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MacBook Pro Crashed: How Do I Recover Files?

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Allen14n
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#1

Posted 05 May 2012 - 02:09 AM

Please refrain from posting anti-Mac statements.

My MacBook Pro's hard drive crashed while I was working on iMovie as well as a Pages word processing document. The programs suddenly stopped responding, and that rainbow circle started spinning to replace to cursor. I tried to quit the programs and all, but nothing worked. I had no choice but to manually shut down the laptop by holding the power button.

When I started up the system again, the screen was blank for a while, but it later showed a blinking icon of a file with a question mark. I figured the hard drive crashed. I went to the tech people at my school to check with them, and the guy said it was a hard drive crash, too.

I have most of my files backed up, but I was working on this huge history project that included a video. I've read online that the files from many crashed hard drives CAN be recovered, although that might take some money and effort. What would you suggest me to do? I've faced this problem before only once, but the laptop I was using then didn't have files that were that important to me. I didn't expect this to happen at all because my MacBook Pro was running so perfectly until the programs stopped responding today, but I guess that's expected of hard drive crashes.

Here's a link that made me feel better and gave me hope:
http://www.popularme...to/tips/4294038

I still need your input on this situation. Please help! I would really appreciate it.

Stinky12
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#2

Posted 05 May 2012 - 02:31 AM

option1:
user posted image

If option 1 don't work, then...
user posted image


YankeesPwnMets
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#3

Posted 05 May 2012 - 02:31 AM

Let me just get something straight: When you say your HDD crashed, do you mean that your hard drive is dead?

Stinky12
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#4

Posted 05 May 2012 - 02:33 AM

Folder with a ? usually means the OS is missing or HDD is actually kaput. Easiest way is to remove it from the macbook and hook it up to another computer via a USB adapter.

leik oh em jeez!
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#5

Posted 05 May 2012 - 03:02 AM

QUOTE (Stinky12 @ Friday, May 4 2012, 21:33)
Folder with a ? usually means the OS is missing or HDD is actually kaput. Easiest way is to remove it from the macbook and hook it up to another computer via a USB adapter.

If this does nothing, then try the freezer trick.

(And then buy a PC.)

Wolf68k
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#6

Posted 05 May 2012 - 05:47 AM

Invest in getting a copy of DiskWarrior http://www.alsoft.com/diskwarrior/
Yes I know at $100 it's not cheap, but trust me it's well worth it. It's very possible that for the most part the OS is fine, just with some issues and it's very possible that DW can fix it.
It's a bootable disk that does one things, repair the OS and system files. It also defrags which is also a good thing.

matthew1g
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#7

Posted 05 May 2012 - 08:59 AM Edited by matthew1g, 05 May 2012 - 09:04 AM.

Stop it with the annoying jabs at apple. Seriously, you people keep yammering against apple, you really need to take a chill pill and stfu.

On topic, when booting up, try holding down the alt key, this should let you boot up the recovery partition and see if you can recover the os from there. If this is still functional then the hdd is still fine and you can most probably reimstall the os. Hopefully you're using lion. I'm not sure how snow leopard and earlier versions work, they came with the installation dvd afaik.

If this doesnt work check your warranty and visit the apple genius bar, you can proably get that replaced for free.

The app wolf mentioned is good, however, you need to be able to load up the os in the first place to run the software.

Ps: once you get this fixed, buy an external drive, partition it and run time machine, it will save from disasters such as this!

Posted from my ipad, remote-desktop'ed to my 27" imac, just to spite the posters above. Umadbro?

:edit: unlike a windows device, a mac will give meaningful documented errors, so, give a visit to this page which explains the problem and what you have to do, http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1440

It pretty much says what i've mentioned above.

Wolf68k
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#8

Posted 05 May 2012 - 04:37 PM

@matthew1g
Read what I said again. It's a bootable disc. It has it's own stripped down version of OSX on it to run it's software. Plus which you can't run and repair with DW on the drive with the OS.
The page I linked the price includes a downloadable version and DVD version. If he has access to another Mac he should be able to download it there and make the disc on there and move said disc to bad system. Might be possible to create the disc on a Windows system if you have the right program that can read the image file and burn it. I've never tried it but I believe UltraISO can do this.

Otter
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#9

Posted 05 May 2012 - 04:47 PM

If you've kept your OS updated you should be able to netboot as well, which will allow you access to your harddrive if there's anything salvagable. It's probably all in there.

That's what they'll do first at the genius bar - boot up to their recovery server.

leik oh em jeez!
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#10

Posted 05 May 2012 - 08:11 PM

QUOTE
you people keep yammering against apple

What do you mean you people?

QUOTE
unlike a windows device, a mac will give meaningful documented errors

Stop it with the annoying jabs at Windows. Seriously, you people keep yammering against Windows, you really need to take a chill pill and stfu.
It's called event log man. Don't bash windows if you don't know how to use it. The brand new iMacs I used in DVP never gave me any errors when they froze or crashed, which was every day.

