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Failing/failed hard drive, data almost recoverable

Last response: in Storage
June 25, 2010 11:03:21 PM

All -

I purchased a Dell laptop almost two years ago that came with a Western Digital 250GB hard drive (WD2500BEVS). A couple weeks ago I went to boot into Vista and it stopped mid-boot, then power cycled and re-booted and went into an endless cycle. I tried booting into safe mode, same thing, power cycled before I could even get in. Tried everything I could think of but came to the conclusion the drive was going bad.

Fast forward to today, I bought a new hard drive and I'm trying to recover some data off the original drive. Most data is backed up, but some (pictures from the last 3 months or so) were not, so not mission critical data but would still be nice to recover.

Here are the symptoms:

1. I've put the drive into a USB sleeve and plugged it into the laptop. Two partitions show up, E: (Dell recovery) and F: (main partition). Drive E: is completely accessible, and drive F: is not, it shows up blank. Though as soon as I try to test to see if I can pull anything down off the recovery partition it disconnects from Windows. Then 30 seconds later it reconnects, then the same sequence of events. NO clicking is occurring and the drive sounds like it's spinning up properly.

2. I plugged the USB enclosure into a different computer (XP), same thing. Connect for 30 seconds, disconnect for 30 seconds. Mind you, NO clicking.

3. I tried a different USB enclosure, one with an additional power source and same symptoms.

4. I stuck the enclosure it in the freezer (properly wrapped and sealed of course). I know I know before everyone yells at me I was well aware of the risks of moisture. I pull it out of the freezer, plug it in and bam, there's my F: OS partition with all of my data. I quickly speed through to my \users\* folder and my folder has security settings that say I have to take ownership. By the time I've taken ownership the drive disconnects and I'm back to square one. This happens 2x before the drive starts showing up blank again. I did another freezer run and the same thing happens, the data shows up for 2 rounds of connections then disappears.

So, my conclusion is my data is still intact, but it seems as though the interface may be screwed up, or maybe the logic board. Would these be correct assumptions? What are my options at this point? I don't want to spend upwards of $500+ for data recovery because quite frankly it's not worth it. Since this drive is on it's way out anyway, would swapping the logic board with a new drive be worth a shot by myself? TIA.

June 26, 2010 1:26:40 AM

Some tips that might work

1, update hard disk drive driver to make sure system can detect the drive
2, use chkdsk to try whether bad sector
3, virus? it could be the trouble

To recovering files from the failing hard disk, you may connect it to another PC, and some recovery tool could do the help to restore files from your disk.

My cousin told me her sd photos were restored by this tool.

My experience, never buy a program until they find your files. Some offer photo preview.