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

22 Jun 2014   #131
jumanji

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

Please wait till Anshad sees and comes out with further instructions. Only he will lead you. I only watch. I am also following his instructions on my comp just to get a feel of parted magic.

I am retiring now.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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22 Jun 2014   #132
Anshad Edavana

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Your hard drive seems to be in SMART Critical status ( Red flagged in GmsartControl ) and there seems to be a huge number of unstable/bad sectors. The drive surface seems to be too damaged and a "DDrescue" cloning will be better suited. However considering the drive's condition i expect a very slow copy and lots of read errors ( and partial corruption of data ).

As soon as you get a new 750 - 1000 GB disk for backup ( Preferably Seagate ), we can start the cloning process. I highly recommend to not attempt any manual data recovery/copy methods to prevent further damage.
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22 Jun 2014   #133
ICIT2LOL

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

Anshad what do you recommend for the cloning as I use Macrium the most and sometimes (mostly in the past) copy disk in Partition Wizard.

I only ask because you say the disk is so damaged.
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22 Jun 2014   #134
jumanji

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

@Icit2, I thought I had already answered this question in my post #113.

"If our suspicion that the HDD is developing bad sectors is true, some of the files copied either with TestDisk or live Linux will be corrupt even if we succeed in copying.

ddrescue while cloning the drive tries to repeatedly read the bad sectors and extract the data in it, which conventional cloning software like Macrium Reflect will not do.The algorithm used in ddrescue is different with focus on bad sector recovery as it clones. First pass clones all good sectors. Subsequent passes - as many as you can order - will target only the bad sectors as logged in its logfile - and try to extract the feeble data in it."

Normally 3 passes is considered sufficient to extract data from a bad sector the assumption being if in three passes a bad sector cannot be recovered, more number of passes may not do anything better except increasing the recovery time..That bad sector is considered irrecoverable and naturally some files recovered will remain corrupted. But the best has been done to recover bad sectors.

I am only interested in seeing how many passes Anshad is going to recommend based on his personal experience.
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22 Jun 2014   #135
Anshad Edavana

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

As Jumanji explained "ddrescue" will be the best tool in this scenario. "Macrium" do have an option to ignore bad sectors but that option will simply skip copying bad sectors and write zeros to the target drive. On the other hand "ddrescue" will split entire HDD space in to smaller chunks or blocks and skip copying blocks with bad sectors in the first pass. This will reduce the chance of disk being crashed by trying to read damaged areas. After all good blocks are copied, "ddrescue" will attempt reading bad sectors. We can specify the maximum number of read attempts as an option. As bad sectors are physical defects, chance of successfully copying a damaged sector is low even for "ddrescue". However rescuing all possible sectors is very important in data recovery. A single 512 byte sized sector rescued by "ddrescue" may contain an NTFS boot sector or an important portion of MFT which defines NTFS.
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22 Jun 2014   #136
Canuck67

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

thanks again everyone for all of your help / suggestions.

1. Just to be clear, in order to hopefully recover whatever data I can from this dead drive, I will need to purchase a new hard drive.

2. maybe I should not post this here... but here goes... what drive would you recommend? Here are the two I have my eye on... the customer reviews give me pause though...
Seagate 3TB Desktop HDD SATA III w/ 64MB Cache at Memory Express
WD 3TB Green Hard Drive, SATA III w/ 64MB Cache at Memory Express

3. assuming I acquire one of those... is my system able to handle both that new drive, and my existing working drive? (WD 750GB)

thanks again.
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22 Jun 2014   #137
Anshad Edavana

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Hi

Considering the higher failure rate of 3TB drives and the possible issues for systems to access disks beyond 2.2 TB, i wouldn't recommend a 3TB drive for purchase.

3TB external suddenly becomes 746GB unallocated

You will be fine with a disk up to 2 TB .
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22 Jun 2014   #138
Canuck67

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Anshad Edavana View Post
Hi

Considering the higher failure rate of 3TB drives and the possible issues for systems to access disks beyond 2.2 TB, i wouldn't recommend a 3TB drive for purchase.

3TB external suddenly becomes 746GB unallocated

You will be fine with a disk up to 2 TB .

wow. I had no idea 3TB were no good.

Seagate 2TB Desktop SSHD SATA III w/ 64MB Cache at Memory Express This one then?
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23 Jun 2014   #139
Anshad Edavana

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

That 2TB drive will work fine. You can also opt for a disk without NAND cache as it will be cheaper.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jun 2014   #140
Slartybart

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

Anshad, et al: CrystalDiskInfo can affect Smart values. This might improve disk access time and also buy a bit more time before SMART flags he disk.

One member reportedly used it on a failing drive and the drive has been fine for 5 years. SMART isn't all that smart sometimes. I recently applied this method to a troublesome ext WD drive - the results are inconclusive, but the symptoms were completely different.

Using CrystalDisk in this manner is not a cure, it's a way to workaround SMART.

Health Status Setting


As far as the capacity of the drive, the only factor is that it needs to be greater than 500 GB. Other factors are cost - how much can you afford to spend on a external drive. Do you need 2 TB?

Google Search 1TB - 3TB drives

3TB drives aren't necessarily bad, there are many issues with them because of a previous capacity limitation. People also use docking stations that are not rated for > 2TB.

Of course there might be real issues with any newer technology - the capacity of drives is growing, but the disk remains the same physical size.

There is nothing actionable in this post - it is information for further research only.

Anshad has the lead and his instructions are the ones you need to follow. We're all working together on the issue and we all have experience, but jumanji, ICit2lol, and I are watching and learning about new and other tools Anshad is using. Perhaps, Anshad is learning a bit from our input as well.

Bill
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