MBP Hard Drive Crashed, Help recovering data!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Gator24765, Apr 14, 2017.

  1. Gator24765 macrumors 6502a

    Gator24765

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2009
    Location:
    Texas
    #1
    My Macbook Pro 2012 Hard Drive recently crapped out. I bought a new 1 TB hard drive from Amazon and reloaded the OS and the computers works like new. The bad news is that I lost all the data on my old hard drive. Yes I know, I should have backed up my data. There was nothing super important but it would be nice to get some of that back.

    I bought an enclosure and plugged it in. The old drive powers up and spins. My computer asks for the password and when I put it in the drive freezes. Also, disk utility freezes when I try and load it up with the old hard drive plugged in.

    Any advice on how to recover some of this data from my old drive?


    Thanks
     
  2. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #2
    Did the old drive have filevault enabled?
    Might make data recovery considerably more difficult or essentially impossible...
     
  3. Gator24765 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Gator24765

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2009
    Location:
    Texas
    #3

    To be honest, I have no idea
     
  4. CoastalOR macrumors 68000

    CoastalOR

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2015
    Location:
    Oregon, USA
  5. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #5
    OP wrote:
    "I bought an enclosure and plugged it in. The old drive powers up and spins. My computer asks for the password and when I put it in the drive freezes. Also, disk utility freezes when I try and load it up with the old hard drive plugged in."

    I can't see why plugging in an external drive would produce a request for a password UNLESS the drive in question was encrypted.

    My personal experience in this area is limited, I will admit. In 30 years of using Macs, I've only encrypted ONE drive, ever. It requires a password when mounting (unless one has already been "remembered" in the keychain). But I don't recall EVER having a drive "ask for a password" otherwise.

    So I'm going to -guess- that the drive in question DOES have filevault enabled on it.
    And I'll also guess that somehow the mounting process (after the password is entered) has become corrupted. You could try plugging the drive into another Mac to see what happens.

    If the drive was encrypted, I'm going to -guess- that you ARE NOT going to get the data back unless you can successfully enter the password and then mount the drive on the desktop. Even data recovery apps aren't going to touch it.

    I'm not even sure that professional data recovery outfits could get into it (then again, they might know tricks above and beyond those which we mortals do).

    Personal experience:
    I once had a partition go bad on me, wouldn't mount. I re-initialized the entire drive, then "went at it" using data recovery software. The software was able to scavenge the platters and retrieve most of the data. The trick was 1. I didn't do a secure erase and 2. the drive was not encrypted.

    But in your case, you can't even touch the drive using Disk Utility.

    I'm wondering if the following might be possible:
    1. Take the drive and re-initialize it on a Windows computer (quick initialize, DON'T do a secure erase that zeros out the data.
    2. Take it back to Mac, see if DU can then see it. If so, re-intialize a SECOND time to HFS+.
    3. Use a Mac data recovery app on it.

    Perhaps there are others reading with more knowledge than I, who could offer advice.

    Actually, the BEST "advice" I can offer is...
    ... next time, BACK IT UP.
     
  6. LT_Smash macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2016
    #6
    Do NOT try and re-initialize an encrypted drive. The above advice will only ever work on a non-encrypted drive. Don't go messing with software when you [most likely] have a hardware problem, if like the OP you couldn't mount it then you're fixing a software problem with software.

    What you need to do is get the drive to run long enough to enter the password in and get to the data. Re-initialize and the drive won't have access to the password information (it'll be removed as a quick initialize is the same as a quick format, the data is still there but you're messing with the drive sectors) and thus you'll never get to the data because the all the information needed to unlock the drive is missing.

    A professional data shop will do the following, you can attempt this but chances are the drive will only run for a brief period of time so get the data off it as quick as possible. They'll transplant the internal platters to an identical drive, as it sounds like your heads aren't positioning properly. You could also have corruption where the password is stored, in which case you're not recovering it.

    If your data isn't too important and you aren't THAT concerned about recovery then you can try the more "wives tale" (for lack of a better term) solutions. You can start the drive with it on it's side or upside down, it might start long enough to get the data. You can shove it in the freezer for a bit and it might run long enough.
     

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