Flash Drive Not Recognized Is A Common Error: Fix It Here [ ] Posted in » SSD Drives

One of the more common errors we are seeing from our customers lately is the Flash Drive not recognized error. One of the funniest things about flash drive in general is that they tend to be very robust when it comes to a data storage solution. If you would’ve talked to us 10 years ago, and told us that there would be a form of storage that can be upwards of 128 GB that we could attach to our keychain, drop on the ground with abandon, and probably even drop into the toilet and still get our data back, we probably would have laughed our heads off.

Flash drive not recognized

Flash drives come in all shapes and sizes, and can take a serious licking!

Of course, flash drives are some of the most robust data storage devices you can find. And, even though we have almost hurt at all when it comes to hard drive experiences, we still get a little bit surprised when some people tell us about how their flash drive failed. We could tell you a lot of flash drive failure stories, let’s just say, that you wouldn’t believe.

Recover Flash Drive?

Although not a lot of people know it, a flash drive can be somewhat difficult to recover depending on the circumstances. These drives are fairly simplistic on a macro level, but you do have to remember that the flash drive circuits are extremely microscopic. On one hand, this is a good thing because it is almost impossible for a regular user to recover flash drive units that have failed.

You can go on YouTube all you like, but it is very unlikely you’re going to find a concrete solution to your flash drive failure issue. In fact, this technology is something that is always best recovered by a professional.

Symptoms Of Flash Drive Failure

One of the best ways to determine whether or not you have experienced flash drive failure is to simply plug your flash drive into your computer. Typically, a failed flash drive will not show up as a drive in most Windows or Mac operating systems. This can be the result of something visibly physical, or can simply be an internal problem. It sounds like an easy test, but sometimes easy just works.

Another key symptom that your flash hard drive is going to fail or has already failed is that your computer freezes up whenever it attempts to access the flash drive. Often, flash drives will get bad spots that make it impossible to store data on them. These are not easy to spot by an amateur, but if your computer is freezing every time your flash drive is accessed, it is probably a good idea to get a new one ASAP.

USB Drive Recovery Is Frequently Different

One of the important things to remember about flash drives versus USB connected hard drives is that they are frequently different. While most people assume that USB drive recovery is exactly the same as flash drive recovery, they are usually different because of the fact that a USB drive is far more related to a regular hard drive then it is a flash key. In fact, USB drives are typically just regular hard drives that access data via USB as opposed to SATA.

Cheap Flash Drive Recovery 

If there is a bright side to flash drive failure, it is typically that flash drive recovery is very affordable. This is simply one of the cheapest forms of data recovery out there, and if you have the proper equipment (which Hard Drive Recovery Group does), these recoveries can be performed very quickly.

Contact us here for more help.

Or, check out some of these resources:

From Sandisk, Flash Manufacturer
Tech Support Forum has a HUGE section on flash drive failure

Hard Drive Failure Recovery: Three Major User Mistakes

If you find yourself with a corrupt hard drive and you’re very afraid that you could potentially lose all of your data, rest easy: this happens to hundreds of people everyday and for many of them it is not such a big deal.

Hard drive failure recovery can be tricky.
Hard drive failure recovery can involve messages like this.

Yes, you may have a lot of very important files: that sales presentation that is due in two days, maybe your year-end tax accounting files that will keep you from a messy IRS audit, or maybe just those special vacation photos that you just forgot to back up. Not to mention the important e-mails, your work calendar, and all the other critical stuff that is stored on your hard drive. But don’t worry, because it is always possible to get hard drive failure recovery.

But there are those people that decide to take the rescue of their failed hard drive into their own hands. And although it may not have been such a huge problem at the start, suddenly hard drive failure recovery becomes impossible. Here are three common user mistakes that you should avoid if you truly value what is on your currently damaged hard disk.

1. Using Bad Data Recovery Software For Hard Drive Failure Recovery

It only makes sense: whenever we have some kind of a hard drive problem our first inclination is to go to Google and attempt to solve the problem with a search. The unfortunate problem with this when you have a hard drive failure is that frequently a lot of the searches will bring up data recovery software companies. Now, certainly there are good data recovery software products out there, but unfortunately, there are a lot more that products out there that can actually damage the files on your drive.

What’s more, even the best data recovery software products out there typically cannot do very much if you have a physically broken hard disk. In fact, many people end up damaging the data left on the drive because they attempt to install software products on the drive.

And as a final note on this, remember that if your operating system cannot access your failed hard drive, how is it going to be possible that a software product that you installed on top of the operating system is going to access it?

Our advice is to always to save yourself a lot of time and money and simply avoid these products. At least, until you get the opinion of a professional data recovery technician.

 2. Calling For Computer Repair

We certainly have no issue with people calling for help when they find themselves in a situation in which they need hard drive failure recovery. In fact, we always recommend that people with hard drive repair needs contact us immediately.

The problem here is that many people do not actually contact a professional hard drive recovery company, and instead contact a computer repair company. These are obviously very different kinds of services, and the degree of success recovering data from hard drives is like night and day.

In fact, taking a failed hard drive to a computer repair technician is like taking an airplane engine to a quickie lube shop: you are simply not going to get the kind of help you are looking for, although you may find yourself with a pretty big bill afterwards.

Basically, when you have a damaged hard drive that requires hard drive recovery, you need to be dealing with somebody who is an expert in the field. This means a company that has a data recovery clean room, has expertise in not only Windows, but Mac data recovery, and deals with companies and individuals with data specific problems on a daily basis.

