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A disaster: plugged in a hard drive while the computer is turned on!

Last response: in Systems
April 20, 2010 3:31:23 PM

I seriously was never planning on doing this, but it was an accident. I actually was moving a hard drive from a computer to another while performing maintenances. But I forgot the fact that not all the computers were prepared for that at that moment, as I was continuing an existing maintenance (started couple days ago). I am also new to hardware, with pretty little experience. I first plugged the data connector -while my mind is completely absent about the fact that the computer is turned on!!-, then when I plugged the power supply's power connector into the hard drive, the motherboard's lights flashed and the computer restarted itself. Now whenever I turn the computer on I get my Gigabyte motherboard's start screen frozen and not responding. I tried unplugging the new hard drive but that did not change anything. There were 3 already connected hard drives when I connected the 4th one which caused the disaster, 2 internals and 1 USB external. The fans of the CPU and GPU are still working, if that indicates anything.

First of all, I just want to know what happened to the data!!! All of my data are on those 4! And then, what about the issue of plugging in components while the power is on?? For the love of God I'll make sure not to do that again! I didn't even want to do it now!! And what about the other components? They'll be pretty bad news to my parents that our best gaming computer was destroyed.

April 20, 2010 8:40:41 PM

April 25, 2010 1:09:21 AM

How did you solve the issue? I just did the same thing. Any help would be really appreciated
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April 25, 2010 1:22:44 AM

Well I am pretty sure I fried both HDs that were connected to the same chain from the powersupply. Both drives wont detect. I dont know why I though I could hot boot a HD. Girlfriend is going to kill me now as she had a book she was writing and other gems on the drive, I am dead!
April 25, 2010 1:29:10 AM

April 27, 2010 11:21:27 PM

Sorry for your story! There might be a solution. I am actually totally ignorant, but if "frying" actually has happened to the electronic part of the hard drive, the physical data storage disks and the reader might be still safe if the electronic part can be replaced. But I am not sure at all, it's just an idea. Good luck!
April 28, 2010 12:41:14 AM

I had a hard drive where one of the ICs on the circuit board started smoking and melted. I knew the physical drive was fine, just a junked circuit board. First, check if you can safely remove the board. Then buy the EXACT SAME hard drive. Make sure EVERYTHING is the same, not just the model number, but also the version and firmware, etc. It *might* work if there are only small differences, but I make no promises. Unfortunately mine was an OLD hard drive that you can't buy anymore. I had to watch ebay for like 6 months before one popped up and I was able to get my hands on it. Swapped the circuit boards, plugged it in, and it worked! Pulled all my data off of it. Swapped the circuit boards back, sent the fried drive back for RMA, put the working drive back on ebay. Only cost me a few bucks in the end.
November 21, 2012 6:55:13 AM

The same thing happened to a workmate, where he plugged in his hdd to a laptop that was on standby, what happened next was that the original contents of his hdd was wiped and was replaced by the data on the laptop he plugged it in to.

Anyone have any thoughts on the underlying causes of this?

Thank you in advance.