Signs of hard drive failure

What is a hard disk drive ?

I guess by now you would have heard the name hard drive before, if not i will give you a brief description of what exactly is an hard drive or hard disk drive (HDD).A hard disk drive is an important computer part within a computer and it is used for the storage and retrieval of data, example saving of your word documents, pictures, videos and music files.If  your hard disk drive were to fail you would not be able to store or retrieve temporarily or probably permanent depending on why it failed in the first place.A typical hard drive is made up of one or more hard rapidly rotating discs known as platters, their surfaces are coated with magnetic material and they use these magnetic heads to write data to the surfaces and further read data from it.Today`s hard disk drive have maintained it`s dominant force in the technology area as a secondary storage device because their has been significant advances in the technology and as such, it has seen decrease in cost, physical size and increases in capacity and speed.

Symptoms of a failing hard drive

1. Computer box sees to be making sounds
Your computer starts to make grinding noises as though something is scratching the metals inside the computer case, this is sound warning that your computer hard disk drive is failing and you need to take action right away and start backing your data.The causes of these noises may vary but the most common reasons might be that the hard drive motor has failed or it might have had a sudden head crash.You need to take action fast.

2. Computer does not recognize your hard drive

Your computer boots and then you get an error stating that your computer does not recognize hard disk drive, if you have gotten this error more than once you  need to back up your data immediately once you get this system running.If for some reason you may have more than one hard disk drive installed in your computer and when you try to access a particular you are unable to or windows is saying that the drive is unrecognizable you may have a bad hard drive or a failing one, you should do disk scan on that particular hard drive for hard drive errors.

3. Disappearing data and disk errors

You notice that files and documents are going missing, you save a document today and tomorrow the document is no where to be found and your system continues to prompt for missing file location needed to run certain programs that are not working any more.Though this may be the work of viruses or malware, providing that you have an updated antivirus program and nobody has moved your files from where you had them on your computer, these are common symptoms that should be taken into consideration when diagnosing a failing hard disk drive.

4. The blue screen of death (BSOD)

This is when your computer just shuts down and restart with a blue screen and it continues to repeat this pattern, these errors are what you call stop errors and they are associated with hardware device failures or some recently installed unsupported software that makes the operating system unstable.If you have not recently installed any such software that might have caused this BSOD and you are running an updated Antivirus Software, we can rule software and virus out of the diagnosis and focus more on the hardware side which our hard disk drive falls under.Though a BSOD can be caused by a number of other failing hardware devices within your computer such bad physical memory, a failing video card or failing power supply, etc, finding the source of your hard drive problems is much more easier providing tests on memory, video cards and power supply have been conducted and they are working perfectly.You definitely will know for sure that our hard drive is faulty.

Note a hard disk drive is hardware peripheral in computer terms and if it is failing or faulty it will give a blue screen of death (BSOD).

5. Constant  Freezing

Providing that you have an updated antivirus software running on your computer, another symptom of a failing hard  disk drive would be your computer constantly freezing up, your mouse and keyboard just stops responding and you have to reboot steady.This can be a signal and when compared with the others symptoms mentioned earlier you should have a good idea when your hard disk drive is failing.

In my next post, How to prevent a hard drive failure, i will tell you how you can prevent a hard drive failure and what you need to do once signs start to show up.

You may also want to check out :
How to prevent a Hard Drive Failure.

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