Look familiar? We hope not!

As a final note, this is not to say that many computer repair shops will not offer you data recovery services. In fact, some of them may sound very professional and give you a very good idea of how the recovery process works. To those shops, we suggest you ask this question:

“What class is your data recovery clean room?”

If there is any hesitation at all, you need to understand that this company does not actually provide the data recovery service, but instead probably outsourcing the service to a company just like Hard Drive Recovery Group. What this means to you is that you are probably going to be spending anywhere from 10 to 25% more than if you would’ve just dealt with a data recovery company directly, and it may take up to a week or two longer because of the fact that the service has been outsourced.

Remember that it’s always better to deal directly, especially when it comes to data recovery services.

3. Going The Youtube Route

Hey. We all understand the power of video. When somebody demonstrate how to do something using a video on YouTube, it can seem like it is a lot easier than you originally thought. And in many cases, such as with a hobby like origami, or model building or replacing your graphics card, YouTube is a fantastic thing. The reason for this of course is that if you are doing any of these activities, you are not actually putting anything at risk. Yes, you may not be as great at performing these activities as you thought you might be, but that’s really a pride thing that we all have to deal with. No harm, no foul.

The difference here is that when it comes to hard drive failure recovery, there is a lot at risk. So even though there seems to be a lot of videos available showing you specifically how to repair your hard drive, you should always look at every one of these as a potentially dangerous piece of education. If you want good education about hard drive failure, why not just check Wikipedia?

Yes, it is important to be always learning. We are in an information-based economy, and the more you know, the better off you will do. But when it comes to data recovery, you have to recognize that there is a lot of professional expertise and equipment involved. What’s more, the people who create these “how to fix your hard drive” videos typically have some kind of agenda, such as to sell you a data recovery software product, or perhaps a hard drive circuit board.

But most importantly, if you follow their advice and damage your hard drive badly enough that a professional hard drive recovery company simply cannot recover your files, what do you do then? Sure, you could complain to the video creator that what he put on YouTube was crappy advice and that you ended up losing all of your business files, but what does he care?

In the end, there is a lot of bad advice on the Internet, and you have to remember that when it comes to very precise devices like hard drives, it is always a good idea to get help from a company that knows what they are doing.

Each day, we talked to at least five people who have attempted to recover their own hard drives and have failed. Like, miserably.

Basically, you are taking a huge risk if you bank on do-it-yourself hard drive recovery.

Something important to remember is that data recovery companies like Hard Drive Recovery Group typically offer free technical support for pretty much anyone with a hard drive issue. Any hard drive recovery company worth its salt is going to want to give you some advice so that your data is kept safe. All you have to do is reach out and contact a professional. It really is as easy as picking up the phone.

But most importantly, it is a virtual guarantee that your data will be safe. And isn’t that what we all want?

Recovering from SSD Failure

One of the biggest surprises experienced by many laptop users is an SSD failure. It’s surprising for many people because of a couple of important things. First of all, people assume that because an SSD or solid state hard drive does not have as many moving parts as a regular hard drive, it naturally is going to be failure proof.SSD drives are far from failure-proof.

Most users just assume that they will never really have to consider something like SSD data recovery, because of the fact that these drives are typically very robust in nature. After all, they are based on a similar technology to flash drives, and everyone knows that those things can take a licking and keep on ticking.

Can SSD Drives Fail?

In a word, yes. Even though SSD hard drives are not subject to the same kind of failures as regular spindle and platter hard drives, (drives which by the way still provide the data storage on about 95% of our computer systems), they still do experience what many in the industry call “fade”. SSD drives do not use a platter to store data, but they do use electronic circuits – man-made electronic circuits – and if there is something we should all understand it is that a man-made product is rarely indestructible.

SSD: Unproven Long Term

Another key reason for many SSD failures is that the technology just simply isn’t proven yet. Although SSD hard drive use continues to grow, especially in portable solutions such as laptops and tablets, we do have to remember that the SSD platform are not incredibly well tested. While we can say with assurance that a regular spindle and platter hard drive can last anywhere from 5 to 15 years with regular use, we cannot say the same thing about SSD hard drives. Basically, they are unproven.

So although potentially less moving parts means that there would be less failure points in an SSD drive, the same factors for hard drive failure are still at play. Obviously, heat continues to be one of key killers of almost all hard drives.

One of the most important things to remember about flash drives versus SSD drives is that flash drives are typically used to store a single file or two. So, what people will do is use them to transfer files between computers, as an example.

An SSD drive, meanwhile, will likely be used to run a computer and store not only files, but an operating system. Obviously, the difference between the amount of use that an SSD drive in a computer gets as opposed to that of a USB flash key is immense. So although they are based on similar technologies, you do have to remember that an SSD hard drive is not failure proof specifically because of its incredible amount of daily use.

And naturally, although SSD hard drive manufacturers do know that there drives are highly functional in the short term, there are still a lot of question marks about the long-term.

How To Recover Your SSD Drive

Although we may be a little bit biased, we are quite pleased with the fact that SSD drives are almost completely unrepairable by do-it-yourselfers. This is key, because of course there are a lot of videos on the Internet that claim that you can repair your regular spindle and platter hard drive, when in fact attempting to open up such a hard drive is an incredibly dangerous thing.

