Friday, April 29, 2005

The next time a hard disk crashes...

This week I had a bad hard disk failure. Something in XP messed up and damaged the directory structure. The symptoms: The machine would not boot. It would offer to go into "safe mode", but then blue screen in the middle of booting safe mode and reset. It eventually led to the complete loss of the information on the disk (I back up about once a week, so I lost approximately a week's worth of stuff - most importantly, the photos of the twin's birthday). So...

Note to self - the next time your hard disk crashes, here is what you should do:Also, when you download photos from the camera, immediately back them up to a CD. It will only take a minute, and it will prevent this from happening again.

For a few hundred dollars (or less if you scrounge) you can add a simple file server to your home's network. This is much easier for backups than fiddling with CD-ROMs.
How do you back up your disk?
I had the exact same thing happen to me about a month ago, total hard drive crash with no recovery. Instead of backing up every week, I'm an idiot and never back up, so I lost almost a year's worth of data. (Luckily I only got a digital camera 5 months ago and regularly upload pictures to the internet so I only lost one set of pictures. Everything else was replacable, since I kept other files on a slave hard drive)

I tried to put my XP hard drive in my old Windows 98 machine, and that didn't work. maybe I should try putting it in another XP machine like you said. I'll also check out Steller Phoenix. Thanks for the tips.

p.s. I now back up regularly
You can try a few tips to revive a failed hard drive. Check it here revive hard drive.
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Thanks for your tip. My hard disk crashed with all my photos in it. I tried Sysinternals NTRecover but that didn't work. Luckily, the Stellar Phoenix - NTFS File Recovery Software was able to recover all my photos. The demo version detected all my files but I had to pay $79 for the full version to recover them.
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