Sunday, 28 July 2019

Why You Need A Hard Drive Recovery Service

Your hard drive crashes suddenly. What are you going to do about it? Would you consider a hard drive recovery service provider or software? It’s best to limit yourself to those two options. Doing it yourself should never be an option for you.

Here’s the thing. Your hard drive contains critical data you can’t do without. Your work and personal files are stored in it. The last thing you really need is for your hard drive to crash.

Unfortunately, hard drives are prone to crash. No matter how well they’re built, they’re not meant to last forever. Anything can happen to your hard drive.

At a time when you least expect it, it can even fail on you.

Hard Drive Failures are sometimes caused by human mistakes, such as pouring water all over the HDD, or they sometimes happen by themselves, simply because the hard drive died naturally. Another example is simply making the mistake of deleting all data on the hard drive, but this is much easier to recover from.


Yes, it happens. You could accidentally delete some of your files. After all, you’re only human and you’re bound to make a mistake especially if you have duplicate copies of an important file.

Lucky for you, there’s a way to get back your deleted files in case you accidentally delete them.

If you happened to lose your data simply by making the mistake of accidentally deleting it, there is tons of software on the Internet that can help you recover.


Accidental deleted files is not the only way for you to lose data. Remember, hard drives fail. There’s just no telling when; they just fail. When that time comes, you will need a hard drive recovery service.

…if the problem is caused by something like completely destroying the hard disk drive by pouring water over it or anything similar, you might need help from a professional.


So why should you opt for a hard drive recovery service instead of using software to get your data back?

Some people who are not computer-savvy enough are seeking for professional help even when the problem is caused by accidentally deleting the data, while the hard disk drive remains completely pristine, simply because they don’t know how to work with data-recovery software. The companies who are involved in salvaging data are not really charging all that much for such services, but if the situation involves recovering data from a hard disk that is completely destroyed, it will cost a bit more for sure.


Truth be told, you really need to choose between a hard drive recovery service and software. It has got to be one or the other. You can’t use both.

If you opt for a software, you need to make sure that nothing goes wrong. Most importantly, you need to make sure that it’s going to work. If the software isn’t able to recover your data and you decide to turn to a hard drive recovery service for help, the latter is going to have a hard time getting the job done.

A hard drive recovery service should never be your last option. Instead, it should be your only option to recover your data.

At the end of the day, it is extremely important that the company you hired fixes the problem, and sometimes there is so much valuable data on the hard disk that it is basically incomparable to the price you have to pay in order to get it back.


Opting for a hard drive recovery service is the most reliable way to get back your data. Hence, is the reason why that particular service is something you need. You may not need it now but in the future, you will.

The Hard Drive Recovery Group or HDRG provides the reliable service that you need in case you’re desperate to get back your files. If you’re wondering why HDRG is the recommended hard drive recovery service, just take a good look at what they have to offer. Their data recovery is safe and secure. What this means for you is that your critical data is protected.
There is no doubt that the HDRG is the service that you need.

Why You Need A Hard Drive Recovery Service Find more on: The Hard Drive Recovery Group Blog


Thursday, 25 July 2019

Is Your Electronic Identity Safe?

It's hard to stay private these days. Anyone can just search the internet to learn more you. If you don't put the settings of your social media accounts to private, then your electronic identity is open for everybody to see.

You should take care of your electronic identity.  Even if it seems enviable, you should do your best to manage it. Don't post everything online.  Anyone can just use your perfect selfies to commit identity theft. So, while you're bragging about your perfect life online, sensitive details of your identity might already be floating around the dark web. For all you know, you've already commited a crime that you aren't even aware of. Your personal information can easily end up in the wrong hands.

Keeping your private information from falling into the wrong hands is a big challenge.


If you don't believe your identity could be compromised, you're doomed. It's very easy to steal and to smear electronic identities, yours included. Identity theft is rampant.

The Federal Trade Commission says the Sunshine State has the second highest rate of identity theft per capita. Last year alone, Floridians lost 84 million dollars to hackers. ABC7’s Jacqueline Matter found you may be putting your identity at risk without even realizing it.


Your electronic identity is not just available online. It's also available in various hardware devices such as your external hard drives and smart phone. So, even if you spend some time shredding documents that contain sensitive information about yourself, you could still get in trouble if you don't clean out your damaged hard drives or smartphone.

Most people know it’s a good idea to shred documents with personal information on them such as tax records, W-2s and other items with sensitive information, but what about those devices that don’t shred like hard drives, thumb drives and mobile devices?

And fraudsters are targeting your electronics too, according to Nathan Bailey, the Chief Operating Officer at SouthTech IT Services in Sarasota.


