Okay, so I only need to be quick while it's running, but I don't need to rush right now before travelling back as long as the computer is turned off, correct?
Will running it as a slave cause further damage then? I mean, would I be safer if I just give it to a specialist to recover my data, or is it worth trying by myself first? I wouldn't want to limit my chances for recovery. If it's expensive, I'll deal with it, though I'd much prefer a cheaper route, but only if it doesn't put my data at risk more than necessary.
Thanks for the link! I'll order one as soon as possible. Is there something I should look for? What makes one hard drive better than another?
The SSD part confused me too. It may be a hybrid drive, but I'm not sure. When I first bought the laptop (refurbished), it had Windows 8 on it, and it was installed on the SSD partition. When I wanted to put Windows 10 on it, the 16GB weren't enough, so I tried to merge the partitions, which wasn't possible. I don't remember, but maybe that was because there are two hard drives, not sure. I ended up installing Windows 10 on the regular drive and ignoring the SSD. I was told that the system would automatically use the SSD to cache things so that it's all faster. Someone also recommended that I buy a SSD-only drive rather than a hybrid. Is that worth it?