There are scenarios when you already know that your hard disk has burnt. Imagine, a devastating fire broke out in an industrial facility and damaged some of the servers/computers by the time it was doused. Even if it’s not a fire hazard, overheating of your hard disk, smoky and burning smell from your hard disk are a few signs that you can watch out for a burnt hard disk.
Whatsoever may be the case, it results in hardware loss. But, what could be even more worrying is the loss of data that’s stored on the drive. Your primary concern is to recover data from a burnt hard disk. But before we go through the steps to recover data from burnt hard disk, it’s critical to look at a few don’ts with the burnt hard disk.
Recovering data from a burnt hard disk – What not to do?
A lot of people fall prey to damaging their hard disk further in making attempts to recover data by hit-and-trial methods and half-baked knowledge. Here’s what you shouldn’t do:
- There are myths which you will find when you do an internet search. One of them is “keeping the burnt hard disk in the freezer” to recover data. Stay away from such myths.
- Don’t try to dismantle the hard disk on your own. It’s so delicate that even the dust particles on its platter (the component that stores data) could scratch the platter, leading to permanent data loss.
- Don’t make attempts to boot your burnt hard drive.
- Avoid using data recovery software in case of a burnt hard disk. On many blogs, you will find this mentioned as an option to recover data. But, since this is a case of physical damage, the use of data recovery software may worsen the situation.
Steps to recover data from burnt hard disk
- Connect your burnt hard disk to another working PC.
- If your hard drive is external, connect it to another PC via USB port.
- In case if it is internal, remove it from your PC, insert it in an HDD enclosure and then connect it to another PC via USB port.
- If you are able to access your burnt hard disk, copy the data on any other storage device. Now that you have a copy of the remaining data, you have eliminated the risk of further data loss.
- Disconnect the burnt hard disk “safely”.
- Seek the help of an acclaimed to recover your data. You can never recover data from a burnt hard drive on your own. Recovery in such cases needs a well-equipped lab and expertise.
Measures to prevent your hard disk from getting burnt
Hard disks cannot withstand high temperatures. Overheating of a hard disk might result in the burning of its components like PCB (Printed Circuit Board), platter and read/write head. But still, there are some preventive actions to help safeguard your hard disk. Let’s have a quick look at some of the proactive approaches:
- Shut down the PC or disconnect your hard disk if you observe any sign of a burnt hard disk.
- Keep a check on the computer’s fan. A malfunctioning fan could lead to overheating of your hard disk.
- Unclog the blocked vents of your computer, if you find any.
- Keep your computer away from heated surroundings.
- Prevent your computer or hard disk from being exposed to moisture. It may lead to short circuits and eventually may burn your hard disk.
Even after taking the above preventive measures, there’s no control over disastrous situations such as natural calamities or an industrial fire hazard that may burn your hard disk. So, it’s best to back up and test your data at regular intervals. So that you can recover the data even if your hard disk has burnt.
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In a nutshell
It’s better to take preventive measures so that you don’t even get in a situation where you find your hard disk has burnt. But if you’ve already lost your data, you should first try to safeguard the data that is still there before making attempts to recover data from burnt hard disk. As soon as you encounter any symptoms of a burnt hard disk, backup your data if the drive is accessible, and then stop using it.
Next, reach out to a professional data recovery service provider to seek expert help for recovering your data from the burnt hard disk. Be wise while making this choice. Since a burnt hard disk is a physical damage condition, your wrong decision may lead to further permanent data loss, making your data irretrievable.