The drive itself might not be bad, but the data on it is toast. Sure, you can buy a new hard drive, but that’s a massive waste of money and time. You can’t get that data back. If your system crashes and you haven’t saved anything to another drive, there’s not much you can do. You’ll just have to live with it. If, however, you have important documents and pictures on that drive, you need to find a way to get it back. It’s not easy, but it’s not impossible, either. Try these 8 tips for recovering data from a damaged hard drive.

Determine If Your Drive Is Bad

If your hard drive is making a clicking noise, it’s likely bad. When your hard drive is “clicking,” it means that the read/write heads are failing to find their way to the correct location on the disk platter. This can happen for a number of reasons, but in most cases, it’s due to wear and tear on the magnetic surface.

To determine whether or not your drive is bad, you can open up Disk Utility (located in Applications/Utilities) and click “Verify Disk.” If you see any errors listed under “First Aid,” then there’s a problem with your disk that needs to be addressed. In this case, you’ll need to take your computer to an Apple Store or some other specialist who can deal with these issues.

Install New Drive When Possible

If you have a new hard drive, you should install it and see if the old data is able to successfully transfer over.

Do a Thorough Backup

The most important thing you can do is backup your data. This does two things: First, it protects your data from further damage. Second, it’ll make recovery easier. If you don’t have any backups of your data, the first thing you need to do is find a way to back up all the data on the damaged hard drive so that you can use it in the future.

7 Steps to Recover Data from a Water Damaged Hard Drive - Guardian Computer

Get a Data Recovery Tool

One way to get at your data is to use a data recovery tool. This is software that will scan a drive and try to recover the files it can find. You might not get everything back, but you’ll be able to recover a lot of your files.

If you have a Mac, you can download Disk Drill for free. It’s not as powerful as some other programs, but it’s still better than nothing. If you have a PC, go with the Stellar Phoenix Data Recovery Suite. It does cost money, but it’s highly rated and packed with features for recovering data from damaged hard drives and discs. These are just two of the many options available, so do your research before deciding on one.

Hard Drive Erase

If you have a hard drive that’s been corrupted, your next move is to try and repair it. If the problem persists, you may need to use a program like Eraser to get rid of everything on the drive. A lot of people don’t know this, but if you use Eraser on a corrupted hard drive, it will actually delete everything from that drive and make it impossible for you to recover anything.

Create a Solid Disaster Recovery Plan

Data loss is a disaster, but it doesn’t have to be the end of the world. If you have a solid disaster recovery plan in place, you’ll know what to do when your data is lost.

No matter how hard you try to guarantee that your data will never be lost, it does happen from time to time. This is why it’s so important to create a solid disaster recovery plan that won’t just deal with data loss but any other type of disaster as well. You want a disaster recovery plan that covers possible disasters like natural disasters, fires, theft or break-ins, and even malicious attacks on your online business.

Bottom Line

Hard drives can take a beating, and it’s not uncommon for data to be lost or inaccessible. However, there are some ways you can try to recover the data on your hard drive. You should also be aware that if your system crashes and you haven’t saved anything to another drive, there’s not much you can do. You’ll just have to live with it. If you have important documents and pictures on the drive, however, consider using these 8 tips for recovering data from a damaged hard drive.