How To Know if Your Hard Drive is in Perfect Condition to Avoid a Catastrophe

check hard drive condition
The use of hard drives has changed dramatically over the years. A decade ago, at the height of the digital universe, our houses were filled with boxes and more stacked boxes, of greater or lesser performance. A decade in which we have jumped from 2GB to 2TB, and for a lower cost.

All our digital files, our memories, converted into binary code in a pile of very fine plates engraved magnetically.

Currently, its function has been relegated to backup, secondary storage to ensure that everything that floats through the clouds is available at the time of a possible digital blackout. For this same reason, it is more important than ever to confirm that our hard disks work perfectly, including those installed in the internal structure of the system.



Diagnosing the health of your hard drive


The first thing we should do is check the status of our hard drives. There are hundreds of software alternatives. Typically from Windows press right click on the Icon HD and with the recovery data we handle, pass a clean deleting everything unnecessary, defragmenting sectors to reposition the files and compressing the database.

If we get a broader performance of your hard drive and status dossier, application CrystalDiskInfo is a good alternative, a well - known utility between users and free. From the application we can do an exam and obtain detailed statistics of the SMART attributes of the system, to anticipate possible fatal errors. It also shows all the information through a simple color chart, ideal for neophytes.


hdd scan


Another popular utility is HDD Scan, from which we can run a full diagnostic, perform read, write and erase verification tests from any part of the disk and from virtually any disk format - RAID servers, USB flash drives, and status discs. solid SSD-. Once we have the system information, making sure that everything is in place, we will review some additional factors to make sure it stays that way for a long time.

If, on the other hand, we find some kind of defective sector, we can do two things. If the damage is physical, on the surface of the plate, we can send it to a recovery laboratory. It costs a real fortune - the tests are done in hermetically sealed rooms - and it is a solution focused on companies that have very valuable data on their discs. If the failure has been caused by a badly magnetized sector, we can clone and extract the data with applications.

burning hard disk


Happy cables


A large part of the magnetization errors is caused by failures with the cables. A simple mismatched connection can cause the disk to be constantly connecting and disconnecting. We must take care that the cables are not strangled with knots or crushed with corners and that they are as short as possible - for a faster rate of data transfer - and that, when we want to disconnect them, we always do it the way that Windows recommends, by clicking on the "remove hardware safely" icon or by right-clicking on the icon and "eject".


Temperature control


Some of the applications mentioned above have a temperature test. Now that summer comes, a high temperature for a prolonged period can completely annoy the hard drive. Protect it away from any heat source - away from the PC fans - and where it can be properly aerated and the residual heat escaped.


temperature control


Use of a UPS or surge protection


Currently, all homes have Type 1 protectors against voltage spikes, limiting the voltage and taking care that our electrical appliances are not toasted. If, however, if this is not the case, our recommendation is that you buy a portable one at any electronics store.

On the other hand, a UPS or "uninterruptible power supply" is an electrical device that provides power when a power cut of the general network occurs. They are quite expensive but if our HD hosts very important information or key to our company and we do not have a backup ( back-up ), it is convenient to acquire one.


hard drives


Placement, handling, and transfer


This is, against all odds, the main cause of error in our hard drives. They are stored, they are vertically cornered, then upside down, near magnetic fields or magnets, then they fall while we move them next to our laptop without disconnecting, in full reading and writing of data. It is recommended to leave the disk in a fixed position after defragmentation and always away from any high power electrical transformer.

While we are doing any data reading we should avoid sudden movements because we can either decalibrate the disk axis or we can cause an internal scratch, causing damage with the head on the disc plates; damage, with great frequency, irreparable.


hard drive protection


Turn off or simply disconnect?


It is recommended to disconnect from the power outlet - if it is powered by a transformer and not from the USB BUS - a hard disk when it is not used, to avoid a constant verification of data or the aforementioned overloads in the electrical circuitry. The reading also limits, over time, the pneumatic mobility of the reading needle. However, the components of the dishes are hydrated like the parts of a car engine.

Therefore, every so often it is convenient to connect and verify the data so that the gel that hydrates the moving parts does not "dry". Imagine the catastrophe of having that backup as the last safe conduct and that the disk, simply and plainly, does not start. When this happens, the mechanical parts emit a click, unequivocal answer that some part of the hardware does not work as it should.


repair hard drive

Because although we live in the digital era, in HD the most important elements are analog. Taking care of these facets of our external discs we can undoubtedly prolong the useful life of them.

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