Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Hard Drive Failure Recovery: Three Key User Mistakes

Believe it or not, if you find yourself with a damaged hard drive and you fear that your data could be all but lost, don't worry: this is a lot more common of a circumstance than you might think.
Yes, everybody has critical files that they just won't be able to operate without: that key report that your boss needed from you yesterday, those important accounting files that mean the difference between an IRS audit and clear sailing, or maybe just those family photos that are so important to you. I don't think we have to talk about the important e-mails, your event calendar or all of the many other things that are currently stored on your now failed hard drive. But there is no need to worry, because hard drive failure recovery is always available.
But if there is a place you do not want to be, is in the shoes of a person who attempts to recover their failed hard drive on their own. What this can do is take a minor hard drive failure and turning into a really expensive problem. Here are three common mistakes that users frequently make when their hard drive crashes; mistakes that you should avoid if you want to get your data back.
1. Relying On Un-trusted Data Recovery Software
We all are subject to this: whenever we have any kind of problem in our life, our first move is always to go to Google and see we can find a solution to that problem. The issue with this when you have had a hard drive crash is that often the search results you will get will direct you to data recovery software companies. And while certainly there are a lot of good data recovery software products on the market, the unfortunate truth is that there are a lot more bad products out there that can actually damage your hard drive when it has already physically failed.
The most important point is that even if you do manage to luck into downloading the best data recovery software product available, there is very little you can do if your hard drive has physically failed. In fact, a lot of people end up damaging the critical data on their hard drive just simply by attempting to install these products.
And one more thing to consider: if your operating system cannot actually access your failed hard drive, how exactly are you expecting a software product that works with your operating system to access the same data? It just doesn't make a lot of sense. Save yourself a lot of money and just avoid these products altogether.
2. Computer Repair Help
Calling for help is definitely not a negative. In fact, if you actually have a physically crashed hard disk, the best thing to do is call a professional data recovery service right away.
The unfortunate thing, however, is that most people do not actually contact a professional hard drive recovery company. Instead, they call their local computer repair company. The problem with this is that computer repair and hard drive recovery are hugely different services.
An important thing to remember is that taking a failed or physically crashed hard disk drive to a computer repair shop is akin to taking a space shuttle to the local mechanic. Underqualified is the word of the day here, and although they may tell you they can do something, and may charge you a lot of money, there is very little that they can do in-house.
It's probably best said that if you have a damaged hard disk drive that requires physical hard drive recovery, it is better to deal with an expert in the field. This means dealing with a company that has a data recovery clean room, and a wide variety of experience recovering drives from all manufacturers. Basically, we're talking about a company that dedicates itself to data recovery.
One more thing about computer repair shops: a lot of them actually will claim to offer physical disk recovery, when in fact they do not actually provide it at all. Instead, what they will frequently do is take your hard drive and then outsource all of the repair work to a professional company.
The result of this will mean that not only will you pay 10 to 30% more for your data recovery service, but it will also take typically up to a week or two longer than if you just dealt with a data recovery company directly.
Basically, computer repair shops can be very expensive middleman, and there is no reason why they should ever be involved.
3. Video Killed the Hard Drive
Everyone loves YouTube. Where else can you learn to rebuild your carburetor while watching an old episode of Dukes of Hazzard?
We all love to do things ourselves these days, and YouTube provides a lot of incredibly good instructional video. So if you decide that you would like to install your own sprinkler system, or figure out how to master origami, this is a great place to look. But remember that with these example activities, there is very little at risk for you. Personal pride, yes, but in the end if you fail at these endeavors, you're probably going to be fine.
This is not going to be the case with hard drive failure recovery. And although you can probably find a lot of video claiming to show you how to professionally repair your broken hard drive, you may want to avoid these particularly dangerous videos.
Learning Is Good, Risk Is Bad
This is not to say that learning is a bad thing when it comes to hard drive repair. It certainly is not. But one of the things that you have to remain with data recovery is that the company that are involved in this industry professionally spend hundreds of thousands of dollars training their technicians, and hundreds of thousands of dollars more on specialized equipment.
If this specialized equipment was not necessary in order to properly recover hard drives, why would they have spent all that money?
Remember also that if you follow the advice of one of these "self-repair" videos, you may actually damage your hard drive so that the data contained on it simply cannot be recovered, professional or not. At that point, ask yourself who is to blame. Is it the video maker? And if so, what do you do about it? Sue?
The end result is that your important data is now unrecoverable because of the fact that you followed some bad advice. There is definitely quite a lot of bad advice on the Internet, and certainly when it comes to precisely constructed instruments such as hard drives, you are going to be better off avoiding it.
It's basically a fact that do-it-yourself hard drive recovery in cases of physical disk failure is not a good route to take. It is basically a huge gamble with your data, data that you are probably are serious about getting back.
So remember that it is always going to be possible to recover your data, but calling on an expert first is by far your best move. There really is no need to make the same mistakes that so many people continue to make. 

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