Family member dropped laptop

My daughter just dropped her laptop OS W7 and has been on the phone because she now cant get on the Laptop and she has course work on there for her PC course. :sweat:
Obviously she didn't back it up what PC course taking student would :pt1cable:

Anyway I would like some input as to the best way of trying to access the data. She gets an option to select OS or tool neither of which she says does anything.

Im thinking that I can boot it with a LinuX live disc and access the drive that way.
Any other thoughts ? She does not have a disc for the Laptop but I have a retail W7 disc, could I try a repair install with that or is it un advisable considering we want the data from the drive ?


Mactronix :)
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  1. If you can boot into a Linux live disc and check the health of the hard drive, that's probably a good place to start. Sounds like there was a head crash when the laptop fell (exactly what I'd expect), so you'll probably have a lot of corrupted data that can't be recovered. There is also almost certainly physical damage to the disk, so you should replace it as soon as possible.

    Might be a good time for an SSD upgrade. They're much faster than HDDs, will extend the battery life and aren't prone to catastrophic failure when dropped. In fact, an SSD can withstand far greater impacts than a human can.
  2. Hello,

    Depending on how old/new the laptop is, you could possibly hook up the HDD from the laptop to say a desktop since the SATA cables and power connectors are the same.

    However even doing so - you might not be able to recover everything as per what Willard mentions.
  3. Thanks for the replies guys.
    I think I have a spare HDD around not sure if its compatible until I get hands on the new one. I guess I can at least use it to check if the rest of the machine is ok before she gets a new HDD or SSD.

    If I cant boot from a Disc (could be damaged as well ?) I can try a USB and if that dosent work then I would guess the memory is also an issue. Does that sound fair enough to you guys ?

    If that is the case then its remove it and try to get the info off by connecting it to my own PC.

    So that's the plan if there is anything you think I may have missed just chime in.

    Thanks again

    Mactronix :)
  4. You can also try running hirens off a USB key that way you can see what devices aren't working so well (as long as the RAM is ok).
  5. Well I have no Idea what is actually up with it but it is now running Ubuntu.
    I tried booting from a live disc = success :D
    Tried booting from a W7 Disc = Fail ?? (Same I/0 failure message) ?? :(
    Swapped HDD out for spare known to be good HDD, Tried booting live disc = Success :D
    Tried booting same drive with a W7 disc = Fail ?????? :pt1cable:

    Put original disc back in installed Ununtu on whole drive = Success :bounce:

    I'm totally lost as to why it should refuse to do anything when presented with a Windows disc but install a Ubuntu system flawlessly

    Any ideas guys ?

    Mactronix :)
  6. Is the version of the W7 disk you are trying to boot from the same version as installed on her laptop?

    I have had a similar problem for example trying to run the repair utility from a W7 pro disk on a machine that had Windows Home Premium installed.
  7. Can you try downloaded a Windows 7 OEM, maybe your W7 disc is no good? Note this is a legit copy of Windows 7 with NO keys - so you would have to use the key from the laptop:

    Download the version she uses - burn to ISO, and maybe try doing a repair on it.

    Did you already get the files off the HDD?
  8. Latest is that I have tried to install W7 again as she didn't want it running Ubuntu as the course work has to be submitted using Office according to her the Open University wont accept anything else.

    It seems quite close to working it did hang first time after the restart but I'm going to keep an eye on it this time and get the Disc out of the drive before it restarts this time. I have had issues with that before.

    As far as the files are concerned a bit of luck there, turns out that the Open University servers will have a copy of the TMA's that she has submitted already so its just the one that she has lost.

    Mactronix :)
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