We are unlikely to be seen very many repair your own SSD drive videos anytime soon, because the individual parts in an SSD drive are just simply not as available to the do-it-yourself market. As a result, the idea that somebody can recover their own data from a failed SSD drive without proper proprietary data recovery tools and a clean room is all but ridiculous.

And although it is good for our business, this is not the reason why we are happy that it is almost impossible to recover your own data from a SSD drive. Instead, it is because so much of the unrecoverable data we come across on a day-to-day basis is because people attempted to do their own hard drive repairs without the proper equipment and environment, not to mention knowledge.

If you value your data, remember that it is always better to contact a professional first, and consider putting the tools away.

Hard Drive Problems And The Cheapest Data Recovery

Hard drive problems are pretty common nowadays, particularly with the popularity of not only laptops, but external hard drives. Because of the portability of these particular devices, and the fact that we are all subject to human error of some kind, we receive a number of crashed hard drives each day. Many of our clients are looking for some kind of data recovery online, but typically do not know exactly what they are looking for because of the fact that they are not sure of what their specific hard drive problem is.

This is no big deal, of course, as we have almost seen it all when it comes to hard drive problems, and can typically diagnose yours within five minutes or less. We’re not trying to say that we are the Domino’s Pizza of the hard drive recovery industry (our services taste much better), but suffice it to say that even if you assume that you have a rather rare hard drive problem, we have probably seen it before.The Cost of "cheapest data recovery"

Cheapest Data Recovery?

Even as a well recognized price leader in the hard drive recovery industry, you would actually be quite surprised by the number of conversations we have with our data recovery customers about prices. Naturally, no one ever wants to overpay for a data recovery service, but people are typically very price sensitive to hard drive recovery services. This likely has a lot to do with not only the fact that the cost for a blank hard drive is actually quite cheap nowadays, but also due to the fact that many competitors offer something we call the “$99 Fakeout”.

$99 For Real? Uh, Nope.

To those looking for the cheapest data recovery solution for their hard drive problems, we always say this: the data recovery industry works on a “you get what you pay for”-basis. By this we mean that there will always be companies out there offering $99 data recovery, but what the uninitiated do not typically understand is that these companies will typically charge you whether or not they recover your data at all. In fact, no matter what your hard drive problems are, they will typically be extremely anxious to have you send their hard drive to them.

These $99 companies typically make their money with what they may call “diagnosis fees”. And, in many cases they can simply have a customer ship a hard drive to them, plug it into a simple data recovery software system to see if they can be fixed, and then if it cannot be fixed via software means, simply send it back.

Many of our data recovery clients come to us with a broken hard drive that they say was returned to them by another provider claiming that “there would be no way the data could be recovered.” Of course, what those “cheapest data recovery” providers typically mean to say is that they do not have a clean room, and as a result can not actually provide professional hard drive recovery services.

The truth is that there are a lot more of these companies out there than you would imagine. So whenever somebody says that you can’t recover your hard drive, it is always better to get a second opinion.

Believe us. Almost 10% of our business comes from people with hard drive problems that have taken these “cheapest data recovery” offers and have discovered that their “drives are unrecoverable”.

This is rarely the actual case.

Contact us here for help.

How to Fix External Hard Drive Problems

One of the most intriguing things about the data recovery industry in general is the fact that there are always websites out there that are offering some kind of quick fix. Recently, we have come across a lot of sites that claim to tell you how to fix external hard drive failures.

Dangerous Information Is Everywhere

Naturally, we do not want to target anyone specifically when we say that typically a lot of this information is not only incorrect, but very dangerous, particularly in cases where the data that needs to be recovered from an external hard drive is very critical. We have seen a lot of cases where businesses trust their data to shoddy data recovery software providers or computer repair stores that really have very little idea about providing professional data recovery, and we can tell you that these stories always end badly. We often end up picking up the pieces in situations like this, and although we are always happy to help, a drive that has been damaged by a non-professional can often be very expensive to recover.

Why Take The Risk?

Many of our business clients are the types of people that do not like to take unnecessary risks. But at the same time, many of these managers are also people who are self-starters and like to do as much as they can to solve a problem. So of course, when they need to repair external hard drive issues, it only makes sense that they would try to do as much as they can to find a solution for free on the Internet.

But, you need to understand that in order to repair external hard drive problems that are physical in nature, there is very little that a layman can do. This is because the process of damaged hard drive recovery is exactly the same whether you are talking about a laptop drive, on external hard drive, or even a full on raid array. Each hard drive must be not only removed from its enclosure, whatever that may be, but it also must be repaired in clean room conditions.

But, if you want to know how to fix external hard drive issues, the best thing to do is to call a professional data recovery technician, such as the ones at Hard Drive Recovery Group. We offer a variety of free technical support services to not only businesses, but regular consumers and continue to offer it seven days a week. We can typically at least give you some kind of idea of what your external hard drive issue is and if it is fixable using data recovery software, or in the case of a damaged hard drive, must be sent to a lab for external hard drive recovery.

Repair External Hard Drives Safely

One of the things that we always recommend to any customer that calls us is to resist using any kind of hard drive utility or untested data recovery software. Just because you find a website on the Internet that claims to offer superior external hard drive recovery results, does not mean that it is always true. Remember that many of these data recovery software providers do not actually offer any kind of guarantee, so if the software they offer does not repair external hard drive issues, you may not be able to get a refund.

What’s more, these products can actually damage your hard drive and the data contained within significantly. What this means is that the cost of your damaged hard drive recovery can increase markedly. Remember that it is always safer in cases of hard drive failure to do nothing than it is to attempt to recover your own files with sketchy products.