It's a lot easier to get hold of  used electronics devices, especially the ones that are all set for the junk yard. Who really takes the time to clean out an old electronic device before throwing it out? Do you? So, instead of rummaging through mails, thieves go for electronic devices.

“People used to go through the mail and pull out the credit card applications and stuff like that. They don’t really do that anymore a lot of it they get electronically," Bailey explains.

Flash drives, hard drives, old computers and phones contain just as much sensitive information as confidential documents.

“Protecting your personal identity is critical and you want to take the steps before you destroy your computers, turn it in and make sure that it’s not going to fall into the wrong hands," Bailey says.


As it is, your digital footprint can easily be tracked down online. Don't make it any easier by making your electronic identity available in your ready-to-discard hard drives.

There are some common misconceptions when it comes to properly cleaning your digital footprint.

“Well one, they may just try to throw it away and hope nobody finds it, but if they ever did, they’re going to pull everything off. The other thing people often do is delete files. They are like, ‘Oh I deleted everything I should be good,’ but really the data is still there."

So how do you protect yourself?

If you’re getting rid of old electronics reset the device or get it back to factory settings, wipe it out completely and either destroy and smash the hard drive or if you’ve got a drill handy drill right through it.

There are reputable companies that recycle the hazardous metals inside, but you should always ask for a receipt that your electronics were properly disposed of.

Taking these steps can help you avoid the time consuming task of getting your identity back if it falls into the wrong hands.


It's safe to say that you should really keep an eye on your electronic identity. You don't just do that by managing your online presence. You should also be careful with devices that store your personal information. Even if they're not yet bound for the junk yard, they might be up for repair.That is why it is also important to choose a reputable company that can repair devices like your external hard drives.

The Hard Drive Recovery Group is a reputable company that guarantees secure data recovery. Your is serviced in a class 100 clean room so that nothing ends up in the wrong hands, keeping your electronic identity safe.

Is Your Electronic Identity Safe? is available on


Sunday, 21 July 2019

Is There A Difference Between Data Security And Data Privacy?

Yes! There is a difference between data security and data privacy. To understand or to, at least, see the difference between the two, let's define each one first. Data security is defined as:

Data security refers to ways organizations protect their data, including technical safeguards that help ensure data confidentiality, integrity and availability.


Now, let’s define data privacy.

Data privacy revolves around the use and governance of personal data. This can include everything from personally identifiable information (PII) to financial information, to information about a person’s career, education, health, family or criminal history.


See the difference?

From these definitions, it’s clear that these two terms—“data security” and “data privacy”—should not be used interchangeably. While they are certainly related and are both extremely important, they should be addressed in different, but integrated ways.


Security expert, Cindy Compert of CTO Data Security and Privacy for IBM Security, explains the intricacies of both terms.

“We like to say you can have security without privacy, but you can’t have privacy without security,” says Cindy Compert, CTO Data Security and Privacy for IBM Security. “Consider data that you consider to be solidly secured: It’s encrypted, access is restricted, and you have put in place multiple overlapping monitoring systems. In all meaningful senses of the word, the data is secure. But when you add privacy into the mix, it becomes a little more convoluted. For example, while the customer service agent may be provisioned to access your account details after going over some security questions, privacy won’t allow the same individual to check the account of a family member, even though they have access privileges to that information.”


These days, data privacy has become more important and complex.

Increasingly stringent regulations in the United States and abroad have put data privacy concerns and compliance front-and-center for most companies. For example, privacy regulations in laws like the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (COPPA) give customers the right to see all data collected about them and allow them to request deletion of that data. Some states, like California, have their own privacy laws.

The more recent General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) from the European Union is even broader, defining a privacy violation as the illegal retrieval or disclosure of “any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person.” That information can include posts on social media, email addresses, bank details, photos and IP addresses.


The set of tools and approaches for both data privacy and data security are quite different as well.

Popular types of data privacy tools include browser extensions and add-ons, password managers, private browsers and email services, encrypted messaging, private search engines, web proxies, file encryption software, and ad and tracker blockers. Data security tools include identity and access management, data loss prevention (DLP), anti-malware and anti-virus, security information and event management (SIEM) and data masking software.


It’s really important to know the difference between the two. To start with, they won’t be used interchangeably. Seriously, knowing the difference between the two terms is critical in this age of Big Data.

“The companies that are doing it right have a unified program, with an agreed-upon classification framework, along with an assessment process and controls based on the sensitivity of the data,” Compert says.


One example of a company that’s doing it right is the Hard Drive Recovery Group. They understand the importance of protecting sensitive data in damaged hard drives. They boast of their very own data recovery process that offers the highest level of security.

