Did someone say "alternatives"? Well maybe I'm no "Linux expert" but if the drive is still functional to any degree...
you could follow one older srticle's tip on how to use a live for cd Linux distro like Debian's Knoppix Computer First Aid Using Knoppix
or ubuntu 7.10's live operation for copying files back and forth between drives like seen in the screen captures here.
You'll notice that the first shows full access to the usb model external drive used here copying an entire folder into a temp folder made on one of the internal drives as a receiver.