Data Recovery from a Samsung 250 GB Laptop Hard Drive


We were recently helping the sales director of a multinational pharmaceutical company to recover data from his Samsung 2.5” laptop hard drive. His operating system has crashed and his I.T. support department passed the drive onto us.


A couple of days preceding his computer crash, the user had noticed his operating system (Windows 7 Pro) getting very sluggish and freezing intermittently. He was extremely busy in his office and on the road. He did not have time to get his I.T. department to have a look at it. Then one morning he turned his system on only to get the dreaded Windows “blue screen of death”. He restarted the system about a dozen times in the hope it might successfully start-up but to no avail.


His last back-up was almost five months old.  He had Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint and Visio files stored on it which he badly needed. Moreover, there was also a .PST holding the details of several important customers.


His I.T. department performed diagnostics on the drive to make sure it was not an errant driver or memory leak which was causing the blue screen. They slaved the drive onto another system but the host system froze immediately. They then knew they would need some extra help in recovering files off this drive.


We received the drive – a Samsung HM251HI. We had dealt with this type of drive before. We performed our own diagnostics. At least 2 of the drive heads appeared to have failed. We then brought the drive to our clean room to confirm what our software diagnostics were indicating to us. Two of the heads had “lifted” from the platters. We removed the whole head disk assembly. We had an exact-match replacement HDA already in stock.  After hours of some very intricate work, the new head disk assembly was now in situ. We now needed to calibrate the servo adaptive parameters of the drive so the new heads would synch smoothly with the platters. With calibration complete, we powered up the drive. This would be the moment of truth. The drive initiated and three seconds later the new heads smoothly touched down on the landing zone area of platters. Perfect! The drive was imaged onto another drive. The data was then all extracted onto a brand new USB external drive ready for delivery. Result: a one hundred per cent recovery and a very satisfied customer.