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Old 01-29-2015, 01:37 PM   #1
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Question Computer repair question

My Acer laptop suddenly stopped working recently. The screen got very bright then shut-off. I am hesitant to bring it in for repair as I am afraid that once repaired, all data will be gone: all my photos, all my favorite sites, all my files, etc. Is this true? Will all data be gone? Also, will the unit have to be registered again as I had to do after un-packing it from the box?
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:29 PM   #2
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Default Re: Computer repair question

You could well lose your personal files and any programs that you have installed since buying the computer. Your personal files should be backed up somewhere else and, in theory, you should have the disks and product numbers to restore the programs. If you downloaded the programs from the internet they should still be available on the internet from the various vendors. The repair guy should reactivate Windows for you.

I know that if you haven't backed up your personal files then me preaching at you, probably, wont be appreciated. Even so this is another opportunity to remind people that there is NOTHING more important than making regular backups of your personal files especially family photos and I say that from bitter experience.

Hopefully the tech guy can repair your computer without losing any of your files. Assuming that it isn't the hard drive he should be able to take the drive out and retain your files, although, that will cost you more assuming he is willing to do that.
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:37 PM   #3
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Default Re: Computer repair question

Whoah wait, why even take to the repair guy before backing up the files?

Find a YouTube video to take the laptop apart, or at least get the drive out. Use something like this (assuming it's a 2.5" drive) to connect it to another computer, then go get your files.

Copy them from "[DriveLetter]:\Users\[YourUserName]\...
-Documents
-Pictures
-Desktop
-Downloads......
etc

After you have your stuff off there, then take it to the repair shop knowing you already have what you need.
Programs you might lose, but they can be reinstalled.
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:42 PM   #4
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Default Re: Computer repair question

Quote:
Originally Posted by iPwn View Post
Whoah wait, why even take to the repair guy before backing up the files?

Find a YouTube video to take the laptop apart, or at least get the drive out. Use something like this (assuming it's a 2.5" drive) to connect it to another computer, then go get your files.

Copy them from "[DriveLetter]:\Users\[YourUserName]\...
-Documents
-Pictures
-Desktop
-Downloads......
etc

After you have your stuff off there, then take it to the repair shop knowing you already have what you need.
Programs you might lose, but they can be reinstalled.
Well first off not everyone is as computer savvy as you seem to be. Secondly if the OP's hard drive has gone down then there is no way in the world he is going to get his files off without spending a shed load of money.

Assuming he is computer savvy then that is what he should do.
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:51 PM   #5
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Default Re: Computer repair question

...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pete.i View Post
Well first off not everyone is as computer savvy as you seem to be.
I get that... I ran an IT help desk for many years. Hence why I suggested a how-to video and posted a link to exactly what they'd need.

The only thing I suggested was to watch a video which shows where to unscrew things and then plug in a USB dongle. If OP can do this:


Then (s)he should have no issue with what I posted. Plus, I'd much rather find out for myself that my HDD is trashed when trying to recover data than having the repair guy tell me it was a power issue and he wiped my drive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pete.i View Post
Secondly if the OP's hard drive has gone down then there is no way in the world he is going to get his files off without spending a shed load of money.
File recovery is a lot cheaper (now) than you may think. Data recovery is no longer "a King's ransom." A program like "Recuva" would easily get his data off that drive barring bad sectors. And again, knowing that before the repair guy touches it is invaluable.
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Old 01-29-2015, 04:08 PM   #6
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Default Re: Computer repair question

I could well be wrong on this but I don't think the OP would have asked the question on here nor would he be contemplating taking his computer to a repair guy if he was able to do it himself. I most certainly wouldn't take my computer to someone else to repair it and neither would you. But if the OP is capable then go for it because taking it to a repair guy is going to cost you and you could well lose your files. I always say learn how to do it. It isn't that hard and there is a mass of tutoring stuff on the internet and YouTube. But, to be honest, that isn't for everyone.
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Old 01-29-2015, 08:28 PM   #7
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Default Re: Computer repair question

Quote:
Originally Posted by iPwn View Post
Whoah wait, why even take to the repair guy before backing up the files?

Find a YouTube video to take the laptop apart, or at least get the drive out. Use something like this (assuming it's a 2.5" drive) to connect it to another computer, then go get your files.

Copy them from "[DriveLetter]:\Users\[YourUserName]\...
-Documents
-Pictures
-Desktop
-Downloads......
etc

After you have your stuff off there, then take it to the repair shop knowing you already have what you need.
Programs you might lose, but they can be reinstalled.
This ^^

If OP also has a monitor around try hooking it up and backing his/her data up this way.
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Old 01-30-2015, 02:14 PM   #8
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Default Re: Computer repair question

Unfortunately, I have no skills at copying files or transferring files from an old HD. I was hoping that when a PC gets repaired, all the files, photos,etc. would remain but now I doubt it; guess I need something like iCloud.
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Old 01-30-2015, 03:12 PM   #9
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Default Re: Computer repair question

Well, maybe not. It is a simple process, but if you're not comfortable, then just specify that to the repair guy... he may charge extra to copy data off but if there's no other way...
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Old 01-30-2015, 03:33 PM   #10
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Default Re: Computer repair question

Well Myron it may well be too late now but if you need to learn anything about computers you need to learn how to back up your personal files to somewhere other than your computer hard drive. Everything else can be replaced relatively easily your personal files cannot especially family photos. Those intimate family moments will never come back. They are distant memories and if you haven't backed up the pictures they will be distant fading memories until you get as old as me and then you will not be able remember them. I am sorry if that sounds harsh but I speak from bitter experience. It is also why I learned how to fix computers although I do have an electronics background which helped. I have been sorting out electronic devices for the last 45 years and in all my experience computers are the most unreliable piece of electronics that I have ever worked on. Especially with viri and malware that abounds on the internet. And now with the advent of UEFI bios making recovery disks and backing up your files on a regular basis has become even more important.
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