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hard disc crashed ? accidental format ?


don't lose hope, because there are lots of ways to recover your important data,


first of all do NOT use your hard disc anymore until you are ready to start recovering data, it would be a good idea to connect the drive as a SLAVE device in your computer (with another drive as MASTER), of course if it's a laptop then you will need to use other options, such as connecting the drive in a modular bay or connecting it externally via USB.


So how do we recover the data then ?


Well if the disc is still readable and you only accidently formatted it or re-partitioned it then you can buy the following software


GetDataBack NTFS


Simply install the software on a working computer running windows XP (or 2000) and as I said earlier mount the drive that you accidently formatted as a slave drive, then using the getdataback NTFS software, highlight the drive/directories you want to recover and you'll get the chance to copy all the data FROM the slave drive TO the master drive (so obviously, you'll need lots of free space on the MASTER drive). Once done, you can re-format, re-partition the SLAVE drive and copy the data back.


Ok, what about if the drive itself is giving errors (bad sectors, read/write failures, clicking), well if it is then all hope is still not lost, get over to Knoppix.net and download the LiveCD. You can then boot your computer (change bios to boot to CD first) from the LiveCD and once it is booted, you should see your drive partitions listed on the Desktop. At this point you can mark the data you want to recover and copy it to your MASTER drive OR to an external USB hard disc. The advantage here is that as Knoppix is linux based it won't abort the file copy process like Windows does, it will prompt you to retry again and again, and if it fails to copy a file, you can skip and it'll continue onto the next file.


Finally if both of the above don't help as the drive is too damaged or unreadable consider using SpinRite 6, this software from GRC will do extensive bit read/write/sector analysis and can recover bad/unreadable sectors, but be warned the process can take HOURS if not days (depending on the hard drive size and damage to the files/sectors/heads.)


hope this helps




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