Data recovery company Disklabs has provided HEXUS with some top tips for avoiding the need for professional data recovery, and what to do if things do go a little... wrong.
Data Recovery Tips From Disklabs
1. Never assume that data recovery cannot be done!
2. Ensure that you make regular backups:
a. Backup onto floppy disk.
b. Backup onto CD.
c. Backup onto DVD.
d. Backup onto a second HDD.
e. Backup onto an external HDD.
f. Backup onto tape.
g. E-Mail the data to a trusted friend or colleague.
h. Backup onto a USB flash drive.
3. Checked that the data you're backing up works and that you can restore it successfully.
4. Ensure that your anti virus software is kept up to date.
5. Run a full virus scan nightly.
6. If you hear clicking sounds coming from your hard drive, turn the computer off immediately and contact Disklabs. Do not start up the hard disk drive again as this may cause further damage.
7. Do not allow the computer to be operated in extreme temperatures.
8. Do not place your computer on an unstable
9. Do not use the computer in a high humidity environment.
10. Stay calm and contact Disklabs to get help. You lose more data through panic measures than anything else.
11. Do not attempt to solve the problem yourself when your hard drive is making any unusual noise. Running any commercial utilities will make the situation worse.
12. Do not shake or hit on the drive when you encounter any problems, as this will only cause further damage to the drive.
13. Do not do anything further if the system reports a, ‘CRC read IO error’, as this is indication of media failure and data can only be recovered if the disk reaches us early.
14. Do not run Scandisk as this will stress your disk further if it is already malfunctioning. Scandisk could only solve trivial logical problems.
15. Do not attempt to format your drive or changing the partitions when you are unable to access your data.
16. Do not run any utility programs unless you are a professional computer technician. Improper techniques often make recovery more difficult and in some cases it will result in permanent data loss.
17. Contact Disklabs, a professional data recovery company with years of proven experience and an on-site clean room.
18. Under no circumstances open your hard disk drive yourself. If it is idle curiosity, we may even send you one of ours to look at. Never open a hard disk drive – you will almost certainly make matters worse, and invalidate any warranty that remained.
19. Constant errors on boot-up or during your systems operation may be the computers way of saying that the hard disk drive is failing. Use this time wisely to back up or send your drive to www.disklabs.com to ensure that the maximum data is retrieved.
20. Make sure that the data recovery company that you send your valuable data to ‘images’, (makes an identical bit by bit copy of), your hard disk drive prior to attempting to recover the data. If they don’t ‘image’ your disk/camera card etc, they are probably overwriting the very files you are trying to recover.