The best data recovery tip in the world is to have backup and backups of your backups and backups of those backups – and to back up your backups every day.

But, we’re human and sometimes we forget. And, it’s technology so sometimes things go wrong. Besides, how many people, not businesses, have backups of all their data? They might have an external hard drive or redundant drives backing up their PCs, but how much of their smartphone data is backed up? How often do they dump all their smartphone pictures and video files onto their PCs, so that they can be backed up?

Their data loss might not be as financially or critically devastating as it is for businesses, but you can’t put a value on your kid’s first steps or the perfectly timed picture of your dog jumping through the sprinkler.


So, what are you to do?

Your absolute best bet is to make an appointment with a hard drive data recovery specialist. Tinkering around with your system when you’re not entirely sure you know what you’re doing is a recipe for disaster. Chances are you will make things worse. In fact, you could render your data irrecoverable, when it could have been perfectly recoverable in the first place.

Here’s what you need to do when things start going pear-shaped.

1. Don’t think that funny noises are normal.

If your computer starts making noises that it doesn’t ordinarily make, try and do a quick back up and then switch it off. The turning off part is especially important if the noises are quite disturbing, like grinding.

If you hope that the noises will somehow stop on their own and don’t turn it off, you risk further damage to the hard drive. You also risk your valuable data being overwritten by new data, like automatic temporary files by desktop applications.

2. You can give software a go if you really want to.

You can get data recovery software – before the problem occurs. You can get free software and you can buy software. Buy it. Free software often doesn’t do what it says it does and it can also complicate a problem that may not have been complicated to begin with. Even bought software isn’t always as good as the manufacturers like to think.

Do some research and buy the best that you can afford. And keep a specialist’s number on speed dial.

3. Don’t mess with it.

Don’t uninstall and reinstall any programmes. If you do this you could overwrite all of your old data and even the best recovery specialists will have to work extra hard to try reach your data that is buried beneath layers of problems.

If you are familiar with a computer’s innards then you can unplug it and remove the hard drive, so that all you have to do is take it with you to the data recovery guys. Don’t try this if you don’t have a clue. Just take in your whole machine and leave it to the professionals.

4. Get in your car and drive.

Some data recovery companies will pick up and drop off the drive, which is great because you don’t need to worry about handling the damaged drive or about packing it correctly.

If you do have to take in the drive yourself, ask for packing instructions. The last thing you want is to have your unprotected drive rolling around your boot or sliding from the seat to the foot well when you take a corner or get too vigorous with the brakes.

The bottom line is that it’s always best to have your data restored by a professional. You might be prepared to risk your personal data with some self-recovery attempts, but businesses should certainly not do this.


So, what are the take-ways from this?

1)     Back up everything all the time.

2)     Find the most reputable data recovery company in your city and keep their contact details handy.

Data Recovery Myth Buster

Don’t slap it, freeze it, spin it or smother it in peanut butter. Computer users are often frustrated and concerned that necessary data has been permanently lost when a hard drive gives up. To follow are a few facts that you need to remember when facing situations of data loss.

On formatting:
The hard drive won’t die if you format it. Formatting will not magically cause it to gather dust and/or lint on the platter surface. Formatting doesn’t worsen bad sectors nor does it stress the machine. You can format it every day and probably not change the unpredictable lifespan of the drive.

On power supplies:
The information placed on a hard drive has very little to do with its lifespan. The same applies in the case of power supplies. Cheap, low-power cables do not slowly choke your hard drive to death, although a power surge may fry it. Check the connectors carefully, and ensure that you turn off the device and unplug it when it’s not in use. Hard drives recalibrate (spin up and down) to regulate temperature, or when they can’t properly read data from the platters. This may be a symptom of a dying hard drive, but it is not caused by insufficient power. A drive with insufficient energy will simply power down.

On bad sectors:
A bad sector is a part of the drive that can’t be read or written properly. In most occasions logical data recovery will restore misplaced information. In other words, simply reformatting the drive won’t work. Bad sectors are a sign that something is wrong with the drive. You may be able to avoid bad sectors by re-routing and using previously spare sectors – but this pressurises the performance of the heads. Always back up data before attempting to delete bad sectors. Don’t ignore bad sectors in the hope that they’ll go away, as they are a sign of problems to come.

Don’t be misled by zany data recovery myths that have “reportedly” been successful. Save your data and the use of your hard drive by sending it to professionals for reliable and safe data recovery services.

Recovering Files on Novell Netware

Novell Netware is one of the better prepared operating systems when it comes to providing back ups for its files and securing them against accidental deletion. Netware stores all deleted files and keeps them available in case of emergency recovery.

There is, however, a catch, the feature is invalidated when the user runs a directory purge or when someone runs a purge on the entire volume. In addition to this, when Netware senses that the server is running out of storage space, it will remove deleted files, starting with the oldest, which are deemed the most unnecessary.

It is possible to recover deleted files, corrupt volumes and to save data if the drive can’t be mounted. Certain experts are also able to retrieve data from corrupted, deleted and formatted Netware volumes, and failed drives.

As with all occasions of data loss, once you have realised that the loss has occurred it is important to stop working on your computer at once. Do not try to fix the problem yourself; you will invariably do more harm than good. Take it to the data recovery specialists, they know what they are doing and they have the tools to do it. You can relax, safe in the knowledge that all of your computer concerns will be taken care of.

Overwritten Data

Hard drive files are stored on areas of the disk called sectors, in units called clusters. Clusters can be strewn across the hard disk, or in a continuous line. A windows file system called NTFS or the older FAT system, logically orders data by assigning a file name to point to locations on the disk magnetic surface. The location contains all data pertaining to that file and the file name holds information about how to reorder or reassemble the data. Because the data may be located arbitrarily around the overall disk surface, it becomes very difficult for a data recovery expert to reconstruct the puzzle that is the complete file. So even if filenames could be recovered and the address on disk of the data could be found, there is no guarantee that all the necessary data can be restored to full original condition. So some, not all scenarios have successful outcomes.

According to a paper by Peter Gutman, New Zealand science professor, from 1996, it is proposed that data can be recovered from disk sectors that have been over written. He outlines how read/write disk heads never travel over the same exact area of the disk twice, so by using a scanning electron microscope, one can reveal a “ghost track” of the old sector. This was based on the type of hard disk drives that preceded the IDE or ATA style drives used commonly today.

Now with a massive increase in bit density per square inch, and a decrease in hard disk track widths (down to nano levels), the possibility of recovering data in this way has greatly reduced.

Thomas Feher has claimed that if a disk drive is opened in a hermetically safe, clean environment, specialized equipment can be used to read residual magnetic traces that surround the newly written tracks and extract old data, even if the data has been overwritten numerous additional times. He claims that one of the Companies that can achieve this level of high-tech data recovery is Kuert Information Management.