Contact us here for help.

As an additional warning against trying to recovery external hard drives on your own, check this video from Youtube about a guy who blew his own hard drive up. This happens a lot more than you would think.

Portable Hard Drive Recovery?

One of by far the most popular services offered by Hard Drive Recovery Group is of course portable hard drive recovery. There a number of reasons for this, but considering the popularity of portable storage and external hard drives nowadays, this is not altogether surprising.

And, because of the fact that external hard drives are quite inexpensive and are now available to the regular user (as opposed to a few short years ago when portable hard drives were actually very expensive and typically tended to be used by businesses only), they are used more commonly than ever. In fact, even at our shop we use a variety of external and portable hard drives in order to back up our own data. They can be a very robust solution and you certainly cannot beat the price per gigabyte.

External Hard Drive Problems

But, the issues with external hard drives are clear. Unfortunately, the portability of an external hard drive means that it is liable to be damaged in a number of situations; at least when compared to a common internal hard drive. As a result, many of our portable hard drive recovery jobs come from people who have dropped the drive, and are looking for a way to fix their external hard drive problems.Portable hard drive recovery issues

These issues are often made worse by the fact that many users that complain that their hard drive crashed were using these hard drives to back up critical files. Even worse are the scenarios where people were using these hard drives in order to keep sole copies of important files. As a result, for many people, portable hard drive recovery is an absolute must.

Portable Hard Drive Recovery Image Problems

One of the biggest issues for people looking to fix external hard drive problems has to be price. Because of the fact that many people purchase their portable hard drives for under $100, they often expect that portable hard drive recovery will be equally cheap. Unfortunately, what you have to recognize when you have a crashed portable hard drive is that the cost for recovering these drives is very equivalent to that of recovering an internal hard drive.

So even though the actual hard disk drive may have been very cheap and on sale at an electronics manufacturers such as Best Buy, it still takes the same amount of professional data recovery time in order to fix external hard drive problems and recover your data safely.

Don’t Fear Recovery

Naturally, we do not want to scare away people who have been in a situation in which their hard drive crashed, because not all portable drive data recovery jobs are expensive. In fact, when there is not an actual physical problem with the drive, we can often perform what is known as remote data recovery in order to restore all of the drive’s files immediately.

The best bet is always to speak with a professional data recovery technician. If you have specific important files that you need to recover, call us for a quote and we may be able to discuss the possibility of only recovering certain files, depending on the problem.

You also may want to click here for additional thoughts on external hard drive recovery.

Contact us here.

Memory Card Recovery Services

Almost all modern digital cameras use portable storage devices called memory cards. They can store gigabytes worth of digital images. Unfortunately, it is easy to delete stored data from these memory cards. If you accidentally select a delete-all function (which happens to all of us, at least once), your vacation photos, family memories and all the great moments you have stored on your camera can be erased. Unfоrtunаtеlу, іt іs easy tо delete stored data frоm thеsе cards.  But it is not necessarily permanent, at least with the right professional hard drive recovery.Memory card recovery

This іs thе reason whу уоu nееd tо knоw hоw tо recover memory cards. Recovering deleted digital data іs not only роssіblе, but a very popular service. Тhаt іs bесаusе cards will nоt іmmеdіаtеlу permanently wipe clean thе deleted files. Тhе digital files аrе stіll thеrе. Тhеу wеrе simply marked аs deleted by the file system whісh mеаns thаt thе рrеvіоuslу occupied space оn thе card саn nоw bе replaced bу а nеw photo file. Тhеrеfоrе, we always recommend our customers stор usіng thе camera аnу furthеr аnd dоn’t tаkе аnу nеw pictures to ensure оld pictures are not overwritten permanently.

The key іs tо usе thе rіght software tо recover deleted photos frоm data card automatically. There are a number of products on the Internet, but unfortunately many of them are rather sketchy and offer no refunds if they do not function.  This is why it is always better to consider a professional shop like Hard Drive Recovery Group – with us, your files and pictures are recovered, or we simply do not charge.

What То Dо То Recover Memory Card Photos

The fіrst thing уоu nееd tо dо іs tо power down уоur digital camera. Yоu must refrain frоm usіng іt tо prevent nеw files frоm overwriting thе deleted photos. Іt is best іf уоu саn remove thе memory card frоm thе camera tо mаkе surе thаt уоu will nоt accidentally usе it.

The nехt step іs tо recover thе deleted photos usіng а data recovery software provided and recommended by an established data recovery service. Тhіs іs easy bесаusе аll you won’t have to concern yourself about heavily researching a reliable software thаt саn undelete photos frоm memory card automatically.

Recovering Deleted Photos: Тhе Actual Steps

You dо nоt hаvе tо bе а computer geek tо recover memory card photos erased photos. Аs long аs уоu hаvе thе rіght software, уоu саn typically perform thе photo recovery operation wіthоut assistance.

The fіrst step іs tо download thе photo recovery software frоm а trusted source. Install thіs software іn уоur computer sо уоu саn begin thе recovery procedure. Тhе installation оf photo recovery software іs easy. Јust follow thе wizard instructions аnd thе software will install itself.

Then уоu hаvе tо gеt thе аffесtеd memory card аnd insert іt іn thе card reader оf уоur computer. Іf уоu dо nоt hаvе а card reader, уоu mау reinsert thе memory card іn your digital camera. Plug thе digital camera intо уоur computer usіng thе USB cable. Оnсе уоur computer has recognized thе memory card, thе photo recovery process саn nоw begin.

