Photo and File Recovery on a Laptop

Updated on December 7, 2018
Msmillar profile image

Ms. Millar has been an online writer for over eight years. She is well versed in website development with several websites she has created.

Broken Laptop

Has your computer died?
Has your computer died? | Source

Photos and Documents Can Be Retrieved

Has your laptop taken a turn for the worse, and taken your photo's and documents along with it?

My old laptop is pictured above. I tried to keep it working for as long as I could. When the keys were popping off, I figured, who needs them? I can type without looking (for the most part). The charging plug came out, and a wire broke, no problem, I hardwired it. It was stepped on, breaking the screen. I thought, "Isn't that what remote screen is for?" I still used it every day, until one day, it wouldn't boot up.

I know, I know, why didn't I back up my files long ago? When the keys started popping off, it would have been a good idea. When the charging plug broke, it would have been a great idea. When the screen cracked, it would have been a stupendous idea. But I didn't. And when it died, it took everything with it!

But there is a happy ending to this story! All of the photo's and documents can be retrieved!

I used a SATA/IDE hard drive attachment.

Here are the steps I took to remove my hard drive and get the files off of it.

Remove the Hard Drive

You can pull your documents and photo's right off of the hard drive! There is an attachment wire that is needed to read the hard drive, and it isn't very expensive at all.

With the attachment wire, you can also use the hard drive as an extra, external, hard drive to store your documents and photos.

Here's what you do (you can follow along with the photo's below):

  1. Flip the laptop over and remove the battery. The .gif below is a general configuration of a laptop battery. There are usually two, maybe one, slide that when pressed in the correct direction, the battery will be released.
  2. Locate the cover panel for the hard drive. It may have an impression of stacked CDs on it. Using a screwdriver unscrew the retaining screws and remove the panel You will see the hard drive under the panel (.gif below).
  3. Manufacturers have different methods of securing the hard drive in your laptop. Even the various models can have a different configuration. Take a good look at yours and determine if it is screwed in, pressed in, or in a sleeve or frame of some sort. Sometimes a frame will be screwed or pressed in. To remove the hard drive, you have to remove the frame first, with the hard drive inside of it.
  4. Detach the plug connecting the laptop to the hard drive.

Great!! You have the hard drive out! You're half-way there.

Remove The Battery

Remove the battery.
Remove the battery. | Source

Remove The Hard Drive Cover

Set Up the SATA

If you look at the wire set on the side of the hard drive, you will notice either a set up of pins or a flat bar with several connectors. Depending on your type of laptop use the appropriate connection.

Now attach the set up to a working laptop or computer using the USB attachment.

There may be a power switch on your cord to power on the hard drive once connected. Make sure the green light is illuminated. It won't work unless the hard drive has power.

Sata Set up

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Motherboard with pins.Motherboard with flat strip.Wires to connect Sata.Pin type connector.Pin connector connected.Flat type connector.Adapter set up.
Motherboard with pins.
Motherboard with pins. | Source
Motherboard with flat strip.
Motherboard with flat strip.
Wires to connect Sata.
Wires to connect Sata.
Pin type connector.
Pin type connector.
Pin connector connected.
Pin connector connected.
Flat type connector.
Flat type connector.
Adapter set up.
Adapter set up.

New Drive In Your Folders

Attach the SATA Device

When you're all set:

  1. Turn your working computer on.
  2. Go to your files folder or computer folder.
  3. There will be another drive now. It may be named F:/ or G:/ or whatever according to what your computer already has.
  4. Click on the folder and all of your documents, photo's and various folders will be presented just like it was on the computer that broke!

You can copy them to another drive or keep them right where they are at and use the hard drive as an external folder for saving your things to. It's safe, has a large storage capacity and convenient if something happens to your current computer you have it backed up!

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2018 Joanna


Submit a Comment

No comments yet.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)