Recognized worldwide, their are considered to be the safest in the industry.

The article Is There A Difference Between Data Security And Data Privacy? Find more on: HDRG


Thursday, 18 July 2019

Backup And Storage Options We Should All Consider

Data backup and storage are critical. Most of the time, we overlook them. In worst-case scenarios, we might even ignore and disregard them.

Only when a disaster strikes, do we find ourselves saying, “We should have backed up!” That should never be the case. Regret is never going to get us anywhere.

While data backup and storage probably aren’t the first things that come to mind when looking at your IT strategy for 2019, business owners should understand that they are part of your technology foundation and could be key to your success this year. Storage, for example, is the vital base for your cloud and data center, and backup capabilities are a requirement in today’s interconnected world.


These days, natural disasters aren’t the only threats to the workplace. Unfortunately, there are now more as compared to before. While technology has made it easier for businesses, it has also made it more vulnerable to data loss and theft.

We read about it nearly every day: Cyber attacks against businesses of all sizes are on the rise and doing more damage than ever. But there are also physical threats your data faces, too. A fire, flood or other natural disaster can wreak havoc on your data and make recovery virtually impossible unless you have a backup plan in place. What is your business doing to protect your data?


Data protection is, no doubt, a priority. That’s the reason why data backup and storage are critical, not just in the workplace, but everywhere.

As computer users, we should all think about data protection. We should never, never overlook data backup and storage.

Here are three options for quick and reliable data backup and storage. The first of which requires us to make use of appliances and automation.

The days of tape and manual backup should be a thing of the past by now. Rather than leave it to chance that employees remember to engage the backup, there are many great solutions out there with complete automation.

The trend is now on appliance-based backup with geo redundant cloud storage. Solutions like this offer automatic backups to ensure you can restore cloud data no matter what happens to it, from malicious attacks to forgetful or careless employees. Everything is backed up to numerous data centers and anything can be restored, preventing data loss and downtime.

For instance, let’s say something happens to your entire infrastructure, such as a flood or fire in your building. Because of scheduled, automated daily backups, all your data is housed on servers in separate geo locations. This also means your employees could work remotely, as those servers in either data center could be turned on immediately.

Such appliances allow companies to maintain control of business data -- no matter what happens -- while enjoying the scalability, cost-effectiveness and flexibility of SaaS solutions.


The second option is to make use of the cloud for data backup and storage.

If a backup appliance is not what you are looking for, then another great solution is Veeam Cloud Mobility. It provides easy portability and recovery of any on-premises or cloud-based workloads to AWS, Azure and Azure Stack. In just two easy steps, you can maintain business continuity and availability across cloud environments. The benefits of going this route is that it does not require an additional hardware appliance, but keep in mind it does require additional resources on the VM that’s running it. However, you have better control of the resources deployed when a restore is required.

Data  portability is critical  for organizations that want to maintain speed and control of their multi-cloud environment. Veeam can provide fast, flexible and reliable recovery of virtualized applications and data and deliver an agentless backup solution built for VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V virtual environments. Other benefits include agentless backups, deduplication and compression, and inexpensive offsite backups. Tools like these can help businesses leverage the growing demand for modern data protection and equip them with the tools needed to reduce expenses, mitigate risk and fully realize the promise of virtualization.


The third option is to make use of flash drives.

With continued evolution that is giving it many advantages over hard disk drives (HDDs), flash solid-state drives (SSDs) are becoming increasingly critical in the memory and storage hierarchy of systems. Used onsite, in a cloud environment or as part of a hybrid system architecture, flash has numerous benefits in terms of speed and efficiency.

Today, thanks to its growing sophistication, flash can deliver information in real time (or near real time) and has distinct advantages over HDDs in terms of power and cost of ownership.

As prices continue to fall and improvements in SSD performance continue to evolve, the all-flash array has become a viable contender to replace the traditional HDD infrastructure. In 2019, look for flash to become an even stronger player and gain more credibility as an HDD alternative.


These three options are very reliable but if we’re really looking at data protection, we need to do more than just rely on our backups and storage.

Our computer hard drive can fail us anytime. Sure, we can always rely on our backups but we also need to make sure that our data from our computer hard drive are safely and securely recovered by experts. This is where the Hard Drive Recovery Group comes in. We can rely on them for services. That way, our data from our failed hard drive are not just recovered but are safe as well.

