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Thread: What happened?

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    What happened?

    A friend who runs a small business called and told me his laptop (a 4-year old W-7 Dell Precision) suddenly died. He said the screen just went black while he was using it.
    What I found was that it had power; power lights were on, the fans were running and the CD slot opened. I connected it to an external monitor, but still nothing. So I figured the graphics card died. I told him it may not be worth the price to fix it, so he readily told me to find him a new computer. Also to get his files off the broken one. I removed the hard drive and connected it to mine via a SATA to USB cable which I've used many times. When I clicked to "Open" the drive I was shocked to see a notice that the HD "needed to be formatted". Whoa! I think it was when I clicked on Properties, it said "No operating system found/ no file system".
    So the computer is dead and a new Dell Precision is ordered (with SSD + HD).
    Just two questions; any other options to try recovering the data from the HD besides sending it to an expensive recovery service? Second, any idea why/how the graphics card and HD would fail at the same time? I thought maybe a power surge, but nothing else was effected and it still had power.

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    Woulld it make any difference if you hooked it up direct to your computer as a secondary drive with just the SATA cable? I have never tried SATA to USB.

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    Super Moderator Rick Corbett's Avatar
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    Try downloading/using a hard drive utility from the HDD manufacturer so see if the HDD is accessible/recognisable. It could be that the HDD controller, for whatever the reason, has died (although this wouldn't explain why an external monitor couldn't at least see something).
    Last edited by Rick Corbett; 2016-10-27 at 10:22.

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    Weedhopper; I doubt it, but I could try it. I have a big laptop with dual drives, too.

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    Yeah im used to Desktops which are pretty simple to install another HD. I dont know if that would work but its worth a try. I was just thinking the USB connection might be part of the problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Corbett View Post
    Try downloading/using a hard drive utility from the HDD manufacturer so see if the HDD is accessible/recognisable. It could be that the HDD controller, for whatever the reason, has died (although this wouldn't explain why an external monitor couldn't at least see something).
    That's worth a try too. With a new computer already ordered, I'll have plenty of time to try things on the old one.
    Yeah, puzzling about both dying at the same time, but recovering the files is the priority now. By the way, I DID warn him about not having a back-up quite a while ago. People have to learn the hard way.

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    Yep,,thats why i run 2 HD and sometimes an external with a 3rd HD. When i first read your post i was thinking he might have a Motherboard problem.
    Last edited by Weedhopper; 2016-10-27 at 10:37.

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    Super Moderator Rick Corbett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rje49
    By the way, I DID warn him about not having a back-up quite a while ago. People have to learn the hard way.
    In my experience people are usually far more receptive to the idea of backups after a disaster.

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  10. #9
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    Boy aint that the truth Little Brother. Its the reason i changed yrs ago to 2 HDs. My Dumb butt had to learn the hard way. And it also started me to learning and building computers. Lol

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    I sometimes get that need to format when plugging in an USB stick - ejecting it and re-plugging it has always resolved.

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    Yeah i think his Laptop has a Motherboard problem ,,,thats why his monitor is black and BIOS doesnt see HD.
    I think your problem with plugging in the HD might be the USB part of your connection. But i could be totally wrong.

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