Lost Windows Password & Beeping Hard Drive

By January 17, 2018Fixed It

Welcome to a new blog series where I will be covering all the random repairs, service calls and more that I encounter. I thought the category “Fixed It” was an appropriate name. I won’t be releasing customer information, just details on what went wrong, and what I did to fix it.

Today’s entry will cover a customers request to fix a laptop that they lost the Windows password to and the random beeping sound I encountered (video above). So, let’s get into it.

The customers issue:

They’ve lost the password to Windows and would like to remove all images and videos from the computer. Once completed, they would like the computer completely wiped and reset.

How I Fixed It:

My first priority was to see if I could access Windows and bypass the password. This laptop was operating Windows 7. Windows 7 is a bit older, so I used some software called OPH Crack. You boot directly from this disk and it will run through the Windows files checking for passwords. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. In this case, it did not. So onto the next thing.

I then decided I would boot directly from the hard drive using my adapter. This is typically an easy thing to do, but since this laptop was older, there was no direct door to access the hard drive. Ugh. That means this laptop would have to be opened up. I HATE doing this, but sometimes it is unavoidable. So I grabbed my precision screwdrivers and started removing screws, unclipping plastic clips and delicately removing components like the keyboard, CD drive and battery. Check it out.

Once it was opened, I was able to remove the hard drive and head to my PC to hook it up. I plugged in my adapter and powered up the hard drive. The video above shows what happened. The hard drive started beeping. No consistent beeping. Just irregular beeping. Weird. MY PC would not recognize the drive which means I couldn’t access the files and I couldn’t move forward with the repair. Ughhh! So now what?

I decided, I would keep the laptop ripped open and try to access the hard drive, with my adapter, on a different computer. My laptop at work should do it. And behold! It did! NO BEEPING!

I was able to access over 15GB of this customers documents, family photos, videos and more. I moved them from the beeping hard drive to a new 32GB flash drive. The customer was EXTREMELY  happy to have their files back.

I put the laptop back together. I booted the laptop from a disk and reset their Windows 7 install to a fresh copy. I cannot guarantee why that hard drive was beeping, but I suspect it simply didn’t have a good connection, for whatever reason, to my home PC. Thus the beeping sound. Once I tried it on my laptop, it worked the first time, no issues, no beeping.

I would not advise this customer to fully trust this laptop again. The beeping hard drive really threw me off, and I would be very cautious about saving important files on it. I’d say, use this laptop as a way to access the internet, type up homework or create other simple items.

So that’s all I got. If you ever find yourself needing access to your files or your hard drive randomly starts beeping, hit me up! If you thought this post was interesting, useful or you just plain like me, hit the share button and spread the love!

Thanks for reading!