The following blog post Backup And Storage Options We Should All Consider is republished from The Hard Drive Recovery Group Blog


Tuesday, 16 July 2019

Data Recovery Services Company Discusses External Hard Drives And Cloud Backup In New Blog Posts

Hard Drive Recovery Group provides four new external hard drive troubleshooting tips and discusses cloud backup provider BackBlaze's latest hard drive reliability report in its latest blog posts. The company publishes blog posts twice weekly about hard drives, data recovery and data safety.

External hard drives, while not new, are one of the most popular forms of data storage available today. Lower prices continue to influence buyers of the drives, which tend to connect and power themselves using a USB 3.0 port. Although these devices are often advertised as "plug-and-play", they do often malfunction, the reason behind HDRG's blog post entitled, "4 Troubleshooting Tips For Your External Drive".

"External hard drives are fantastic for a lot of consumers simply because it gives them a safe, external place to backup their data," said Maureen Davies, spokesperson for Hard Drive Recovery Group. "Before external hard drives were available, backing up was often very 'Wild West', with far too many proprietary technologies available and too few inexpensive options. The USB port really made the external hard drive popular, which made a lot of backup solutions obsolete."

External hard drives tend to show their minor user related issues through two avenues - their USB port and the drive itself. While they are certainly very consistent overall, USB ports can be finicky with some drives, as they enable both the connection to the computer, as well as powering the device itself.

And while external hard drives are excellent as backup devices, to store photos or to carry files on the go, Hard Drive Recovery Group stresses that they should not be used as a consistent storage point for critical files.

"While the newer external hard drives are better, larger and faster than they have ever been, these drives remain dangerous for consistent use mainly because of their portability," said Davies. "If used as a backup device, the drive should be used solely for that, as a slight drop or accident which may occur during regular use can create immediate data loss."

In a second blog post entitled, "Cloud Backup Firm Report Shows The Importance Of Data Backup", Hard Drive Recovery Group discusses BackBlaze's most recent annual hard drive reliability report. The report notes that hard drive failures are up in their systems compared to the year before, but also notes that large drives are no more likely to fail than small drives.

The report notes that the highest failure rate of the hard drives the company uses was 2.6%. That model, an HGST 12TB disk, compares well to the company's most used drives, a Seagate 12TB (with a 2.22% failure rate) and a Seagate 4TB (1.96% failure rate). The overall failure average for all hard drives used in their comprehensive backup systems was 1.56%.

"This study is one of the most informative out there when it comes to reporting the consistency and failure rates of hard drives," said Davies. "What's more, it shows regular users that even industrial backup companies with millions of dollars worth of switches, expensive cooling setups and stationary drive racks experience hard drive failures."

Davies notes that although BackBlaze does have drives fail, it rarely affects the customers, as redundancy is the backbone of their business. And yet, it does clearly demonstrate that one out of fifty computers may experience some kind of normal use hard drive crash.

"While it is certainly possible that certain users experience less drive failures, the majority of users simply do not have the kind of setup conditions that a company like BackBlaze does," said Davies. "As a result, we tend to see that 'real world' failure rates are far higher, especially considering that laptop drives fail so often as a result of wear and tear. This is why Hard Drive Recovery Group always recommends keeping consistent backups of all important data."

from Hard Drive Recovery Group

Sunday, 14 July 2019

The Most Important Thing To Do Before Selling Your Old Computer

The excitement sets in. You can’t wait to get a new computer. However, you have to sell your old one first. That’s not a problem because you can always sell it online. Just as soon as you delete all the data in your computer, you can start selling it online. Easy as a pie, right?

Apparently, it’s not that easy. You see, you might be giving more than just a hardware. The data, you thought you deleted, could easily be retrieved by the buyer.

A team of researchers purchased some second-hand hard drives on Ebay that still had some data stored on them.

After applying data recovery tools to those drives, they found that 42% of them had at least some data. Even more concerning, about three out of every 20 of the drives had personally identifiable information, including scanned images of passports and birth certificates, as well as financial records.

Some of the drives also included corporate data. One had 5GB of archived internal email messages from a major travel company, and another, 3GB of shipping details and other data from a cargo/freight company. A third drive included data from a software developer that had what was described as a “high level of government security clearance.”


Maybe the previous owners tried to delete their data or maybe they didn’t. The point is, fragments of data were easily retrieved with the use of some recovery tools. That is really scary. It's pretty evident that  those hard drives weren't cleaned out well.

Obviously, it takes a lot to clean out a hard drive.

Consumers who even bother to remove data from their drives either delete certain files individually, or attempt to reformat that drive, thinking any existing files may be overwritten.

But “formatting is not the same thing as removing data,” says Fredrik Forslund, vice president of cloud and data erasure at Blancco, who adds that there are two ways for doing so in Windows – a quicker less secure method and way deeper format method. But even deep formatting, he says, leaves some data behind, where it could be surfaced by an individual or company with the proper recovery tools.


