Recover files from a broken external hard drive

An external hard drive is a convenient way to back up your files. But what should you do if you have a broken hard drive?

Making backups is one of the most important things to do if you don't want to lose your files. It is recommended to make multiple backups on different media such as external hard drives, and also in the cloud if you wish. But if you haven't, and your external hard drive contains the only copies of important files, you will have a problem when this drive fails. So how can you recover your files? Also read: How to clone a hard drive.

If you can access your files, it's a good idea to back them up right now.

Strange noise

If the disc makes a strange noise, it is better to leave the disc completely alone so that no further damage is caused. Unfortunately, in this case, you will have to leave the file recovery to a professional company.

If the drive doesn't make weird noises, you can sometimes do something yourself to get your files back. An external hard drive is really just an internal hard drive in an enclosure. It is possible that there is nothing wrong with the drive itself, but that there is a connection problem.

Housing

You can carefully remove the drive from the housing with a screwdriver. If you see that the cable has come loose from the connector, you can plug it back into the hard drive. Then check if the external hard drive works again.

If the cable is not loose, there may be a problem with the connectors on the housing. Remove the drive from the enclosure and plug it directly into the computer's USB port using a SATA USB adapter.

backup

If you can access your files, it's a good idea to back them up right now. Since there is nothing wrong with the drive itself, you can put it back in a different case if you want.

If you don't see any files, there is a problem with the drive and you can try using recovery software to get your files back. If that doesn't work, it's time to hire a professional company.

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