The software саn dо іts job wіth minimal intervention frоm уоu. Simply follow thе instructions аnd allow thе software tо recover deleted photos frоm memory card automatically. Wіthіn а fеw minutes, уоur deleted photos саn bе restored tо уоur computer.

Accidentally deleting photos frоm memory card саn happen to anyone. But, yоu саn lose thеsе photos forever іf уоu will nоt recover thеm quісklу. Gеt thе rіght іnfоrmаtіоn nоw tо learn hоw tо Recover Deleted Photos frоm memory card wіth thе help оf a reliable provider like Hard Drive Recovery Group. Contact us here.

Hard Drive Clicking? What Not To Do.

When it comes to a clicking hard drive, the web seems to be pretty chock full of “things to do when your hard drive is clicking.” Unfortunately, 98% of the stuff that is out there is either a myth, or simply dangerous to your hard drive (but most importantly, the data contained within!).

hard drive clicking

Ok, so if you can see the inside of your hard drive like this, you're doing something wrong.

So, we figured we’d instead create a Top 3 list of things NOT to do when you hear your hard drive clicking, because clearly there is no shortage of “To-Do” advice. Most of this advice is very unfortunate, however, because in some cases it can take what would have been a perfectly recoverable hard drive and make it absolutely worthless. No more pictures, no more emails, no more files. Gone. You do not want to be in that kind of situation, where your drive is dead and hard drive recovery is NOT possible, but believe us, it happens more often than we would like. It happens a lot, in fact, to people who:

1. Attempt To Fix Hard Drive Problems On Their Own

Hey! That guy on Youtube looks pretty cool as he pulls out a screwdriver and opens his hard drive case right in front of you, right? Well, although he may be cool, he’s likely also an idiot. There is a reason why clean room data recovery exists, believe us, and that is because hard drives are ultra-sensitive to contamination of any kind. That means dust. That means moisture. That means microscopic particles in the air. They are all around you, believe us. So when someone tells you that by simply swapping out a circuit board or removing a head mechanism from a similar drive is going to help, STOP! Put the tools down for the sake of your data. It’ll save you time and tons of money.

2. The Hard Drive Freezer Trick?

Does this work for dead hard drive recovery? Uh, sometimes… But this is really something we like to call “lottery ticket data recovery”, and is certainly not the be all and end all when it comes to how to fix a hard drive failure. The problem with the Freezer trick, of course, is that the condensation created within the hard drive during the melting process is extremely dangerous to the data on the disk. Basically, water kills anything electronic, and if you freeze the air surrounding a typical spindle and platter system, you’re going to get a lot of it. If you do this, you are likely to find yourself with an unrecoverable drive. So don’t!

 3. Continue Working

Yep, this is from the “if I don’t do anything, that noise will go away”-school of thinking. And while this may work for your 1978 Datsun, let’s just say your hard drive is a little more complicated. So as soon as you hear your hard drive clicking, turn that computer off! An important thing to understand is that the quicker you power down your drive, the easier the data recovery is going to be. This is because typically the sound you’re hearing is a misaligned drive head, and each click may be the head crashing into the platter. So to sum up, act quickly, and your hard drive repair will be cheaper, more complete, and just better!

Oddly enough, when it comes to a hard drive crash that has been the result of a clicking hard drive, inaction is often the best policy. That means taking your tools you were planning to use for this “dead hard drive recovery” and throwing them aside. That may mean turning your computer off even when your first inclination is to use whatever fix you can find in Google. Now, take a deep breath. If you have had a failed hard drive, you are going to need some professional data recovery help.

Feel free to contact us here.

Remote Data Recovery

What many business owners do not think about when they have a server failure or catastrophic hard drive crash is that it is not always necessary for them to immediately package up the hard drive and send it to a professional provider such as Hard Drive Recovery Group. It is not always necessary to prepare your hard drive for shipment immediately, especially with more complex machines such as raid arrays or NAS or SAN systems. Instead, many business owners turn to us for something known well in the industry as remote data recovery.

About Remote Data Recovery

Typical server bank in the midst of a remote data recovery job.

RAID servers are perfectly built for remote data recovery services.

Remote data recovery is exactly what it might suggest: professional data recovery services completed from a location that is remote to yours. This means that no matter where you live, or where your business is located worldwide, as long as you have an Internet connection, we may be able to provide you with professional remote data recovery services.

In a lot of cases where a business owner or IT professional may have something like a mis-configured file system or partition table problems, we can offer immediate help via a simple network connection. This saves not only the business owner a lot of time and potential productivity loss, but also enables us to perform the data recovery service safely, and faster than if the hard drive had been removed from the machine in order to be shipped for data recovery.

Major Cost Benefits

Of course, convenience is not the only advantage of remote data recovery: because the overall time taken by our data recovery technicians is much shorter in remote recovery situations, our recovery fee is also much lower. In fact, we offer some of the lowest remote recovery pricing in the industry. And, if you have a competitive quote for a similar service, we will beat it by 10%, guaranteed. All you need to do is forward us the e-mail quotes, and we will immediately beat that price – no questions asked.

Perfect For Enterprise Software And RAID Array Problems

Although remote data recovery is often perfect for situations where a single hard drive has failed within a raid array, it is not a common procedure for many consumer hard disk drive problems. In fact, if you are actually experiencing a physical hard drive failure, there is very little we can do remotely. In fact, whenever you have an actual mechanical problem with your hard disk or server, it is more likely that you are going to have to call us about a flat rate hard drive repair that can be performed in our class 100 clean room.

