My neighbor brought her laptop over yesterday, windows won't boot even in safe mode. Hiren's Mini XP won't touch the docs, the HDD freezes my PC and shows 0% used/0% free. It won't mount for a chkdsk /r either. Turns out that, of course, every single picture she's taken since 2006 is on that bad hdd....with no backup. My intention was to fix this for them gratis as a going away gift (they're moving to the down undah next month). Well the data gods were smiling, I fired up Spinrite and it crunched for about six hours but recovered the data! I copied all data to a USB drive and reassembled the laptop and everything works fine. Tomorrow I'll give the laptop back with a shopping list for a new HDD and I'll clone it over before it fails again. Nothing more, just wanted to share this good news!