Hard Drive Recovery

Data recovery can be the most difficult types of computer repair job; it can also be one of the easiest. Sometimes, it involves a true specialist - a business that deals primarily with data recovery. However, in most cases, when the consumer is looking for data recovery, it is a job that a non-specialist can handle. The "data recovery" job involves accessing the hard drive from an external system. When the system is unbootable, data is usually not lost; it's just more difficult to access. Choosing your technician should be based on price and his ability to guarantee the recovery of your data. Be careful though; a failed data recovery job may create a situation where the data is more difficult to recover than it would have been otherwise; thus, if your data is extremely important (worth tens of thousands of dollars), it may be worth going straight to professional data recovery servcie that focuses exclusively on data recovery, even with the potential thousand-dollar price tag.

Speaking With the Tech

Data is sensitive and so is your time. Your personal settings as well as things like music, pictures, videos, and system files usually can be recovered in the event of a computer crash. In one of the better outcomes, a technician can often "clone" your hard drive to a new one, keeping your computer almost perfectly intact - just like it was before the crash. Ask if this is a possibility. Be sure to communicate the location of your most important files (e.g. "My Documents", or "a folder you created on the C: drive", as well as the type of files (e.g. "Word Docs", "bookmarks", "pictures", "tax records", etc) that you need recovered.

Make sure that important files such as music, pictures, and or video will be backed up to DVDs or your external USB drive so that they can be accessed from another computer; or if you have a second computer, that data (and optionally, your personal settings) can be recovered and copied to it. The tech may charge higher rates for one or the other, so get quotes for both if they are both sufficient options for you.

Finally, consider asking your technician whether he can help set up a data backup solution to help prevent data loss in the future. Most technicians would be happy to set you up with one of the popular data backup companies. Some technicians resell data backup plans.