Fredrik adds that manually deleting data isn’t foolproof as well.

You can, of course, continue to manually delete files of sensitive documents or pictures, keeping in mind that doing so isn’t foolproof either.

“It’s like reading a book and removing the table of contents or the pointer in the file system to that file,” says Forslund. “But the entire data in that file remains on the hard drive so anyone can download freeware recovery software, run it, and get all the data back.”

The other thing you might do is consider your risk. Are you likely to be targeted? Does your drive have personal stuff blended with stuff from your employer?


If you have both personal and business data stored in your hard drive, you need to make sure that they’re all totally deleted. Before handing over your hard drive to its new owner, you need to make sure there aren’t any traces of your personal and business files. Keep in mind that your personal and business files are worth more than just the hard drive you’re selling.

With that in mind, the most important thing for you to do before selling your old computer is to take it to the experts at

Their various data recovery services not only protect your personal and business files, they also ensure that your hard drive is cleaned out. Don’t take the risk of thinking that you’ve deleted all your files from your old hard drive. Let the experts do it for you. You will have peace of mind as you put your computer up for sale.

The Most Important Thing To Do Before Selling Your Old Computer is courtesy of Hard Drive Recovery Group Blog


Thursday, 11 July 2019

Cloud Backup Firm Report Shows The Importance Of Data Backup

Yes, your data should be backed up. It’s very important that all your computer files are backed up. If they’re not, you could lose them forever, whether you're talking about a Windows, or a Mac system.

Here’s another thing to consider when it comes to data backup. Just because all your data are safely backed up to a hard drive doesn’t mean they’re safe. You need to factor in hard drive failures that can eventually compromise your data. If you’re not factoring in hard drive failures, then your backups are in danger.

Here’s the reason why. Based on a report from a leading cloud backup firm, hard drive failures are on the rise.

The latest hard drive reliability report from Backblaze, a cloud backup company that routinely publicizes failure rates among the drives in its employ, noted some interesting trends in the first quarter. For one, HDD failures as a whole have gone up. At the same time, the reports shows that larger capacity HDDs in the range of 8TB to 14TB are no more prone to failure than smaller capacity drives.


The report shows the failure rates of the various models of Toshiba, HGST, Seagate, and WDC.

A cursory glance shows that Toshiba manufactures the two drive models (4TB and 5TB) with zero failures in the first quarter, but "neither has a large enough number of drive bays to be statistically significant." Nevertheless, you have to go back to the second quarter of 2016 to find the last Toshiba 5TB drive to have failed, for whatever that is worth.

What's of more interest is the data for drive models that are used in higher numbers. The two most widely used drives belong to Seagate and include a 12TB model with a 2.22 percent failure rate (out of 34,708 drives), and a 4TB model with a 1.96 percent failure rate (out of 19,786 drives).

Those are actually some of the highest failure rates of the bunch, though not thehighest—that distinction belongs to a 12TB model from HGST (HUH721212ALE600), with a 2.6 percent failure rate.


The report shows a low failure rate but then the sample size is small. Needless to say, it’s still pretty obvious that hard drives fail.

That's still a relatively low failure rate, though it's a bit concerning, given the small sample size. Overall, the 15 drive models used in the first quarter collectively averaged a 1.56 failure rate.


While the failure rates of the various hard drive models are quite low, the report still emphasizes the importance to back up data.

Continue to back up your data, and make multiple back ups of anything that is mission critical or otherwise too precious to lose. For that kind of data, it's also a good idea to keep at least one of those backups off site, in case of a fire, flood, or some other catastrophe.

Provided you do that, it's generally safe to use a larger capacity HDD, if that's where you are leaning, based on Backblaze's data. For the most part, HDD's that are 8TB or higher appear only slightly more failure prone than lower capacity drives.


The whole point of backing up your data is to get them back immediately when the need arises. Unfortunately, you can never tell when that need is going to arise.

Considering the fact that branded HDDs still fail, you can’t be totally sure of getting back your files when you need them most. What you need is a reliable solution to a hard drive failure.

For Seagate data recovery, hover over to to learn more about it. For Western Digital data recovery, visit Both are useful resources for hard drive data recovery.

The following blog article Cloud Backup Firm Report Shows The Importance Of Data Backup was initially published on


Tuesday, 9 July 2019

Data Recovery Services Provider Talks Productivity, Safe Photo Storage In New Blog Posts

Hard Drive Recovery Group touches on staying productive in cases where high speed internet is not available and talks about professionally-preferred photo storage media in its latest blog posts. The company continues to offer a weekly blog with the aim to entertain and educate in a realm that few people consider "super exciting", namely "data recovery".

