Recovering a dead harddrive... almost - Page 2


Page 2 of 2 FirstFirst 12
Results 16 to 30 of 30

Thread: Recovering a dead harddrive... almost

  1. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Tampa, FL USA
    Posts
    2,193
    Right now I'm comparing my options between the UltBootCD and dd_rescue.
    I found a program on SourceForge called myrescue that may be better than dd_rescue (for my purposes).

    About the freezer thing, I read up on it, and it sounds like something I should use as an absolute last resort.
    http://www.hardforum.com/showthread.php?p=1028112728
    Last edited by Sepero; 01-05-2007 at 05:59 AM.

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    681
    that really doesnt make much sense if you have a clue as to what the freezer trick is actually doing, but more power to you
    i agree with you it shouldnt of worked , but it did. i had a bad motor in the drive. I can't tell you why the trick worked on that drive. I have another drives with motor problems and it didnt work. . I think that the motor was on its way out and wasnt dead yet : ) .
    "Software is like sex: it's better when its free."
    -LINUS TORVALDS

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Fife, Scotland
    Posts
    1,794
    I agree with saikee that it sounds like a head crash, or at least a sticking head.

    Unfortunately, this won't help you much, but anyone else browseing this website might find the following useful for a knackered hard drive:

    You CAN replace the entire drive electronics on IDE drives with another module from another drive, but it MUST be absolutely identical. Exact same make, model and size. You would also want to keep the revision of the drive firmware the same as well since using the wrong controller can cause SEVERE system damage (possibly fried motherboard and worse).

    I had a knackered Quantum Fireball 40Gb a few years back but still managed to sell it on eBay for a tidy profit since the heads were shot but the controller was good. Since the drive had been discontinued (Maxtor bought out Quantum) they were VERY hard to find. So, if you don't manage to recover the data, you could sell the controller (either now or in a few years!).

    Sorry I couldn't be of much help, but if the data is recreatable then I would suggest you do that rather than try to recover the data. I know PC World here in the UK start at a minimum of 600 (yeah, we know they're crap, but it's only an example) for full data recovery and they send it off to someone else to do (after flogging you a new hard drive when only the controller cable is disconnected).

    Sadly, the only real solution is to backup the drive if it has valuable data on it. OK, I'm a hypocrite, the laptop I'm typing on has NEVER been backed up (will get round to it one day) and I really couldn't afford a failure right now. I'm sure I'll be alright for a few more months at the very least!

    Good luck with the drive,

    James
    -----------------------------
    UseLinux.net
    -----------------------------

    perl -e 'use Math::Complex;$|=1;for$r(0..24){for$c (0..79){$C=cplx(($c/20.0)-3.0,-($r/12.0)+1.0);$Z= cplx(0,0);for($i=0;($i<80)&&(abs($Z)<2.0);$i++){$Z =$Z*$Z+$C;}print$i>=80?"*":" ";}print"\n";}'

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Posts
    63
    If it's not mechanical SpinRite will fix it. I've recovered numerous drives with it. I'm a huge fan of this program. It's commercial, but it works and will recover just about anything.

  5. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Newcastle upon Tyne
    Posts
    2,984
    From my own experience If the fault isn't mechanical then any Linux Live CD can get a 100% recovery too.

    dd can read every "1" and "0" from a hard drive and write the same binary pattern on another drive, word by word or sector by sector any way we want. We can clone any information out as long as the hard disk can be read.

    I would like to be enlightened why a FreeDos program like SpinRite can do better than a Linux Live CD, especially if I have to part with $89.
    Last edited by saikee; 01-06-2007 at 08:02 PM.
    Linux user started Jun 2004 - No. 361921
    Using a Linux live CD to clone XP
    To install Linux and keep Windows MBR untouched
    Adding extra Linux & Doing it in a lazy way
    A Grub menu booting 100+ systems & A "Howto" to install and boot 145 systems
    Just cloning tips Just booting tips A collection of booting tips

    Judge asked Linux "You are being charged murdering Windoze by stabbing its heart with a weapon, what was it?" Replied Linux "A Live CD"

  6. #21
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Posts
    63
    From what I understand, it has to do with how it works with the heads also. Basically, it works its butt off to try and read data over and over again. If it can't read a sector one way, it will try and hit it from another direction..also trying at different speeds. It also works as a maintenance tool. It's ability to control it at the hardware level is an advantage. This is just my basic understanding of it.

