Envision yourself making use of a well functional computer which spontaneously prevents you from gaining access to your documents stored on your peripheral hard disk. Whoops!!! Do not panic, there are couples of things you can try out before reaching out to a experienced hardware repairer.
Lost data is usually as a result of few numbers of determinants, though there are two frequent determinants. The first is akined to software while the second is owing to some hard drive failures. The former occurs when you mistakenly delete an essential file after which you mistakenly empty the recycle bin or when you wrongly format a wrong drive. While the latter, could be owing to a failed hard drive. When a peripheral hard drive fails, there are little techniques you could use in recovering your data before seeking for the services of a professional.
Using Software to Restore Your Lost Data
When handling a hard drive that you mistakenly emptied its recycle bin, the essential thing to note is to avoid plugging the drive to a computer this is owing to the fact that each second you spend plugging the hard drive to your PC, you stand the chances of every restoring your lost data. This is because, once you plug your hard disk into your personal computer, your operating system starts reading from it no matter how active or inactive it might be. The fact remains that your personal computer will see the erased data, as some free space to load more documents and will gladly overwrite this section thereby limiting your possibility of restoring your lost data. Below are few steps to follow in restoring your lost data:
- Shutdown the computer linked to the peripheral hard drive from which you erased the data from. This will make your drive safe; after which you reproduce the drive by creating its look alike and try restoring from the cloned drive. There are couples of ways to reproduce a drive; some of these numerous ways are easy while others are pretty difficult.
- Scan the cloned drive with a couple of different restoration software. There are quite a couple of options available; some are free while some are purchased. You can use the Recuva; a free recovery software or the Zero Assumption Recovery software which is relatively cheap.
Restore Your Lost Data using a Hardware
Well, what could possibly be your fate if you realize your computer didn’t erase your data in your peripheral hard drive? Or if your computer is identifies your drive but freezes whenever it tries to access to it? What will you do when you realize your hard drive does not spin? We will briefly summarize the major elements of a drive, with a view on some of those elements are prone to failure and the various symptoms exhibited by each of these failures.
PCB: Is a green colored panel fastened to the lower part of your peripheral device. It comprises of the central controller and a couple of other electronic devices. This interface translates your OS and IS into data understandable by your personal computer.
Platters: Most commonly used hard disk consists of one or more circular platter. They spin between 5,000rpm to 7,000rpm. They consist of glass or alloy and coated with a magnetic layer. These platters have a storage space of about four Terabyte.
Head assembly: The read and write heads are commonly used to read data from platters of hard drives. While active, these heads do not meet with the platters. They are some nanometers away from the surface of the disk writing and reading data off these platters. A typical hard drive is made up of two heads on each platter; hence a huge drive made up of three platters will have six heads paired with it, with one platter dedicated to a pair. If the drive is mistakenly dropped, it will experience a head clang making the head unable to spin over the platters. When the head is unable to fly above the platters, it will try creating some contact with the surface thereby leading to some destruction after revolving for some minutes.
Firmware: Each peripheral device has its personalized operating system which enables it to access the variety of data and operations trying to gain access to it. A good number of this firmware is saved on the platters, with few sections reserved on the PCB. Firmware can fail thereby making it difficult for you to have gain entry to your data. It’s quite unfortunate that hard disk drives firmware is pretty different from your tablet and mobile phones which are easy to reflash and update. Each drive is made up of its outstanding modules and framework.
Now that we have adequately analyzed the fundamentals constituents of a hard drive, let’s check out some of the rigorous inconsistencies and symptoms you might come across, ways to determine the various components responsible for these inconsistencies, and possible ways of rectifying these errors using the DIY style.
Your Drive Fails to Revolve
If you notice that your hard disk fails to spin when you send some power across, then the issue is associated with a PCB mismatch. With older drives, you can easily find a similar PCB and by swapping the old one for a new one, your drive will be restored. However, newer drives aren’t same as older ones as they are made up of new architectural structures and technology. Each drive is made up of unique microcode that is attached drive, hence if you try swapping your PCB with another, your stand the chance of endangering your data.
