
The Nashville Computer Guru – at times – can recover data from hard drives through a basic method. If the drive is psychically damaged, as is the case with most clicking or grinding noise ones, it will have to be shipped away.
Be aware: data recovery centers can be expensive! They take apart, rebuild and recover your data in clean rooms and workers walk around in suits like technicians in a virus lab. It is hard to put a price tag on the memories in your hard drive but it’s pretty common for places to run from $1,000 to $2,000. And it is not unheard of for government, hospitals, and schools to pay $8,000 to $12,000 for their crucial data.
“Basic” – Locally: $100 per drive to recover data, using data recovery software and tools. No Data = No Labor Charge; just a low-cost trip-charge to cover fuel. [Approx. 24 hours]
“Advanced” – Shipped to Data Recovery partner (for the really bad situations): a NON-REFUNDABLE $200 charge, paid up front. That includes shipping and parts for a new hard drive. They literally buy an identical hard drive and then use the parts of the good and working drive to bring back to life your old drive. If any data is recovered then you will need to pay an additional $499 to receive your data. If no data is recovered then you are out the $200 only. $699 is the cheapest option to getting back up and running if no backup system was in place. [Approx. 4-7 business days]
“Recovery and Restoration” – The price is $240, which includes the labor and new hard drive.
- [Old IDE/PATA drives may increase price by $30; computers made since 2005 use SATA drives]
- Replacement of faulty/slow hard drive.
- Backup of current data – if recoverable from old drive using our basic method.
- Installation of new drive, reinstall and setup Windows, install hardware drivers and all your software.
- Restore Data such as “My Documents, iTunes – Music, Pictures, and Favorites” to new drive.
Hard Drive Data Recovery and Restoration on New Drive: $240 which includes the labor and new hard drive, old IDE/PATA drives may increase price by $30. Most computers made since 2005 use SATA drives.
• Replacement of faulty and/or slow hard drive
• Backup current data if recoverable from old drive using our basic method
• Install new drive, reinstall and setup Windows, install hardware drivers
• Restore Data such as “My Documents, iTunes – Music, Pictures, and Favorites” to new drive
• Install Applications such as Adobe reader, Flash, Anti-virus, Printers and other specific apps you would need.