Three Common Misconceptions About Data Recovery

Most people going through data recovery are doing so for the first time. That means they aren’t quite sure what to expect. What they do know, is what they need off their drives and what the internet tells them about data recovery. Unfortunately, this leads to a lot of misconceptions about data recovery.

Only the large recovery companies can recover all your data. There are a lot of claims out there about success rates and proprietary techniques. There are things that data recovery can do and things it can’t do. While some companies have invested in better tools and technology that can give them an edge, there isn’t much that the big companies have access to that no one else does. A good technician will make up for that difference in most situations. You should certainly do your research and look at customer reviews, but take claims that a company “recovers 40% more drives than anyone else” with a grain of salt.

We have complete control over what data can be recovered. Often customers are only looking for certain things off their drive, and will ask if those things are recoverable at the beginning of a recovery. If the portion of the drive is damaged beyond repair, then no amount of wishful thinking will bring it back, even if the company was able to recover the rest of the drive. When a company offers you a file list, it means they have already completed the recovery. While this reduces the risk you will pay for a recovery and not get back the file you want, this usually comes with a much higher price tag.

Trying to recover your data yourself first is safe. Do it yourself is a popular topic right now. With an internet guide and a few basic tools you can solve any of your problems. Technically all the tools and software used in professional recovery are available to the general public (while extremely expensive), but the knowledge on how to use them is not. As a general rule, the less you work on your drive after failure, the better your chances of professional recovery. If you must work on the drive, document what was done so your recovery technician can quickly correct any mistakes. Never take the lid off the drive. The smallest particle visible with the human eye is around 50 microns. The head that read and write your data float only a few microns above the surface of the platter. Even if you can’t see the dust, it can make your drive unrecoverable.

Data recovery is expensive, and it is good to call around, ask questions and read reviews. However, it is also important to use some common sense when reading claims made both by DIY guru’s and recovery companies alike.

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