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foolproofing mac HD crash

Posted on 2013-11-19
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Last Modified: 2013-11-21
the imac crashed and the apple store say the HD is beyond recovery..  and data lost.. what options should i have used to keep the data extra safer?
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Question by:25112
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LVL 83

Assisted Solution

by:Dave Baldwin
Dave Baldwin earned 84 total points
ID: 39660593
Other than backing up your data onto another disk?
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by:strung
strung earned 250 total points
ID: 39660615
The data is not necessarily lost. If the drive still spins, then DataRescue III will probably recover it:  

http://www.prosofteng.com/products/data_rescue.php

Is your data worth $99?

If so, pull the drive and put it into an external USB enclosure. Attach it to another Mac and see if that Mac will read the drive.

If not, download the free trial version of DataRescue III and it will tell you if you can recover data from the drive and will let you recover one file as a test. If that works, then you can spend the $99 to unlock the trial version and rescue the rest of your data.
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by:uniqueinfotech
uniqueinfotech earned 166 total points
ID: 39660634
Checkout Spinrite, which is able to do a low level non-destructive format, which allows for the drive to perform it's own internal recovery and sector swapping proceedures. You'll need to pull the drive and run it on a PC though.

There is no trial version but they do a full money back guarentee if you are not happy for no reason (I've personally verified this). Also the cost is $89.

I would never attempt data recovery from a USB interface as this prevents access to much of the ATA Spec which can aid in recovery and drive monitoring.

Failing this and if the data is really important to you you'll have to take it to a professional data recovery company they'll generally charge you in excess of $500.
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LVL 53

Assisted Solution

by:strung
strung earned 250 total points
ID: 39660685
Unique, have you tried Spinrite on a Mac formatted drive? In my experience trying to use utilities intended for a PC formatted drive on a Mac formatted drive can often have dire consequences.

I have used DataRescue on a number of occasions and can attest to the fact that if the drive spins, DataRescue can usually recover the data.
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by:uniqueinfotech
uniqueinfotech earned 166 total points
ID: 39660797
strung, one of unique features of spinrite is that it doesn't read the file system. The only requirement is that it uses the BIOS which is why a PC is required. Otherwise it'll recover any HDD even ones that are encrypted. I've used spinrite in cases even when data recovery has failed.

Just putting another solution out there.
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LVL 53

Expert Comment

by:strung
ID: 39660805
Fair enough.
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LVL 5

Author Comment

by:25112
ID: 39663624
this is helpful.

could you suggest what are good clone tools.. that can get a snapshot of the drive, which can be used later to restore? (is this little different than a backup?)
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by:
strung earned 250 total points
ID: 39663809
Macs come with built-in "Time Machine" which makes incremental backups, much like Windows Server Shadowcopies:

http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1427

You can also clone the drive using the built-in Disk Utility, but not while booted from the volume you are cloning. Instead you have to boot from the recovery volume by booting while holding down Command-R.

A good commercial cloning utility which will let you live-clone a drive you are booted from is Carbon Copy Cloner:  http://www.bombich.com
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Author Comment

by:25112
ID: 39666018
thanks
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