How to Recover Programs and Files from a Broken or Dead Laptop

How to Recover Programs and Files from a Broken or Dead Laptop

Paula Napolitano |

When the unfortunate happens, and your laptop dies, you might appreciate a few ideas on how to retrieve your data. Recovering files from a dead laptop may seem complicated, but with the right help, you can figure it out. Learning DIY laptop data recovery can save you money at times. When you don’t want to spend a lot of money, you can consider refurbished laptops as a replacement to your broken laptop.

Assessing the Situation

The first step of data recovery from a broken laptop is evaluating the damage. How badly your computer is broken will determine the right way to retrieve files. What led to the failure? Laptops suffer different problems, and some of them result in data loss. Software crashes are some common issues. Converters, antivirus and file editors are some programs that can malfunction and compromise the integrity of your files. 

A virus can also infect your laptop and corrupt data. Lost files can also be due to hardware problems like motherboard malfunction, defective drive and overheating. Learning these common causes goes a long way in preventing data loss.

Pre-Recovery Preparations

Before you start recovering programs and files, you must make sure your laptop is really dead. The problems might be repairable, meaning you can salvage the entire machine. Firstly, connect it to a source to see if it still receives power. If the display is not working, link the computer to another monitor or TV to determine if the screen is faulty. Check the laptop for physical damage. Also, listen if it generates any sounds because that would indicate the hard drive is working. If the hard drive fails to boot completely, then it means your machine died. Total recovery is not always possible, which is why a laptop data backup is a sensible practice to adopt. Having duplicates of your files on separate storage can save you a lot of grief.

DIY Data Recovery

Retrieving lost files yourself begins with opening the machine to reach the hard drive. In case your laptop fails to boot up, connect the drive to a second computer using an adapter. Copy files from the device if they are visible. You can find most of the files in the user folder. If the drive fails to read and asks for formatting, then you will require laptop data recovery tools to fish out the data.

Seeking Professional Help

Consider the expertise of professionals if you follow the guide but still can’t get back your files. Find experienced technicians who specialise in laptop data recovery. Be careful to only deal with skilled and qualified experts. Ensure the data recovery centre you select has the means to handle a significantly damaged machine.

Recovering Programs

You can find several tools on the market designed to retrieve data from dead or broken computers. Some of these programs are free, while others offer a paid service. If the DIY laptop data recovery process requires you to use software, then you can make sure the tools are genuine by checking the product keys and licences.

Restoring Files

With the right techniques, you can get back lost and missing data and return your computer to working condition. Recovering programs and files from backup locations is the easiest way to do it. You can also install an application to dig for data on a damaged laptop.

Data Backup Strategies for the Future

Even though data recovery from a broken laptop is possible, it would be better not to have to worry about it at all. Backing up files routinely can help with that. Cloud storage is popular due to its convenience. However, you can also store your files on a secondary device.

Preventing Data Loss in the First Place

Keeping your laptop in good condition reduces the risk of losing files. A majority of data loss causes are preventable. Using antivirus and updating your system regularly decreases the risks of infections that can crash your computer. Also, make a habit of backing up data, handling your machine carefully, using a surge protector and avoiding hard drive overload.

Exploring Refurbished Laptops

Replacing a damaged laptop can be costly, especially if you need it urgently. However, you don’t require a significant budget to find a high-performing computer that suits your goals. Refurbished laptops offer a wide array of choices at low costs. Wisetek Store is a leading supplier of refurbished electronics such as refurbished laptops, refurbished MacBooks, refurbished phones, refurbished tablets, refurbished desktops and more. Whatever your requirements, we can help you find quality refurbished laptops and refurbished MacBooks. All our products undergo rigorous quality checks to make sure they are up to standard.


The above tips guide you on what to do when recovering files from a dead laptop. In instances where the damage is severe, professional services are the best solution. Data recovery specialists can use their skills to get back your data. Besides retrieving information, you can also get advice on safe computer use. Remember to prioritise laptop data backup when using your machine to avoid losing files.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are files on a dead laptop lost forever?

Not necessarily. If your computer dies, you might still have a chance to retrieve all or some of the data on it. It depends on the extent of the damage. You can use tools to help you with DIY laptop data recovery if the hard drive is still intact.

How do I know if my laptop is dead?

A few signs can tell you if a personal computer is beyond repair. If the laptop is physically damaged, then it is highly likely it’s dead. Another symptom is a black or blue screen that doesn’t display anything. A hard drive that fails to boot also indicates catastrophic damage to your laptop.

Can I recover files if my laptop doesn’t turn on?

Yes. However, you would have to use a separate machine for the task. You can transplant the disk and use recovery software to dig out data. Consider laptop data backup options to prevent a similar situation.

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