For many years now, software companies have been structuring their applications away from desktop installable programs to those that are available over the web. Often called "software as a service", this method of software delivery does allow the developer complete control, while allowing the user to benefit from immediate patches and upgrades, among other advantages. While this does work in an environment where there is always-on high speed internet, until recently, it was relatively useless for users in remote environments where Internet access is an issue.

"One of the most difficult things about the software as a service concept is that much of our daily lives are spent in zones where strong Internet is just not possible, despite smart phones," said Maureen Davies, spokesperson for Hard Drive Recovery Group. "Google has been huge in this arena, by creating smaller but fully functional versions of their software that allow people to work without Internet."

The article not only addresses Google apps such as Sheets, Drive and Calendar, but also other ways to stay productive when the Internet is not available. Easily the most often forgotten, and yet most important to the data recovery world is undoubtedly taking time to clean your hard drive, and checking out your current backups to ensure that they are indeed working.

"One of the things people rarely, if ever, consider is that it is very possible that the computer backups they have on hand are not actually functional," said Davies. "A time with no Internet is a fantastic time to see whether your backup software and hardware works, and if it does not, you have lots of time to address the situation before a future problem occurs."

A second recent post, entitled Photographers Share Proven Ways To Organize Digital Photos, discusses not only ways to organize your photographs in the age of digital photography, but also safety tips for people looking to ensure their photos live long beyond the device they are stored on.

"Because of the sheer availability of portable and external storage devices, saving your photographs can be quite easy, and certainly the large size of current external hard drives makes it possible to save them redundantly," said Davies. "We would recommend that you save any really important photographs not only to the device they were taken on, but also an external drive and a cloud service; the latter being either very cheap or free."

While many photographers do automatic backups of their photos, one of the best ways to find and file your photographs is simply to have a proper labeling system. This can be as simple as creating a file and folder naming convention that includes the time and the date.

"We recover photographs for professionals and amateurs alike, and one of the things that is always obvious with amateurs is that their photos tend to be managed poorly," said Davies. "In fact, we deal with far less professional photography simply because professionals are well versed on not only photo management and filing, but also consistent backups."

Whether you have a lot of digital photos or very few, ensuring their safety, from things like accidental deletion or even Ransomware is always going to be key to your piece of mind.

"The funny thing about digital photos is that so many people don't really care about them much until they have a hard drive failure," said Davies. "At that point, they usually begin to understand exactly what those photographs mean to them."

from Hard Drive Recovery Group

Sunday, 7 July 2019

4 Troubleshooting Tips For Your External Hard Drive

External hard drives are heaven sent. Even with cloud technology, physical devices, like external hard drives, are still great backup and storage options.

Backing up your data is important, and while storing information on the cloud has become second nature to most, there's still nothing like having everything saved on a physical device.


External hard drives are always very easy to use.

You plug them in, they appear on your computer, and you can drag files right on over.


Unfortunately, no external drive is infallible. No matter what brand, an external hard drive is bound to fail.

If your drive isn't appearing when you plug it in, you might have a problem. Here are a few troubleshooting steps you can take to remedy the situation.


The first tip is pretty simple. You just have to make sure that your external hard drive is plugged in and turned on.

While some drives can draw enough power from your computer's USB port, others—especially larger drives not intended to be portable—may require wall power to spin up.

If your drive came with an AC power adapter but you haven't plugged it in, try hooking it up (and pressing the power button, if there is one). If it came with two USB plugs, make sure they're both plugged into your PC. With any luck, your drive will appear normally once it gets the juice it needs.


The second troubleshooting tip is probably what you usually do when your computer can’t seem to detect your external hard drive.

If the drive still isn't working, unplug it and try a different USB port. It's possible the port in question is failing, or just being finicky with your specific drive. If it's plugged into a USB 3.0 port, try a USB 2.0 port. If it's plugged into a USB hub, try plugging it directly into the PC instead. You might also try it in another computer.


The third troubleshooting tip requires you to do some updating in your computer.

Occasionally, Windows runs into driver issues that will render a device unrecognizable. Open the Start menu, type "Device Manager," and press Enter when the option appears. Expand the Disk Drives menu and the Universal Serial Bus menu to see if your external drive appears in either set.

If you see an entry that looks like your drive with a yellow exclamation mark, right-click on the device and choose Properties—you may find an error code you can Google. You can also head to the Driver tab and try updating or uninstalling the driver and rebooting your computer.

