How to fix an external hard drive with driver issues caused by a drop?

September 26, 2013
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I have an LG 500 MB external hard drive. I was copying files from it when it accidentally fell and it stopped responding so I started task manager and pressed ‘End it now’.

When I tried to plug it again, the HDD started making noise like a whisper, and after a while it stops and I hear the click that the laptop has read it but a message appear “the driver was not successfully installed”.┬áThe light from the external turns on when I plug it.

I tried iCare recovery but it won’t read it.

I took it to someone but he said that nothing can be done.

I don’t care about the driver itself but is there a way to retrieve all the data on it?

It has years of my life and memories.

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  1. Oron J
    September 27, 2013 at 4:26 pm

    If your hard disc is clicking, particularly after a fall, then Kev is right, it's the "click of death" which results from damage to the arm which carries to the read-write heads. You may be able to get your data recovered by sending it to a data recovery bureau, but it won't be cheap, sorry!

  2. Hovsep A
    September 27, 2013 at 10:53 am

    you can buy another identical hard drive and try to use it as the case holding the hard drive, that means you have to open both and transfer the internal package to the new external hard drive.

    1) go to Start then Run and type cmd right click and choose run as administrator
    2) type: diskpart
    3) type: list volume
    do you see your external hard drive

  3. Dave R
    September 26, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    Your last resort would be to try the freezer trick here - http://lifehacker.com/5515337/save-a-failed-hard-drive-in-your-freezer-redux

  4. Kev Q
    September 26, 2013 at 8:53 am

    I hate to be the bearer of bad news here, but unfortunately, you have a failed hard drive. The "driver issue" that Windows is giving is actually a red herring, Windows is trying to install what it thinks is a new device, because it can't recognise it, because it's broken.

    The only thing you can really do is attempt data recovery on the disk, but the "click" that you hear is a very worrying noise. There are a lot of tools that you can use for data recovery, but being totally honest, if the data is that important to you, I would send it away for professional data recovery.

    It's still not guaranteed, but they are the experts, and will undoubtedly have a better chance of getting your data back that you will. I's highly recommend ABC data recovery (Google them), I've used them on numerous occasions in my professional life, and they usually do a good job. But be warned, they're not cheap!

    Finally, I know it's probably not what you want to hear right now, but keeping a lot of critical and personal data on an external hard drive is a very bad idea. As you've witnessed, they can break easily. I'd recommend getting some cloud storage like Dropbox, Copy, of Google Drive, and safely backing up your data on there. You can always use your external hard drive as an extra backup with these tools if you like.