E.R. for Hard Drives: An interesting article on data recovery services.
DriveSavers operates from an anonymous office building in Novato, 24 miles north of San Francisco, that houses a “clean room” for inspecting drives and separate data extraction rooms for the most common computer operating systems.
[…] Depending on the size of the drive, the complexity of the problem and the requested turnaround time, recovery costs at DriveSavers range from $500 for the slowest service — five to seven days — and fewest recoverable files, to $8,900 for a rush job, which will begin the moment the drive arrives and continue around the clock until the data has been extracted.
For those customers who can wait up to seven days, recovery tops out at $2,700 for a drive up to 600 gigabytes. For one- to two-day turnaround, expect to pay $900 to $3,900. When nothing can be recovered — typically when drives cannot spin or data has been overwritten — DriveSavers charges a $200 inspection fee.
I always thought this would be a good business for Sioux Falls, since when people have a problem they’d want to hand the drive to someone the same day.
The article talks about how they have to get the drive spinning to get anything off it. But couldn’t they just remount the platters? There has to be a way to extract magnetic data from stationary platters.