Over 2,000 Australian dollars!
I typically do complete backups irregularly to external hard disks prior to overseas travel and do not normally bother for domestic travel.
After a change of machine and needing to shuffle files between the two I had irregular backups this past year.
While returning my laptop to a backpack style bag 2 months ago I was distracted and the laptop feel flat on its lid. The machine was powering down at the time it fell, which must have exacerbated the problem.
The disk head dragged across the platter creating a scratch that left the disk unrecoverable by “cheap” data recovery methods.
I found a company in Australia who specialise in this work and 2 months later and 2,500AUD have almost all of my data back.
They first found an “identical” hard disk (minus the scratch) and dissembled both disks in a proper “clean room”. Then they transferred the head from the new disk to the damaged disk. Using specialised hardware, they then started transferring the information from the damaged disk to their server sector by sector. If the scratch was not so significant it may have completed in a few hours however, the read took over a month operating day and night! The scratch further damaged the new reading head so the whole thing took even longer than “normal”.
So …. the takeaway for me is to do daily backups – incremental and archive backups and to get more serious about offsite backups.
If this note helps one person save the money, frustration and time that I have just experienced it will be a worthwhile 5 mins writing it!
What backup routine, solution do you use?
Happy photographing and backup!
P.S. Image attached is one of the recovered file - hope it covers the cost of the repair :-)