A guy I work with just came by to ask me about a damaged thumb drive/USB flash drive. Apparently his son dropped it on a hard surface and it won't power up anymore. They've tried plugging it into multiple machines without success, even though each port they tried was able to power other USB devices. He knows it's not a lost cause because a local tech store is offering to recover the data for $500, but he says they're not worth that much. I figured someone on SU would have an idea about this; he doesn't care about using the drive in the future, just wants to salvage a few files that would be a pain to recreate. Is this possible without advanced equipment, and if so, how?
He said he already tried the advice on the Internet about typing in different drive letters and such, but that failed because there was no power going to the drive. He also said that he opened the case up at one point, but I'm not sure what, if anything, he did inside.