Computer Tech Questions

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by D_Elijah_MorganWood, Dec 2, 2006.

  1. D_Elijah_MorganWood

    D_Elijah_MorganWood New Member

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    A couple of you guys have helped me before so this is worth a shot, here's my latest situation:
    I have a Dell Inspiron 1150 laptop running XP Pro that I dropped one too many times and cracked the screen. The hard drive contains extremely important data that I desparately need. The machine powers and boots up fine. I hooked it up to an external monitor and it comes on for a minute and then the monitor goes dark. I tried this repeatedly. Someone (local incompenent computer repair place) said I may have a bad video card. What I was thinking of doing is buying an identical Dell laptop and swapping out the hard drives. There are things on that drive that I
    R E A L L Y need.

    1. Can I buy an identical Dell Inspiron 1150 laptop and swap out the hard drive? I was just reading something online that says it's not as easy as it seems.
    2. Can I buy a different series or different kind of computer and swap out the hard drive?
    3. Should I buy a "parts" laptop and rape it for the screen, video card and possibly the motherboard? I'm not tech saavy but I can follow directions.
    and finally...
    4. Is there any way I can get the data off this hard drive without going through all this? I have 2 Compaq desktops sitting here with empty bays for extra drives. I know, they're different sizes.

    HELP!
     
  2. Over 7

    Over 7 Member

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    I'm not a Windoz guy, but on a Mac you can use the other computer via firewire or ethernet & put the one you need to access in 'target disk mode'. Then just swap the files over. You really should back up.
     
  3. Pussy_Noire

    Pussy_Noire New Member

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    Are you going to have the laptop repaired or junk it? You can have the repair people salvage the drive.

    Or you can purchase an external USB hard drive and initiate the transfer. That way you have your vital data stored independently and do not have to worry about dropped laptops, just dropped drives. This is a way for you to back up your files also. You can buy an external drive that is about 250G for reasonable prices during the holiday season. Try Pricewatch.com, TigerDirect.com, BestBuy.com, NewEgg.com.

    You could have damaged the video card when you dropped tha laptop, or it could be slight unset in its slot.

    Hope this helps
     
  4. Rikter8

    Gold Member

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    DO THIS.

    Pull your Laptop Hard Drive out.
    Keep your fingers off the circuit board, and think "Static Sensitive Device"

    Purchase a USB 2.0 to IDE cable for 2.5" drives Cost- around $25 and handy to have.

    Plug it into your laptop hard drive, plug the USB into a known good PC, and Pull your data off as easy as using a Flash drive.
    Newegg.com - BYTECC BT-200 USB2.0 to IDE Cable With Power Adapter - Retail

    OR just purchase an enclosure...cuz your going to need a new laptop anyway..
    Newegg.com - Rosewill RX250-U SLV External Enclosure with One Touch Backup function - Retail

    C
     
  5. Rikter8

    Gold Member

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    Oh, and another Tip...

    DONT power the laptop up anymore until you know the structural integrity of that hard drive.

    The more times you boot with a possible bad hard drive, the More LIKELY that your data will be un-recoverable (Unless you want to pay Ontrack $1500 to recover it all)
    Damaged hardware can corrupt and scramble files badly.

    Plug the drive in externally, and Pull data as fast as you can.

    C
     
  6. BuddyBoy

    BuddyBoy Member

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    I echo the suggestion for an external 2.5" drive enclosure - you should be able to find one locally too. CompUSA, Radio Shack, etc, should have one. You just slip the drive into the enclosure and plug the enclosure cable into your usb slot on your desktop.

    The bonus is that after you get your new laptop, you can use the enclosure to back up data too (hint, hint). :biggrin1:
     
  7. dong20

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    I agree, as a quick fix, I bought such an item for £1.30 on ebay to use with an old laptop drive for a client as an offsite backup for key files she didn't want to include in the std backup. Works a treat, not quite so foolproof as a solid state pen but then it has 40GB of storage. Also the colour is cool.
     
  8. VeeP

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    Excellent suggestions already from others, and I'll add that if you happen to have it and your other machines on your home network, you may be able to access the laptop drive from one of those desktops (provided the laptop's problem is really limited to video). This method can get a bit tricky with firewalls and all, but it's worth a shot.

    I always take out the extended warranty on laptops and so far they've paid for themselves every time. If that 1150 is still new enough you should still be able to take one out on it or even "uplift" it to on-site service if you just have a mail-in warranty.
     
  9. D_Elijah_MorganWood

    D_Elijah_MorganWood New Member

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    I ordered a USB 2.0 to IDE cable. Now it sounds like I should order an enclosure.

    The unit is over 2 years old so the warranty is kaput. It was a great machine but heavy as hell.

    Thanks guys, you saved me from what I was about to do...buy another identical computer I didn't want to swap out the drives. I'll let you know if this works.
     
  10. jakeatolla

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    Good luck. Nothing worse than your computer dying.
    I had it happen to me a year ago to the day.
     
  11. transformer_99

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  12. transformer_99

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    Yes, if the hdd is going bad, you want it to be able to be accessible and work long enough to get your files off it. It sounds like the hdd is fine, but the notebook is messed up moreso than it's a failing hdd though.

    OnTrack is a ripoff @ $ 1,500. This software is a solution if the boot sectors are screwed up and the drive will work long enough for the software to recover what is on the hdd.

    File Recovery and Data Recovery Software. Hard Drive recovery utility
     
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