Seagate harddrive failure, data lost?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Mpulsive81, Nov 18, 2007.

  1. Mpulsive81 macrumors 6502

    Jun 7, 2006
    McKinney, TX
    Ok so i've learned my lesson. My factory seagate hdd just crapped out on me and I cannot find my discs that I had everything backed up on. It fell victim to the dreaded "head crash" and no longer mounts (as seen below, amongst other places)

    It goes without saying that my lost data is my primary concern, I could care less about the programs or the drive itself (I was planning on replacing the drive w/ a larger one anyways)

    Seeing as it won't mount, is there any possibility of recovering my data on my own in lieu of hiring a data recovery company for $400+? I just want my pictures, music, and documents back. I've heard of Data Rescue II, but if the hdd won't mount, is it still feasible?

    Any other ideas? I'm hoping someone can help!
  2. ab2650 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2007
    I'm sorry to hear about your drive crash. Unfortunately, Data Rescue will be of no use to you simply because you need a viable mount to search for erased/lost data. It's more for people who delete files without thinking, not for those with physically broken drives.

    Honestly, too, I think you're going to pay a bit more than $400 to a data recovery company. I've never had to use one personally but anecdotal evidence suggests this is why backups are so freaking important.
  3. theman macrumors 6502a

    Jul 26, 2007
    i would say $400 is the minimum price for ANY recovery situation. from what i heard of that type of failure, the head actually scrapes into the platters leaving large gouges in them. that is more serious that most failures (where the platters aren't damaged at all) because they can just take out the platters and put them into a new drive. this may end up costing $1000 or more, (even with the possibility they can't do recover anything). i really am no expert though so you shouldn't trust what i say. go to one of the sites and call or email to get a price quote. (but they really wont know until they examine the drive in person).

    if your drive will not mount, there is no software fix.

    this really sucks, and i know how it feels. i never backed up before Time Machine, and was always paranoid about losing things (but could never get in the habit of backing up). One day 90% of the files in my Documents folder just disappeared. There was stuff in there that I'd had since my first computer in 1983, I was terrible. then the whole drive stopped being readable. I called a few of those places and most of them gave me a rough estimate around $600-700. I sort of chewed over it for a while, and one day i read something that said sometimes sticking the drive in a plastic bag and putting it in the freezer for a couple hours can sometimes revive it. I tried this, and stuck it back in, and when I booted up the computer the files where just there. I immediately burned all my important irrecoverable stuff onto DVDs. now that time machine is here, i don't have to worry at all (and i still have the DVDs so i have an extra layer of protection for the older stuff.

    i don't know if you will be as lucky as i was, and the freezer thing has the possibility of really ruining the drive... so its not the greatest idea.

    good luck to you man.
  4. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    If you have that revision drive ... firmware Version 7.01

    If you had that drive failure, then the data is gone ... since a data recovery company reports ONE recovery.

    There is a post somewhere around here, where the damage is physical to the media destroying the platter.

    Instead of the the circuit board or mechanism simply stops working. which is a recoverable failure since the platter is still intact.

    MacBooks face lost data risk
  5. ab2650 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2007
    If I were the OP, I'd give the freezer method a try; just use a totally air-tight bag and suck all the air out.

    To theman, I hope you're keeping the files on your DVDs somewhere else too. I've had DVDs that I burned a few years back become unreadable on even the drive that burned them. I was fortunate enough to be able to find a drive that would hesitantly read the files to get them off.

    I think the market is ready for some "forever" storage that is unlike any other product out there; I've read about 100-year media but I'm not sure I trust it. I want my bits laser engraved on diamond, damnit!
  6. Mpulsive81 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 7, 2006
    McKinney, TX
    I may try that freezer idea. Another idea I heard about was trying to plug the macbook another machine via firewire cable and holding T, (file transfer). I'm not sure if it'll mount that way, seeing as it won't mount normally. At this point, the worst that can happen is i'm stuck in the same boat.
  7. ab2650 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2007
    Yeah, I'd give whatever you can think of a go (well, don't attempt drive surgery...) If all else fails you need to consider if you would rather have your data or a small stack of cash. I know there is certain data (baby photos, writing, etc.) that I would easily pay a grand to get back. Note to those looking to hold my bits for ransom; It's all about the offsite backups.
  8. jtsmith macrumors newbie


    Nov 20, 2007

    I might be grasping at straws here but you could try buying the exact same drive, swap the circuit boards and see if it will mount.
    I can tell you from personal experience that data recovery costs average around $1200. $400 is very generous estimate. I went to this data recovery company, I was referred to them by my local Apple store. They got my data back but it was an expensive lesson. JT
  9. killerwhack macrumors regular


    Aug 5, 2004
    Los Angeles, California
    Grinding noise?

    When the drive powers up and you hear a whirring grinding noise, most likely the failure is the main bearing or a head crash. In the case of a head crash, you are looking at $2500 to $4000 to recover any data.

    This is the case where they open the drive in a clean room and run it while connected to a diagnostic device to laboriously stream off the cylinder contents.

    You have learned now that the data is worth much more than the hard drive. Use a back-up service or time machine with a back-up external drive.
  10. ab2650 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2007
    I think any noise coming from the drive is pretty much something that has to be dealt with by a data recovery company... I've heard anecdotally that "clicking" drives can be salvaged for a few minutes by the freezer trick, but I've never seen in done myself.

    In regards for backup service, if it's a possibility, its the best way for your data to outlive you (that's the goal, right?) Amazon S3, Apple's .mac, or even a home-brewed solution like the masses of storage at Dreamhost are all fairly inexpensive solutions. The real maxim is "data in only one place, no matter where or how, is at severe risk."
  11. abelwalker macrumors newbie

    Nov 26, 2007
    Since the drive won't mount, I guess your drive has experienced some mechanical fault. I am sorry to say esaldana817, data recovery software are no way helpful to you. If data recovery software is not capable of recovering your critical data, then it’s time to contact Data Recovery Services.
  12. ab2650 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2007
    I just read how boiling a clicking hard drive may possibly save it. Like we've all said, this sounds more serious than a normal "click of death" but here's another way for you to ruin possibly save your data.
  13. tmoney468 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 13, 2007
    On the flip side, I've heard that sticking dead HDs into a freezer for a couple of hours and then hooking it back up has worked wonders for people for getting their data back off of a dead HD. Worth a shot I suppose.

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