They say it's not "if" your hard drive will crash, it's "when." I am living proof that you should be prepared for this at any time! Today I was working happily on my notebook computer, the new one I just bought in March. It froze up while I was working, and I thought a simple reboot would fix things. Upon rebooting, the hard drive was not readable. I did some diagnostics tests, and sure enough, it was completely gone.
I have always thought that you would have a little warning when a hard drive was going out-- things would be slower, sluggish, acting strange. But this was here one second, gone the next!
I am trying hard not to come unglued about this, so it helps me to note that there are several things to be grateful for about this experience:
- I am SO GLAD I had everything backed up. I use Carbonite, which is really inexpensive ($50 per year, unlimited storage) and backs up almost in real time while you are working. The only data I lost was the newest information I had added to documents I was working on during the crash. Everything else is all there. Whew! I am very impressed with Carbonite. What is your backup status?
- I still have my old laptop and it works. I am using it right now. Do you have a machine accessible for you to use in case of emergencies?
- I am now able to take this opportunity to downgrade back to Windows XP. I was very disappointed with Vista. My advice is that if you buy a new PC, get one with the power and capability of running Vista, but just get XP loaded on it. Then someday when Vista is more palatable, you can upgrade to it.
- I am still under warranty for the hardware! I do believe in buying extended warranties for computers. I was under a year in this case, but I have always been so glad to have 3-year coverage on other machines. Do you know if your computer is covered?
- I had all of my passwords preserved in SplashID, which was also backed up. Also, I had my important Carbonite password written down in a safe place on paper. Take a moment today to note if all of your passwords and account information would be quickly available to you in this type of situation. It's a very good idea to have a printout of the most important ones if you use an electronic password keeper.
Take heed, my friends! This could happen to you! Are you prepared?