Additionally, this particular form of data recovery is not appropriate for major physical problems caused by natural disaster such as flooding or fire. In fact, this particular service really only represents about 10% of our business hard drive recovery cases. But, it is an option that is available when it is possible, and comes part and parcel with our 24 hour free support for businesses.

We understand how to important critical systems are to your business, and also are quite aware of the productivity losses that may come from a major system failure. This is why we consider all of our business remote data recovery jobs to be priority one and work to solve your hard disk drive issues immediately. This is just one of the differences that Hard Drive Recovery Group technicians provide our clients.

Call us toll-free at the number above or click here in order to request a remote data recovery assessment right away.

RAID cannot access disk drive?

Unfortunately, despite what many of the raid controller manufacturers would like you to think, raid servers are far from infallible. As a result, you will not commonly, but possibly have to deal with a situation in which your raid cannot access any of the data on your disk drive. Or, as it is more commonly known, your raid disk.newsraid cannot access disk drive

This can actually be for a number of reasons, and one of the biggest pieces of advice we give almost every client who is having raid server difficulties or some kind of raid failure, is to resist doing anything rash. One of the key causes of major raid disk failure is some sort of physical intervention by an administrator. The unfortunate part about this is that IT administrators are typically very smart people, and are typically very risk-averse. But in an effort to find a solution to a raid problem, they will typically go beyond the call of duty. This is of course because typically the information that is stored on a raid server is very important to the business or organization.

But that, unfortunately, is the very reason why you need to take a very safe and proactive approach to any kind of raid disk access problem. Remember that our toll-free helpline is always available to you, and we can certainly help you determine where your raid problem is coming from. Or, we can at least inform you of the safest way to proceed.

Remember always that data that is stored on raid is stored there for a reason: because it has the utmost importance to your organization.

Hard Drive Freezing?

One of the most common symptoms we hear from our customers is that there “hard drive is freezing”. I think it is important to note that this is a very common symptom because of the fact that hard drives are created to essentially stop working whenever there is something mechanically wrong with them. As a result, many people find that they have total computer freezes before any kind of clicking or buzzing sounds begin to emanate from the hard drive. Hard drive freezing can be a warning of future disk issues.

I think one of the things that a lot of people miss when it comes to a scenario where there hard drive freezes is that often this may be your final chance to back up your drive before major physical hard drive failure occurs. In fact, you definitely need to understand that once you have experienced a major hard drive crash symptom, such as a clicking or buzzing, it may already be too late for you to get your data back by conventional means.

If you are going to try to back up your hard drive when you fear it may be failing, it is always best to do this in Safe or DOS mode. These are typically the least disk intensive modes that your Windows computer can run in and as a result may wear down your drive less.

Recover Your Hard Drive Using Software? Not as common as they’re saying…

Funny thing when you check the search engines for information on recovering hard drives… Naturally, most people want to assume that they can quickly restore all of their files using a cheap, easy to download data recovery software. I would want to assume this, too.

But I think it’s important that people understand that no matter what a Youtube video might say about a ‘dynamite’ hard drive recovery software, it may not work for you.

Slimy sales people on the Internet? Really? I can only imagine your disbelief. But for most people with hard drive failure problems the reality is that their data is simply NOT recoverable using software.

Ask yourself this: if you cannot boot your program or access the operating system, how exactly is this software going to work?

In fact, most authentic physical hard drive crashes mean that you cannot access the drive via any software means. In effect, you must repair the hard drive first. This is a job that can only be accomplished by a professional with hard drive expertise and access to a data recovery clean room. There are very few exceptions to this rule.

Remember that if you do have an “accidental file deletion”, software might be your best bet. But, if you have a full on hard drive crash, no software is going to be able to access your drive. So why waste your money on a product with no Money Back Guarantee?

There are situations, we should mention, in which a hard drive may appear to have crashed, but hasn’t. To see if your drive is experiencing this, contact us here!

IOSafe SSD – Hard Drive Recovery Unnecessary?

the IOSafe SSD

IOSafe: making hard drive recovery obsolete?

As we have mentioned on occasion before, we simply love those IOSafe drives. A great idea, seems to be executed extremely well, and comes with the kind of price that doesn’t scream as “premium” as it would have a mere five years ago. Yes, the consolidation of the hard drive industry has been fantastic for users, and those prices aren’t going up anytime soon. IOSafe, though, seems to be in a class of its own as far as hard disk protection.

So, it appears the company is moving forward with this, its first SSD drive.  It’s certainly not for the thin of wallet, to be sure, but it’s nice to see them taking their hard disk safety technology forward with this $499 beauty. Plus, it’s one of the fastest hard drives PC Mag has ever tested, due in part to its USB 3.0 interface.

Now, we’re really not the kind of techie to recommend SSD drives to users – we still consider the technology too new and expensive, and risky, frankly, – but this one has it’s own insurance policy. And by that we mean literally – IOSafe will give you up to $5000 dollars for data recovery if it becomes necessary within the first couple years. Now, of course you won’t need close to that if you send in your drive to Hard Drive Recovery Group (nice plug!), but it does circumvent a lot of the fears that come with adopting a straight SSD hard disk.

Keep it up, IOSafe!

