I come here today...hanging my head...to serve myself up as an example of someone who is reasonably intelligent and thoughtful...but who totally blew it in terms of common sense with one of the most basic of computing rules: "back up your data." I just took a week's vacation to Walt Disney World with a new HD camcorder in tow. The camcorder afforded me two hours of video per 32GB SDHC card. Each night, I dumped that day's video onto an external 1TB HDD to free up the SDHC cards for the next day's use. All the other data on the drive was a true backup of files which also exist on my laptop. But the video files were SO big, I made the careless decision to only store them on the external HDD so as not to bog down the laptop. Short story. The drive crashed. Days after my return home. While I purchased a 3TB drive for the sole purpose of backing up those files, the 1TB drive crashed just after the 3TB drive was delivered. Apparently the File Allocation Table files corrupted. If the data remains, I cannot see it. The IT guys at my work tried to help by running some on-line data recovery software. Didn't work. I just chatted with a guy from Kroll Ontrack (one of the big online data mining companies) and was told that their services include a $65 evaluation which will determine what is recoverable...but that the actual recovery will then fall somewhere between $695 and $1995. My opinion--and I would suspect most people would agree--is that's way too much to recoup my vacation video. So.......my question for you folks is: Has anyone every had data recovered from a crashed drive and how did it go?