Usually, hard drives just use Windows' built-in USB and hard disk drivers, so this isn't likely to fix a temperamental drive, but it's worth a shot. (You can also try downloading drivers from the drive manufacturer's website, but again, that's probably a long shot.)


The fourth troubleshooting tip requires you to dig deeper into your computer.

If your drive is powered on but still isn't appearing in File Explorer, it's time to do some digging. Open the Start menu and type "disk management," and press Enter when the Create and Format Hard Disk Partitions option appears. Once Disk Management loads, scroll down to see if your disk appears in the list. If it does, make sure it's online and formatted. If it's offline, right-click the disk's name (e.g. “Disk 2”) and choose Online.

If the disk hasn't been formatted (it'll say "Unallocated" under a black bar), right-click it and choose New Simple Volume. This will also solve the problem if the drive is formatted for another operating system, as described above. Be warned that formatting it will erase any data on the drive, so only continue if you're sure you don't need anything from it.

Finally, if your drive is online and formatted, but doesn't show a drive letter next to its name, right-click the volume and choose Change Drive Letter and Paths to add a drive letter. If you're lucky, one of these simple steps should get your new drive up and running.


There are actually 2 more troubleshooting tips but they’re too technical to consider. If you’re not an expert, you might even end up damaging your external drive.

If you’re not comfortable with these troubleshooting tips, it’s okay. You'll probably be more comfortable with a hard drive recovery service company that specializes in

The article 4 Troubleshooting Tips For Your External Hard Drive was originally published on Hard Drive Recovery Group Blog


Thursday, 4 July 2019

Photographers Share Proven Ways To Organize Digital Photos

Your photos are priceless. They depict moments that can never be replicated. Thanks to smartphones, it’s so easy to seize the moment. You can take hundreds or maybe even thousands of photos to seize the moment. The only downside is that you’ll have too many photos to organize.

Organizing photos, whether they’re digital or not, could be very time consuming. Unfortunately, deleting some of them could be heartbreaking as well. There really is no easy way to organize all your photos. One thing for sure, you need to back them up. Just in case.

It’s never been easier to take literally thousands of photos every week, whether they’re of your worldly travels or your everyday antics. But then, what do you do with all of those pictures? Unless you're going to print and then delete them on a regular basis, it's a good idea to back them up in some way — both for the purpose of freeing up space on your phone or camera, and as a fall-back in case you somehow lose the originals.


The mere task of transferring photos from your smartphone or camera to your computer is already time consuming. More so, organizing them in your computer. Still, it has to be done.

It’s also a pretty good idea to create some sort of organizational system that won’t have you sifting through thousands upon thousands of files every time you want to find one picture to post for a #TBT or print for your new gallery wall.


So, how should you go about doing it? How can you organize your photos? Professional photographers share proven ways to organize your digital photos.

Kenny Kim from Kenny Kim Photography recommends that you back up to the cloud.

“One great piece of advice for backing up your photos is to use cloud-based apps like Google Photo, where the photos are stored in your online account instead of your phone. Be mindful of their storage limitation, and know that there’s a monthly fee for additional space — but it is well worth it for safe-keeping. The app also comes with various features to allow you to organize, find and search for images.”


Susan Portnoy of The Insatiable Traveler recommends stocking up on memory cards and external drives.

“I always make sure to have plenty of memory cards with me [when traveling]. I don’t need to reuse them during the trip. It’s too easy to lose images that way. I always carry two 2 TB external hard drives ([I use the] Silicon Power 2TB Rugged Portable External Hard Drive) and at the end of each day, I download my memory cards to both.


Travel photographer, Charlie Gardiner, uses editing software to backup and to organize his photos.

“When I get back to my hotel room at the end of the day I dump all of my files from my SD cards onto an external hard drive (the files are never stored on my laptop’s hard drive). I then import the photos into [Adobe] Lightroom in order to catalog them and do some basic processing, I love Lightroom’s way of allowing you to organize photos. Once I have categorized all of the images and added relevant keywords (to make searching for them later easier), I create a backup of the Lightroom catalog, which is saved to the same external hard drive the photos are on. Lastly, I back up the external hard drive to the cloud ([I use] Amazon Drive). That way, I have a physical copy of the files and a backup stored in the cloud.”


Wedding photographer Kaitlin Cooper uses a network-attached storage device.

“For all of my photos (both taken on my phone and with my DSLR camera), they are all uploaded to my computer and stored within a network-attached storage (NAS) device...a high-powered server and external hard drive that allows you to store images and files. Because it is also a server, you have the ability to access your stored images remotely, along with being able to sync images up to it, such as directly from your phone.


Dan Gold from Halfhalftravel uses Backblaze to back up his hard drives.

