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Recovering from a dead HDD?

I have an external HDD (Freecom 400GB) and it seems to be dead now. It hasn't been used in about 6 months and might have been damaged during a house move. It doesn't seem to be drawing any power and spinning up. There is power, as the internal LED is active, but the drive itself is not responding at all. There is no movement.

Is there any way to recover its contents? The drive was used as an 'archive' of all our family photos covering about 20 years :S

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verence3 years ago
If you know how to do it, remove the actual HDD drive from the external housing and install it internally in your PC or into another external case. If you don't know how to transplant the drive, ask a friend that does or bring it to a computer shop.

If that fails, and you are willing to spent good money, look for data recovery specialists. They have the parts and tools to read data from broken drives. Be ready to spend a good deal of money.

Never NEVER try to open the actual hard drive (the 2.5 or 3.5 inch block) There is nothing inside you could repair and even if you have the tools to open it without breaking, you don't have the clean room to protect it from dust.
Try putting the dead hdd into a fresh machine just to make sure it isnt your mobo or something else
Install a new hard drive alongside the old one,set the new hdd as primary(change the jumper switch on the old one to make it "Slave" and boot to desktop,go to "computer" and see if you can open up and see the contents on the slave drive.
Install EaseUS data recovery tool on new primary and follow instructions.
This is a bit of a Hail Mary but put the dead drive in the freezer overnight,quickly install back in machine,it sould wr long enough to put your data onto disk,usb,or cloud drive.

Good Luck
Tragic
There are specialists who can help, but their services don't come cheap I'm afraid.

Recovering a modern drive is extremely complex. If the data is precious, ignore any advice to DIY.

The only thing I'd suggest is you open the box that the HDD is mounted in, and see if the connector to the drive is OK, and failing that, buy a new CASE and try putting the old drive in that.

DO NOT DO ANYTHING with the drive itself if you want any hope of getting data back.
BobTheSkull (author)  steveastrouk3 years ago
That seems to be the advice I'm getting from friends too. There's no way I'd try a DIY on it. I'm not experienced enough to do it. It's got a sealed case, so I'm not sure how easy it'll be to open it and check the drive without destroying the case.
Take it to a decent local shop, explain the situation, and see what they say. I'd be prepared to sacrifice the external drive to get a final verification. It IS unusual that the drive isn't even spinning up in my experience, so I cross my fingers for you and hope that this is really only a loose connector outside the drive.

The best of luck with it, whatever.
Jason5193 years ago
Dead HDD? Can the HDD be identified by computer? If it can, I think you can recover data from dead hard drive by hard drive data recovery tool, there are many softwares you can choose. I know a recovery named Tenorshare Data Recovery is good, you can try it, if your hard drive can't be read by computer, you have to ask professional data recovery service for help, good luck!