One thing many people don't think about until it's too late is, "what do I do if my computer ever crashes?" "Am I prepared?". The fact is, computers fail, more importantly, hard drives fail. This is just one of those certain things in life, kinda like death and taxes. There is no way to avoid it.
Computer data recovery is a booming industry right now. This is both good and bad for those in need of hard drive data recovery services. The good thing is with the increased competition you are no longer having to pay $5,000 to get a single hard drive recovered. The bad thing is, data recovery is a specialty that not everyone is qualified to perform.
It's not uncommon these days to have your local computer tech attempt data recovery. While there are some powerful software solutions available, this does not help when your hard drive has suffered a mechanical failure. Specific repairs need to be made, and it can be said with 99.9% certainty, that your local computer tech or IT support does not have the equipment, skills, or knowledge necessary to complete a recovery like this. More often than not, their attempts will only render the data totally unrecoverable.
This is not a knock on the computer repair and IT professionals out there, it's just the facts. A good analogy would be like going to the doctor; if you need a flu shot, you go to your general practitioner; if you need quadruple bypass, you go to a heart specialist. They are both doctors, but with totally different specialties. It's the same thing in the computer industry.
You also have to make sure that the company you are using is a real business. We have many resellers out there, and they do great work taking in drives for us, and forwarding the work to our labs here in Texas. Sometimes it's a good idea to check out a company before sending your drive to them. Many companies are just looking to make a quick buck off of evaluation fees, or attempt fees and really have little or no experience in recovering data.
So if your computer has crashed, and you need the data recovered, make sure you deal with a company that specializes in computer data recovery. When you get your data back, you'll be glad you did.