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Backing up a failing hard drive

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by xPandax, Dec 24, 2010.

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  1. xPandax

    xPandax Thread Starter

    Dec 24, 2010
    Sorry if this has already been answered, I searched a little and couldn't really find anything specific to my problem.

    My boyfriend's laptop hard drive got a SMART error and is crashing hard and he needs his files off it (way to back things up). So I go to press F1 to get out of the error screen and nothing happens, awesome sauce. So I do a little research online find some people with the same problems and the best suggestion was booting a version of linux (the said puppy/seamonkey) and getting the files he need off that way. So I get that and burn it to a boot-able CD and try that, only nothing happens. I check the cd on my PC and it works fine, so that's not the problem. So I figure i'll just make it a slave drive to my PC and I get it all hooked up and on the start up it comes up with another black screen saying it's detected all my stuff and it recognizes his hard drive with SMART some stuff saying it checks out 'bad' and my computer wont start up with it connected. So i'm at the end of my rope here and I cant think of anything else to do. I'm probably dabbling into things above my computer know how, but I've gotten this far and I don't feel like quitting yet. I dont know if I have to do something in the BIOS screen or what, but I'm playing amateur hour over here and would love for some help.

    Thanks guys
  2. Noyb

    Noyb Trusted Advisor

    May 25, 2005
    First Name:
    Two options I can think of ..
    1) Make a backup Image to a data file in an External HDD.
    Replace the HDD and attempt to restore it from the Backup Image.
    I'd use Acronis .. But I hear the freeware Macrium is good.
    Imaging Backup Programs run from a CD loaded to RAM.

    2) Replace the HDD and recover it from the Recovery DVDs.
    Put the old HDD in a USB adapter .. Read it and recover any Data files.

    And Welcome to the TSG Forum
  3. Snagglegaster

    Snagglegaster Banned

    Sep 12, 2006
    xPandax, if you already have a USB drive adapter that works with the laptop drive, this should be pretty straightforward. Lots of computers have problems booting if there is an external hard drive or pen drive plugged in at startup. Boot the computer, then connect the drive. If the USB adapter and drive are detected correctly after the system starts, you should be able copy files from the notebook drive, scan it, or run repairs. If your computer is running Win7 or Vista, you may be prompted to take ownership of the files, which can take a few minutes to execute. If there are problems with damaged files, it's easier to fix them from a Windows environment and then copy the files to another disk rather than using Linux.
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