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Possible to recover data from a broken external HDD?

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    So I have this 500GB external HDD which was nearly full. I borrowed it to one of my junior and his sister accidentally dropped it. Now it cannot be detected by the computer once it's plugged in and makes some weird clicking noises. Is it possible to recover all my data without going to a data recovery specialist? The data inside is not really important (just movies and tv shows mostly) but I have a few photo albums in it. I was really hard broken when I heard about my hard disk's condition so it'll be really really great if the data is recoverable.
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    It may be possible, depending on how the HDD was damaged in the first place. I'm not sure about the UK, but you may be able to find certain data recovery specialists that only charge you if successful. Always worth a shot. :yep:
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    Windows is crap for reading faulty HDD. It may be completely broke but if not put it in an enclosure box (£10 ish) and boot up a live ubuntu (Linux) disc, that should be able to read most of the sectors if not all. It is possible to send it off and for people to actually read the disc itself but that costs a stupid amount of money.
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    (Original post by Vulpes)
    It may be possible, depending on how the HDD was damaged in the first place. I'm not sure about the UK, but you may be able to find certain data recovery specialists that only charge you if successful. Always worth a shot. :yep:
    It's still with my junior so I can't access how badly damaged it is. I won't be in the UK until September and shops in my country either doesn't do data recovery or it charges an outrageous amount. Even if it's still on warranty, Toshiba does not do data recovery - they'll just replace it with a new one :erm:

    (Original post by Zenzic)
    Windows is crap for reading faulty HDD. It may be completely broke but if not put it in an enclosure box (£10 ish) and boot up a live ubuntu (Linux) disc, that should be able to read most of the sectors if not all. It is possible to send it off and for people to actually read the disc itself but that costs a stupid amount of money.
    Unfortunately, I know nil about Linux. Can you even boot it on a Windows laptop?
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    (Original post by Akiraryuu)
    It's still with my junior so I can't access how badly damaged it is. I won't be in the UK until September and shops in my country either doesn't do data recovery or it charges an outrageous amount. Even if it's still on warranty, Toshiba does not do data recovery - they'll just replace it with a new one :erm:


    Unfortunately, I know nil about Linux. Can you even boot it on a Windows laptop?
    yes, I believe you got 2 options, one where you can boot within Windows or as a dual boot system
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    (Original post by Akiraryuu)
    It's still with my junior so I can't access how badly damaged it is. I won't be in the UK until September and shops in my country either doesn't do data recovery or it charges an outrageous amount. Even if it's still on warranty, Toshiba does not do data recovery - they'll just replace it with a new one :erm:


    Unfortunately, I know nil about Linux. Can you even boot it on a Windows laptop?
    Use a Live CD.
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    (Original post by Akiraryuu)
    Unfortunately, I know nil about Linux. Can you even boot it on a Windows laptop?
    Yes, as Mad Vlad said you can use a live cd. You can put ubuntu on a memory stick (Min 800mb ish) or a blank cd/dvd. There's many tutorials, won't be hard to find one and linux is free to download. If ubuntu can read it then just drag and drop what you can onto another HDD. You don't need to know anything to be able to run linux, it's quite simple to use.

    If you struggle with that, PhotoRec is a great program to use. Might be easier to get it for windows rather than trying to install it first and run it off linux unless you get a live cd with it already on. This program allows you to take files off a HDD only by the file type, but you can specify the folders to look in. Great program and free.
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    (Original post by Iqbal007)
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    (Original post by Mad Vlad)
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    (Original post by Zenzic)
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    Right, thanks guys! Hopefully my files are recoverable! What are my chances of recovering them you reckon?
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    (Original post by Akiraryuu)
    Right, thanks guys! Hopefully my files are recoverable! What are my chances of recovering them you reckon?
    Based that you said you hear clicking from your HDD i would say 50%. Doesn't take long to do the things I previously mentioned once you have an enclosure box that is. Also enclosure box can be used as an external HDD afterwards providing you have a spare HD
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    (Original post by Akiraryuu)
    Right, thanks guys! Hopefully my files are recoverable! What are my chances of recovering them you reckon?
    With physical damage to the drive, slim.
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    (Original post by Zenzic)
    Based that you said you hear clicking from your HDD i would say 50%. Doesn't take long to do the things I previously mentioned once you have an enclosure box that is. Also enclosure box can be used as an external HDD afterwards providing you have a spare HD
    What happens if I don't use an enclosure box? I think it's quite hard to find one in my country..
    (Original post by Mad Vlad)
    With physical damage to the drive, slim.
    :cry2: I can hear my heart breaking... That external HDD was costly.
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    If you're at uni... And got some geeky computing friends get them to take it to a forensics lab and get something like encase on the job
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    (Original post by Wiggler)
    If you're at uni... And got some geeky computing friends get them to take it to a forensics lab and get something like encase on the job
    EnCase is useless without a functioning drive. It's good, but it's not that good
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    Clicking indicates a mechanical failure, so I strongly doubt you'll be able to do anything about it. Professional data recovery costs for *******s of this type are also very expensive.
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    Clicking sound indicates a mechanical failure.... Other than professional data recovery services... I doubt you can recover the data by yourself...

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Updated: December 16, 2013
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