URGENT Possible HDD Failure, Please Help

rex48

Honorable
Apr 7, 2013
1
1
10,510
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My Macbook Pro has had some problems lately. A couple of months ago, it overheated and one of the RAM slots got damaged, which led to many crashes and annoyance. I sent it in to the Apple Store to verify my "diagnosis" and it came back positive, so I ordered a single 1x8GB RAM card and installed it in the still-healthy slot, thankfully reviving it. Until now, I've thought that was the end of the problems, but contrary to my belief, the HDD might also have gotten damaged.

For context, the only reason I use this computer is for school, as it is required, and I don't have the money for a new one, plus, they would charge me to "redeploy" the needed software and configuration, so I'm really hoping I can just recover my data to a new hard drive. While in school, I opened the macbook after having it in sleep mode for about an hour and 20 minutes, but after a few movements of the trackpad and desktops, it froze; the cursor could still move, but I was stuck in "Mission Control". I tried escape, Cmd+Q, forcequit, but nothing worked, and I finally just did a hard-power-off thinking it was just an odd crash. But to my displeasure, I got the folder with the question mark on startup. After two or so hard-restarts, just in case, I just turned it on with Cmd+R pressed down. I went into Startup Disk, once recovery mode started, whoops, no disks at all. Disk Utility? Just a disk0 with 1.39 GB of storage. Well, I'm in trouble. No matter what I try, according to my computer there are no disks but that one, which I've verified, but I can't use to startup.

I'm stuck; please help me. It'd be nice to have the disk working again, but it would still be awesome to just recover my data and load it on a new disk. Thanks! :)
 
Reactions: NovaBrunswick

DeadlyDays

Honorable
Mar 29, 2013
15
1
10,590
5
Even if you clone the partition to a new disk, if the OS data got corrupted, you may not have any new issues, but the existing issues won't go away because the data is already corrupted. I am not familiar with Mac OS recovery/restore options for fixing the corruption issue.

For cloning, you can lookup Clonezilla and create a livecd and clone the disk over to temporary storage like an external drive, then install a new HDD and restore the clone back over to the HDD.

EDIT:
Or take it to the apple store and see what they will do for you I suppose.

For recovery if it is entirely inaccessible, you can use TestDisk which is a complex looking, but fairly simple to use utility to recover files/partitions/etc. You can create a livecd/bootable usb of this(or install into Linux and run from there, or from windows DOSBOX)
 
Reactions: NovaBrunswick

DeadlyDays

Honorable
Mar 29, 2013
15
1
10,590
5
Even if you clone the partition to a new disk, if the OS data got corrupted, you may not have any new issues, but the existing issues won't go away because the data is already corrupted. I am not familiar with Mac OS recovery/restore options for fixing the corruption issue.

For cloning, you can lookup Clonezilla and create a livecd and clone the disk over to temporary storage like an external drive, then install a new HDD and restore the clone back over to the HDD.

EDIT:
Or take it to the apple store and see what they will do for you I suppose.

For recovery if it is entirely inaccessible, you can use TestDisk which is a complex looking, but fairly simple to use utility to recover files/partitions/etc. You can create a livecd/bootable usb of this(or install into Linux and run from there, or from windows DOSBOX)
 
Reactions: NovaBrunswick

BadAsAl

Distinguished
Nice thing about Mac's is you can take the hard drive out, put it into a USB enclosure and then boot from the USB drive.
If it boots, then you know the hard drive is okay. I have seen many MacBook Pro's fail because of the HDD cable and that is an easy and cheap fix.
You can also try booting using a Linux Live CD and see if it can see the drive and data. If it doesn't, this still doesn't tell you anything as it could be the cable or the drive. So that is why I recommend trying to boot the drive while attached via USB.
 
Reactions: NovaBrunswick

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