No Nonsense Hard Drive Facts

A Seagate Hard Drive

A Seagate Hard Drive - more advanced than the space shuttle?

It really was about time. If you know the hard disk drive industry at all, you know that they have some marketing people that love to try to make a metal box look like a Corvette. This is hard drive technology, after all, which is frankly, quite amazingly dull. A lot of business owners like it that way. It’s a sturdy technology that lets you put a lot of information into a small space. Saves paper, too. Although if you were talking to a marketer, he’d tell you it was more exciting than the moon landing!

This article on hdd specifications from PC World is a great no-nonsense look at specs, and what to look for. Someone needed to say it, and I’m glad that PC World did. Take it from us: there are really only so many things that matter when it comes to hard drive storage. In essence (with perhaps the exception of SSD drives and hybrids), this is very much the same technology that has been around for 20+ years.

On the other hand, PC World still is PC World, and of course their plug of USB 3.0 drives is funny only because they RECOMMEND them as a performance boost. My friends, we can tell you that unless you’re a robot, you’re not going to “sense” the milliseconds of time savings you will get from USB 3.0. But, let’s remember that this is a magazine that survives by its advertisers, and making them happy first (after the reader, of course) is always going to be the plan.

Fake Hard Disk Failures, And Other Schemes

Yes, the hackers are getting better at graphic design as well!

Yep, they’re at it again. The Trojan Horse hackers had actually seemed to have gotten lazy for a while, at least by their previous standards. But now, they’re back: in Trojan 2: Fake Frag (Electric Boogaloo). Yes, more “fakeware”, this time claiming your “SATA Drive has Failed”, along with a ton of other fake messages. Then, despite the fact that you’ve never actually downloaded it, “Windows Recovery” software comes up and starts to scan your PC for bugs. Naturally, it finds them. By the tons. So not only is hard disk failure imminent, your computer is attracting parasites galore. Soon, it will be on fire.

Of course, it isn’t on fire. These Trojans are part of a new Blackmail-ware era of con game, where a “magic program” will recover your failed hard disk, “fix” all your system errors, and leave you $80 short. These are easy Trojans to pick up, as well, as one of our techs discovered on his home machine the other week. Continual notes that “only Windows Security 2011″ will fix this, and at $80, it doesn’t seem so bad.

This is all a huge waste of your money, of course. There are a number of sites that do show you how to remove the “virus”, which is typically just a small .exe file that runs anytime you execute ANYTHING. A good way to stop the thing (and find exactly what .exe it is), of course, is by using your Windows Task Manager. Once inside, click on “Processes”, and look for something that just doesn’t look right. It’ll usually be using a ton of CPU, and can be stopped easily. Stopping it, of course, will typically then enable you to search for it in the registry.

We could go into deeper detail, but we won’t – there are a lot of other sites on the Internet that do. But just be warned: a lot of these guys suggest: “This is a difficult process for the non-advanced user, you may want to try Spyware Remover 2000 or Spyware Doctor” (or some other crappy name for an otherwise free spyware remover). So what are they doing? Yes, friends, they too are blackmailing you. Only this time it’s for less money, typically around $30. Check out a great demo video of this script in action on the Inquirer.

A smart user should know that all you really need is Regedit, and you can get the job done yourself.

Here are a few names this kind of virus goes under:

Windows Repair
Windows Recovery
Internet Defender
Security Defender
Internet Security Essentials

Click here for another decent site that still tries to blackmail you, but does let you know how to get rid of the Trojan as well.

Hard Drive Crash-Proof?

This drive is indestructible (according to the manufacturer!).

More great hard drive technology from IOSafe coming down the pipe. The 3TB “Everythingproof” hard disk drive touts itself as not only crash and failure proof, but fire and waterproof! This is one of those drives that you could take a blowtorch to and to cool it off, throw it in icy water. A “Mythbusters”-style piece of hardware, from a really innovative company.

Yep, can’t say enough about the technology at IOSafe (it isn’t good for our business, mind you ;)), but knowing the business of hard drive repair and recovery quite well, we would note that price, especially when it comes to storage media and hardware, is pretty much priority one when it comes to regular users. Business users can sometimes be different, but (much to their dismay when an inevitable hard drive failure occurs), more than often are also a little “by the seat of their pants” when it comes to data safety.

At $499, this is probably priced way above most personal users wallets, and is still not a “must have” for Enterprise users (which really should have a professional, consistent backup plan in place, one would think). But great technology, and despite only having 1 year of free data recovery service included (here’s where the $99 upgrade to 5 years protection comes in), a real improvement in the world of safe data storage.

Mac Hard Drive Recovery Just Got Harder…

IMac

The ever uncrackable IMac. Now more proprietary than you'd like.

Well, color us surprised, but then, not really. Apple is up to its old tricks again, this time making it harder than ever to perform Mac hard drive recovery. Or removal. Or replacement, for that matter…

Yes, according to a note on Engadget today, the new IMac actually has a “specialized” proprietary SATA cable for its hard disk, on which features a seven prong setup as opposed to the usual four prong. This  means that if you were really techie about it (and you have to be on an IMac anyway, as removing a drive is nowhere near an easy task for the layman) and you wanted to put a new hard drive in your system, you’d be completely out of luck.

This is unless, of course, you bought a drive specifically from Apple. We’ won’t bet against the idea that this will likely be an expensive option when compared to picking up a discount drive at your local retailer. Some might call this a “war against the customer”, while others would call it “protecting Apple technology”. Whatever the case, IMac buyers may be getting a little more than they bargained for when they experience a hard drive failure. Users beware!

