Technology has evolved on a mass scale from the latter part of the 20th century to the present day. In the past you would only be able to purchase hard drives with only MB’s of storage space, and would be a lot bigger in size. Now you can have hard drives up to 5TB in size that can fit in your pocket.
It’s the same with USB sticks, although the physical size of USB sticks have not changed too much, the amount of storage you can have in one device has changed drastically over a number of years. Like hard drives, you would have USB sticks that would only be MB’s in size, but in recent years they have had 8GB sticks up to 128GB. A few years ago they introduced a USB stick which would store up to 2TB of data. It’s amazing to think that you can put the same amount of data on a hard drive as well as a USB stick. Of course the 2TB HDD’s are considerably less expensive than the 2TB USB sticks. 2TB hard drives normally sell for £65-£75, whereas the 2TB sticks can be priced as much as £1200 due to how rare these sticks are.
Any sized hard drive can be fragile if used incorrectly or if used with a heavy hand, for example, a hard drive can be dropped which will cause the heads to possible crash and mangle.
With 2.5" drives, they are arguably more fragile than 3.5” drives, mainly because the heads are more close together than on larger drives, so it doesn’t take much to damage the heads or the platters inside the drive. For example, if you have a laptop and squeeze it with some force or if you accidently sit on it, then that can cause damage to the hard drive later on, when the laptop is pressed down then the hard drive is also pressed with some force so that in time can cause problems when turning on the laptop. The heads will stick more to the platters generating scratches on the platters. Also the heads would struggle to mount so you would hear a clicking sound coming from the laptop.
At that point you know there is a problem. If there are finger prints and rings as well as scratches then the chances of recovering data from that particular drive is almost none existent.
The most fragile drives (that have been sent to us) are Seagate drives, specifically the 2.5” Seagate 1TB mobile HDD drives (ST1000LM035), we have a lot of these drives that have failed due to either Media degradation or the more common Mechanical fault, and unfortunately when it comes to sourcing a matching donor they are tough to match. Although since we have had a lot sent to us, it does mean that we have a lot of working drives to choose from, so we are not short on stock supply.
If a 2.5” is dropped then it is more likely to click and have major damage to it than larger 3.5” drives, this is due to larger drives being sturdier and having a thicker shape and thicker lid.
The hard drive failed on my MacBook Pro. Applestore advised they couldn’t recover the data when they fixed the laptop, and that the data would be lost (including my photos that had not been backed up). I described the issue with R3 by phone, and they were confident they could recover the data and confirmed the cost. It took just 16 hours from registering with R3 that I wanted them to look at the failed drive, to being notified what data had been recovered. I was kept informed of progress throughout, and all my files were recovered.
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