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Discussion Starter #1
ok saturday morning my tower starts 'hiccupping' and so I try to restart and it does nothing. Called gateway and the tech rep tells me that the armature that reads the drive has gone off track like the arm/needle on a recordplayer goes off the end an starts skipping.
Basically he said I'm screwed and that he'll send me a new HD within 5 days-I've lost everything on it including my Microsoft Money program with lots of bank info and some irreplacable digital photos of the Trep's new duals and some of my daughter's first steps

question for you computer guys-can I use the old drive as a slave drive and get my info or since the harddrive cnnot be read am I screwed.
If so how much would it cost to send it to a Harddrive recovery place like if it were in a fire they can even get some stuff cost effective? for as trivial the info is?
where can i send it?
using work's computer now to post
MAN AM I BUMMED
 

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Discussion Starter #2
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"bump"
IMPORTANT
 

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Don't toss that drive yet. As they are sending you a new drive, it would not hurt to see if you could get your data off of it by slaving it up. The most you stand to lose if it doesn't work is a few minutes.

If slaving the drive to the new one still doesn't allow you to access your data, then you will want to send it in to a data recovery specialist if you really need the data. Be forewarned that data recovery guys are HUGE cash. There are a variety of freeware/cheapware "data recovery" programs that claim they can do the job, however, most do not.

The Trep pictures can be recreated for the most part if you take it back to the shop to grab the underbelly pics. The only question you have to ask yourself is if you have hard copies of the other pictures (first steps) and your financial statements.

If you have hard copies of the pictures, you can always scan them in again - either with your scanner (if you have one) or at a place like Kinko's (if you don't).

The financial statements (which you should be able to get from your bank and/or brokerage) can be used to recreate your Money file. Granted you will have to re-input all of your bills and whatnot, but other than your historical information, you'll be able to recreate it none-the-less. Your bank and/or brokerage may even be able to supply you with a great deal of the historical info.

Who knows, if you ask in one of the "general" forums you may find that someone has actually downloaded and saved to disk your dual exhaust pictures.

In summary, try the slave idea first. It may work fine and save you a big headache. Secondly, see if you can recreate the data by performing the above suggestions or similar. Thirdly, if the first two methods fail, call a data recovery company or two and see what the costs are and weigh them against what the data is worth to you. Also, be aware that the data may, in fact, be unrecoverable by the data recovery guys. You will have to pay them something for their time even if they don't get the data back as they expend the same effort regardless of if the data is there or not.

Good luck!

P.S. The advice may be a day late and a dollar short, but you should consider investing in a backup solution for your data. The best bang for your buck currently is to buy a CDR (at roughly $75-$200) and a bunch of blank CDs (at roughly $.10-$1.00 per disk). CDs can store 650MB of information which according to your info above should be plenty of capacity to store whatever data you want. Every X number of days you should copy the data files that you know you don't want to lose to a blank CD, date the CD, and store them wherever you want. That way in the case of a catastrophic failure such as this (there will be more down the road...it's Murphy's Law) you can fairly easily recover.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
great info THX

ok got the new harddrive on wednesday and hooked it up no problems-but...

I ended up deleting a bunch of shortcuts from my desktop that I thought I'd never use-turns out that they are part of windows and should not be deleted
found out the hard way-just as i got the damn thing running the way I wanted with the desktop not cluttered and all applications installed -even the modem and scanner,printer,camera drives-just about to hit the rack so i start the defrag since I had deleted a bunch of 'useless' stuff-well defrag told me it couldnt run because i had an error in the C drive and to run Scandisk-so i did and scandisk was supposed to fix it automatically and it told me to reboot/restart-after trying to reboot/restart i get an error message like i had a corrupt file or ran out of memory-called gateway cuz i couldnt get it started-went through the whole thing again had to re-format the disk, install windows again and get the damn computer going again

moral of the story dont delete shortcuts to Outlook Express(even though i never use it) or My Briefcase or others mfrom your desktop

anyways i looked into data recovery and for mine it would cost STARTING at $850 cus its a mechanical failure- theyd have to bring it into a cleanroom and open it up instead of just finding the info on it with a program like when you get a virus
TOO MUCH $$$$ for me I'll just swallow it
and slaving the drive wont work cus the armature is out of wack and wont read the drive anyways so I'm just screwed

another moral BACK UP BACK UP BACK UP-jesus thats why i got a damn CD/R-**** me gently
 

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Re: great info THX

DCREPID'00 said:
anyways i looked into data recovery and for mine it would cost STARTING at $850 cus its a mechanical failure- theyd have to bring it into a cleanroom and open it up instead of just finding the info on it with a program like when you get a virus
TOO MUCH $$$$ for me I'll just swallow it
and slaving the drive wont work cus the armature is out of wack and wont read the drive anyways so I'm just screwed
don't believe the Tech support guy!!! Always try it anyways!! Just because he said it sounds like the armature is bad doesn't mean it's true

what's the worst thing that could happen? you waste a few minutes? try it....

do you have to return the old drive to them? If not I would volunteer to do some creative drive scavenging, crack the hard drive open and try to get it to "hobble" long enough to extract the data
 
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