    I just thought I'd throw it out there as another alternative that has always worked for me. I, of course, prefer free and opensource tools over commercial ones, but this one has never failed me. Just my 2 cents worth.

  7. #22
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Saint, Paul, MN USA
    Posts
    83
    Hi.

    The SpinRite program tries to recover the data, dd basically just reads it.

    My understanding is that most of the modes in SR will read a sector and save the contents. If an original read is bad, several attempts are made to extract as much good data as is possible. If the data is good, it then writes and reads that sector again to make sure that the sector is usable, and finally restores the original data.

    It is certainly possible that the drivers in *nix work hard at reading data also, but I don't think they they take the time and effort to try to recover data the way SR does.

    Another difference is probably obvious: dd can write to an alternate device, SpinRite stays on the device you select.

    SpinRite and similar tools are not a cure-all. I recently had an IBM SCSI disk go completely bad, wouldn't spin, wouldn't even select. There is nothing that SR or other software can do with that. If the data were critical, the failing electro-mechanical component would need to be replaced for data recovery. Usually it only takes one experience like that to cement the importance of backups in one's mind.

    I'm sure I am not doing SR adequate justice, so if you are interested, please see http://www.grc.com/sr/spinrite.htm for details ... cheers, hotcold
    [ "Sure, I can help you with that." -- USBank voice recognition system. ]
    ( Mn, 2.6.11-x1, AMD-64 3000+, ASUS A8V Deluxe, 1 GB, SATA + IDE, Matrox G400 AGP )

  8. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Tampa, FL USA
    Posts
    2,193
    I am back. I want to say thank you very much to everyone who replied to this thread!

    To Satanic Atheist:
    Thanks for your advice on selling the unit. I was just going to toss it, but maybe it can serve to help someone else.
    Also, YES backups are the ONLY TRUE way to go.

    It's a retarded story, but I actually DID have a backup. (The drive actually was my /home partition. So it was the most valuable info on my whole system!) At the point that I realized the harddrive was dieing and almost dead, I tried to update my backup one last time. Well, long-story-short, my backup was relatively up to date, but I got greedy. I ended up entering the backup command incorrectly and completely erased my backup.


    Just so everyone understands IT WAS A HARDWARE FAILURE. (Though, I did end up having some bad blocks too.) The worst part being that when the drive accessed certain locations, THE DRIVE WOULD COMPLETELY FREEZE, REQUIRING A REBOOT! (OMG frustration!)


    Now for the good news.
    I made a 99.99% recovery of the drive!

    After _MUCH_ personal research, I decided to go with simply 2 programs: hdparm & myrescue

    Normally hdparm is used to increase or boost performance of harddrives. Luckly, after much googling, I found a single post by a very wise person about using hdparm to disable DMA, read-ahead, and special features on a harddrive. (My immediate thought was "DUH! Why didn't I think of that before?".)

    The myrescue program is very much like the dd_rescue program (but with slightly worse documentation, and it required me to compile it). Unless you're willing to go to just about any length to recover your data (like me), you'd probably be better off with dd_recue.


    Here are the exact commands I used:
    Code:
    # Copying from /dev/hdb to /dev/hda6. Device hda6 must be equal or greater in size than /dev/hdb.
    hdparm -A0 -B255 -c0 -d0 -n0 -M128 -r1 -W0 /dev/hdb
    ./myrescue -b1024 -B bitmap -S -r1 /dev/hdb /dev/hda6
    It slowed my harddrive to a CRAWL, and to back up the 40GB drive took approximately 15 HOURS! TO MY COMPLETE SHOCK, IT RECOVERED EVERYTHING EXCEPT 2 BAD BLOCKS. I WAS EXTATIC! (I'm still pretty stoked! )


    Unfortunately, I was unable to recover the 2 bad blocks (but I did not try too hard, as I did not wish to push my luck). Thankfully, that is the relative end of my little adventure. Now I must find myself a new backup drive. I don't think I'll be going with WD and their Microtrash tools. Anyone know of a drive maker that is a supporter of FOSS?

