Recommendations to hdd recovery software?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by toke lahti, Aug 18, 2014.

  1. toke lahti macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2007
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #1
    Hi,y'all!
    Few times a year some friend or relative asks me, can I recover something from their hdd gone sour. Usual recovery services are usually too expensive, so I finally decided to start heeling them for a small fee.

    So the first time, I'm going to buy a commercial recovery software.

    It needs to be able to recovery from both ntfs and hfs+ and would be nice, if it could work in both cases: hardware problem and filesystem/partition mixup.

    Would be plus also, if there would be a version for both windows and osx. Or a bundle of both with deep discount.

    I've been looking at RuntimeSW's GetDataBack. Any pros/cons against it? Better options? Maybe Paragon?
     
  2. Manic Harmonic macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2011
    #2
    Carbon copy cloner is great for HFS drives and will create a bootable clone. I recommend using it in conjunction with time machine so you also have the option of doing a clean install and then migration assistant. As for NTFS... There's some cloning software for windows, but my preferred tool is a Clonezilla Live disc. It will make a bootable clone of any drive, regardless of what's on it or what file system, which means multiple operating systems, etc. It even managed to clone the hdd in my fusion drive setup when it was failing, I replaced the failing drive with the new one and it worked right away. You can also clone or create a disc image of a Windows drive from OS X or Linux using the dd command line tool. For did or clonezilla the destination drive must be the same size or bigger. The only drawback of using dd from OS X, in my experience, is that my system locks up as soon as the drive is done cloning (happens on multiple computers).
     
  3. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #3
    On the Mac side, you probably should look at DataRescue3. It's Mac-only, however. Not sure if the publisher (ProSoft) offers a Windows version...
     
  4. bitonw macrumors newbie

    bitonw

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2014
    Location:
    UK / Spain
    #4
    there is ONLY one tool what really works; SpinRite full stop
     
  5. northerngit, Aug 18, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2014

    northerngit macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Location:
    England
    #5
    I'd actually argue that crown has been taken by ddrescue. Available standalone, as part of SystemRescueCD, or on OS X with various GUI's available.

    Random example

    I've personally tried most recovery software after a new 3TB suffered an intermittent motor failure, taking a few years worth of family photos and videos with it. The only thing to successfully recover the data... ddrescue.

    Although it did take 5+ days of continuous running, while working through drive timeouts.

    Worthy mention also goes to TestDisk and PhotoRec. Don't let the name fool you, it recovers far more than just photographs... even if the drive had been repartitioned or formated multiple times... but it assumes the drive hardware is in a somewhat stable state. For anything else. ddrescue.

    I now have multiple onsite and offsite backups ;)
     
  6. bitonw macrumors newbie

    bitonw

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2014
    Location:
    UK / Spain
    #6
    i'm not in for a contest but SpinRite is clearly the best HD recovery tool around. there are too many scenarios and testimonies around the globe to confirm this.

    google is your friend
     
  7. northerngit, Aug 18, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2014

    northerngit macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Location:
    England
    #7
    I'm only offering personal advice. There's anecdotal evidence both ways. SpinRite, had a good history, but little evidence in more recent years; it hasn't been in active development for 10 years - 6.0 was released in 2004.

    ddrescue is free, open source and has an active community with an extremely responsive developer. The last version was released for testing on the 16th August - 2 days ago.

    I'm sure both tools are fit for purpose. But they are different beasts. SpinRite's intent is to modify the drive. For recovery and forensic work, I'd personally run dd/ddrescue BEFORE even contemplating SpinRite - especially if the drive is on its last legs.

    Google and Wikipedia are indeed your friend:

    http://www.myharddrivedied.com/blog/why-spinrite-not-my-data-recovery-software-list

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SpinRite (See issues)

    http://serverfault.com/questions/51681/does-spinrite-do-what-it-claims-to-do

    http://www.tigerknight.com/blog/2013-02-28-recovering-data-from-an-almost-dead-hard-drive

    http://micronet-at-uc-berkeley.8401...o-Return-SpinRite-for-a-Refund-td1398290.html - the most telling...

    Declaring one "clearly the best HD recovery tool around" is a little strong. My information is, like yours, anecdotal. It worked for me. I'm just trying to pass on alternative options. I wouldn't be so confident decalring something "the best ever".

    When a drive dies with precious data, I'd rather have a suite of tools at my disposal than just one, that may make recovery, even professional, all the more expensive.

    My 2c.
     
  8. toke lahti, Aug 24, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2014

    toke lahti thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2007
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #8
    I tried SpinRite years ago and googled about it a lot. Don't remember much about it, but AFAIK it's the last option you should try. If the hdd is dying, it will not be gentle to it.
    My case now is my friend's laptop's internal drive, which had a messed up filesystem, most likely because of hardware problems. I cloned the drive with windows and HDDGuru's "HDD Raw Copy Tool" and Roadkill's "Raw Copy". Latter one is pretty ancient and was very slow.
    Then the laptop went to warranty repair and I made a "working copy" of one clone. GetDataBack found the right partition and showed a lot of content with right folder and file names.
    Then I tried TestDisk and it didn't find the right partition. It recovered a recovery partition and another small one, but not the actual data partition.
    Then I tried PhotoRec and damn it's slow! After 150 hours it had recovered about 1000 non-recursive folders, which have e.g. 48000 .jpg files with no original folder or file names.
    Then I guess my old windows laptop had a hiccup or my 3-year old daughter managed to halt it.
    Next I'll make a new working copy and try ddrescue with a bit more stable old workhorse MP.

    Thanks for suggestions and help so far!

    I'll try to be diligent enough to write how this is going.
    I'll also check how DataRescue3 will turn out...(EDIT: ...or not. Mac version doesn't read ntfs and windows version hfs+? No bundling for win+mac? ...maybe I'll save some time and skip this...)
     
  9. toke lahti thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2007
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #9
    Seems to be that ddrescue-gui for osx doesn't work so good.
    The external disks I have duplicated from the one that needs recovery does not show up in ddrescue-gui. They are present in diskutility and I have tried to connect via fw, usb2, usb3 and esata with my mbp.
    Will try still with my old MP as internal disk, but then it's time to move on...
    ..or any ideas?
     

Share This Page