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External Hard Drive Data Recovery

Having problems with your External Hard Drive?

Most Common External Hard Drives

  • Western Digital
  • Seagate
  • Toshiba
  • Lacie
  • G-Drive

What is the different between External HDD and SSD?

The different between HDD and SSD is that HDD is a Hard Disk Drive with movable parts.

When you power on HDD, if you put your ear to the drive, you can hear the platters spinning, the read/write heads moving back and forth and reading from the platters.

When you power on a SSD, you won’t hear anything at all. Inside the SSD, there aren’t any movable parts.

Common External Hard Drives Issues

Should I attempt External Hard Drive Recovery on my own using Data Recovery Software?

No. Please make sure to avoid attempting DIY data recovery. Avoid using terminal and running command prompts. Any attempts to recover files using Data Recovery Software or online DIY guides could make data recovery even more difficult and if not impossible by professionals later.

DIY Data Recovery Software should only be attempted IF the issue with your drive is not severe and usually only if you are trying to recover deleted files (even then, we would recommend you allow professionals to the recovery, to avoid overwriting deleted data).

My External Hard Drive has experienced physical damage. I can still see all of the files and folders on the drive, but they are corrupt.

This is a very common issue with external drives. This can be caused by media damage, bad sectors or damage to the file system of the drive.

When experiencing this issue after some sort of physical damage, its best to power down the drive immediately. The longer you keep the drive running in this condition, the higher the chances of spreading the damage and corrupting the file system more that it already is.

I need files recovered from an External Hard Drive, but Im worried about the security of the data? Do you offer an NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement)?

Yes of course. We have NDAs available on hand. Rest assured that your data is 100% secure at Five Star Data Recovery.

How much does External Hard Drive Data Recovery Cost

Our External Hard Drive Data Recovery fees are flat rate, depending on the issue with your drive, storage capacity and drive model.

The base fee is $300.00 for drives up to 2TB in capacity (not amount of data, but the total capacity of the drive). A $100.00 Surcharge applies to drives larger than 2TB, drives that have a USB 3.0 connectors and drives that are encrypted.

Great news is, that ONLY 1 Surcharge Applies. So if your external hard drive is a USB 3.0 Western Digital My Passport and 4TB in size, your total cost of recovery would be only $400.00 ($300.00 base fee + 1 Surcharge of $100.00).

If the issue with your External Hard Disk is mechanical and requires repairs in a Clean Room; our flat rate fee for these types of recoveries is $950.00. This includes the cost of the recovery, Clean Room Fees and donor parts. There is nothing paid upfront and you would ONLY pay if the recovery is successful and your satisfied with the results.

How long will it take to recover the lost data from my external drive?

This all depends on the exact issue with your external drive. If the issue with your drive is corrupted files, the recovery will take much less time that if the issue with your drive was mechanical.

On average, recovering data from a 1TB external hard drive that is 50% full will take 1-3 business days. We always provide a Free Diagnosis the same day the drive is dropped off (by mid-night). At this time, we will be able to tell you pretty accurately how long the recovery will take.

Do I get a discount if you are not able to recover all of my data?

All of our External Hard Drive Data Recovery fees are Flat Rate, regardless of how much data is recovered. The great news is that your satisfaction is GUARANTEED!. IF we don’t recover enough data and your not satisfied with the results, you can decline the recovery and pay nothing. IF you decide to accept the recovery results, then the flat rate fee will apply.

Typically cases where only a “partial” recovery is possible are most complicated and time consuming cases. These cases should theoretically cost more, but we still charge the same flat rate fee, regardless of how much time and resources are spent on the case.

Do I have to provide a new drive to put the data onto once the recovery is complete?

Yes, we will need an empty drive (transfer drive) to put the data onto once the recovery is complete. We only repair/patch/bypass issues with the drive in order to recover the data. The drive will still be in the same non-functional condition when you pick it up as it was when you dropped it off.

Which model External Hard Drive does Five Star Data Recovery recommend?

We would recommend any portable Seagate or Lacie External Hard Drive. This recommendation is as of May 2022 (our recommendations will change as hard drive manufacturers redesign their drives. Many years ago, our recommendation was Western Digital External Hard drives, but things have changed). We recommend these External Hard Drives NOT because they are fail proof, but because the chances of recovering the data from these specific model drives are much higher.

At the end of the day, all of these drives are today being manufactured with less quality than they were before. Manufacturers of external hard disks are squeezing more data in less space, thus increasing the chances of media damage if the drive experiencing any physical damage (Example: Compare a 1TB External drive from 5 years ago, to an external drive from today. The thickness of the drive is 2 times what it is today).

When deciding on what external drive to get, the most important factor is “How likely is it to able to recover the data IF the drive fails.”