Connecting hard drive via USB or in a PC

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Maccle, Jan 28, 2012.

  1. Maccle macrumors newbie

    Sep 13, 2011
    Hey everyone. I need some help with a faulty hard drive. My friend's hard drive stopped working and he sent it back to Apple who returned the machine with a new hard drive (in the machine) and the old hard drive (separate from the machine). There's data on the old hard drive he wants to retrieve. I don't know if the old drive is functional in any way, but I'd like to test it and see if anything is recoverable (it might not boot from it, but the data might be retrievable). What would be the best way to do this? Should I get an enclosure and try connecting it via USB? Or is it possible to load it into a desktop PC (running Windows)? He's not sure what size (physically) the HDD so will I need to find that out specific to his machine or do all MBPs have the same HDD? Thanks for any help on this as there are some important coursework documents he'd like to be able to get.
  2. dusk007 macrumors 68040


    Dec 5, 2009
    The size doesn't matter the connectors are all the same and it can be nothing but 2.5" anyway.

    It depends on what kind of stuff you have lying around, as to what is easiest.

    If you have any external drive (regardless what size) open it, put your hdd in and connect it. Borrow such a thing if you don't have one. Buy it if you want to have an external drive anyway.

    If you have access to some Desktop PC that you can open.
    In case you have spare sata power connectors coming form the power supply and a spare sata cable connect it with those, or if not there is probably an optical drive in the PC connected via SATA (unless it is a very old one).
    Unplug the optical drive and plug the very same cables into your HDD.
    Next retrieve the data you want and copy it wherever you want. Without an external drive you need either a big enough flash stick or transfer it via LAN.

    Pluggin into a Desktop is the fastest and simplest option. Just remove the side panel you can plug in and out sata cables while the PC is running. It will only crash if you pull the system drive and sata is Plug&Play thus it will recognise it.
    You will probably need MacDrive or something to get Windows to understand HFS+ the Mac filesystem.
  3. Maccle thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 13, 2011
    Thanks a lot for your reply. I'm tempted to just put it in my PC as I seem to have the required parts. One last thing, do I run Windows data recovery software or Mac data recovery software?
  4. Ccrew macrumors 68020

    Feb 28, 2011
    A mac hard drive isn't formatted in a fashion, nor does it have a file system that a Windows machine will understand. It will appear blank to a Windows PC. You're best off with an enclosure hooked to a Mac, or in my case I use a SATA dock that I can use from machine to machine: dock&cp=1&lp=1
  5. stridemat Moderator


    Staff Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    A quick Google seems to say that there are certain applications you can download and install that will allow you to read HFS file formats on Windows.

Share This Page