On topic: Do you have a spare computer you can put the HDD in to recover files? That would make things a whole lot easier.

Wolf68k
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#11

Posted 05 May 2012 - 10:46 PM

QUOTE (leik oh em jeez! @ Saturday, May 5 2012, 14:11)
The brand new iMacs I used in DVP never gave me any errors when they froze or crashed, which was every day.

Sounds like you need DW as well

matthew1g
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#12

Posted 06 May 2012 - 12:34 AM Edited by matthew1g, 06 May 2012 - 12:37 AM.

QUOTE (leik oh em jeez! @ Saturday, May 5 2012, 22:11)
QUOTE
you people keep yammering against apple

What do you mean you people?

QUOTE
unlike a windows device, a mac will give meaningful documented errors

Stop it with the annoying jabs at Windows. Seriously, you people keep yammering against Windows, you really need to take a chill pill and stfu.
It's called event log man. Don't bash windows if you don't know how to use it. The brand new iMacs I used in DVP never gave me any errors when they froze or crashed, which was every day.

On topic: Do you have a spare computer you can put the HDD in to recover files? That would make things a whole lot easier.

I build, maintain and troubleshoot windows desktops and administer Active directory domains on Server '08 R2+XP/W7/Linux environment with Cisco and HP hardware, plus I manage other related services for a living with an HP Gold Certified Partner, I'm a certified enterprise MCITP 08 r2 administrator, with CCNA, CCNA wireless, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, LPIC 1+2 as well as in possession of several HP certifications and currently working on obtaining a Degree in Computer Science From University of Middlesex(UK). So I don't know what you mean when you say "don't bash windows if you don't know how to use it"

I have no idea what DVP is, but at home I run a mac based network. Not a single crash or freezing. Clearly, you must be the one doing something wrong here. You know damn well what "you people" means. Every other apple topic you and a couple of other members post in with your apple hate. Keep your opinions to yourself, nobody cares, especially someone who needs his problem solved.

And as I said, there is probably no need to replace the HDD since most probably booting into the recovery partition as stated in a previous post, also in the link for apple support provided.

Otter
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#13

Posted 06 May 2012 - 12:50 AM

If DVP stands for Digital Video Production, then one can only assume that we're talking about abused machines in a school setting and most likely with a poor understanding of best workflow practices.

leik oh em jeez!
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#14

Posted 06 May 2012 - 01:15 AM Edited by leik oh em jeez!, 06 May 2012 - 01:17 AM.

QUOTE
Sounds like you need DW as well

They were school computers, and this was like five years ago.

QUOTE
I build, maintain and troubleshoot windows desktops and administer Active directory domains on Server '08 R2+XP/W7/Linux environment with Cisco and HP hardware, plus I manage other related services for a living with an HP Gold Certified Partner, I'm a certified enterprise MCITP 08 r2 administrator, with CCNA, CCNA wireless, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, LPIC 1+2 as well as in possession of several HP certifications and currently working on obtaining a Degree in Computer Science From University of Middlesex(UK).

And I have this awesome shirt!
user posted image

QUOTE
Clearly, you must be the one doing something wrong here.

No, all I was doing was was using the software that was installed on the system by the instructor who was a long time Apple fanboy. Obviously the whole "It just works" campaign is an outright lie.

QUOTE
Every other apple topic you and a couple of other members post in with your apple hate. Keep your opinions to yourself, nobody cares, especially someone who needs his problem solved.

It was small print at the bottom of my post. If you don't like it, don't read it.

QUOTE
If DVP stands for Digital Video Production, then one can only assume that we're talking about abused machines in a school setting and most likely with a poor understanding of best workflow practices.

Bingo. Still, there were only two classes a day, I was in one of them, and we got them right after the start of the semester. They were horrible from day one, and were never connected to the internet. And correct me if I'm wrong but the entire point of an Apple is that it's supposed to be idiot-proof, right? What exactly could the school do to abuse them before the fist time use while not even being connected to the internet to make them freeze and crash every day?

Otter
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#15

Posted 06 May 2012 - 01:21 AM

QUOTE (leik oh em jeez! @ Saturday, May 5 2012, 17:15)
And correct me if I'm wrong but the entire point of an Apple is that it's supposed to be idiot-proof, right?

Yeah, this is where you're wrong.


leik oh em jeez!
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#16

Posted 06 May 2012 - 01:26 AM

QUOTE (Otter @ Saturday, May 5 2012, 20:21)
Yeah, this is where you're wrong.