“Backblaze is one of many different photo backup systems that we use. [It’s a subscription service that] creates a backup of the hard drives that you attach to your computer. Backblaze makes it easy because it is a simple app for your computer and an easy-to-use-web interface.


Both Viktoria Altman of Travel Tipster and Matthew Maxey of ICON Sportswire spend time creating folders for all their photos.

According to Viktoria Altman;

“The key to organizing photos is to keep it simple and use good tools. First, you'll need somewhere to store the pictures. Purchase a high-quality external drive, [like the Seagate Expansion 8 TB Desktop External Hard Drive], to keep all your photos. On the drive, set up folders by year, and break them into month and date. Next, use an organizing tool like Adobe Bridge. Import all your photos, and assign keywords to the pictures.


Here’s how Matthew Maxey does it.

“I sort everything by Year —> Month —> Event Name. Since most everything I shoot is a game or concert/festival on a specific date, that makes it very quick to find exactly what I’m looking for when I have to reference back.”


Jocelyn Voo of Everly Studios uses services to send and to store her photos.

“If I'm trying to send a few one-off photos to clients while on the go, I either use Google Drive or WeTransfer. Both are free, and you can send fairly large files without clogging up someone's email. However, if I'm delivering a larger set of photos from an event, I use Pixieset.


No doubt, these are great ways to organize your photos. They also add a couple of layers of protection, ensuring that your photos last longer. Nonetheless, there’s still no guarantee that they will, especially if you resort to using various hardware devices such your computer and external hard drives. They can eventually fail.

That simply means a hard drive failure is inevitable. Don’t worry because there are experts who can help get back, not just your photos but everything else from your

The blog article Photographers Share Proven Ways To Organize Digital Photos is courtesy of


Wednesday, 3 July 2019

Data Recovery Services Company Talks Ransomware And Windows 7 In New Blog Posts

Hard Drive Recovery Group touches on Ransomware and how to fight it, as well as the end of the long reign of Windows 7 in two new blog posts. The company continues to offer a weekly blog with the aim to entertain and educate in a realm that few people consider "groundbreakingly exciting", namely: hard drives.

As computer viruses have begun to become less of a threat because of near universal anti-virus protection (including Microsoft's Defender, which comes free with almost every edition of Windows 10), ransomware has become a new, dark threat that plays on the trust of users, tricking them into installing a virus on to their computers willingly.

"In many ways, ransomware is just like a basic virus, in that the user is tricked into downloading and installing an app they should not," said Maureen Davies, spokesperson for Hard Drive Recovery Group. "The difference is where the trick is played - where viruses usually play on the idea that people will double click on files they assume are trusted, Ransomware actually tricks people into thinking something is wrong with their computer, and that an app is the only thing that can help them."

While certainly some might say that this is indeed the business model of many software companies, what makes Ransomware truly evil is that in some cases it may all but disable the computer's function. Then, the user is typically required to "pay a ransom" in order to have their computer restored.

"Sadly, although Firefox and Chrome have been rock solid when it comes to fighting scripts that will auto-install pieces of ransomware on computers, there are still rogue ads that can attack your computer," said Davies. "The sad fact is that often these ransomware apps don't even accomplish what they claim to be able to do - instead, they often simply disable themselves totally once a ransom is paid."

While ransomware typically used to be the domain of consumers on their personal computers, recent ransomware has affected governments and cities, prompting CBS' 60 Minutes to profile the issue. The post, Keep Your Computer Safe From Ransomware summarizes and discusses the key points of the piece. Hard Drive Recovery Group advises computer users to always think twice when a script or what even appears to be a Windows message demands that they install a new application.

"Nowadays, Windows typically handles its Update services behind the scenes, so it is extremely rare that you will receive a message that instructs you to install a new application," said Davies. "When you break it down, the best way to avoid this stuff is simply to close out your browser, research the potential ransomware, and then move on."

A second blog post, entitled Windows 7: Thanks For The Memories, outlines the fact that Microsoft has completely shut down support for the operating system, making it a high risk operating system that is no longer being maintained and supported.

"While Windows 7 was really the first operating system by Microsoft to be truly robust and majorly stable compared to earlier versions, it doesn't have that huge of an audience compared to when, say, XP was replaced by Windows 7," said Davies. "This is because during the Windows 10 release, Microsoft virtually gave the operating system for free to Windows 7 users, and only a small percentage did not take them up on that offer."

Still, as time goes on, Windows 7 machines will become riskier and riskier to run, said Davies. Newer applications are already sometimes difficult to install and run on the OS, and viruses may not stand up to the older security modules in Windows 7.

"As with almost anything in computing, newer is usually better," said Davies.

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