Below is an email I sent to Maxtor a couple months ago:
Hello, recently when attempting to reboot my computer, I received a bunch or error messages telling me to perform a chkdsk. The computer wouldn't shut down so I manually shut it down and restarted it. Quick scenerio, I have two hard drives, one that came with my Dell and the second is the one I purchased from you for all my personal things. It's a Maxblast 3 ata hard drive, 40gigs. After restarting my computer, I would double click on the drive it it said "the file or directory is corrupted and unreadable." It wouldn't let me perform a chkdsk and my buddy who is a Linux nerd attempted to mount it from his computer and it was unsucessful. We're bother comp sci majors so we know what we're doing. My friends computer recognized the hard drive and it was partitioned. My friend believes the NTFS is corrupted. Regardless I NEED some type of answer because I have far to valuable information on that hard drive. Please give me a worthwhile solution. I would greatly appreciate it.
Of course, they had absolutely no worthwhile solutions and just passed off a link to an uncountable number of Date Recovery websites. My problem is, how do I know which one is good and reliable? If anybody could suggest a company with good data recovery software, I would greatly appreciate it.