Anyone here have experience with data recovery?

My laptop fell off of a low table (15-20 inches) as it was shutting down. When I restarted it, it would get to the Windows loading screen and just stop. I booted up the computer with a Debian Live CD to see if I could access disk and I can still access it, albeit incredibly slowly. It takes over a minute just for a single folder to load. I’ve tried copying files off of the drive, but it takes forever just to copy a couple of small files and if you try to copy a large file or large number of files, it simply times out and gives an error. And when you do successfully copy a file (a JPEG for example), it will sometimes be corrupted, as if the whole file isn’t there (intact header, but half the image missing).

Is there a good chance a data recovery service will be able to recover my drive for a reasonable cost (<$1000)? Anyone here have any experience with a data recovery service?

I just read about that the other day. I’m going to give it a try.

I had the HD for less than a month. I didn;t have a backup because I didn’t think i’d fuck it up that quickly.

As far as you fucking it up, don’t let it get to you. That sort of stuff happens to the best of us.

As far as having information on your laptop that you need and not having it backed up – you really can’t predict the need for a backup. There is a lesson here. Learn it and moove the fuck on.

Getting your data back.
Not gonna be easy.
Go here:

Whatever route you take this will make it easier for you. This is a type of external enclosure where you take the hard drive and you plug it in by just sitting it inside the base, the base plugs in via USB to the computer.

These things are really useful and really cheap. It is hard to say exactly what is your correct course to rescue that information, but something lie this could be useful.

What has almost certainly happened is that when the laptop got dropped the hard drive was engaged and the head came in contact with the platter.

This is bad.

If you can fumble your way through this what you will probably find is that some of the information can be gotten back but some is just toast.

As a first step I recomend replacing the hard drive in the laptop, getting the laptop working again.
Then place the bad drive in an external enclosure, plug the enclosure in through a USB port and run chckdisk on the bad hard drive.
I think it is chckdisk /f you want (might be option /r). If that doesn’t bring you any luck then go to the hard drive manufacturers web site. They will have tools you can download to help.

Update this thread if you need farther help.

Thanks for the information.

I’m thinking i’m just going to leave it to the professionals. If it was a head crash, the last thing I want to do is try to read the disk anymore and screw up the platter surfaces. I found a local company that does data recovery and any work they have to do in a clean room, they outsource to a company called Drive Savers. From my research, they have a reputation for good work @ decent prices (as in less $ than going through a big box place like Staples or Best Buy).

Phoenix Data Recovery software has worked wonders for me, and it’s reasonably priced. Also freezing the drive prior to attempting recovery is a good strategy.

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