Getting Hard Drives Restored

If you have been following my blog the past two weeks, I'm sure you are aware of the hard drive problems I have been having. First my laptop's hard drive failed (i.e. it started the clicking sound that indicates "death") then when I agreed to give up 4 months of my life by having Applecare replace the hard drive for free, my back up hard drive failed. It's not dead mechanically, but it is definitely corrupted.

Since Justin, who is a computer engineer and worked as an IT person, is very busy with his job, we decided it might be best to take my laptop to a professional. Onyx, a business specializing in data recovery in the Atlanta area, was recommended to us by Apple, so we thought we would give them a try. While they were able to handle all of my Applecare issues (by sending my laptop out to the Apple depot in Tennessee), when I took my back up hard drive to them, I was impressed by how little they were actually capable of doing!

I understand that Justin and I are more familiar with computers and software than the average user, but when I take my laptop somewhere, I don't want to pay them to do what I could do from home. At that point, why don't I just pay myself? I can find data recovery software to try just as easily as they can!

So yes, I brought my back up drive, which is a MyPassport drive by Western Digital, to Onyx only to have them plug the drive in and see that it said it was "unreadable". They handed it back and said they couldn't do anything with it. Umm... if it were "readable", I wouldn't have brought it in!

Needless to say, Justin had recently bought a program called "Data Rescue 3" which was actually pretty useful. I was not able to recover all of my files (or even half), but I was able to recover some. We are still working to figure out how Time Machine back ups work and if anything backed up by Time Machine is recoverable despite being corrupted. I will let you all know.

In the mean time, I recommend having a back up of your back up. Or perhaps an online back up with something like Dropbox.

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