How to get data off of Macbook Harddrive

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Le Big Mac, Mar 4, 2010.

  1. Le Big Mac macrumors 68030

    Le Big Mac

    Jan 7, 2003
    Washington, DC
    My wife spilled coffee into her MacBook (late 2007 version). Yeah, nice work. Anyway, early assessment is the MB is a goner ($900 repair) but the hard drive may be okay.

    In theory it's all backed up on my Time Capsule, but . . .

    If I need to get the data off (assuming the drive works) can I put it in an enclosure? Any specific one? Or can I simply get a cable and connect it? What cable?

    I realize a cable, if possible, is a one-time solution. Ideally I'd get an enclosure and repurpose the drive. But it may be that I can get only one or two uses out of it, with the coffee stains and such.

    Also, could I use an existing enclosure? I have a couple of external drives from OWC . . .

  2. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    Not sure of the MacBook model you have
    If it has Firewire, you can use Target Disk mode and an ethernet cable
    Otherwise, an external enclosure is your best bet
  3. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus


    Jul 24, 2002
    Pretty much any SATA<->USB (or Firewire) enclosure or cable will work. The only think you need to ensure is that it's for laptop drives, not desktop ones.
  4. Le Big Mac thread starter macrumors 68030

    Le Big Mac

    Jan 7, 2003
    Washington, DC
    I don't think the Macbook is going to boot up even in target mode (I assume you mean FW cable)

    It's the Rev. D MacBook from late 2007.
  5. ftaok macrumors 603


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    I recommend the Macally PHR-S250CC. It sports both USB2 and FW connections to your SATA drive.
  6. polotska macrumors 6502

    Sep 23, 2007
    Yes, pull the drive and use a SATA to FW/USB enclosure.
  7. markfrautschi macrumors member

    Jan 6, 2004
    Rockville, MD
    Instructions on pulling the drive

    Please visit and get instructions for your version MBP.

  8. Le Big Mac thread starter macrumors 68030

    Le Big Mac

    Jan 7, 2003
    Washington, DC
    Thanks everyone. So basically I can follow the hard drive removal instruction from ifixit (or wherever) and pop the drive into an enclosure like the Macally and then, assuming the drive is alive, plug it in by FW cable or USB, and recover data and, potentially, even boot from it.

    Edit: Would this product also suit my needs? World Computing/ES2.5BPU2W/

    I realize it doesn't have FW, so not a boot disk.

    This seems less painful (I hope) that I expected it might be.
  9. Hmac macrumors 68020

    May 30, 2007
    Midwest USA
    I have one of these - just pop any 2.5 or 3.5 SATA drive in it like a piece of bread in a toaster and the drive shows up on your desktop ready for drag and drop.

  10. GfulDedFan macrumors 65816


    Oct 17, 2007
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPod; U; CPU iPhone OS 3_1_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/528.18 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0 Mobile/7E18 Safari/528.16)

    You can boot your MacBook via a bootable external drive connected by USB. Your options are described above (enclosure or cradle) and I saw another kind of device HERE. It looks interesting and versatile.
  11. Altemose macrumors G3


    Mar 26, 2013
    Elkton, Maryland
    I would get a cheap adapter and not even bother with repurposing it after you recover it. There is no exact answer as to what the coffee did, even if the drive looks okay. I would just write the drive off also and clone it ASAP.

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