4 Replies Latest reply: Jan 3, 2011 2:57 PM by rkaufmann87
rubeyc Level 1 (0 points)
Not sure if I'm on the correct forum. This is a first for me! I excitedly bought an iMac 8 months ago, after years using a Windows based system. I regularly back up my PC, although it has never crashed... Finally succumbing to the hype of Mac, i decided to change, primarily for the iPhoto, and now I am without a computer, 20000 images, and months of work invested, after my Mac started flashing with a question mark in a folder, and crashed. Stupidly I never thought my Mac would crash! And regretably, i hadn't backed up, so a lesson learnt I know.
I am now being told that the technical centre cannot retrieve any data, and that the hard drive is dead. In order to replace it under the warranty, they have to return the old drive back to the factory, so I am stuck, in that I cannot give it to anyone else to try and retrieve data as my warranty then falls away? A catch 22! I have been told by a number of colleagues that it is impossible that data cannot be retrieved? I am not technical in this regard, so please I am needing some advice? Is it possible that a hard drive can be so 'dead' after only 8 months? And is it possible that I wont retrieve my photos?? thankyou...

iMac 21.5 inch, Mac OS X (10.6.4)
  • rkaufmann87 Level 9 (55,218 points)
    If you can get the HD back you can send it to a Data Recovery service (Google it) and pay to have your data recovered. Your iMac has a utility built into it to do automatic backups, this is called Time Machine and only requires an external HD. All computers must be backed up, not just PC's. Here is an article from MacWorld that discusses backup and some strategies. While this information won't help your current situation as soon as you get your iMac repaired simply plug in an external HD (the largest you can afford) and begin using Time Machine.

    Best of luck,

  • Jolly Giant Level 7 (25,440 points)
    you could try with a 3rd party data recovery software such as _*Data Rescue*_ or FileSalvage.


  • rubeyc Level 1 (0 points)
    Thankyou for your advice.. I realise that I should always backup, and I do have external HD's but for some reason, I had not thought about my iMac crashing, or so soon. It still has 4 months under warranty, and over 300 G's available space, so not sure what went wrong? The technician says it was just a faulty HD. It is my own fault for not backing up, and unfortunately nothing will change the fact that i've lost months of work, ongoing documentary projects etc..that I will either have to start over or cancel altogether.
    Thanks once again....
  • rkaufmann87 Level 9 (55,218 points)
    Hard disks can go bad at any time, some can last a couple of days some will last up to 10 years. There just isn't any predicting when they will die, it's not a matter of if it's a matter of when. That is why backing up is so important.

    I'm sorry to hear you lost your work. In addition to getting an external HD to use for Time Machine I would also suggest getting AppleCare for your iMac while you still can. It will add an addition 2 years years to your warranty and give you more peace of mind. While Macs are very reliable in most cases AppleCare pays for itself if your machine needs just one repair. If you do decide to get it don't buy it from Apple you can find it discounted from a reliable reseller like Amazon, just ensure you buy AppleCare for an iMac and that it comes in the original box.