Hard Disk Drives
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Our Data Recovery Engineers Have Successfully Recovered Data From All Leading Makes of Hard Disk Drive (HDD):
- HDDs (e.g. made by Western Digital, Seagate, Fujitsu, IBM, Hitachi, Samsung,Toshiba) are commonly used to store data in desktop computers, laptop computers and servers (usually multiple drives combined as a RAID)
- Games consoles (e.g. Microsoft Xbox 360® or Sony PlayStation 3®) also commonly use internal HDDs to store games (as well as Solid-State media to transport games)
- HDDs may also be used externally to increase the storage capacity of devices and / or to keep back-up copies of data
Before Attempting Recovery it is Essential to Establish the Likely Cause of Data Loss:
- Simply running some data recovery software can actually make the situation worse and potentially even render your data irretrievable
- The root cause of failure is often a combination of both 'logical' and 'physical' failure
- In cases of physical failure HDDs may actually need to be repaired, and faulty components replaced, before data can be extracted.
- Our Data Recovery Engineers are expert electronic engineers and have same-day access to literally millions of replacement component parts to facilitate rapid repairs
Data Loss Can be Broadly Classified as ‘Logical Failure’ or ‘Physical Failure’:
HDDs store data in a magnetic layer coating the surface of disk platters, which spin at a precise & fixed speed, driven by a motor. Access to the stored data is provided by read / write heads, which ‘fly’ above the surface of the disk platters. An electronic disk controller controls the movement of the read / write heads & supplies power to the motor.
- Logical Failure: the HDD is still in good working order, but the data cannot be accessed because it has been accidentally deleted, it has become corrupted or there is some other software issue
- Physical Failure: the HDD no longer functions correctly, possibly due to a mechanical issue (e.g. jolting or jarring leading to misalignment or uncontrollable ‘bouncing’ of the read / write heads, which can damage the magnetic layer coating the disk platters & destroy any stored data). Physical failure can also be due to an electrical issue (overheating, a power spike, firmware damage, component malfunction or physical damage can all cause the disk controller to fail, resulting in excessive power causing the motor windings to burn out).
Because of their portability, laptops are particularly susceptible to data loss as a result of physical failure (often caused by impact damage as a result of the laptop being dropped or knocked onto the ground, or by a drink being spilled over the keyboard)
To help you recognise when your hard disk drive is failing and to help you limit data loss, please read our ‘Top Tips’