How to Recover Data From a Broken Hard Drive

internal components of a hard drive

One of the worst experiences you can have is losing your data because of a broken hard drive. Months or years of hard work could be gone forever, especially if you didn’t do any backing up.

Thanks to technology, it is now possible to recover all your lost data from damaged computer hard drives.

You don’t need to pay a truckload of money to recover your data from a damaged computer. The steps to complete the recovery process are easy, and you don’t need any specialist training to get started. In many situations, the data stored on hard drives that have been physically damaged can be recovered.

To start the process of recovering your data from a broken hard drive, you will need tools such as a screwdriver, a USB cord, and a working computer.

Points to note…

Some Hard Drives are Locked

This means that you will need to change the security administrator to access the stored files, according to HP.com.

Software Damage Can Make the Process More Complex

You can diagnose software damage if it is impossible to reboot the computer in safe mode.

The First Step

First, you will need to unscrew the hard drive from the computer. This should be an easy task. After removing the hard drive from the casing, if the inner components are not damaged, you can gently fit the row of pins to a matching connector on a new computer or use the USB cord.

You should then be able to access the files if the hard drive is not password protected.

If the hard drive is password protected, you can change the security admin by right clicking on the hard drive icon on the new computer.

From the menu, select the ‘Document and Settings’ folder. Next, click ‘Security’, followed by clicking the ‘Advanced’ option. Now you should see the ‘Owner’ tab.

When you click on the ‘Owner’ tab, you will find the option to edit Administrators. Left click on ‘Administrators,’ and tick the box to ‘Replace owner’ on Sub containers. Click ‘OK’ and select ‘Yes’ from the menu that pops up.

After changing the Administrators setting, you should have access to files stored on the previously locked hard drive.

How to Retrieve Data From Hard Drives with Damaged Software

This issue is more complicated, but with a data recovery program, you shouldn’t have any problems.

After connecting the damaged hard drive to a new computer, start the recovery program. Follow the prompts on the page and start a deep scan of the damaged hard drive.

Recovery programs are designed to retrieve stored and deleted data from damaged hard drives. The retrieved files are compiled in a folder where you can access them to do a backup or copy the essential files you need.

If these processes seem overwhelming (and for many people they are!), you can hire the services of a professional to recover lost files from your damaged hard drive.

Here’s a tip – To protect your files and make a recovery easier if the unexpected happens, always create restore points at least once a day. You should also back up all important files to a remote data storage system or a cloud based backup service.

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