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Can I recover data from a smashed hard drive?

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My fixing to be ex wife had our hard drive hit 5-10 times with a sledgehammer and soaked in bleached water for 2 hours. It was bent and dented up with several pieces off. She claims there was nothing but I think she's been cheating. Is there anyway someone could recover info for me without charging an arm and leg? Even though the outside is bented and dented, any chance the platters are good as new?

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asked Jul 31, 2017 in Computers and Internet by rick29148

3 Answers

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As it happens, the U.S. Dept. of Defense lists several ways to reliably and effectively decommission a disk and using a sledgehammer happens to be one of them. (Seriously.) That method is used when you have a disk that used to contain Sensitive or Secret data and you want to assure that its content never falls into foreign hands. It is approved because not everyone has the modified wood-chipper needed to tear a drive apart and shred it.

Have to admit the bleach was an interesting touch. If the drive case was cracked and bleach got into it, the drive motor will be shot and useless but I'm not sure that the drive surface coating is affected by bleach. I think that is usually alkaline but modern drive coatings are more likely to be affected by acid.

Drive repair at that level is probably not possible even with big bucks. I've seen how hard it is to recover data from a scratched drive. From a crushed one? Sheesh!
answered Jul 31, 2017 by The_Doc_Man
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unless you are the united states government with a budget that would make bill gates weep no. The plater is bent so the data cant be read without extremely expensive equipment plus you would not get all back so need a super computer to figure out what any of it was.. so sorry its gone for good sledge hammers and computers have that sort of final outcome!
answered Jul 31, 2017 by GFNGeek
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It may be technically possible if the platters are totally undamaged - which is unlikely.

However it would need totally rebuilding in a new chassis and the platters realigning etc. - the cost would likely be in the thousands of dollars range.

Add in damaged platters and it goes up to tens of thousands..
answered Jul 31, 2017 by Robert J
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