- GetDataBack which would cost $69 to fully use; and
- TestDisk which is a free Opensource disk recovery program that works on DOS, Win, Linux and BSD.
When I tried to copy the Thunderbird profile (complete with emails) I got a "Destination smaller size than copied files" error. I thought that was odd and when I checked the source folder it had a size measured in PB or petabytes. And what's a petabyte you ask? Well I could conversion page and it lists a petabyte as 1,125,899,906,842,624 bytess, or 1,024TB (terabytes). The dodgy drive was only rated at 1 TB - no wonder it couldn't cope! ;)
Luckily this seemed to an glitch in the file table. When I'd open the folders the sizes would get corrected to what they really were. Even so, my Thunderbird folders total 2.5 GB - I've been storing emails (including attachments) for a LONG time. It's a good thing I bought a 1.5 TB external drive last week just for this and video files. Crazy time, a crazy time!
After the backups I'll put that drive aside, after creating a new partition table. For all I know the whole problem might just be some other hardware problem with the Studio PC rather than the drive. In any case, I'm just happy not to spend more $$$$ on programs, drives, or other hardware.