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Paul

I had a catastrophe. SO here is my warning to you.

12 posts in this topic

OK, if you are not computer savy or have spare money around for htis you may want to put on your christmas wish list a spare Hard Drive.

On Friday I came home to my ups beeping and shut down and my computer was down with it. When I went to turn computer back on my worst nightmares appeared. A total Hard Drivew Crash. Now most of my photos say about 90% were kept on a seperate partion of my same drive. I got lucky and am able to access that partion and remove the files from there. How ever, my C drive or boot drive is totally un accessable through normal means. I had a lot of inforation on that drive that I was in the process of moving to a more secure location but My portable 500 gig was full. After speaking with a bunch of computer buddies of mine, I have come to the conclusion that you should have a minimum of 2 Hard Drives in your computer. One a boot Drive Drive C. The second a complelty seperate peice of hardware not a partion like I had (I knew better and am now paying the price for it) to hold all your information, such as pictures, contact lists etc, stuff you need and never want to lose. Now my original hard drive boot sector got screwed when the computer took a Hard crash when my UPS went to [PoorWordUsage], what that means is that the HD drive itself is ok, but the information on it is gone. This hit us hard. 3 websites were stored on there, plus our entire address book of everyone we know, 21 years of Geneology missing. ( I have back ups that are several months old of that but my new info I obtained from Norway is toast). There is some software out there that will repair the partition and boot records so I may still be able to retrieive that infor but for now, after 3 days of lying in my sick bed and trying (bad case of strep throat to top things off) my info is lost.

I just wanted to pass on awarninging, I should have headed my self a long time ago, never put all you eggs in one basket. Have multiple Hard Drives. they are cheap. One TB Seagate 1000 RPM drives are now going for under $150.00

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Sorry to hear that Paul. I've always run two separate hard drive in my computer. One is storage and backup only, the other is my boot drive. I also run three separate external drives for storage and also have an on line backup of photos and DVD backups of those as well.

One of my external drives is kept off site as well. Most folks may not need that complete of backup but as Paul suggested a separate drive in your computer is easy to do and good insurance. An even easier method are the external drives that just plug in to a USB or fire wire port. I only turn those on when I am moving data onto them.

For those starting out with digital your computer is your photo album, take care to back up those photos. This is the third person in the last week I have heard with a hard drive crash. It happens, plan on a system to do that now rather than latter.

Hope you get your data back Paul!

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That's tough luck. I have my desktop and 2 laptops. My 1 laptop can go haywire if squeezed in the wrong place, so I just use that as another storage device. So, I have all my photos on all 3 computers.

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I know it's a lot of uploading, but online storage is another very good option. By default it is "offsite" in case of fire or other natural disaster and can be accessed from anywhere.

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Sorry to here of your trouble, I had that happen years ago, no photos at the time, but my financial data was on it. The computer company was able to recover it all though.

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It's a painful lesson to learn, no question. You might try using a program called "get data back NTFS" to recover the dead drive. My wife had a drive fail, it would be visible in the bios and Disk Manager (as a blank, empty disk), but otherwise unaccessable. Get data back NTFS was able to make an image of the entire drive onto another physical disk, I used an external USB, and recover all of the data.

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Could also use Ontrack data recovery if you know someone who has it. I have used it multiple times to recover data from crashed drives.

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Paul - sorry to hear your bad news =[.

There may still be hope if you're willing to try it - my solution is free but it requires you to plug the hard drive into another computer to access it.

Let me know if you'd like to (or can) try it, i'd be glad to run through it with you.

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I have been through all the scenarios I can think of. I put a new drive in the machine, formated, loaded windows xp pro. did updates. Installed old drive restarted machine, now maching can not see either drive. Took new drive out put back in enclosure, hooked to laptop, can see it but can not access files. I think it may actually be either a Virus issue or a Mother Board Issue now. WIll now be pulling cmos jumper pin on Motherboard and removing all 4 1gig strips of ram and letting it sit a while, maybe there is a new virus that snuck through and got into my boot sector. AM running some new tests now on new hard drive.

I have access to Easus Easy Dish Recovery software Pro which is supposed to be able to pull anything.

I post an update when I know more, I hate it when stuff like this stumps me. I of all people should know better, I am married to an IT tech and she is stumped as well.

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I used to specialize in data recovery at my previous job, i'm confident that so long the hard drive hasn't physically failed, there's something we can do to pull your data.

Is this a sata or ide drive? It's best to have the drive plugged in via it's native interface (dont use a USB enclosure) when attempting to recover the partition tables.

Once you have the drive set up as a slave and your machine is booted to windows, you can run an application called 'testdisk' (the first site returned from a google search will give you a legit download location). It's run via command line, and it will let you step through the recovery of the partition table for a selected disk. This is usually all that is needed when you can see a drive connected to a computer, but can't see the partitions or anything within them.

There's plenty of documentation supporting it, and it's close to self explanatory when you actually run the app that you and you're wife could probably run through it quick.

I do want to throw out a caution that if you don't know what you are doing with it, it can cause further harm to the drive you are trying to recover (or blow away your current working drive if you selected the wrong one).

It's worth checking out, it was always the first technique I would use before something like ontrack.

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shnelson, thanks for the tip. I have come to the newest conclusion it is the actuall drive. some really funny noises coming from the drive now. I was thinking maybe virus for a while but now that the drive has the weirdest sounds that I have never heard of. I going to just have to assume it is dead.

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