Maccast 2010.12.29 – J.C.’s Tale

Written by: Adam Christianson

Categories: Podcast

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A podcast about all things Macintosh. For Mac geeks, by Mac geeks. A special end of the year Maccast with guest J.C. Hutchins. J.C. normally would be telling sci-fi tales, but this time he delivers us a bit of non-fiction. His Macbook recently suffered a catastrophic hard drive failure and he was willing to come on the show and share what it was like to go through the experience without backup. There’s ups and down, twists and turns, but luckily a somewhat happy ending.

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J.C. Hutchins
Sector Logic Data Recovery (Denver, CO)

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There are 6 comments on Maccast 2010.12.29 – J.C.’s Tale:

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  1. Robert Garrett | Dec 30 2010 - 03:23

    Hey Adam,

    I love the show. I listened to this particular show and there are multiple companies in the silicon valley are that specialize in taking burned, broken or “dead” hard drives and retrieve the data. They will put the data on either an external hard drive or DVD’s.

    Your buddy should look into sending the drive off and having the data recovered. I have used the service 3 times. Once my drive was hit by a power surge and the components would not spin the discs in the drive. I had a full recovery of data when I sent it off. The second time my computer burned in a fire. The drive burned too. That time was a full recovery as well even though the drive was burned. The third time I had a business computer hard drive that would function until it warmed up, then it stopped working. That time they were able to recover all the data as well.


  2. Jeffrey L Miller | Dec 30 2010 - 08:01

    Something suspicious about this episode.

    Surely Killroy2.0 could have got that data off that drive for him and are we to believe that the man who writes about backing up consciousnesses didn’t backup his data?

    Seriously though, excellent episode and I am glad it worked out for J.C., though I wish it was not such a costly mistake.

  3. Tom | Dec 31 2010 - 10:11

    I listen to the Security Now podcast with Steve Gibson who wrote Spinrite. It only works on PCs, but it seems to resurrect (an Easter theme) dead hard drives. If I lost a drive with years of work on it, I’d give this a shot. Here is a url to his site. Cheeper than drivesavers!

  4. Sebastian | Jan 02 2011 - 06:46

    Did he try the disk utility spinrite I have had very good luck with this utility.
    There is no Mac version but if you have the hard drive out of box you can put it in a pc and do the work.

  5. Dave | Jan 03 2011 - 10:47

    10 years worth of data is probably worth Drive Savers… They restored a completely dead drive of mine.

  6. Phil | Jan 04 2011 - 07:49

    I had a similar scare on Christmas day. I had previously been diligent in backing up the hard drive on my 2005 G5 iMac until is started to show signs of failure earlier this year (slowness, S.M.A.R.T. status, etc.). I purchased a pair of 1 TB Samsung drives, installed one in my iMac, and restored my system from the backup drive. I left the other drive in the box with every intention of purchasing a NewerTech miniStack for a SATA drive that is similar to the PATA-based one I was using previously. Then life set in. And I got busy. And I forgot.

    So on Christmas morning my kids wanted to hook up all their new electronic devices to the iMac (iPod Touch, Leapster, etc.), and one of them freaked the Mac out to the point that I had to reboot it. Except that it didn’t come back up. After several attempts I finally booted from my old backup drive to discover that some of the data on the drive was corrupted. Fortunately, TechTool Deluxe reported that everything else about the drive was OK as was able to be repaired, both by TTD and Disk Utility. But this was not before I got really good at swapping the 1 TB drives in and out of the iMac because it was having issues discovering the corrupted drive using my NewerTech Universal Drive Adapter.

    Needless to say, I am going to be much more conscious of backing up my data no matter how new a drive is.

    That being said, the NewerTech miniStack SATA enclosure is around $100, but the plus side is that it has USB and FireWire hubs (both of which I use quite a bit). I have had a good experience with the miniStack, but I was wondering if anyone had any recommendations on a similar enclosure?