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Windows 7: how do I recover data from a non responsive hard drive?

20 Jun 2014   #101
Slartybart

x64 (6.3.9600) Win8.1 Pro & soon dual boot x64 (6.1.7601) Win7_SP1 HomePrem
 
 

Very thorough analysis, as always, jumanji.

Cloning would be my first choice. I have no experience with ddrescue, so I defer to the experience of Anshad and yourself. It will be a learning experience as I watch the progress of the thread.

The other methods on your list are good fall back options. I think you listed the methods in the order I would try due to the advantages / disadvantages.

My vote is cast for cloning

I do have a post in a thread for Data Recovery using Linux Mint Mate, it's workable, but not polished. This would be the first use of it in the wild (it's easy for me to follow because I wrote it)
If it is needed, I will supply a link.

Bill
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My System SpecsSystem Spec
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20 Jun 2014   #102
Anshad Edavana

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I would also suggest cloning the disk to another known good empty drive using "ddrescue". The destination drive should be with same or more LBA numbers. As the source disk is a 500 GB one, a 750 or 1 TB drive is recommended as destination disk.

To save the log file, the same bootable USB key can be used ( either "System Rescue CD" or "Parted Magic" - i am more comfortable in using "Parted Magic" and it came with some nice extra tools- last free version will do fine ). Usually the log file will be only a few KB in size.

Before starting the cloning process, i would like to confirm whether there is any difference with a brand new SATA data cable.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jun 2014   #103
Canuck67

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

Thanks for everyone chiming in on this.... I don't really understand most of it, but then again, that's why I'm here

a couple of points...

1. I've tried replacing the SATA cable with no effect. That was one of the first things I did before posting here. Apologies if it wasn't previously mentioned.

2. with regards to needing another drive... will the other internal hard drive be sufficient for any cloning or other tasks?
It has approximately 460 GB of the 698GB listed according to when I bring it up in the library.
On the 500GB drive in question... it has maybe 300-350GB of data on it.

EDIT:
3. my main concern right now is data recovery. if I lose the drive.... so be it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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20 Jun 2014   #104
Slartybart

x64 (6.3.9600) Win8.1 Pro & soon dual boot x64 (6.1.7601) Win7_SP1 HomePrem
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Canuck67 View Post
Thanks for everyone chiming in on this.... I don't really understand most of it, but then again, that's why I'm here

a couple of points...

1. I've tried replacing the SATA cable with no effect. That was one of the first things I did before posting here. Apologies if it wasn't previously mentioned.

2. with regards to needing another drive... will the other internal hard drive be sufficient for any cloning or other tasks?
It has approximately 460 GB of the 698GB listed according to when I bring it up in the library.
On the 500GB drive in question... it has maybe 300-350GB of data on it.

EDIT:
3. my main concern right now is data recovery. if I lose the drive.... so be it.
You might have mentioned the SATA cable swap, way back when, thanks for confirming that again. Anshad might ask about the type or rating of the cable you used, he gave some specifics on the post he suggested it.

This is a cloning operation, so the drive has to equal or exceed the capacity of the faulty drive (500 GB).
A 750 GB - 1 TB was recommended as a safety factor. After the clone, the extra space can be used however you choose. The concern is that the process might require 500 GB + 10 MB (I just picked a number over 500 GB) and since the process takes a long time, it would be a shame to loose the time due to a small overhead factor.

The other thing you should know is that a clone is different from a copy. In a clone, the disk is read sector by sector and written sector by sector, so the clone partition has to be a separate partition. In other words, you can't clone to your C: partition, but you could copy to it (not recommended though - I'm working with another member who did that and it got messy... the last time I checked he was doing a clean install of Windows restoring his machine to factory condition.)

The answer: No you cannot use the other internal drive, there isn't enough free space to create a partition to be the clone of the faulty drive.

It was a very good question asked at the right time
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jun 2014   #105
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

I too have no experience with "ddrescue" and it may be the best way to go.
However:
If all else fails you have the option to image using Macrium with the option of ignoring bad sectors. You must select this option to ignore otherwise Macrium imaging will halt on a bad sector. Go straight to "Force Macrium Reflect to ignore bad sectors" and don't run chkdsk. This link shows how to select the option.
v5: Imaging disks with bad sectors (Bad Sectors)

I'd store the image on an external HDD. Then disconnect your faulty HDD to save it from further wear & tear.
Boot from the Macrium Rescue pe DVD and mount the image. If it mounts ok then transfer your data. You could even try reimaging to a new HDD and see how you go.

As a Macrium user I'd be trying this first. However, "ddrescue" is worth knowing about.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jun 2014   #106
ICIT2LOL

Desk1 7 Home Prem / Desk2 10 Pro / Main lap Asus ROG 10 Pro 2 laptop Toshiba 7 Pro Asus P2520 7 & 10
 
 

Bit late in here been sick so I was going to say before just to clone the thing even with faults the thing is not going to give up the ghost eh?

My particular favourite is Macrium for cloning and then perhaps run the tests in the old drive even if only for curiosities sake - but that is just me being a tad pedantic I suppose.

These are some I found but haven't yet tried them all Best Free Hard Drive Health Monitoring and Diagnostic Programs
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Jun 2014   #107
jumanji

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

And so it would seem cloning with ddrescue is suggested by most.

Since Anshad is comfortable with running ddrescue from Parted Magic, he may lead the OP into it. We can also learn how to do it. ( I just downloaded the free version, from Download Parted Magic - MajorGeeks, created the bootable pendrive with Rufus and booted from it. Even I would need further guidance .)

And so over to Anshad Edavana to lead. ( Since you want to have the logfile in the pendrive, you may specify the size of pendrive the OP may need.)

Thanks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Jun 2014   #108
Anshad Edavana

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Since "Partition Wizard" bootable CD can detect the partitions, there is a good chance for "Parted Magic" to see and explore the partitions. In that case cloning won't be necessary.

I would like to know the result of :

1. Disconnect all hard drives except the failing one and then boot from "Parted Magic" ( CD/USB).

Download Parted Magic - MajorGeeks

Open "File Manager" and check whether you can browse the partitions.

2. Open "Disk Health" from Desktop and double click on the drive icon.



3. Navigate to the "Attributes" tab and click on "Save As" button. Save the file with the name SMART on our flash drive and attach it with your next reply.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Jun 2014   #109
ICIT2LOL

Desk1 7 Home Prem / Desk2 10 Pro / Main lap Asus ROG 10 Pro 2 laptop Toshiba 7 Pro Asus P2520 7 & 10
 
 

Hmm must try as I must admit I have only ever used it for wiping drives
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Jun 2014   #110
Slartybart

x64 (6.3.9600) Win8.1 Pro & soon dual boot x64 (6.1.7601) Win7_SP1 HomePrem
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Anshad Edavana View Post
Since "Partition Wizard" bootable CD can detect the partitions, there is a good chance for "Parted Magic" to see and explore the partitions. In that case cloning won't be necessary.

.....
This might help Canuck, in that he has free space available on his other internal drive that he could use in a copy operation. I haven't looked at that drive partition scheme close enough (or recently) to advise on creating a partition specific to the copy.

I will leave it up to Anshad to determine the best scenario. I hope everything goes well and you can recover all or most of your data. Good luck, I'm back to the shadows.

Bill
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My System SpecsSystem Spec
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