We get a lot of questions about data recovery services, so we wanted to try and address these by giving you an overview of what you should know before you utilize a recovery service. While this won’t teach you everything, it should give you a good foundation and a place to start if you want to learn more. We’ll cover three types of Hard Drive failure: Logical, Physical and Mechanical.
Logical failure occurs when the error is not a problem in the hardware, but rather in the software. If the failure is extensive enough, this can cause your machine to not boot up.
Common causes include:
- Virus infections
- Malware infections
- Corrupted files
Warning Signs of logical failure:
- Disappearing data
- Disk errors
- Sluggish systems
- Computer crashes
Physical damage to hard drives is essentially what it implies. If a drive comes in contact with water, an abundance of heat, or shock (such as dropping or jarring a drive) it almost always causes at least some data loss, as well as poses the potential for logical structural damage as well.
Warning signs of physical damage:
- Poor ventilation (leads to excess heat)
- Water and Shock damage: happens quickly and without warning
Mechanical failure occurs because unlike most computer components which are electrical, a hard drive has mechanical moving parts (solid state drives and flash storage are an exception). This is why we say hard drives have a life span, and they will fail eventually. This kind of failure happens due to normal wear and tear.
Warning signs of Mechanical Failure:
- Strange noises:
- Computer Crashes
- Frequent freezing
Are you Noticing any Warning Signs?
If you begin to notice any of the above warning signs, the best course of action will be to begin backing up, immediately. This can help avoid data loss and help minimize the cost associated with recovering your data.
I didn’t notice the signs, I need to recover my Data
If you suspect that your drive has fallen to one of the above failures, the first step is to turn your machine off, and do not turn it back on until you decide the following: Is the data worth taking to a recovery company, or should I hire someone to see if there is a way to recover the data without that price tag? Note that data recovery companies will tell you the best chance for success is if you do not attempt to recover the data or change anything before they have the opportunity to inspect your drive.
Secondly, it’s worth noting that Logical failure does not require drive disassembly. Therefore this method should be a fraction of the cost of an open case, or a situation that involves opening the drive and manually repairing physical aspects of the drive to do recovery. (Open cases are by far the worst case scenario, and the most expensive and difficult to complete.)
Lastly, when deciding whether or not to use a company for data recovery, you must decide how valuable the data is on the drive. This can be a very costly experience, however it can be more costly to those who are uneducated about the process. Some of these companies (shady businesses) will treat consumers and businesses who don’t know the difference with this process poorly. Educate yourself and decide if your data is critical enough to justify the price.
Below check out the resources provided going over important factors to decide which company to utilize for your data recovery.
Resources to use before choosing a company:
Questions to ask
Common Causes of Hard Drive Failure