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Hard Drive Problems/Photo recovery-Thanks in advance!


Hello and thanks in advance for your time and help! I am wondering if it's possible and what is needed in order to recover jpg photos off of failed hard-drives- I have heard of slave-driving with another computer and using recovery software but have no idea what direction to go. I am just hoping to get old family photos back if possible. Also- I know you can also do this with memory cards and if you know of how to get the most deleted photos off of memory cards or could point me in the right direction to information regarding this that would be fantastic! Much thanks!

Hi Autumn!

You don't speak Italian, do you? Just wondering :) I know an Autumn back in that neighborhood.

It depends on what is wrong with the hard drive. If the drive is dead, then there is very little that can be done. The only option then would be to send it to a data recovery service like OnTrack or DriveSavers. This is expensive, but "almost" guaranteed to get your data back.

If it is functional, but it simply won't boot or says it needs to be formatted, or is otherwise corrupted, then you can "slave" it to another system - you simply attach it to a spare port/slot on another system and access it just like you would any other drive of a system. You can also use a USB adapter that will connect and power the drive and connect it via USB to another system.

Sometimes, if the drive just won't boot, all the data can simply be moved from the bad drive to a good drive. If the drive is corrupt and files cannot be found, you will need special software to find and retrieve them. I have had good luck with's GetMyDataBack. It costs $80 to retrieve your data, but you can see what it can find and confirm it will work before you have to buy it.

Good luck, and remember to always keep TWO copies of any important files!  

Hard Drive Problems

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I can answer questions about server hardware RAID and general storage for servers and PC's - hard drive issues, troubleshooting, advice, specs, and information. While some apparent drive/RAID array failures can be recovered, I can only provide advice/recommendations in the event of catastrophic data loss. I don't assist in actually recovering from this type of data loss on this forum.


I worked as an analyst in Dell server support for 2 years, and have since worked with many Dell PowerEdge servers. I am currently employed as IT Manager. I am currently ranked in the top 5 All-Time in Server Hardware and Hard Drives in a very popular and large forum similar to AllExperts.

I have a BS in Computer Science and have earned the following certifications: CompTIA Security+, A+, Project+; CIW Web Design, Database Specialist; Microsoft Windows 7; Dell DCSE Server. I am also an expert in Windows 7, Servers, and Hard Drives (I don't normally do XP - not because I don't know it inside and out, but because I have "retired" personal support for XP, and I want to see it die :)).

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