Wow, way to go man. You really proved me wrong there. That was possibly the most detailed and well thought out dissing I've ever seen. That totally negates all of my points. Keep up the good work. dozingoff.gif

Otter
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#17

Posted 06 May 2012 - 01:30 AM

I'm sorry - didn't you simply ask to be told if you were wrong? That I did. I think you'd be the first person to know that no machine is truly idiot proof.

leik oh em jeez!
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#18

Posted 06 May 2012 - 01:58 AM

I'm sorry, you just didn't make it out to be a simple correction. Obviously no system is 100% idiot proof, but I was under the impression that being more so than a Windows or Linux based machine was much of the point in buying an Apple. You know, it's supposed to be harder to break or something?

Otter
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#19

Posted 06 May 2012 - 02:12 AM Edited by Otter, 06 May 2012 - 02:23 AM.

No, not really. Apple systems are simply more reliable because the sheer amount of variables are tightly controlled. It's a bit of a sh*tty trade off - your options are severley limited but at the end of the day your productivity, and the cost of maintaining and replacing machines, is incredibly optimized. They break, but the reasons for these breaks and the methods to prevent them from happening again in the near future, are far more easily identified.

But it's not just Apple that loves to impose these strict limitations on end users. You wouldn't believe how much time and money is spent in development costs to ensure that a website will run on Internet Explorer 6 because a huge segment of the professional market uses it almost exclusively. Because of imposed limitations.

So when people say Apple "simply works," they're on to something. Because when it eventually doesn't work, there's a a very streamlined troubleshooting checklist. And when we're talking about thousands of dollars per day of lost productivity (I bill out alone at $500 these days) it only makes sense to run on a system that can quickly get up off its knees.

leik oh em jeez!
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#20

Posted 06 May 2012 - 02:27 AM

I would agree that it is harder to accidentally f*ck your operating system into not booting on an Apple system, but cheaper and easier to maintain and repair... Not so much, I just don't see how. I mean it's great on paper, but in reality when something does f*ck up, it may not report why it's f*cked because, well, it's f*cked up. You have the same problem in Windows. Sometimes you'll get an error that will tell you exactly what DLL is missing, sometimes your system locks up. Sometimes under Apple, you get a nice detailed error, but sometimes you get the swirling rainbow pinwheel of death. The way I see it, the difference in maintenance and repair will come down to parts availability and price, and in those areas, an unrestricted PC will win every time.

To me at least, the trade offs wouldn't be worth it if Apple products were priced the same as or slightly below others. combine that with their ridiculous prices even though they have lower manufacturing and distributing costs, and it just irks me. Further combined with how they try to brainwash consumer into thinking "it's simply better" just really makes me hate the company. But I suppose that's enough of my rambling.

Wolf68k
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#21

Posted 06 May 2012 - 02:52 AM

Ok. Enough from the both of you. Take it to PM. Help the OP with real solutions or don't say anything at all.

Allen14n
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#22

Posted 08 May 2012 - 03:17 PM

QUOTE (Wolf68k @ Saturday, May 5 2012, 05:47)
Invest in getting a copy of DiskWarrior http://www.alsoft.com/diskwarrior/
Yes I know at $100 it's not cheap, but trust me it's well worth it. It's very possible that for the most part the OS is fine, just with some issues and it's very possible that DW can fix it.
It's a bootable disk that does one things, repair the OS and system files. It also defrags which is also a good thing.

Thanks for the suggestion. I was a bit skeptical at first, but it does seem like a convincing way to recover files. I think I might just go for DiskWarrior after all. I hope it's worth the money.

Wolf68k
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#23

Posted 08 May 2012 - 03:22 PM Edited by Wolf68k, 08 May 2012 - 03:27 PM.

I make no promises that it'll work in your case, so don't hate if it doesn't work for you. If it doesn't that's a sign that the problem is pretty deeper (like missing or corrupt system files) or possibly hardware related.
I can say that in my personal experience I've had it fix a lot of issues I've had in the past, short of a hardware problem of course.
My dad got me to start using it back in what is now known as the Classic OS days. I think we were using OS 8.x or for sure OS 9.x. Prior to that we relied on Norton Utilities for the Mac which was great back then.

Allen14n
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#24

Posted 08 May 2012 - 04:18 PM

QUOTE (Wolf68k @ Tuesday, May 8 2012, 15:22)
I make no promises that it'll work in your case, so don't hate if it doesn't work for you. If it doesn't that's a sign that the problem is pretty deeper (like missing or corrupt system files) or possibly hardware related.
I can say that in my personal experience I've had it fix a lot of issues I've had in the past, short of a hardware problem of course.
My dad got me to start using it back in what is now known as the Classic OS days. I think we were using OS 8.x or for sure OS 9.x. Prior to that we relied on Norton Utilities for the Mac which was great back then.

I think what happened was:
I was working on something on my MacBook. All of a sudden, the programs stopped responding. I shut the system down and turned it back on. The screen showed this flashing icon of a file or folder with a question mark in the middle.

I really hope it works.




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