Ready to Start Your Career?

Digital Age Data Recovery Myths

manishbhickta26 's profile image

By: manishbhickta26

November 29, 2018

Data Recovery Myths BustedWith the increase in data loss occurrences, there is a massive demand for data recovery solutions. In the world of internet, the supply of information is often surplus than needed. However, a large number of solutions and fixes on the internet—that promises to restore data and fix most drive issues—consists of myths; Myths that can permanently destroy your drive and the data beyond the scope of recovery. Also, relying on these fixes wastes your time, energy, efforts, and many times, leading to permanent data loss. Therefore, it is necessary to debunk the long-established and discussed myths on the internet related to data recovery. And bring out the facts—Facts that benefits you and helps you retrieve lost and deleted data securely.

Popular Data Recovery Myths Debunked

Myth 1: Fix hard drive by swapping the Platter

A widespread myth that also seems legit says data can be recovered from a failed drive by removing its platter and reading the platter using another drive.

FACT: Replacing hard disk platter is a challenging task and required technical expertise as well as resources. Besides, it’s much more difficult in modern multi-platter HDDs even with right resources.Therefore, you should never try to open a hard drive by yourself if your data is critical. Dust particles, moisture, and mishandling can cost you the entire data. Once platter is damaged, the recovery chances become negligible.That’s why such operations are performed in a dust-free temperature and humidity controlled Class 100 Clean Room labs by data recovery experts. Also, precision and right donor drive required to execute the task which is often infeasible and unavailable for an average person.TIP:Before coming to the conclusion that drive is damaged, thoroughly inspect the wires and connectors for any fault. Try using different cable or connect the drive to a different PC.

Myth 2: Freezing, heating, dropping, or knocking the drive can revive a dead drive

Sometimes, due to improper ejection, mishandling, or physical damage; a drive’s actuator arm or head might get stuck on the platter or spindle might stop rotating the platter. To fix this problem, you will find people on the YouTube, online forums, and a few blog post recommending such solutions as they did work for some. However, the success rate is too low and does more harm to the drive than help. FACT: Freezing or heating a hard drive can affect the magnetic property of the hard drive platter (required for storing data). It also leads to the expansion and contraction of the metal parts that can cause cracks and misalignment. Besides, freezing can also produce moisture inside the drive causing damage to the electronics and making data recovery impossible.While knocking or dropping the drive deliberately can lead to scratches on the platter (forms hard bad sectors) and affects the internal mechanism— leading to much more laborious and costlier data recovery process.TIP: For a drive with mechanical damage making screeching or clicking sound, you can use a data recovery software with the ability to create and restore data from a disk image. You can choose particular sectors on the drive, create its virtual image (.img), and then run the recovery software on the image. This helps you save drive from further damage and restore data faster from a partially damaged as well as severely corrupt drives.

Myth 3: Overwritten data can be recovered

When you delete a file or format a drive, the file remains at its location on the drive but its address is deleted from the Master File Table (MFT) database. The OS marks the space as unallocated but the file remains recoverable. However, when you transfer a new file, the OS stores it on the unallocated space, which results in file overwriting.FACT:Recovery of data overwritten after deletion or formatting is nearly impossible with a data recovery software. Even data recovery experts can’t guarantee recovery of overwritten data. Therefore, claims of recovering overwritten files online with a software are mere tactics.That’s why when data loss occurs; it is recommended not to use the affected drive or the system to avoid overwriting. We always suggest that you should immediately stop using the media after data loss. Also, implement a reliable data recovery software to recover data promptly.TIP:You can try ‘Deep Scan’ feature available in data recovery software. It’s an advanced scan option that thoroughly reads each sector on the drive for the traces of recoverable data. While it’s not guaranteed that data will be recovered, there’s no harm in trying as the software such as Stellar Data Recovery runs in read-only mode. Also, free version provides 1GB free data recovery.

Myth 4: Data recovery from an SSD with Trim enabled is impossible

Unlike traditional hard drives, SSDs are flash-based storage drive and works differently. Storing and deleting data on SSD involves various processes and commands such as TRIM, Garbage Collection, and more. TRIM and Garbage collection makes SSD faster and improves SSD endurance. Also, making data unrecoverable is a side-effect of TRIM. FACT:It’s true that data recovery from an SSD with TRIM support is impossible with a data recovery software but not for data recovery experts. According to a recent study
conducted by the University of California at San Diego—data can’t be destroyed from an SSD completely even with software-based sanitization methods let alone TRIM. They were able to recover RAW data even after running various data erasure techniques.TIP:To ensure data security in SSDs, implement encryption or built-in sanitization commands correctly.

Myth 5: Data can’t be recovered from a Broken Drive

It’s a general perception that if the drive is broken, data is also destroyed and can’t be recovered.

FACT:Recovery from a broken drive is possible but only with the help of data recovery experts. They have the resources that are needed to restore data even from a completely broken hard drive. They can get traces of data recovered from large broken pieces of the hard drive platter.Recovery is also possible from drives damaged due to water or fried electronics.Of course, a data recovery software can’t help in recovering data from any storage media with physical damage.TIP:Immediately reach out to data recovery expert and get your data recovered. Don’t try to perform DIY recovery on such drives. It could be fatal for your data.ransom ware data recovery

Myth 6: Recovering Ransomware Encrypted Data is Impossible

There are several wrong impressions about the Ransomware especially with respect to data recovery. One common myth related to Ransomware is that data recovery is impossible after a Ransomware attack.FACT:Ransomware uses strong encryption algorithms such as RSA 2048 or AES-128, which is virtually impossible to break. However, data recovery software such as Stellar Data Recovery Professional can help you recover data infected by ransomware such as wanna cry, Petya, Locky etc.

To restore data from a system infected with such ransomware, follow these simple steps:
  • Remove the drive that contains the Windows OS infected with ransomware
  • Connect the drive to a healthy Windows system and DO NOT access the drive via File Explorer

  • Install and run the data recovery software
  • Select data you wish to recover and then select the drive that contains ransomware infected data
  • Turn on deep scan option if available and run the scan
  • Then select the files you wish to recover and save them at your desired location
  • Important Note: Not all files can be recovered for the obvious reasons for which ransomware is known. Also, use an external healthy drive to save the recovered data.Tip: Follow 3-2-1 Backup rule which states: Create at least 3 backups in 2 different storage media with one stored at offsite. Also, keep a data recovery tool readily available.


    We addressed and debunked some of the most popular myths related to data loss and recovery. We also unveiled the real facts behind every myth discussed and reasons to why you need to be more careful and cautious after a data loss situation. While backup is the best way to safeguard against data loss, a data recovery software is the best bet and ultimate solution for recovery of your lost data when the backup isn’t available, obsolete, or damaged. Modern data recovery software like the one we mentioned earlier comes equipped with advanced data recovery features, options, and add-on utilities that help you recover data as well as safeguard against future data loss.
    Schedule Demo