5 Signs Your Hard Drive Is Ending Its Life (And What To Do) / Technology Explained

Each of us has valuable files such as personal documents, photos, videos or audio files that we usually store on hard drives. Few people know that most electronic storage devices, including hard drives, have a finite lifespan compared to the age-old methods of storing information such as stone, papyrus, paper, or old school notes. The average service life of a stationary hard disk today is around 5 to 10 years, depending on the type and manufacturer. It decreases rapidly when the drive is exposed to severe temperature, humidity, and motion fluctuations.

Nowadays, a majority of people own laptops and external hard drives. External drive not recognized? This Is How To Fix External Drive Not Detected In Windows? How to fix it in Windows Your external hard drive may not show up in Windows 10 due to partitions, drivers or many other issues. We will help you with the solution! Read More This is an extremely short time to reliably store important data.

At best, hard drives fail gradually, giving you a chance to react and preserve a copy of your data. What is the best way to back up data on a computer? What is the best way to back up data on a computer? Worried about losing your important personal information? Data backups are essential. But what is the best way to back up your data? Read More There are a variety of signs that indicate a gradual failure of your hard drive.

If you’re not sure how much life is left on your hard drive, read this article to find out what the signs are of imminent failure.

1. Computer slowdown, frequent freezes, blue screen of death

These are very non-specific signs that can be caused by a million different things. Regardless of what is the problem behind these symptoms, it is recommended that you take a backup copy immediately. If these problems appear after a clean install or in Windows Safe Mode, it is almost certain that it is due to faulty hardware and possibly a faulty hard drive.

2. Corrupt data

If you start finding files that cannot be opened and are corrupted even though they were saved correctly or if files suddenly disappear, you should be worried. Again, this can be due to a variety of problems, but it is also a typical sign of a gradual hard drive failure.

3. Bad sector accumulation

Bad sectors are areas of the hard drive that do not maintain data integrity. They are automatically masked by the operating system and are therefore difficult to identify, especially if large amounts of the hard drive are currently being used. If you are indeed encountering bad sectors, it is certainly a bad sign.

You can run a manual disk check to find errors that Windows hasn’t yet detected. In Windows 7 go to > Start > Computer Right click on the disk or partition you want to check. Select > Properties, in the window that opens, go to the > Tools tab and click > Check now… In the Check Disk window, place a tick next to > Automatically fix file system errors and > Look for an attempt to recover bad sectors .

Windows also checks for bad sectors when you run a full format. Formatting a USB Drive & Why You Need to Format a USB Drive & Why You Need to Format a USB Drive Formatting a USB drive is no different than formatting any other drive. But how many times have you actually formatted a drive and ever wondered what the different options mean? Read More

4. Strange sounds

If you hear strange noises from your hard drive, it may already be too late. A repetitive sound, also known as a death click, is made by the head when attempting to write data and recovering from errors when it does so. Grinding or squeaking noises indicate that parts of the hardware, such as the bearings or the spindle motor, are failing.

5. SMART data

There are tools that aim to detect hard drive failure by reading SMART (Self Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology) data recorded by the operating system. Unfortunately, as with most of the other methods listed above, SMART’s ability to predict hard drive failure is notoriously unreliable, and the disaster will often occur before SMART’s warning. However, if you have a working hard drive and are looking at the SMART data, see our article on tools to help you predict and prevent hard drive failure.

I think my hard drive is failing. What should I do??

Worried that a hard drive failure is just around the corner? The truth is, even if you don’t worry, it is! All you can do is keep backup copies of your data on a second hard drive and be prepared to get a replacement. 7 Things to Consider Before Buying a Hard Drive 7 Things to Consider Before Buying a Hard Drive Buying a hard drive is easy once you know a few basic tips. Here is a guide to understanding the key features of the hard drive. Continue reading .

The likelihood of both drives failing at the same time is rare. An exception would be natural disasters such as floods or fires. In these cases, I recommend keeping a copy of your most important data in another physical location, e.g. B. at work or at a friend’s house or possibly on a remote server e.g. B. using an online backup solution.

For more information on backing up data, see the Backup and Restore Guide. The Windows Backup and Restore Guide. The Windows Backup and Restore Guide. Unless you’re ready to lose your data, you need a good Windows backup routine. We’ll show you how to prepare and restore backups. Continue reading . You may also want to erase the drive. How to completely erase a hard disk drive How to completely erase a hard disk drive There are two ways to connect a hard disk drive. Here’s what you need to know to get it done quickly and easily. Read on to prevent someone from recovering data.

Don’t let your hard drive fail!

Don’t rely on labels or software to tell if you have a bad hard drive. It’s more than likely to fail unexpectedly and without any warning signs. Instead of trying to forecast something even less predictable than the weather, rely on backups.

When it’s too late, learn how to diagnose and fix a dead hard drive to recover data. And if things remain a lost cause, you can still use something from that dead drive. 7 DIY Projects You Can Make With an Old Hard Drive 7 DIY Projects You Can Make With an Old Hard Drive Don’t throw away the old hard drive from your computer! Whether it’s functional or not, your old drive still has some cool uses. Continue reading .

Photo credits: Anyka, Malost, Lucadp, Matthias Pahl

Learn more about: computer maintenance, data backup, hard drive, .