Archive for May, 2009

Signs That Your Hard Drive May Crash

Signs That Your Hard Drive May Crash
By Bryan Halverson

Computers have become an integral part of every home and office
in today’s fast paced world. In fact, to carry a computer with
you are no more a fashion fad but a business necessity not only
to keep you up-to-date but help you process many other things
while still on the move. It is no surprise therefore, that we
should understand some basics of our computers if we are to
ensure its smooth running at all times.

As we work on our computers daily, there are many error
messages that keep popping up and most of them are ignored. What
we fail to understand is that these messages are indicators of a
malfunctioning hard drive which could be on the verge of a crash
soon. A hard drive crash will not only affect our daily duties
but also cause lot of hardships through loss of important data.
Some of the most common errors are, hard drive not Formatted,
Operating system not found, hard drive not found, Disk failure
or Disk drive corrupted, Unknown booting device etc.

Each error indicates a different problem the hard drive may be
facing and most of them need immediate attention. A ‘hard drive
not formatted’ error indicates damaged, deleted or corrupted
hard drive partition. Anything from power cuts or voltage surges
to viruses can cause this. Some disk partitioning utilities and
software downloads or updates could also be the reason. Such a
message blinking could mean some alterations in BIOS boot
priorities have occurred or the hard disk has turned bad or a
virus has infected certain parts of the hard drive. These
symptoms should be attended to immediately, to avoid further
damage to your hard drive.

Apart from such pop up images, also look out for any tell tale
signs like clicking sounds that are emitted from your computer’s
hard drive. These sounds indicate corrupted firmware or damaged
magnetic platters, affected PCB controller, misalignment of the
hard drive components due to a fall and power surges. An
overheated hard drive could also cause expansion of the internal
components, which come in contact of each other causing the
click sounds. Another reason could be a broken actuator arm that
sways freely inside your CPU.

If the problems are left unattended, it would eventually cause
the system to freeze or hang. A computer hangs or freezes when
the user is unable to work, give any further instructions and
when other accessories like mouse or the keyboard fail to
navigate. A freezing or hanging computer means existence of bad
sectors on your computer’s hard drive making it difficult to
read or surpass them. This hinders the hard drive’s ability to
make necessary transactions like reading files or loading
programs and is not able to access other sectors without
completing the given command. Though rebooting or restarting the
computer may help a few times, this condition should not be left
unattended to as the bad sectors may increase with increased
usage causing the complete hard disk to crash.

Heed to the symptoms of your ailing hard disk and you can be
guaranteed a life time trouble free computer.

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