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PCstats Q & A - No drive left behind - PCstats.com PCstats Q & A - No drive left behind
Mon, April 25 2005 | 5:54PM | PermaLink Feedback?

Our second Q & A of the week comes from Paul via the reader feedback page. Remember to try our friendly forums for help too.

Q: I recently experienced a hard disk malfunction, making my Windows XP Pro system unbootable. Since I had been planning to anyhow, I bought a new drive and used my XP CD to reinstall my system onto the new drive. I want to try to recover my data from the old drive if possible, as per your hard drive recovery article . I seem to have the space in my system, so what I want to know is, can I do this? Your article mentioned transferring the failed drive to another system to attempt data recovery, so I'm assuming there is no problem with putting it into the same system with a new OS as a secondary drive. How would I go about setting the jumpers, etc? Is there anything special I need to know?

A: You can certainly install your failed drive as a secondary (slave) drive to attempt data recovery, and there are not really any special considerations you need to take into account when you do this (unless you think your old drive might have failed due to a computer virus, in which case DO NOT put it back into your system until you have enabled and updated virus protection). It's just a matter of setting the jumpers correctly as you said, and installing the drive. To set the jumpers, consult the top of the drive, which should have a small chart listing the various jumper settings. If you are attaching the old drive to the same cable as your current one, you'll need to configure the 'slave' setting.

Once the drive is fully installed, you can attempt to recover data from it at your leisure. Just make sure you save any recovered files to your new drive, not the old one.

For more information on hard drive installation, see our guide on the topic here.

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