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Hard Drive Recovery Diagnosis Easy Tips and Tricks

imageOver the years we have discussed my progress in data recovery. I have recently integrated the physical recovery end in to my ever growing knowledge base. It used to be that when I spoke to customers and friends I was coming purely from a logical recovery background. An exceptional understanding of how data works on a hard drive in the Windows environment is an invaluable tool, but I found not knowing exactly what the cause of the physical hard drive failure was causing a serious hole in my continuing adventure to be the

Data Recovery QUEEN!


To Much?

So I thought it would be fun to pass some of this new found knowledge on to you guys!


OMG it it the dreaded CLICK ‘O’ DEATH. Well great we have all heard about it, and a large majority of us have heard it in that up close and personal kind of way we really don’t want to hear it in. So what IS IT?!?!?! I assure you it is not good. Most commonly the clicking hard drive sound is 1 of 2 different things. One the heads are slamming around in the keeper (see me using those technical terms) or it is banging into the spindle. Either way both can cause the heads to get all mangled up and then drag across the platters which will make recovery virtually impossible. See my awesome image below for a no fail explanation.





Listen to : Clicking Hard drive

So in the end clicking is really very bad for a hard drive and can cause a data recovery company not to be able to get the data at all. The best course of action is to turn it off and call someone for help if you are really in need to the data on the drive.


Next Problem we see a lot of is jammed spindle. This is exactly what it sounds like the center spindle is stuck, this usually occurs from dropping the hard drive. The fix for this is putting the patters in a new base and to ensure the alignment does not get messed with. The way to know if this has happened is you will plug the drive in and it will seem to be getting power but you will not hear any thing spinning so it will seem DEAD.  It is not recommended that anyone other then a highly skill clean room technicians with years of experience try this. Out lead tech here is the only one doing patter swaps. There is a reason for that. If you do decided to try this on your own because of some video you have seen on the internet remember I warned you against it Winking smile.


And moving on.. What is the smell? Yep I get that A LOT! The would be the smell of your PCB (Green) board burning up and more then likely passing that damage inside the hard drive. This is one of the faster clean room fixes because after we clean up the char and swap the heads we get a fairly clean recovery. Words of advice, continuing to run these drive with that electrical smell can cause a fire. We have gotten drives in singed to a crisp and ones with minor electrical burn damage.  What I have learned is that usually this is caused by the chip on the PCB that controls the motor. That chip gets a real work out and if the motor should seize it will continue to try push the platters around.


So that is all I have for now but I am going to keep on with my never ending  journey in hard drive recovery, and will hope to keep you updated as I go!

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