I was transferring files from an external hard drive to a new, larger hard drive. When I started to copy the files the old drive began making a soft grinding/crunching sound. It only makes this sound when accessing data/copying files. I ejected the drive and didn't attempt to copy any more files.
I don't care about the drive, but I'd rather not loose the data. I've had some folks tell me the noise is probably the arm hitting the stop and that I should be fine copying my data. I called a couple of data recovery places and, of course, they said to send it in for recovery and that it would be between $800 and $1,500. They said that if I copied the files the head could hit the platter and I could loose everything. I've heard of people using noisy drives for a long time.
Any advice? Should I try to copy the files? If I do, is my a more expensive recovery or everything lost forever?