When a computer with mysql server shuts down is the the database detached on shutdown. So if i pulled the hard drive out and put the .mdf and .ldf file into another machine (So i have not really detached it.) edited it with Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio Express until i got my original computer hardware fixed. Then put the harddrive back in the original machine with the updated .mdf and .ldf files. Would the sql server be able to use the updated file?
As techniacally i did not detach it. Then attached it to MSSMSE, Edited, Then detached. And not re-attached.
The databases are not really detached, but if it was a clean shutdown, they should be consistent. Provided the hardware failure does not include any sort of disk problems, you can very likely take the MDF and LDF files, and attach them to another instance of SQL Server.
Personally, I would make copies of the files, but I get paranoid when hardware starts failing. It is unlikely that the databases would come back on the original instance, if they can not be attached to a new instance.