  9. #24
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Sheridan, Michigan
    Posts
    320
    I'm going to add this info to my FAQ page. I already had hdpram on there and I found myrescue on SF last week, so the next release will have these tools. People always ask if they can save damaged hard drives and now I can tell them maybe.

    Thanks Sepero and others
    Patrick Verner
    www.partedmagic.com

  10. #25
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Fife, Scotland
    Posts
    1,794
    (My immediate thought was "DUH! Why didn't I think of that before?".)
    Me feels stoopid as well. I've had to disable DMA and stuff with HDParm when my 40Gb Quantum was dying. Oops, sorry.

    dd can read every "1" and "0" from a hard drive and write the same binary pattern on another drive, word by word or sector by sector any way we want. We can clone any information out as long as the hard disk can be read.
    Does that mean that theoretically, it's possible to completely copy ANYTHING such as a DVD or PlayStation DVD? Surely it could just copy the entire encryption onto another disc rather than attempt to decrypt it or balk at bad sectors? I'm not looking for the obvious illegal angle, but backing up media can be handy - they're expensive to lose!

    James
    -----------------------------
    UseLinux.net
    -----------------------------

    perl -e 'use Math::Complex;$|=1;for$r(0..24){for$c (0..79){$C=cplx(($c/20.0)-3.0,-($r/12.0)+1.0);$Z= cplx(0,0);for($i=0;($i<80)&&(abs($Z)<2.0);$i++){$Z =$Z*$Z+$C;}print$i>=80?"*":" ";}print"\n";}'

  11. #26
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    SF Bay Area, CA
    Posts
    14,947
    Well, the bad sectors are sometimes the problem -- there are some CD copy protection systems that require specific values in "bad" sectors, I think.

    I know there are some CD copy protection systems that rely on CD writers not being able to write out certain bit patterns (this seems to be a limitation in the CD writers' firmware, because certain models -- mostly old ones -- can successfully write out these sectors). The copy protection code reads a known-weak sector, and if it gets an error, it fails its check. So it seems logical that the opposite approach (try to read a known-bad sector, and if you don't get an error, or get the "wrong" error value, then fail the check) might also be in some systems.

    But this is CD (and DVD?) copy protection; it's not related to encryption. AFAIK, you should be able to make a bit-for-bit backup of any movie DVD, and probably at least some data DVDs (like the ones containing games).
    Last edited by bwkaz; 01-07-2007 at 06:20 PM.

  12. #27
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    3,289
    the problem there would be needing a dual-layer dvd burner and media for many modern dvd's to do a direct copy

    and yea there is a copy protection scheme with bad sectors on the disc of some new mainly sony media dvd movies, you cannot copy these dvd's bit for bit, the only way to play them is to route around the bad sectors during playback, luckily most dvdplayers follow the menu for playback so playback is still possible, if playback is possible you can get the data

  13. #28
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    SF Bay Area, CA
    Posts
    14,947
    Oh, that's right, the whole menu discussion. I'd forgotten about that. And the dual-layer stuff makes sense as well (some movies would even require dual-sided media, but as this is a pain when watching the movie, I doubt it's being used all that often anymore -- but as I don't do many DVDs, I don't know for sure).

  14. #29
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Toronto, Canada
    Posts
    763
    I'm a hypocrite, the laptop I'm typing on has NEVER been backed up (will get round to it one day)
    something we all preach but not always do

    great post though....some valuable information.
    Check out the Unix/Linux Administration Program at Seneca College.
    Thanx to everyone that helped/helps me on this forum!

    t0mmyw on #linuxn00b

  15. #30
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    3,289
    no, not many dvd's need flipping, there were some trials with that for longer movies, but it didnt go over very well, now with the HD dvd formats coming out, there wont be much need once the format wars are over

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •