LinuxQuestions.org
Help answer threads with 0 replies.
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Hardware
User Name
Password
Linux - Hardware This forum is for Hardware issues.
Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?

Notices



Reply
 
Search this Thread
Old 03-05-2014, 09:07 PM   #1
maples
Member
 
Registered: Oct 2013
Location: IN, USA
Distribution: Arch, Debian Wheezy
Posts: 431

Rep: Reputation: 110Reputation: 110
Suggestions on how to rescue files from a friend's dying laptop hard drive


Hi!

My friend recently dropped his laptop, from about two feet. At first, things seemed fine, but then games slowed down, then he got a few Blue Screens (tm), and now it seems that the Windows bootloader can't find a Windows installation on the hard drive.

To me, it sounds like he had a head crash. My plans were to boot from a Lubuntu flash drive that I keep with me, and then open up its file manager and start copying files to more flash drives and other external media until we get everything we can or the drive quits.

I was thinking about trying out the dd command (coincidentally, I read an article about how to use it last week), but since part of the drive is obviously bad, it might not be the best idea. Also, we will probably only have flash drives available to copy files on to.

IMHO, this doesn't sound like a very good plan. Does anyone have any other suggestions? I would prefer to stick within the Lubuntu if possible, but I would be willing to try other things as well, as long as they have clear instructions or is basic enough that a newbie could use (in case something goes wrong, which is bound to happen with a dying drive).

Thanks!

EDIT: BTW, I've told him that he should leave it turned off until we start to rescue his files

Last edited by maples; 03-05-2014 at 09:08 PM.
 
Old 03-05-2014, 09:31 PM   #2
metaschima
Senior Member
 
Registered: Dec 2013
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 1,526

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
If you need just a few files, you should focus on those and get them off ASAP.

If you need many files, then you may be better off using 'ddrescue' to image the whole drive to another equal or larger drive. Then you can use whatever tools like testdisk/photorec or foremost to get the files that are damaged from the good drive.

Modern laptops have HDDs with drop sensors that park the heads when you drop the laptop. How old is this laptop ? Either way, the HDD could be bad even without dropping it.
 
Old 03-05-2014, 09:43 PM   #3
maples
Member
 
Registered: Oct 2013
Location: IN, USA
Distribution: Arch, Debian Wheezy
Posts: 431

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 110Reputation: 110
I will ask him before we even start if there any files that are REALLY important, and get that first.

As for ddrescue, I'm 99% sure that we'll only be able to use flash drives, but you never know...

As for the age, I can only guess. It has an Intel Pentium processor, if that means anything to you. It also has Windows 8, and I think UEFI boot, which makes me think that it's newer. But even if it has a free-fall sensor, what if Windows decided that freefall is the perfect time to defrag the disk?

As for it already being bad, I'm inclined to doubt it. He had no problems (that I'm aware of) before the drop. Maybe it was a tiny defect but it was still able to operate normally, and the drop just amplified the defect?

Whatever the problem is, I have a feeling that it won't last that much longer. Once we get everyhing off of it, we might crack the drive open and see if there's a streak in the middle of the platters.
 
Old 03-06-2014, 09:05 AM   #4
onebuck
Moderator
 
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Midwest USA, Central Illinois
Distribution: SlackwareŽ
Posts: 11,451
Blog Entries: 4

Rep: Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505
Member Response

Hi,

You can get some useful utilities from: Tools, Recovery, Diagnostic, Emergency

Hope this helps.
 
Old 03-07-2014, 05:46 PM   #5
Habitual
Senior Member
 
Registered: Jan 2011
Distribution: Undecided
Posts: 3,619
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Triinity Rescue Kit
 
Old 03-07-2014, 09:10 PM   #6
jefro
Guru
 
Registered: Mar 2008
Posts: 12,087

Rep: Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521Reputation: 1521
Might consider some command like dd or ddrescue to image it off. Any time you use a damaged drive, it could make it worse.
 
Old 03-14-2014, 05:13 PM   #7
DiskChris
Member
 
Registered: Jul 2012
Posts: 31

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
If its a UEFI computer with Windows 8, make sure secure boot is disabled or you will problems booting linux. Yeah I would ask if there is any *really* important data, and copy that first, then as others have said use ddrescue. Ddrescue is supposed to use an algorithm designed minimize the stress on failing drives.
 
Old 03-14-2014, 05:52 PM   #8
onebuck
Moderator
 
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Midwest USA, Central Illinois
Distribution: SlackwareŽ
Posts: 11,451
Blog Entries: 4

Rep: Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505Reputation: 1505
Member Response

Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by DiskChris View Post
If its a UEFI computer with Windows 8, make sure secure boot is disabled or you will problems booting linux. Yeah I would ask if there is any *really* important data, and copy that first, then as others have said use ddrescue. Ddrescue is supposed to use an algorithm designed minimize the stress on failing drives.
There are several distributions that can be installed to a UEFI system. You just have to follow directions for your particular distribution. For Slackware you can look at: http://docs.slackware.com/howtos:sla..._uefi_hardware

Really no need to use Legacy mode in the BIOS unless that is the only way to get a particular Gnu/Linux installed on a UEFI system. UEFI is a good protocol to prevent unwarranted or wanted issues with a system via firmware.
 
Old 03-15-2014, 02:18 PM   #9
maples
Member
 
Registered: Oct 2013
Location: IN, USA
Distribution: Arch, Debian Wheezy
Posts: 431

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 110Reputation: 110
It was a UEFI boot system, but I could use the boot menu to select "boot from USB" in "legacy boot" mode. I only had time to get the REALLY important stuff off (his Eagle Scout project) because we did this in the library before school, but I plan on taking another round at it some other time. When that happens, I'll take a closer look into ddrescue.

Thanks!
 
Old 03-15-2014, 03:45 PM   #10
boutje
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jul 2011
Posts: 4

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Post Dying hard disk afther dropping laptop

@maples
You can use Hiren's Boot CD.
Download it at http://www.hirensbootcd.org/download/ and burn on a cd.
Dissable UEFI by accessing BIOS and set your boot order to "boot from cd".
Boot from the cd and shoose Mini Windows XP in the menu.
This link explains how you can recover data from a dying hard disk.: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i_RpUxfMayU
I hope this will solve your friend's problem.
 
  


Reply

Tags
hard drives, rescue


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
[SOLVED] hard drive dying, what is the best way to copy? Undermind Linux - Hardware 3 04-26-2010 02:34 PM
How to know if hard drive is dying? alan_ri Linux - Hardware 26 05-28-2008 01:11 PM
Hard drive dying? Lindy Linux - Hardware 2 11-25-2006 04:03 AM
My hard drive is dying... what to do? terence8888 Linux - Software 6 11-23-2006 04:58 PM
Is this hard drive dying? newmoon Linux - Hardware 5 11-14-2005 03:46 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:10 PM.

Main Menu
Advertisement
My LQ
Write for LQ
LinuxQuestions.org is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
Syndicate
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
identi.ca: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration