NOOO!!!.... is my hard drive toasted?

Ok... let me explain my situation here...

few days ago i was checking out the air flow of my computer and found the IDE cables were blocking the flow. Therefore, I lifted the cable up a bit and suddenly my IBM 60G 60GXP starts the 4 clicks cycle with patterns. in windows xp, i got much lower performance so i tried to shut the computer down but i got stuck at the point where xp says "saving personal files". i'm pretty sure it's not the windows' fault because i can really hear the hd kept clicking and clicking...

i immediately noticed that it's my hd that's failing so i power up the comp and tried to save wutever i can see now. unfortunately, right after the POST i got this "boot record not found" msg and couldn't get into windows what-so-ever. so i tried to use bootdisc to enter DOS and see if i can do anything from there. unluckly again i couldn't even access the 3rd partition that contains all my important files, my drive would just kept clicking w/out any responses.

you guys probably will ask "so did u back ur things up earlier?" sigh.... i was going to 2 days b4 the hd failed but forgot to perform the backup, gosh this is the most sucking experience ever :(

back to the HD. after that i use the famous IBM tool: Drive Fitness Test and check what's actually going on w/my damn HD. It reported with failure code: 0x70 which means defective and asked me to erase or repair the sectors. upon repairing the sectors it immediately gave me the screen saying that i have currupted sectors in my partition table or boot records, and it's impossible to repair those sectors.

IBM's DFT's no use now since it can't recover nor repair. so next i've tried the famous SpinRite 5.0, too bad it couldn't even report the hd's existence :(

but i was able to see the hex values of my sectors using Norton Utilities's Driver Editor. that tool has a function that alllows me to use the fat2 to overwrite the fat1, which i did. but it just gotten worse... now i can't even see my drive under dos, plus now the BIOS will report wrong values of my hd intermittingly, such as incorrect heads/sectors/volumn...

now i'm totally clueless on how to save the hd. i wouldn't dare to power it up again since i was told it's been scratching my platers w/those clicking noises... hence i called some data recovery companies and hope they would offer cheap solutions. i was wrong, w/my kind of situation they always want about $200 plus of fee to recover...which is even more then what i had paid for this hd ><

so i've been thinking about recovering by myself, since i'm not really sure it's scratching the platers cuz what i heard is patterned clicks and will only produce when the hd access some areas. but i have no clue on how to fix this almost toasted piece of junk...

can i perform some kind of partition table recover or rebuild and format the drive after that, then use other computer to unformate the drive with software?

any suggestions/advices on what should i do to recover those data? or do u know any place that offers cheap solutions that's sub $100?
i would greatly appreciate any replies :D

oh btw, i live in redmond, washington, which is pretty close to seattle.
18 answers Last reply
More about nooo hard drive toasted
  1. Dude, that sucks. Get a different hdd and boot from there. Try using file recovery progie like file scavenger, and use it on the busted hdd.

    My frog asked me for a straw...dunno what happened his ass all over the place :eek:
  2. flamethrower205 thank you for replying :)
    i've tried ur suggestion b4, didn't work.... windows xp won't even read the content of the hd... so those softwares are basically useless.

    maybe i'll try windows 98 then
  3. 08/26/2002 9:12 PM (NEW!)

    a friend told me to use the freezer trick that ppl used to try on recovering their 75GXP defective hds...

    he said "put your hd in a plastic bag, seal it so nothing can get in, and place it in the freezer for some time, then, get it out, hook it up, and start copying the data as fast as you can and claim warranty"

    will that work? is it very risky?
  4. havnt heard of that one before...
    but thinking about it... i would assume it would only work if the problem was overheating electronics. but if the mechanics or drive surface is damaged then it wont make a blind bit of difference.

    have you tried using a different cable? just in case? cauz u were touching that when it went bad.

    anyhow... i feel i must wellcome you to the IBM deathstar club. i had one die on me too... over and over. i feel your pain.

    <b>Due to Customer Complaints, this sig has been witdrawn from public use. Thankyou. :lol: </b>
  5. i've tried chaning the cable, it's not the cable...
    i've also trid to access the hd on my 2nd comp, no use, same thing :(
  6. Right, Welcome to the Deathstar club. I also had a 60GXP that died. I managed to recover the data by temporarily swapping the PCB board with one from an identical drive.
    You write that you cant even detect the drive anymore. I was wondering if platter faults can give such errors or do you also have a PCB problem?
    When my drive failed, the motor just stopped spinning. I dont recall whether my bios could detect the drive in this situation, but I dont think the drive can be detected before it has performed power-up initialisation etc. So if you have an identical drive (or are willing to purchase an additional for a doubtfull datarecovery attempt), you can try exchanging PCBs.

