Amongst all the components in the assembly of a computer, hard drive is unarguably the most indispensable part and also most susceptible to failure. However, with proper care and maintenance, you can prolong your hard drive’s lifespan. Below is a rundown on certain types of hard drive failures that may strike anytime.
A hard drive houses necessary files and when it malfunctions, the computer most often does not boot and sometimes, the data also becomes inaccessible. The best defense action you can take is backup your important files regularly and be aware of the causes as well as effects of hard drive errors.
Causes of Hard Drive Failure
Most of the times, a computer that is not positioned properly leads to hard drive failure. In case you computer is tilted, especially the CPU, your hard drive may stop functioning.
Hard drive failure also happens due to malfunctioning of IDE cable. In case the IDE gets broken, a hard drive trouble may be caused.
Hard drive may also get damaged because excess heat. Keep your hard drive away from heat and make sure that the CPU is connected to a UPS so that your hard drive as well as other components on motherboard computer remains protected from electrical surges. Also handle computer parts with a lot of care. Never ever drop your hard drive as it may cause malfunctioning of internal hard disk components. Exposure to magnet is also not recommended for hard drive. Magnet exposure may affect internal components of hard drive, causing a hard drive failure.
Hard Drive Logical Corruption
It is a corruption or failure that takes place when something goes wrong with the file system of the hard disk. Generally, there is an error in the File Allocation Table or FAT. This happens when the drive is not fragmented properly. In case of a Logical Error, File Allocation Table becomes terribly entwined further causing loss of data. However, you can repair this kind of error with help of special software. In fact, if you regularly defragmented your hard disk drive, chances that you hard drive will incur Logical Error becomes minute.
Logical Error may also occur in case of a physical damage to the hard disk drive. However, Logical Error is generally not a symptom of some software error or viruses attack. At times, a Logical Error can be something extremely simple such as invalid entry in FAT. Conversely, logical errors may even cause horrific problems such as loss of file system or corruption of fragmented drive.
Firmware corruption is essentially a software error that leads to failure of hard drive. Firmware is actually a special software that is used by computer to correctly detect as well as interact with the hard disk drive. In case something goes wrong with the firmware, computers become incapable of detecting your hard disk drive. Firmware corruption may also cause several problems with computer including improper powering up of the drive, drive being not detected by BIOS, computer starts hanging frequently, especially during the boot-up process. Let’s learn more why this happens.
Firmware, as you all know is a software code that is embedded in the hard drive and it is the software code that controls the hard drive’s functioning. In case something goes wrong with the firmware, the hard disk becomes unreadable or corrupted. However, most of the times, the lost data can be recovered by following proper procedures and reprogramming the hard drive.
A firmware failure may also be caused if you hard disk is spinning up when the power is turned on but it does not get recognized when the computer boots. In some cases, the hard disk is correctly recognized but the system hangs during the booting up process.
The best action you can take when this happens is calling a professional who can help with successful data recovery.
When the hard disk fails because of electrical spikes or surges, it is an electronic failure. Sometimes, the controller board present on hard drive gets burned and makes the hard disk unreadable. If your hard disk has undergone an electronic failure, the first sign that will show up will be that your drive will not spin even when the power led is lighting. Other signs of hard disk failure include the hard disk not be detected by operating system or BIOS.
Sometimes, a hard disk drive starts making repeated clicking noises. This essentially happens when you’re trying to boot up your computer. Mechanical failure in hard disk usually happens when its internal components either wear out or become damaged. Although much cannot be done about a mechanical failure except replacing the hard disk but you may try a good data recovery services. A good data recovery service will at least be able to retrieve data from your hard drive. However, make sure you do not tamper the disk yourself as it will decrease the chances of data recovery. Moreover, by trying to tamper the hard drive yourself, you may end up creating some of the other fault in the disk’s internal components.
The only way of detecting a mechanical failure is to turn on the power and see if hard drive is making a regular clicking or ticking sound. In case this happens, contact a reputed data recovery clinic immediately and see if any files can be recovered.
Signs of Hard Drive Error To look for
The most common sign of hard drive failure is the inability of computer to boot. If this happens, recovering the hard drive becomes a very difficult task. Luckily, there are a number of preliminary signs that can indicate a hard drive error in advance.
In case there is an expected noise from the hard disk, it’s a sign that there is definitely some underlying problem. A problem may also be encountered in case the hard drive starts spinning at random intervals, causing your computer to slowdown. This is also an indication that there are some bad sectors on the drive. In case you encounter any of these signs, immediately make backup copies of all essential data on your computer and contact a computer expert.