Could my hard drive be damaged?

  lagalloise 12:57 04 Mar 2009

Hi, I recently posted on here about problems getting an external caddy to work with the hard drive from my old computer, but have discovered there might be a more serious issue...

I'm sorry if this is a bit long!

I got a new computer in September and have been trying to get the data off the hard drive (all my photos, music and old uni work) from my old computer(which is IDE). The hard drive is relatively new as I bought it about a year ago to see if it could make my old computer faster. It didn't so I got a new one.

I've tried several caddies: The first one didn't work. The second one was the wrong size (my fault). The third one started smoking when I turned it on and so I sent it back. The fourth one doesn't work.

A friend who knows about these things came round and checked it and said that the smoking caddy could have damaged the hard drive, as it doesn't seem to do anything when turned on in the new caddy.

If this is the case does anyone know if I'll ever get my data back?

Here is my original thread if you want to look:

click here

  MAJ 13:03 04 Mar 2009

It's possible the smoking caddy could have damaged the drive, but maybe it hasn't. Maybe I have missed it, but have you tried attaching the old drive to your new computer, internally, as a Slave?

  lagalloise 13:36 04 Mar 2009

Hi, I haven't tried it as I would have to get an adapter as the old hard drive is IDE and the new computer is SATA.

I knew that was an option but was advised to try the caddy option first as I could then use it as an external hard drive.

Plus I've discovered the little jumper you have to take off the pins to make it into a slave drive is firmly stuck on and won't come off!

  Diemmess 13:42 04 Mar 2009


[Usually a power fault on a HD will cause an open rather than short cicuit]
So bearing in mind the very small possibility that the HD has an internal short which might damage any power circuit to which it is attached.....

Assuming that old and new HDs are either IDE or SATA (NOT a mixture)
You can mount the doubtful HD as a slave by very simple and easy means.

Remove the cover on the PC and as long as there is a spare socket available for the data lead and a spare power lead then don't bother to screw anything in.
Probably worthwhile to select Slave on the tiny jumpers near the plugged in leads

Just let the test HD dangle clear of other components and even a slip of card to avoid worry about contacting anything it shouldn't!
As long as the HD wont slip or be moved while it is running.

The PC can now be booted normally and should show in Windows.

  Diemmess 13:43 04 Mar 2009

Sorry to be so slow, you have just the snags I hoped would not be there!

  Jim_F 14:10 04 Mar 2009

Just connect the power to the drive and see if you can hear the motor spin up.

You should then hear a single seek - a faint click or two.

If the motor doesn't spin up or you hear a continuous clicking sound then its probably game over,

If all is OK at this stage then power down an connect the ide cable taking especial care over orientation as these are not always keyed.

I wouldn't test a failed drive in my main machine - I keep an old box for this sort of thing - the risk may be small but its there !

  Jim_F 14:12 04 Mar 2009

I hadn't seen the last 2 posts when typing but just to amplify - I would use the power supply from the caddy.

  lagalloise 14:58 04 Mar 2009

Well, I do still have the old computer so I could just put it back in and see if it does anything in there.

If it doesn't and it seems that the smoking caddy has damaged the hard drive....

is there any way of retrieving data from a drive that's this damaged?

I'm not averse to calling in the professionals!

  lagalloise 15:22 04 Mar 2009

Problem solved!

I suddenly thought that I might just have been sensible when I installed the new hard drive to my old computer and backed up everything onto the original hard drive which I then set as slave.

So I've got that one out and it all works in the caddy and I've found my stuff...

Phew, relief!!

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