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How to Spot Early Symptoms of a Hard Drive Failure

There is the possibility of repairing problems which occurred with your hard drive like bad sectors, but once mechanical problems appear, they cannot be reversed.  At that point, you need to work on data recovery instead of prevention. Because of this, it is recommended that you pay attention to any of the following common signs of disk failure and begin saving your data before the hard disk crashes and before you are faced with permanent data loss.

  1. The computer crashes, stops working, stops responding or freezes and this usually happens when Windows is booting.
  2. When performing simple tasks like moving, copying and accessing files, error messages appear which signal a certain error.  Even if you do not know the number of the message, you can look it up afterwords and even if it gives no actual relevance, it is a sign of a corrupt operating system or a failing hard drive. So, if it persists after formatting the system, it is probably the latter.
  3. Your files and folders have changed names, most of the times with weird characters that actually have no meaning.
  4. Your files begin to go missing or disappear and reappear. This is because they cannot be accessed by the reading head of the disk and this implies that it has begun to have mechanical difficulties.
  5. Any command you give, like file access or loading of an application or a simple explorer command will overuse your resources and will take minutes to be performed instead of the actual couple of seconds normally required.
  6. Hard disk does not show any reaction response to your command and you cannot hear it in any way.
  7. You have unnecessary files from your printing or other applications which remained in the system or your temporary memory held some surplus information after this.
  8. You start to hear harsh sounds coming from the hard drive when it begins to do certain tasks, sounds which you normally do not hear.

From all of the above, what you need to especially consider are the sounds. The other signs may also be caused by software problems, like drivers which have not been properly installed or like the fact that your operating system has been corrupted by a virus. Sounds cannot be produced by those, they are a direct result of mechanical malfunctions. So if you hear harsh sounds, inconsistent clicking and even weird spinning sounds, like that of an old pick up player, the first thing you need to do is to shut down your system. The longer the system reacts like this, the more it will produce irreversible damage to your stored data.  If the problem occurs when you have powered your system again, you should immediately turn it off and you should immediately backup your important data and purchase a new storage device. There is a slim possibility that a good technician can repair it, but it isn’t likely. To recover your data, we recommend that you seek the services of a hard drive recovery service, because in your attempt to recover your data, you may damage it, or even worse, the hard drive will crash.