Data Recovery Case Study: Toshiba Laptop HDD

A client recently got in touch after their laptop wouldn’t power up after a fall from a desk of about four feet. Our data recovery team were able to recover 95% of their data successfully!

We received a call on Tuesday morning from a London-based student who had dropped his laptop and found that it wasn’t booting up. There was no noise coming from the hard drive at all, and the client promptly removed it and sent it to our data recovery lab for a free diagnosis. Because of deadlines and the importance of the work stored on the hard drive, the client was naturally keen to get his data recovered as quickly and smoothly as possible. When the hard drive arrived in the lab, it was catalogued and given a unique bar code alongside the job reference number that was emailed to the client after he spoke to one of our team. The logistics department then sent the hard drive to our data recovery engineers.

Because of the drop, it was essential that the hard drive wasn’t powered up – the fact that it wasn’t likely did the client a favour, as it would have been damaged further. If one of the drive’s read/write heads is even slightly misaligned, it can lead to a catastrophic head crash. Remember, a mechanical HDD’s read/write heads hover just a few nanometres above the magnetic platters where your data is stored. Even a tiny knock can misalign the heads and cause a head crash, which is never ideal. All of our hard drive data recovery work is undertaken in our Class 100 clean room. This means that the conditions our data recovery technicians work in is similar to the conditions under which the hard drive was assembled in. Hard drives aren’t designed to be opened up, and are assembled in controlled conditions, so leave it to the professionals!

Our data recovery technicians soon found what the problem was – a damaged head. In order to recover the client’s data from the damaged hard drive, we needed to consult our library of 14,000+ spare parts that have been gathered over the years – kept in a room with a reinforced floor! Since this model of hard drive is found in a number of laptops, we were quickly able to find a donor hard drive. On the rare occasion we don’t have the part in our library, we’ll order it in for you. Once the damaged head was carefully replaced, we cloned the hard drive. One of our data recovery technicians was present at all times to ensure there wasn’t any hidden damage that hasn’t been spotted. We provided a file listing to the client, along with a no obligation quote, which was accepted. We transferred the data onto an external hard drive and sent it by next-day courier; from the moment the hard drive arrived into our office, the data was recovered in less than 24 hours.

Data Recovery