|The only way to protect ALL personal files is to back them up. The more important they are the more copies you make. |
I use optical media like CDR or DVDR to permanently archive my files. Once you burn them to disk you should verify they are actually usable files by accessing them from that media. Then feel free to make multiple copies of the disk by simply copying it.
Going back to the original drive. When the drive is properly connected to a second computer and you boot the computer does the BIOS configure the drive? If you watch the POST screens at start up you should see a number of hardware items being recognized by them being displayed on the screen by model.
If you don't see ANY hardware being configured at start up then a manufacturers logo may be blocking it. Depending on what motherboard you have the method to display this information varies.
Try booting into the BIOS screens at start up and disabling all logos and fast boot. If you have a pre-built computer you may be able to view things by tapping a key at start up. Like Esc or a F key. You will need to read your manual.