retrieving internet browsing data from broken hard drive

I have a damaged laptop (win 7)
before I can repair it, I need to collect the browser history

can you tell me how to do this ?

Europa MacDonaldChief slayer of dragonsAsked:
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Hook the hard drive up via an external USB adapter and browse out to the temp file of the user's profile.

Default location is usually C:\Users\*username*\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files

Europa MacDonaldChief slayer of dragonsAuthor Commented:
there is no

Temporary Internet Files

You'll need to enable hidden files and folders to see the Temp folder. To do this please visit this link.
The 7 Worst Nightmares of a Sysadmin

Fear not! To defend your business’ IT systems we’re going to shine a light on the seven most sinister terrors that haunt sysadmins. That way you can be sure there’s nothing in your stack waiting to go bump in the night.

It might not be visible, but it is there.  Open Windows Explorer and in the address field type in C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows up to the Windows folder.  You will probably not see it listed in the Windows folder, but if you futher append the address with \Temporary Internet Files it will probably take you into the folder.

Europa MacDonaldChief slayer of dragonsAuthor Commented:
thats strange, I have show hidden files and folders enabled, and it does not show but when I typed as you suggested, it is there

why is this ?
Europa MacDonaldChief slayer of dragonsAuthor Commented:
thank you

ok, so where do I get the browser history data ?
You can find Internet Explorer browsing history in the history "index.dat" file, you will need software to read the contents of the dat file.

This is a permanent record of browsing history for IE, it is normally a hidden file and is not easy to delete.

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
If you have Windows 7 or Windows Vista then index.dat files are in these locations (note that on your PC they can be on other drive instead of drive C):

C:\Users\<username>\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\index.dat
C:\Users\<username>\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Low\Content.IE5index.dat
C:\Users\<username>\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\UserData\index.dat
C:\Users\<username>\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\UserData\Low\index.dat

Europa MacDonaldChief slayer of dragonsAuthor Commented:
thanks for that.

that viewer only views the file relating to the installation of the pc Im working on. It doesnt allow for me to open the index.dat file of another computer, inside a USB drive
Danny ChildIT ManagerCommented:
if you took a copy of your own file, and then replaced it with the one form the bad disk, then the viewer should work?
That should work.  Just rename your index.dat file to something like index.dat_old and then place the index.dat from the external drive on your machine like DanCh99 stated and it should read it.  
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.