    NOTE: !!! Dont do this I you are not comfortable with it. Use the correct tools. Dont scratch the screws (otherwise you may not get a new drive from IBM).... and (most important) Dont blame me if you suddenly has two dead drives.

    Good luck
  7. Woohoo! Another lost IBM Deskstar. Damn them...

    I could at least pull the data off the drive as a slave before it totally died.

    <font color=red>I have a computer and it does weird stuff. please help.</font color=red>
  8. The freezer trick (which is followed by 'banging' the HD right when it's starting up) is supposed to be the last thing you should try and it's done to make any stuck platters or the head to start spinning one last time so you can backup data. (I've learned this from one or two posts in ArsTechnica OtherHardware forum) I don't think it would apply in your case.

    Hope you can recover your data but it seems your HD is dead.
  9. My question is,

    Why are you moving and touching cables in your computer while it's on?

    Not very smart.


    I am ignorant no more!
  10. mmm, swaping PCB... sounds cool :P
    how do u get the PCB off the hd? screws? will that remove the warrenty?

    btw... are u sure it's partly PCB's fault? my bios will sometime reads the wrong volume/sector/head info but does that really means that my PCB's smokeing weed?? :P
  11. thx for ur advice r2k, i'll def try that if my ideas are down to the toilet...
    hope i can still RMA that baby after all that freezing and banging :P
  12. aye cooj... i've learned my lesson: NEVER MESS W/THE CABLE ELSE U'LL CRY LIKE A BABY :D

    but i still couldn't believe a little lift of the cable (w/out moving the plastic connector that sticks into the hd's socket) will cause my hd's armageddon... :/
  13. I touch and move cables while it's on all the time. No probs.

    My frog asked me for a straw...dunno what happened his ass all over the place :eek:
  14. yeah ditto... i fiddle with cables from time to time as well... allthough im careful not to touch any components when on!

    <b>Due to Customer Complaints this sig has been withdrawn from public use. Thankyou. :lol: </b>
  15. Bah, I touch components too. Not like they can electricute u.

    My frog asked me for a straw...dunno what happened his ass all over the place :eek:
  16. Quote:
    mmm, swaping PCB... sounds cool :P
    how do u get the PCB off the hd? screws? will that remove the warrenty?

    The screw are of the TORX type, and it requires only a torx screwdriver to remove. They are not sealed in any way. Obviously messing around with the drive viods warrenty, since IBM dont know whether you messed around with it before or after it died. So if they can see it has been messed with they probably wont exchange it. However, what they dont know about, they cant care about. So if you loosen the screws carefully without scratching them they probably wont notice. But whether you want to try this really depends on how desperate you are to recover the data. And further assuming the drive (not considering the controller) is ok, your previous recovery attempts with FAT etc. may have caused data errors that makes recovery impossible even though you get the drive up and running. Im sorry to say that it doesnt look good.

    btw... are u sure it's partly PCB's fault?

    Not at all. But you never know. Considering that the drive failed while you where messing around with the cable while power was on, you might inadvertently have caused a short/loose connection which has partly fried the board. Somebody here mentioned they mess around with their stuff, while power is on, all the time without anything happening. I also do it. I even once disconnected a drive while power was on. Nothing died due to that. However, if you are having a bad soldering on your PCB, even the slightest push might have been enough to cause the fatal error.

    my bios will sometime reads the wrong volume/sector/head info but does that really means that my PCB's smokeing weed?? :P

    Another reason why I think you may getter better results with a new board. On older drives the 'drive identity' information was stored on the platters in a special hidden sector. However, on never drives this is stored in non-volatile memory on the PCB board. Considering that you cant read the information correctly suggest that there might be something wrong with the board.
  17. I used to also play around with my computer when it was on. I would really yank and pull on everything, like see how hot the video card was or the hard drive and stuff like that... but the third time I did it, after that, when I booted my computer, there were SMART errors and I FREAKED out. after booting about 10 more times, they disappeared and I learned my lesson. lucky for me, everything is back to normal.

    good luck trying to get your HD working again
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