Let us consider disk drives, and the sheer amount of information we store on them, think about everything they have replaced. Does anyone really keep a paper diary or phonebook anymore? Possibly
one or two of us, but most people are storing their
information digitally - either to computer or to the cloud, or both.
Storage capacities of modern hard disks mean that you can keep essentially anything you want to on the hard drive these days. Organisations can store all their data, teachers and pupils all of their coursework, and having a complete video collection on external hard drive no longer a challenge.
With the increase of data being held digitally, there is an increase in the demand for companies that provide data recovery services. Hard drives may now be able to hold much more data than before but they do still go wrong, and when they do the data on them is often required.
Hard drives do not simply fail in the same way, there are various ways they can fail. They can get an electrical malfunction, the data on them can be lost due to destructive viruses and malware. For these reasons, data recovery companies have needed to develop many ways of recovering corrupt data and files and folders from hard disks that have become faulty.
A common method of insuring against data loss and increasing capacity at the same time is to use some form of RAID server system. RAID comes in many different varieties, the most common being RAID 0, RAID 1 and RAID 5. Each variety is different of provides different levels of data redundancy. Once again though, RAID and servers still break and successfully recovering the data from a crashed RAID server is often contingent on the RAID data recovery company you choose being capable enough and having the knowledge to recover the data successfully.
Not all data loss problems require a data recovery company though, because not all situations are due to a hard drive failure. For example if the data structures are still intact on the hard drive, a software based recovery may be made. Decent software to perform a file recovery can be found on the internet, but be careful because a lot of it is rubbish. If the data structures on the hard drive have been damaged (eg. by a system reinstall or an accidental deletion) then software won't really help you that much.
The instances where a data recovery service will be needed is if the computer's operating system cannot communicate with the hard disk drive to get information. This will be most noticeable when the computer boots. A message will be displayed telling you that the hard disk drive can not be found. If you see this message it means that the computer can connect the the hard drive. This is most likely because there is something wrong with the drive. In these cases, call a data recovery expert. You can find ones recommended on the internet.
It's important that you don't just back up your hard drives and servers as much as possible, but also to keep in mind that you have alternatives. At the first hint of a problem, you should not ignore it, because it will only get worse. You need to take action and deal with it. Otherwise you run a high risk of losing data.
Don't take it upon yourself to attempt to fix your hard drive and recover the files if you aren't a professional. This is especially true with servers and RAID arrays that frequently distribute the data they store across their drives. You really do not have the specialised expertise or the surroundings to do as such. For example, dust in you home might get on the heads of the hard drive and cause additional failure. Professionals can extract the data in a proper recovery environment and copy it onto a new hard drive for you as it's often not feasible to get the original drive working as it was before the failure.
In cases where a hard disk drive has been physically damaged, it usually requires a couple of parts to be replaced in order for the drive to start working again. This sounds a simple process but it isn't. Taking a hard drive to bits and then rebuilding it is a specialist job. You wouldn't take a jet engine apart, rebuild it and then fly on the plane that uses it. It's the same with hard drive recovery - it is best left to the professionals.