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When your hard drive dies

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When your hard drive dies

Postby shootist » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:04 am

When the swearing has stopped, a few observations.

1. Solid State Hard Drives are not immune to failure. Also, when they fail it can be immediate and total.
2. You no doubt have backup software. Find out how to use it before you need it. It make life a lot easier.

My main hard drive decided, the day before yesterday, to become a paperweight. As dead as Elvis. What a PITA, but it could be worse. A badly strained calf muscle has kept me somewhat housebound and I have been promising myself a complete re-case of my main system and an upgrade to Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit and to add another 4g ram so off we go. Nothing is that easy! The new (recovered from an earlier project) case has only 5 1/4" bays so it's off to Maplins for some bits, then to an electronic parts supplier for some 'cheap' ram. A whole day of buggeration followed before all seemed clear. Now it's down to tracking down and sorting the backed up files, so far so good, but a bit too early to be sure.

The computer is reasonably quiet for one that has six internal hard drives.

The next decision is whether to try and upgrade to Windows 10. I have it installed on my 'experimental' computer, which I also use as a Hackintosh, or at least I try to. For those who don't know of such a beast, it's a standard PC of the type that you normally see using Windows or Linux, but a Hackintosh runs Mac OSX, sometimes. Don't ask me why.

Ever onwards towards the inevitable obsolescence. That can take a while though. I have a small collection of really ancient Macintosh cubes from the early 80s, the treasure of which is an SE/30 that I am hoping someone is recapping for me (replacing knackered capacitors on the motherboard and in the PSU).

It's life, Jim, but not as we know it.
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Re: When your hard drive dies

Postby atticus » Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:35 am

For those who aren't as geeky as shooter appears to be ...

I am paranoid about backing up my photos, music, scans of key documents, and work.

I have seen too many disasters.

I set up an e-mail account for the kids to e-mail all their uni course work to. It proved a life saver when a laptop died a couple of days before a dissertation was due.
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Re: When your hard drive dies

Postby dls » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:26 am

My computing life began in te 1970s. I was visiting a supplier, and sat in reception. A woman came in from the office, saobbing, cryig or screaming. Anyway she was in serious tears, having just lost several months' work through some failure.

I have given up on non SSD drives, having lost too much. I back up maniacially and mechanically. It still never really seems to guarantee success.
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Re: When your hard drive dies

Postby diy » Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:48 am

Since mrs diy is a photographer we are also paranoid about backups.
Her macbook (recently upgraded to 16gb of memory despite apple saying it can only take 8) is automatically backed up to a server with RAID 1+0 disks (mirror and stripe) which are then backed up to the older server located at the bottom of the garden in the man cave. Both servers have USB3 sockets with external mobile HDD which are again used for backup. The weak point was always her camera - having a single memory card. Her new camera has dual memory card capability and wifi/usb3 etc. So we are experimenting with getting the camera to dual write or copy backup.

The problem we have is the consumption of disk drives.
The price/size sweet spot seams to be around 4TB currently as the 8TB drives are a bit pricey.

The problem is that her camera can easily write 20MB+ files and she will snap a 1000-1500 in a full day. I've also switched to 4K for my latest youtube projects and can easily rip through a 128GB card for just a 10 minute vid.

One thing I don't use is the cloud, for anything other than small stuff - its frankly a 1 way backup as it could take literally months to restore a few TB of data.

I started my IT career at aged 16 in the late 80s - 8" floppies, with 80kb capacity. I've still got a stack of 5 1/4 and 3.5"
My suggestions are not legal advice
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Re: When your hard drive dies

Postby dls » Wed Mar 22, 2017 1:42 pm

The problem is that her camera can easily write 20MB+ files and she will snap a 1000-1500 in a full day.


As sure as I am that her work is wonderful, is not the real problem that we have lost the balance between retaining everything, and making proper decisions that some at least needs discarding quickly.
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Re: When your hard drive dies

Postby 3.14 » Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:32 pm

My pc (which I built myself) only has a small SSD which at the time I bought it was expensive. When I'm back in the uk this year, I will be buying 1TB ssd to upgrade it. The price and increased size of memory is one of the wonders of the modern age.
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Re: When your hard drive dies

Postby diy » Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:52 pm

dls wrote:
The problem is that her camera can easily write 20MB+ files and she will snap a 1000-1500 in a full day.


As sure as I am that her work is wonderful, is not the real problem that we have lost the balance between retaining everything, and making proper decisions that some at least needs discarding quickly.


Yes indeed - the final client copy will be down to fit easily on an 8GB stick, but with 2 or 3 shoots a week there is a lot of copies and copies of copies while she gets there. She also tries to keep client work for a min of 12-18 months.

We do live in a world where its cheaper to buy more than to tidy up and free up space.
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Re: When your hard drive dies

Postby dls » Thu Mar 23, 2017 3:47 pm

We do live in a world where its cheaper to buy more than to tidy up and free up space.


Agreed, buteventually you are simply lost in teh thousands of photographs, and among those thousands, you lose those of value very easily.
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Re: When your hard drive dies

Postby shootist » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:01 pm

Currently updating, loading update 197 of 256! :evil:
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Re: When your hard drive dies

Postby megaman » Sat Mar 25, 2017 2:51 am

I have been a geek for a long time and programming is my profession.

In my experience mechanical hard drives sometimes start making funny noises before they die.
As soon as this happens dont ask questions just buy a brand new one and clone it (or at lest backup files you want to keep), consider yourself lucky it did not die without warning, and get rid of it.
maybe you are throwing away a perfectly good drive but for what they cost they are no longer worth the risk.

I have never experienced an SSD fail
I dont know what if any symptoms it would show but i am certain there would be no noise.

All i will say is that i have a RAID 0 setup on my machine (data evenly spread across 2 physical drives which literally doubles the risk off failer)
and i have not yet had any problems with SSD.
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