You’re working on your computer, and everything suddenly freezes and the screen goes blank — or you might receive the most terrifying error message of all, the “blue screen of death.” Panicking, you think about all of the files the computer contains: family vacation photos, the novel you’ve been trying to write for the last three years, work documents, tax documents. “I have no idea what happened,” you might say. “Everything was working fine!”
Was it really, though? It is very rare a hard drive will stop working suddenly without any warning at all. There might be the odd mechanical issue that comes out of nowhere and causes the drive to seize or otherwise fail, but in almost every case there are warning signs of an impending problem. If you ignore those signs you could have a hard drive failure.
By paying attention to what your computer is trying to tell you, you can address problems before they become more serious and expensive to fix.
Your Computer Has a Hard Time Booting
When your computer was brand new all you needed to do was touch a button and within seconds everything booted up and was ready to go. As you added files and programs the process got slightly slower, but it still didn’t take long. If you begin to notice, though, that your computer seems to take forever to boot or seems to get hung up during the process, you might be facing a hard drive failure. Keep in mind most computers have a delay every now and then, due to new software or updates or some other unknown cause, but if your machine has trouble booting every single time it’s time to get the hard drive checked.
Your Files Disappear
If your file directory suddenly feels like the missing persons department, with files simply disappearing without explanation, your hard drive could be to blame. Most likely, they are not gone forever, and Recover My Files innovative software will be able to retrieve them. However, if your files start going AWOL all of a sudden you have a hard drive issue.
Files Take Forever to Open
You used to be able to click on a file and have it open in seconds. Now it takes more than a minute, or longer. If opening even small files takes a long time the hard drive could be failing.
You Cannot Save Files
Often, when a computer’s hard drive fails the amount of available memory shrinks to virtually nothing. That means saving even a small file — a single page word processing document, for example — is all but impossible. If it regularly takes several minutes for a file to save, regardless of size, or if you regularly get error messages telling you the file cannot be saved then your hard drive might be on the downward slide.
The Computer Crashes — All the Time
Every time you use your computer you hold your breath. How long will you be able to work without it crashing today? You obsessively hit the save button, refuse to open more than one program at a time and walk on eggshells trying to keep the computer from crashing or freezing throughout the day. If that sounds familiar then you know you have a problem, and it is most likely the hard drive and you need to get it checked out.
Clicking or Other Sounds Coming from the Drive
Hard drives are generally silent, or close to it. You might occasionally hear a soft whirring or motor-like sound, but the hard drive shouldn’t be making much noise at all. If you hear a series of clicking noises, or worse, a metallic clanking or grinding coming from your computer get the machine to the repair shop pronto. Those noises are a sure sign you are about to have a massive failure.
Finally, if your computer stops working altogether — it will not turn on, or it gets partway through the booting process before displaying an error screen — your hard drive has probably failed.
Keep in mind any of these signs can happen at any time and may not indicate your hard drive has a problem. If they happen regularly, or you notice a pattern to these issues, then you need to back up your files and have your drive checked out. Catching the problem early on will help prevent the panic and inconvenience of having your hard drive fail when you are unprepared.