OSFClone – Open Source Cloning For The Masses?

Interesting tool we just came across in the blogs. OSFClone touts itself to be a free drive cloning program (which is what companies that practice “safe hard drive recovery” use), which enables you to “see-all” that is on a drive. Basically, it looks to clone a raw image from your drive so that you can analyze it. It also boots itself, which of course lets you skip your OS and get straight to the nitty-gritty.

So probably not a program for “everybody”, frankly, but at least for those of us with geekier intentions. Worth a look, and a disk imaging program for FREE is certainly nothing to complain about. Especially if it works ;)

Self-Erasing Hard Drives? Say It Isn’t So…

This drive erases itself!

Well, we suppose it was only a matter of time… Toshiba has just announced the introduction of “self-erasing” hard drives to its product portfolio, a product they’re saying is perfect to “help their customers protect sensitive data from leakage or theft”. To this, we say, thank you, Toshiba.

Thank you for the future hard drive recovery business. Because if there’s something we do know, it’s that this technology is probably going to work – perhaps a little TOO well for most users. Considering the high level of “accidental erasings” already part of our business in general, we really can’t see how this “self erasing technology” is necessary, but we can see how it’ll be pretty dangerous.

At any rate, even if security is a hyper-priority at your business, you may want to avoid these ones. We consider them to be one of the scariest technology ideas coming from the storage industry in some time!

SSD – Worth The Hassle?

Another SSD drive

SSD... even the experts can't recommend 'em!

Very interesting article from a storage expert at Information Week, where you might expect him to be talking his own book (or basically, pushing new technologies on companies), but he actually seems to go the opposite way.

Read Getting Real About SSD Performance and check it out for yourself.

As a hard drive recovery provider, talking our book (i.e. generating sales and jobs for our company) would mean jumping for joy at SSD, as its overall stability has been weak at best, and has already provided us with more data recovery requests than we might have thought. But, we continue to warn corporate IT managers AGAINST the technology, as its high expense, particularly at this relatively nascent time for it, far outweighs the benefits.

The “tried and true” platter system will have to suffice for now for all but the most risk-oriented IT people. But then, most IT people we know prefer “tried and true” to “rolling the dice” when it comes to their critical data!

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Consolidation Reigns In The Hard Drive Industry

Recessions bring about these kind of things. The bigger, healthier storage companies end up gobbling up the smaller ones. Such is the case with Western Digital buying Hitachi, and this will continue. As the industry moves to SSD, some of the older platter-based foundries essentially become obsolete, leaving a lot of cap-ex on the balance sheets for these manufacturers. Western Digital's getting bigger!

Not a surprise to see this happen, as Hitachi is a huge company, and their storage unit merely a small piece of the pie. Western Digital has gotten better at what they do as well, as we see a lot less of them coming through for hard drive recovery than we had just a couple of years ago.

Not a lot of players left in the industry, but that, too, could change. SSD has leveled the playing field once again.

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A “Promise” Of Faster RAID Technology

Intel’s Thunderbolt has quietly crept on the storage scene, promising transfers from external sources at up to 10Gb/sec. Fast transfer, to be sure. Meanwhile, Promise, one of the most respected RAID manufacturers has introduced their Pegasus RAID solution.

Claiming 20x the throughput speed of USB 2.0, this one could indeed be a smoker for administrators looking for a hot network attached storage solution. Good stuff, we say.

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Erasing Your SSD Drive. Or Not…

SSD drives continue to be the “future promise” that the hard drive manufacturers are touting. But the disadvantages are beginning to add up. So says the fine folks at UC San Diego, who tested several drives with the classic drive erasing techniques that work very well with platter based drives, and discovered that some of the data was still recoverable. In fact, with some erasing algorithms, ALL of the data was still present.

The SSD drives are touted as the future of laptop hard drives, and yet the inability to erase them is a pretty serious security breach. While we don’t want to “put the hate on” new hard drive technologies by any means, it’s clear this is a huge issue for businesses and in particular, military and government. How to address it is really where the question lies.

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Hybrid Hard Drives – Failing?

Interesting note this morning on Seagate’s Momentus XL, which is a hybrid SSD and platter based hard drive. Seems it was quite hyped coming up to its launch. Weird fact is that users are saying that it is subject to the failures of both drive architectures, meaning a lot of buzzing and clicking capped with some circuit issues that SSD drives feature.SSD drive recovery remains a need for new adopters.

Unfortunately, hybrids are still subject to failure, without a doubt. The platter and spindle architecture remains much as it was in the 1990s, with a few tweaks here and there. And although the flash part of the drive doesn’t have as many mechanical parts which can fail, they also can break down.

A Popular SSD Myth

One of the more popular myths lately has been that SSD hard drives are failure proof. That they simply cannot fail, if only because they don’t have the number of mechanical parts that classic conventional drives do. This, of course, is wrong. Flash based Solid-State hard drives can, and do fail, and quite often. While there are no head crashes or motor breakdowns in these drive structures, the switches within these drives are still subject to issues brought on by water damage, heavy usage, and particularly electrical overload.

If you feel like your Hybrid or SSD drive is failing, feel free to call our toll free support line 24 hours per day at 1-866-938-3475 or get a full, no hassle diagnosis by filling out the form here.

Remember: these are still man-made devices. And although SSD drives have definitely become more robust as time has passed, they are still very subject to mechanical problems.

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