Featured Article

Recovering Data from a Laptop


I have self-built a home server, into which I planned to install 2 WD hard drives, one with 500GB of storage space, and the other with slightly more. I wanted to move the drives into the home server, from another computer, preserving the data. I mounted the larger of the two WD drives, and copied data from the drive onto the server. I thought that I could connect the SATA cables into the other drive, making it suitable for a hot swap. When I plugged in the smaller drive, the computer would not see the drive. I looked in My Computer, and in other areas of the desktop for the drive, but it is not visible. I decided to run a scan, which involved restarting the computer, but when it rebooted, CHKDSK began almost at once. It put up a notice which said ‘deleting index’, or similar. When I looked at the 500gb drive again in the computer, it can see the drive, but all of the data is gone. There is only one file which says ‘upped to server’. I want to get back the data which should have been on this drive.


I have a RAID system connected to a server which operates 4 drives. I run a company, and for most of the week another worker keeps this server system running. However, when I came into the office the other day, I saw that the server was turned off. I put it back on, thinking that was how it should be, and saw a message saying ‘disk read error’. I thought that this might mean trouble, so I rebooted again. There was the same response, and so I tried to perform a rebuild. This did not work, and I have not been able to get the computer to read the drives, either. I decided to remove the drives separately, and examine them using a SATA cable to the motherboard. They all seem to be fine when viewed this way. There is a small part at the beginning of each drive which is slightly different, but most of the data appears identical. I have lost a partition in one of the drives. All this seems good, but the data, when opened, is a mess and completely unreadable. I don’t know what has happened, and the worker denies having touched the server or altered the RAID.