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Can Stellar Data Recovery Recover Data From 3 year Old ‘not in use’ Hard Drive?

 Modified on: July 26, 2021 |    11934 views

Stellar Data Recovery Standard is a powerful DIY data recovery software that can recover data from all kinds of Windows devices and storage media—including drive that hasn’t been used for 3 years or more.

How to recover Data from a 3-year or older Unused Hard drive by using Stellar Data Recovery Standard

Usually drives unused for long time are backup drives containing critical files. To recover data from such drives, follow these steps:

  • First, check and ensure that the drive isn’t damaged physically
  • Then connect the hard drive to a Windows PC via SATA or SATA to USB converter cable
  • Open the Disk Management tool and check if the system recognizes the drive
  • If the drive is detected and visible under Disk Management, then use Stellar Data Recovery Standard software to scan the drive and get back every bit of recoverable data

Watch the following video to know how to use Stellar Data Recovery software for data recovery.

Factors that May Affect Data Recovery from Such Hard Drives

Ideally, a drive can keep data for as long as five years without any issue. However, the longevity of data stored on a hard disk and the possibility of data recovery from such an unused hard drive depends on the conditions under which the drive was stored for 3 years or more.

The following are a few factors that affect a drives’ ability to retain data and the possibility of data recovery from such drives when they remain unused for prolonged durations:

     1. Environmental condition

Hot and humid environment can degrade a hard drive, and the drive may not be able to survive through its natural life. Heat also affects the drives’ magnetic properties and mechanical parts. Further, moisture can corrode the internals of the hard drive and damage the electrical components of the disk permanently.

     2. Mechanical failure or physical damage

A 3-year old unused hard drive might get physically damaged or suffer mechanical failure if it hadn’t been stored securely. In such a case, the drive may not be recognized, and hence, you would not be able to get back data from such hard drive by yourself and need the help of a data recovery expert.

     3. Magnetic field breakdown

It is known that a permanent magnet loses its magnetic strength by 1% per year. The same applies to hard drives, as they use magnetic field to store and read data from the platter.

If your drive isn’t recognized or suffers from physical, mechanical, or electrical damage, immediately reach out to a data recovery expert for help.

Tips Avoid Data Loss from an Unused Hard Drive

  • Securely store your hard drive at a cool and dry place
  • Periodically refresh the data on the drive by transferring data from and back to the hard drive. Rewriting data strengthens the magnetic field and data remains accessible
  • If data is important, refresh more frequently. This also helps keep a check on drives’ physical condition and avoid mechanical failure
  • Also check disk health and SMART info of the disk once in a while


6 User Comments

pls data recovery





Hi Sathisa,

Please let us know your query in detail so that we can assist you further.

Moreover, you may submit ticket using below link to seek technical assistance:


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Stellar Data Recovery

Hi I am unable to activate stellar software with my Licence key. Pls Help

Regards Vikas


vikas Rai



Hi Vikas,

We apologize for the inconvenience caused to you.

Our team has already sent you steps to activate the software.

In case you will face any issue then reply to their email.

Stellar Data Recovery

does stellar photo recovery work on floppy discs





Dear Tim,

Unfortunately, no. The software does not support floppy disks as of now.

Feel free to reach us.


Stellar Data Recovery


User Comments




Stellar Data Recovery Stellar Data Recovery is an easy to use Windows recovery software to get back lost documents, emails, photos, videos & many more from HDD, USB, Memory Card etc.

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