Hey tech guys I am in big need of some advice from some hard drive experts here...
I have got a internal Western Digital Caviar GP 750GB SATA2 7200RPM 16MB 8.9MS Cache Hard Drive from ncix 2 year ago to build a custom rig. SKU # is 25561 (which is a bit different than the below link, but the description matches)
It has crashed on me and I want to get the data on it back..
Just a short background. The rig was build 2 years ago and has these components (just incase it helps):
Western Digital Caviar GP 750GB SATA2 7200RPM (3 year warranty)
intel core quad Q6600 LGA775
ASUS PK5-E/WIFI-AP mother board [WLAN]
620Watt Corsair power supply
4 gigs of mushkin DDR2 Ram
Antec Sonata medium tower
I run system mechanics and anti-fragmentation on it at least once a month. so this thing completely blindsided me. I noticed a week back before it happened (yesterday) that the computer screen would freeze up, all the windows images would be eched into the screen (ie if i closed the window its image would still be there on the screen while the computer had terminated the program it self) I could do a ctrl+Alt+Del and the window would pop and I could move it around and the whole screen would fill with its lagging images. I hope you get the picture. The only way to fix that was to shut the computer down via power bottom (start & quick menus were frozen and unclickable as well). yesterday the same thing appeared to be happening.. but instead of shutting down the computer I decided to wait for it for a couple of minutes to see if it corrects itself (big mistake in hindsight) and it crashed and gave me the blue screen.... after that whenever I tried to start up the computer it would first crash right after windows screen or would give me a S.M.A.R.T failure message on bios load up (or a simple hard drive failure message press F1 to load again etc).
I hope my explanations here clear the picture a bit. I did not write down the blue screen crash message but if it is needed I can try to get it. it is risky though since I don't want to kill the drive if it is damaged by trying to load it up again.
I am thinking about finding a SAFE/reputable boot software to get back some of my files but am not sure how the process entirely works (do you have to have an empty drive of similar size attached to copy the recovering stuff from start up for example?). I have tried to attach the device to another running computer but got no readings of the device in that computer.. since it is internal drive I slaved it both before and after boot but still no reading (not sure if i can buy a USB cable to attach internal hardrives to the computer, Will have to check). I can hear it clinking (not loudly) and grinding a bit after I attache it as a slave drive so it is not competently dead yet.. which gives me some hope. Infact the latest I tied to load it up I got as far as the safe mod window command (ie to load drives in safe mod) but then it crashed again.
What are my best options here guys? try a boot software to make an image? hooking it up to an existing computer then running a software to detect its contents and recover it? bring it to a shop to do the recoveries? (I am reluctant since it contains a lot of info, including my bank & personal info. but I would do so if it was the safest choice).
I REALLY really would appreciate some knowledgeable help here since I am rank armature comparability in this stuff... and I need my data back to do most of my work (which is now in a temporary halt). Any software recommendations are also appreciated.
Edit: Hopefully I posted this in the right section.. Really could use some helpful pointers here on this one guys