There are two prime causes of hard disk failure; it could be either as a result of a TVS diode shortage owing to some overvoltage, owing to some failure by the PCB. Most hard drives are made up of two TVS diodes. They act as fuse and are used to secure your drive against electrical instability. There are two unique types of voltages; the 5 voltage and the 12 voltage. If you mistakenly plug your electrical adapter into the wrong power voltage, or you come across a power upsurge, it means that one out of the two TVS diode might have been damaged in a bid to secure your hard drive. If you realize that the TVS diode is the only element that has been damaged, changing the shortened diode will restore the drive.
Use the multimeter to ascertain the damaged diode, as the one with zero ohms is the damaged one that needs to be replaced. When you perceive some smell and some visible burnt areas, it means that that diode has been shortened and needs to be replaced. When a TVS diode has been removed from the hard drive, the device is prone to harm, therefore always make sure that the power supply is plugged to the drive is the right voltage.
If you do not perceive any burnt smell from the TVS and it displays the right digits when measured, it, therefore, means that issue is from the PCB. Try replacing it correctly. Most PCBs are made up of 8 pin ROM chips along with excellent firmware information needed to begin the drive. For the replaced PCB to function properly, you are required to move it to the new one. A good number of hard drives, do not possess the 8 pin chip, rather their firmware is stored within the center controller which is static and immovable.
If you wish to mend the PCB, you have to search for a befitting replacement and also move the ROM chip. There are various online providers you can purchase PCBs from. A good number of them will glad to assist you in moving the ROM chip, thereby saving you the stress of soldering and possibly destroying the chip. If you realize that other internal components are in perfect working conditions asides the PCB, after replacing and swapping the ROM, your hard drive should be in perfect condition once more. Also, have a check the head contacts to be certain they are in perfect working condition. Most times they wear away with time, though they can easily be wiped clean with an eraser made of rubber.
If Your Hard Drive Spins but Makes Some Clicking Sounds
This is an indication of a couple of damaged head/s. It is also an indicator your drive has a damaged platter owing to head destruction. Whatever the case may be, this isn’t what you can handle, but what the professionals can handle. This is because the drive will be required to be disassembled in a laboratory with the head assembly properly fitted in order to restore the data. If you hear some clicking sounds, it best you turn off the power until a professional comes to recover it. Turning it on could make it lost forever.
If Your Personal Computer Detects Your Hard Disk But Your Drive Freezes when You Try Accessing It
Most times this is as a result of a vulgarized magnetic media. It means that there are tremendous numbers of spoilt sectors which your drive is seeking for ways to read but finding it difficult. This usually occurs when a drive has been overworked and the data can only be recovered with some pro data recovery software. If you take a close look at the values and notice some large number of reallocated sectors, it is best you send your disk to a professional to avoid losing your data.
If you wish to rectify it yourself, then it is better you try using a software imager capable of working around bad sectors. The effectiveness is limited once the software is accessed through the BIOS. Try making use of the dd rescue; a free Linux software capable of skipping bad sectors.
If Hear Some Beeps When Powering Your Drive
The beeping sound occurs when the motor fails to spin the drive. This is as a result of two severe mechanical failures one of which is known as Striction. Striction occurs when the heads of your drive make contact with the platters and sticking to it. In order to correct this inconsistency, the drive needs to be carefully opened in a clean laboratory, after which the heads will be carefully replaced.
The other inconsistency is as a result of a failed motor spindle. If the spindle surrounding the platters fails to move, the spindle can either be replaced of the platters can be moved into a new hard disk casing.
If Your Drive Produces No Sound And isn’t being Discovered, Or if it’s is Discovered as a Wrong Capacity
This is often an inconsistency with the firmware. This can be attributed to two things; either the drive isn’t adequately read or there are some corruption sectors that need to be rectified.
Couples of years back a popular bug known as BSY was created with Seagate 7200.11 and an SD15 firmware version. There were lots of inconsistencies associated with this bug though there were a good number of DIY solutions provided to assist those with these discrepancies. With the current new drives available in the market, users are advised to send their drives to pros if they experience any form of malfunction.
This means that there are very few cases where you can try restoring your data from your failed hard drive yourself. If you mistakenly deleted your files, then you could properly restore them yourself. But if your drive fails to power up, or makes an unusual noise, then you need to employ the services of a professional in order not to lose your data.