Yesterday my disk broke up and, given my packup policies have been a bit lagging last months due to the enthusiasm o the new stuff I've purchased (and in consequence I've been spending all the available time working to the music).... I've lost almost everything I've done in the last 5 months! (all GPO related works included).
It's axiomatic (and perhaps some weird variant of Murphy's Law) that if do NOT have any backup plan, then SOONER OR LATER you are going to need it.
My utility and main music systems both have a DVD-RW drive and since each DVD disk can currently hold about 4.7 gig, it's a snap to backup the Cubase CPR (Cubase Project) files and associated stuff that goes with them. On the utility system (where I do post-creation editing, trimming and "packaging" the WAV files and associated derivitatives (WMA. MP3, promotional materials, etc.) take a bit more space (currently around 30 gig), so I take an "incremental" approach there and backup the files which are new from the previous month onto a DVD-RW.
I fell your pain, Allesandro! I've been "bit" before and I think that's why I am fairly paranoid now. Of course, since I instituted all of these backup schemes I've not needed them (knock wood!).
What would you pay to NOT go through this again? Even if you system does not have a DVD-RW drive, you can, in most cases, add and "after market" one if you have the physical space and currently have only one CD-R or CD-RW drive. I just checked www.PriceWatch.com and DVD+/-RW drives are going for $100 or less. (Generic DVD-R media is available for around $1 per disk.)
Many of us have had a similar experience. When you put your heart and soul into something it is awful to see it disappear.
There are compnaies that specialize in hard drive recovery that have special methods to recover data from failed hard drives. You may want to check into these services. Perhaps you can some of your work.
Are you sure it's gone? Can you put the disk in another computer and get it to work?
I'm in IT and for the last ten years I've been "babysitting" over 100 computers. Some are getting quite old - we have some that are 6 or 7 years old and still running. Altogether about 400 computers have come through my office. I've lost data from a hardrive crash once. I know, it's possible you are that unluck .1%. I hope not.