Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

My son accidentally bump my laptop and the portable HDD fell to the floor while I'm transferring files. How can I get my data back?

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

If the drive is still working in some form - e.g. the drive is still spinning (you will be able to feel this when resting your hand on it, it will be vibrating just after you have plugged it in) - then I recommend buying a copy of Spinrite. If anything can still be read from the disk, Spinrite will certainly do so.

I used it a while back to recover my laptop's hard drive.

If it is not spinning at all, your only recourse is to send it to a specialist recovery service but this will cost a lot of money.

share|improve this answer
    
Also, if you are going to use spinrite, if possible remove the disk from the USB enclosure and attach it directly to the computer as Spinrite can not read the S.M.A.R.T. data it uses to recover the data over a USB connection. It will still work, but not as well. –  Scott Chamberlain Jul 18 '12 at 18:37
    
Good point Scott - though it doesn't really use SMART for much. If you listen to the author Steve Gibson, you'll realise he doesn't set much store in the SMART data except for certain limited things. Connecting direct is likely to speed things up a fair bit though. –  Julian Knight Jul 18 '12 at 20:12
    
Very true, @everyone else see the FAQ for more details about USB drives and Spinrite –  Scott Chamberlain Jul 19 '12 at 13:24

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.