disk read error with unrecoverable problems

dovidf
dovidf used Ask the Experts™
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An XP Pro Dell Latitude d160 laptop suddenly died. Any attempt to boot yields disk read error press ctl alt del to restart.

I booted in the recovery console and attempted chkdsk /r and chkdsk /r /p and it reported the volume appears to contain one or more unrecoverable problems.

The user's backup was run while the disk reported problems and is useless.

What is the best next step?

Is Spinrite a choice or should I just send it to a data recovery service and not play with it for fear of causing greater damage?

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It sounds like a bad drive. I don't think Spinrite will help. I'd just take it to data recovery since it's obviously important.
If you can't afford professional recovery, then give Ontrack a try.

You can recover 1 file for free but if it sees all your files you can purchase it.
http://www.krollontrack.com/resource-library/free-downloads/

Commented:
Have you tried booting from a Bart - or other recovery - CD? That might let you retrieve at least some of the data...
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dovidfCEO

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Commented:
I used ubcd4win and it didn't see a C drive
dovidfCEO

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Commented:
What's a good data recovery company for someone based in New York state?
dovidfCEO

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Commented:
I replaced the drive and rebuilt the system. The user decided not to pay for recovery which would have cost a minimum $1,200

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