Frequenty Asked Questions

How does the recovery process work?

  1. Contact Us
  2. Fill Out Form
  3. Ship Your Drive
  4. Free Evaluation
  5. Recover Your Data
  6. Receive Your Data

Is my data/drive recoverable?

We will not be able to determine whether or not your data is recoverable until we can evaluate your drive. This is the main reason we offer a Free Diagnosis and Quote, so we can determine whether or not we can recover the data from the drive.

How do I start the Recovery Process?

On the Client Information form (CIF), please make sure the top section is legible so we know who the drive came in from, with your name, email and phone number being most important. Once you have the form filled out you will just need to either place the drive in the mail or drop off the drive to our lab in Livermore California. You will want to have the drive securely packaged using a few inches of padding on all sides of the drive then place the CIF in with the drive. The first thing you will receive from us will be the receiving report that will document everything we received in the mail so you can verify we received everything you sent or dropped off.

First we offer a Free Diagnosis and Quote that will take 1-2 Business days. Standard recovery time is 7-10 Business days after we have received the approval to move forward with the job. We do also offer Expedited (3-5 Business Days) or Emergency (1-3 Calendar Days) however these rush options will increase the overall price of the job.

The Main reasons a job will go over this time frame is if we end up waiting for replacement parts in the mail, or if we are waiting for the approval from the customer.

How long does the average recovery take?

First, we offer a Free Diagnosis and Quote that will take 1-2 Business days. Standard recovery time is 7-10 Business days after we have received the approval to move forward with the job. We do also offer Expedited (3-5 Business Days) or Emergency (1-3 Calendar Days) however these rush options will increase the overall price of the job.

The Main reasons a job will go over this time frame is if we end up waiting on replacement parts in the mail, or if we are waiting on the approval from the customer.

How much does it cost?

The price range will vary from drive to drive, depending on the type and severity of the damage as well as how long we believe this drive will need to remain connected to our systems. For a standard price range of a rotation, drive would be anywhere from $500.00-$1500.00 depending on what is found wrong with the drive.

For a more comprehensive look at our pricing structure, you can visit the pricing page.

How do I get my data back?

Our standard way to return your recovered data would be to extract the data to a drive of equal size. You can purchase this drive through us, or you can provide a drive to be used as the return media. If you provide the drive, please ensure that it is an empty drive that is, at least, equal in size to your problem drive.

Do you provide an evaluation on the drive?

Yes, we offer a free diagnosis and quote that will determine whether or not we believe we can recover the data on the drive. The free diagnosis and quote include a breakdown of what we believe the failure is, what we need to do in order to recover the data, and a full price breakdown. The Diagnosis and Quote take 1-2 Business days after we receive the drive in our lab.

What happens if my drive is not recoverable?

If we find that your drive is not recoverable during the process of the free diagnosis and quote, you will receive an unrecoverable report as opposed to the diagnosis and quote. If the job is deemed unrecoverable, the only thing you will be obligated to pay is for the return shipping, or if you are local you can come pickup the drive.

If the drive is found to be Unrecoverable after the recovery attempts have begun we do have a No Data No Charge policy where you will not need to pay for any of the recovery services if the drive cannot be recovered.

Do you have a clean room?

The Data Rescue Center boasts one of the most advanced clean rooms in the world. We have an ISO 5 Class 100 cleanroom. The Class 100 Cleanroom has an environment specifically engineered to remove air contaminants, preventing them from damaging open hard drives.

A cleanroom with a Class 100 rating refers to the United States Federal Standard 209E. The international equivalent is an ISO 5 rated environment, as determined in the ISO Standard 14644. The ISO standard has replaced the Federal Standard to provide consistency worldwide. The Data Rescue Center maintains their cleanroom to both standards and provides data recovery and drive repair on an international scale.

What happens to my broken/failing drive if I use the E-Waste program?

If you donate your drive to our E-waste program, the first thing we will do is securely erase the drive to ensure that nothing can be recovered using your average recovery software. We will then take the drive apart and take any usable parts to use as donor parts in ongoing recoveries. These parts we reuse would include the read/write head assembly, and the PCB board. After the usable parts have been extracted, we will destroy the internal platters that once contained your data as well as any parts that were not salvageable. Once the drive has been destroyed the platter fragments are mixed with the platter fragments from other drives in the E-waste program to guarantee your data can never be accessed on that drive again.

How do I send the drive to you?

