My Hard Drive is About to Crash- What Should I Do?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by Ro_Laren, Oct 5, 2012.

  1. Ro_Laren

    Ro_Laren Commodore Commodore

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    Dec 12, 2004
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    The Badlands
    I am typing this on my itty bitty smart phone, so sorry for any errors. I went to about 10 different stores today to compare prices and see what tech was available. Flash drives seem like a more expensive way to go if i actually want to save all my files. External hard drives r more expensive than i think they r in america... and theyseem to be the same price as the internal hard drive. I did not know beforehand, but i guess u need to know if your computer is a usb 2.0.or 3.0 when buying an external hd? My computer has a usb 2.0.... does that 100% mean that something labelled as usb 3.0 wont work with my computer?

    Can i just use an external hd like a giant usb? Meaning i can save files on it and then access them on another computer (making chanes and saving them and maybe saving new files to the external hd too)? Or, should i buy norton ghost and then just ghost my hd? If i ghost my hd to an external hd of the same storage space as my laptop(320 gb), then does that mean i would have to ghost my computter all over again to add a,new file? I am assuming i can ghost something over and over again to one hd (knowing rhat the old versio will be replaced by the new).
     
  2. Ro_Laren

    Ro_Laren Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2004
    Location:
    The Badlands
    T ^ also, if i ghost my soon to fail hd, does that mean my extrnal hd would have all the same probs as my current hd? Ordoes norton ghost just skip any corrupt data (maening that in reality my computer is not 100%.copied to the external hd)?

    also, if i buy an external hd that has a lqrger capacity than my computer‘s 320 gb hd, then can use part of the external hd to ghost my computer and the rest of th external hd to add new files (like if i take pics somewhere the next day)? Or does ghosting a computer to am externwl hd completely take over that external hd (even if its storage capacity is larger than what was ghosted to it)?
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2012
  3. Count Zero

    Count Zero Welcome to the Danger Zone! Moderator

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    Mmh, I have USB 3.0 ports on my newer computer but no devices that use it. Wikipedia says that you can plug USB 3.0 devices into USB 2.0 ports. It will then, of course, be just as slow and not offer the additional stuff USB 3.0 does. It's possible that USB 2.0 devices are cheaper.
    You can use external HDDs as storage devices and copy your files there. I don't know how much sense employing a ghosting program makes in your case. It depends on whether you end up buying a new machine after the HDD failure or not and whether you want to have a completely fresh install of the OS and programs you use. I'd prefer the latter so I'd just save files I want to keep.
    I don't know how Norton Ghost does things but usually, these programs make incremental updates to the back-up, i.e. they add new files to the existing back-up. I use a back-up program that came with my OS to back-up my home directory (I'm on Linux where things work a little differently) and the back-up is just a directory on one of my external HDDs. I also have my music collection and other stuff on that drive. Of course, depending on what you decide to back-up you might not have the space to put anything more than the back-up on your external HDD.
     
  4. Captain Ice

    Captain Ice Cookie Constructor Moderator

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    Ro, before we go on any further about ghosting your drive, do you have the installation discs for the application software you use somewhere handy? IIRC, you are in Russia, but isn't your permanent home elsewhere? Did you bring all of the software cds for the stuff you use with you?

    If the answer is no, then I think I would go ahead and ghost the drive. As others have said, the drive is failing. That's what the clicking and grinding sounds mean.

    Does your machine have a second hard drive bay in it? My HP dv7 does, and if it were having the problems yours is, I'd buy a new internal hard drive, use the second bay to ghost the main hard drive, and then swap drives.
     
  5. Holdfast

    Holdfast Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I don't see much point to ghosting a whole drive for average users. Just backup whatever documents you want, and then just transfer them onto your new computer/drive with a fresh OS install. Most people collect a lot of crap they never use over time so a fresh installation, and then transferring whatever old documents you actually need, is probably better than ghosting IMO. I'm not a very technically-savvy individual so I'm sure there are advantages to ghosting that I'm not seeing right now. But for an average, straightforward user, I'm not sure they outweigh the speedy gains of having a fresh install.

    I do agree with all those saying that the next time you start the computer up, should be the time you back everything important up, by whatever means you prefer.
     
  6. Captain Ice

    Captain Ice Cookie Constructor Moderator

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    In this case, the point is that he may not have access to his software installation discs. Ghosting the drive is cheaper than repurchasing the software.
     
  7. Count Zero

    Count Zero Welcome to the Danger Zone! Moderator

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    It's been a while since I last installed anything from an actual disc (except for the OS, I mean). Open Source FTW! ;)
     
  8. ngc7293

    ngc7293 Commander Red Shirt

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    Michigan
    I don't know how Ghost has changed over the years, but when we used it in the computer shop, we ghosted a customer's HDD to another. To use Ghost as a regular means to copy your software just seems like you would be re-copying your software. It would likely be slow since you would be doing the same thing over and over again. Perhaps use Ghost ONCE and then every time you get new files you copy them to the new drive.

    There is an alternative. Some Backup drives have built in software that backup your drive for you and then continue to back it up. I just use mine manually like a 500GB thumb drive. A friend of mine leaves his 1TB drive plugged in and it backs up any time files are changed. This sounds like the kind of think you would likely want to use.

    I think if you are careful with a computer that seems on the verge of failure, then it will last as long as you need it to. You sort of do things like a video game, you back up the game constantly so that if something goes wrong you will always be safe. By the same respect, if you always keep your data backed up, you will always be safe with your bad news HP :) Good Luck
     

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