Data corruption is certain to cause a lot of chaos and panic. With the right steps taken, it is possible to recover lost data from a laptop or PC. In many situations where the hardware is still active, there are several options to recover the potentially lost data yourself. But, if the hard drive appears to be mechanically damaged, the only cause of action is to send it to the professionals to repair.
Here are a few do's and don'ts of data loss:
Do make contact with the professional if you aren't entirely sure of what is needed to recover the data. For those with a backup machine, it is possible to research and learn the basics of data loss recovery before attempting any work on the damaged PC.
But for those that aren't experienced with working with computers, it may be more practical to seek the guidance of a professional, especially for machines that hold a lot of important or sensitive information.
Do look for a data recovery tool online and use the free trial or demo version to see if the lost data is still available for recovery. If the trial appears to be successful, it is worth investing in the full software tool to get the data back.
Do attempt to save the data onto a backup or external drive to check file system integrity and readiness. In many situations, it is possible to copy the data if the issue only relates to a corrupted operating system.
Make sure to regularly back up the critical files, photos, or other data that will cause difficulties if lost.
Do not attempt to load up recovery software on the partition or drive that experienced the lost files. This will likely overwrite the existing information and make it impossible to recover.
It rarely benefits to simply attempt to swap the existing circuit board on the modern drives. There is the risk of system or firmware conflicts that can lead to even more difficulties.
Don't be tempted to open up the laptop or PC to take a look at the hard drive and related components. There isn't much that can be done by the do-it-yourselfer in this situation. It is best to pass the computer to a skilled data recovery engineer who is qualified to repair the hardware and works in a safe cleanroom environment.
In the event of any data loss issue, it is important to stay calm and carefully consider the options to avoid making things worse and not being able to do anything to recover the files on the PC.