Since I started working in Data recovery, I tend to view the stories in the news a little differently. When hearing of a disaster like the recent blackout in Detroit, my first reaction is the same as it has always been, “I hope everyone is ok.” It’s my secondary reaction that has changed to: “I hope their data is ok.” We always preach “Backup! Backup! Backup!” when it comes to data, but in a blackout situation, the back-ups could be affected as well.
In the event you have been affected by the Detroit Blackout, or another power outage situation, there are a few tips to increase your odds of a successful recovery.
- Stop using the media immediately. Shut the system down to avoid overwriting the data.
- Restore any backups to a different volume; this ensures that all important files are good on the backup before possibly overwriting data on the active volume.
- If there is a RAID problem, test the backup by restoring it to a different location or image each drive from the RAID before attempting a rebuild.
- Do not use file recovery software unless you have a validated backup and know your drives are not physically damaged. Using file recovery software on a faulty hard drive may destroy what was otherwise recoverable data.
- Do not create any new files on the disk needing recovery or continue to run virtual machines until the important data is recovered.
- Call a professional data recovery service for further assistance.
Keep in mind that you may only have one chance for data recovery. Now, I obviously have my biased opinion on which company you should call, but I honestly just want to help and make sure you have a good data recovery service. Here is a list to keep in mind when deciding which company to choose.
- Beware of companies that charge for the entire data recovery up-front. Data recovery is never 100% guaranteed and even our skilled engineers cannot be completely certain what can be recovered until they examine the media.
- Will they provide a list of recoverable files before you have to pay for the data recovery? Not many people know this is even an option, but it is. Know what you are going to get for the fee you are paying.
- Check to make sure they have they have experience in recovering from your type of media, platform and operating system.
- How long has the company been in business? Do they have repeat customers? What do customers say about them?
- Know where your data will be recovered. Does the company have cleanroom facilities and where are they located? If they need to ship your media internationally, this will add to the time and possibly the cost of the recovery.
- Any large data recovery requires a number of engineers along with a vast amount of storage space for the data being recovered. Does the company have the resources to complete your recovery?
- Is there an option for remote data recovery or for someone to come onsite to recover the data. These are options for large recoveries, or for when the media is not allowed to leave the property for security reasons.
- What are the company’s security protocols? This is your data! Do they have security measures in place to keep it safe?
Ultimately, the decision is up to you, but you can contact us if you have any further questions.