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Hard Drive Recovery

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Hello I know this should be in the applications forum but this is a multi oriented question. I'd like to know what the best hard drive recovery software is when you want to recover all your files. I'd also like to hear methods you can use to recover from hard drive failure, or how you can notice signs of hard drive failure before it happens [whether it be from virus', the drive itself, etc].

Thanks! This hasn't happened to me yet but I know it is part of every pc users life and will happen to me one day. I would like to be ready! I know this thread will give a lot of new info to many new pc users. Tell some horror stories too if you have any!

I'd really like to know what the best software for this is because I want to buy it now just to have around.

Edited by superstar, 24 July 2007 - 10:25 PM.

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Hi superstar, one of the best options you can have - especially if you're looking to buy stuff - is to purchase a backup hard drive and use it to copy all your stuff. If you want to purchase a program also, I recommend using Acronis True Image, this will make an exact duplicate of everything on your hard drive. So if your drive fails, all you need to do is put in the new hard drive in your computer and then you can load the Acronis program and it will just put everything straight back on like it was the last time you did a backup. You won't need to install Windows again or anything.

You could also purchase another hard drive (exactly the same one as you already have) and use RAID 1 (mirroring).

The only way you can tell if your hard drive is going to fail is if the SMART warning comes up, even then it usually doesn't predict it anyway. My horror story is that one morning my computer just would not start. The POST almost finished loading and gave me an HDD error, I could hear this horrible ticking noise. It was a mechanical failure and the whole lot was gone in an instant. I had to get a whole new hard drive and start again - I actually got two, one for backups. I learnt my lesson!

I strongly suggest you be PROACTIVE and get copies of your data everywhere (not just on the backup drive, but on DVD's every now and again) so that you won't lose it.

Good Luck! :whistling:
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one of the simplest warnings one gets for a harddrive going south is called "the tick of death", it is when one starts hearing the tick, tick, tick of spinning disk, it means that one has just enough time to retrieve ones data, but not enough to do any scans, sounds strange perhaps but put the drive into the fridge often gets a little longer time since the cold helps.

as for data recovery, I don't know of any that work once the drive is dead, yes there are programs for finding data that has been overwritten on but that is not the same thing, the drive has to given to experts to extract to data by opening the case.

for backups there are programs too, but many factors come into play here so I will just talk from my situation, first off, I dumped windows for linux, next I use old harddrives for back ups, that is I use an external harddrive caddie and remove the harddrive of any old computer I come across, then using the caddie connected to my current computer I store the same data on two harddrives knowing that even if one hard were to die the other would still hold the data, or in the case of it being some fixed one-off data I burn it to a CD but I only do that with really important stuff because the cost adds up. In fact, the odd thing I have noticed is that the old harddrive live a lot longer than the new ones, I don't know how many 6gb harddrives I have and am still using.

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