When packaging the drive you want to make sure that you have a couple of inches of padding on all six sides of the drive. If you were to (please don’t try this) shake the box with your drive inside you do not want your drive to move at all, you want the drive to be secure and firm in the box, and you should be safe to ship. For padding, you will want to use bubble wrap. You do NOT want to use packing peanuts, air pillows, or paper, as these are not resistant enough to hold the drive in place. Once the drive is securely packaged, please include the completed Client Information Form, so we know who the drive is coming in from and have your contact information.

How can data loss be avoided?

The only way to avoid performing a data recovery service (where important data was lost) is to have a functioning backup system in place with backups that are current. It’s important to remember sooner or later every hard drive will fail. More commonly than customers do not have a backup system is that they never check their backups until they need something only to find out there backups were either not running or the backup drive failed long ago.

Why choose The Data Rescue Center?

Being faced with data loss can be a frightening experience. Searching online for hard drive data recovery services can be overwhelming and turn up hundreds of data recovery companies and options. The Data Rescue Center has hard drive data recovery services that are affordable (30% to 40% cheaper than the competitors).

Whether you have a crashed, corrupted, or failing hard drive, The Data Rescue Center can help. The Data Rescue Center specializes in hard drive crash recovery services that provide professional results at a lower cost to you. Building on the number one rated recovery software, Data Rescue from Prosoft Engineering, The Data Rescue Center was founded to help computer users get their data back no matter what their situation is.

If your hard drive is suffering from data corruption, bad registry, broken directory or a virus, then the Data Rescue software should be able to help. There is a full demo available online to see if it will work (try-before-you-buy). However, if you hard drive is suffering from a more severe hardware failure, then software won’t be a solution, and therefore, the expert services of The Data Rescue Center are available.

What does a physical recovery entail?

A physical data recovery service requires specialized tools and spare parts from a completely compatible drive highly.

Even if you own the same drive from the same manufacturer (offering the same size and speed) most likely internally the drives differ considerably. The same drive can be incompatible with each other regarding the parts used inside. In addition to the same drive differing inside, there is a need for expert tools that need to be operated within a clean room environment (to prevent dust particles getting into contact with the magnetic platters), is the major reason physical hard drive recovery services are so involved and ultimately expensive. Dust and dirt can potentially ruin the surfaces that hold your data, preventing successful recovery. As such, physical hard disk data recovery services are not for the faint of heart.

Once a drive operates again, the same software tools used in a logical data recovery scenario are used to scan the raw data on the drive. The software tools will hopefully locate the data needed and recover it to another device. All hard drive data recovery services function this way by recovering the data to a second device. This way we avoid overwriting any data on the problematic drive and keep the stress level of the drive to a minimum avoiding an even bigger drive failure.

Can I perform a recovery myself?

As makers of the award-winning software packages Data Rescue for the Mac and PC, there are scenarios where you can use our software to perform DIY recovery. Our software comes with bootable USB that can be used to run our recovery tools, even when your OS is damaged where it doesn’t work anymore. Our software tools are mainly possible in cases where data was accidentally deleted, or a drive was partitioned or formatted by mistake.

Data Rescue will allow you to scan your drive and salvage whatever important data you need. From there you can go ahead and reinstall your OS if needed and copy your data back over. However, if the scans don’t succeed due to hardware issues, give us a call so we can assess your particular hard disk data recovery situation and discuss the available service options, preventing the situation from becoming worse.

What drive should I buy?

We get this question all the time, but the truth is all drive manufacturers have experienced problems with certain lines of drives at one point or another. Get the drive that offers the features that you need (size, speed) at the price you can afford. Always have a working backup strategy, and your chances of getting hit by a data loss disaster are extremely low.

It also doesn’t matter which brand your hard drive is because every brand has had its share of premature deaths. Backups, and checking your backups are the only way to avoid having to go through a hard drive recovery service in a data loss situation.

What is data recovery?

Whenever you have lost data that you still needed – through accidental deletion, a crash, hardware failure, etc. – and you didn’t have a backup to fall back on, a data recovery service is your only option to get that lost data back without having to recreate it.

It works by looking at the raw data stored on the drive and ignoring the filesystem used by the OS. Analyzing the data in this manner is the only way of getting your data back, which is why it is so crucial to stop using the device in question immediately give us a call to find out about our hard drive recovery services.


Still don’t have an answer? Please contact us and we'll get you one!