Ontracks Top 5 Data Recovery Cases of 2017

Friday, May 11, 2018 by Michael Nuncic


Our data recovery engineers in our labs and cleanrooms around the world receive a great number of data recovery cases every year. Some of those cases are quite easy to fix with the right tools and the necessary experience, but some are more than just tricky even for the most experienced engineers. This year our US engineers - with the help of their colleagues around the world - had to cope with many severe data recoveries due to the devastating effects of the Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Ontrack donated $500,000 in recovery services and was on location to help those affected by these storms. But this was not the only natural disaster 2017 in the world: Cyclone Debbie was the strongest tropical storm in the Australian region after 6 years and hit Queensland in late March with severe flooding and water damage.

See for yourself what data losses our experts encountered last year due these natural disasters and "normal" every day use:

5. The tropical storm Debbie devastated Queensland in Australia and the office of a client

Besides the whole furniture and office equipment also their backup server was hit by the water masses and retrieved form the muddy water after the storm was gone. The client sent the server to Ontrack's Brisbane office to rescue the data. After removing all the dirt inside the server, drying the internal disk drives and reading them out, the engineers were finally able to recover the vital data of the company, which would have taken the clients months to recreate and probably could have lead the firm to close forever.

4. Sometimes our engineers do not trust their eyes when they receive storage devices for data recovery

It was the same with this case: Our US engineers US received a customer’s drive said to be suffering a hardware failure. What they didn't expect was that one of the internal platters were broken obviously due to a hard crash. Even though it was extremely difficult the engineer was finally able to create an image of the data stored on the disk and successfully recovered a great number of photos.

3. Sometimes it is only a normal fire that can have all your data destroyed

In this US case the fire struck a customer's two drive NAS, which was badly damaged and contained critical business data. One might not believe it when looking at the picture, but our engineers were able to successfully overcome the damage and recovered all of data from the two discs.

2. Around August 25th, Harvey hit Texas with a category 4 hurricane with speeds up to 209 km/h (130 mph) and in its aftermath some regions had to cope with severe flooding.

One of the affected Texas residents asked Ontrack for data recovery help with two disks that had been underwater for almost 3 days. Both drives were shipped to Ontrack. Within about 3-4 days, both drives were 100% recovered, copied to new external hard drives and shipped back to the customer.

1.But the most funny data recovery case happened in Europe, Austria to be exact, where we received an external hard disk drive from a customer.

When he explained the issue to one of our service professionals, he told her, that after his baby stood on the disk drive, it made noises and the personal computer was not able to find the disk in the operating system anymore. However the baby wasn't able to destroy the whole disk just by dancing on the drive. From the disk with total amount of 1 terabyte of data, only 14 small files were bad and could not be recovered. So most of the data – precious baby photos and other memories of the child – were sent to the customer on a new Ontrack external drive only after a couple of hours.

Picture copyrights: Ontrack and LuidmilaKot / pixabay.com CC0 Creative Commons license

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