The hard disk has been responsible for keeping all our data files from our favorite music to favorite memories in the form of pictures and videos. It has kept safe our confidential documents, files and folders for years. It is one of the major parts that helps in operating a computer system, be it a PC or a laptop. Hard Disks come in different types, e.g., SATA, HDD, IDE, SSD but the principle for logical operation and errors is the same.
Hard disks are prone to logical and physical failures and hence are very crucial for resurrecting the lost data and files. But what’s unfortunate here is, nobody cares about backing up the data. Hard disk failure can happen anytime due to virus/malware, fluctuating power supply, damaged block and sectors or corrupted operating system files e.g., ms-dos.sys NTLDR, boot.ini, etc.
Here are 6 worst reasons of hard disk failure with the solutions that will definitely help you in recovering the data.
1.Firmware or Manufacturer Faults
- Your hard drive goes undetectable or is not recognized by any system.
- The system hangs in the middle of the booting process or fails to boot.
This hard disk issue mainly occurs with a newly bought hard disk and can hamper its functioning. This problem can also happen after few days of purchasing and the reason behind it is that the manufacturer had delivered you a faulty hard disk. Damaged hard disks are delivered to the customer without testing.
For such cases, users can contact the manufacturer of the disk and ask for RA (Return Authorization) if the disk is still in warranty. Hence, such problems can be taken care of without paying extra money or inquiring further. However, the user may lose important data stored on the hard disk. Also, the manufacturer won’t offer you any guarantee of the safety of your data or the recovery of the lost data from your corrupted hard disk. Here, data recovery software comes to the rescue. You can also go for emergency responsive services in case you need that data urgently.
- Fans are moving slow or not moving at all.
- Strange sounds such as clicking sounds arising from the hardware system.
- Heat disseminating from the desktop or laptop soon after starting.
This is the most common cause out of all the hard drive failure that occurs often. This situation can arise due to bad ventilation or a faulty CPU fan. And if the problem is not taken care of it can heat up the system to the highest point that can further crash the hard disk or can cause severe damage to the computer hardware. This type of damage that is caused by the heat is irreversible.
To make sure that CPU fans are working properly, you need to double check that the proper cooling is supplied to the processor and the related peripherals. For this, you can use thermal paste and place it between CPU fan’s heat sinks to make them run flawlessly in the future. Also, there are some smart tools in the market that will help you in getting notified about the hard disk conditions and all the associated risks with the hardware in the future. This also assists in preventing users from creating bad sectors on the hard disk platter. This prohibition is done because creating bad sectors can cause a sudden freeze in the system or even complete breakdown of the system.
3. Electronic Failure or Power Surges
- BIOS system will be unable to identify the hard drive
- Hard drive is not able to spin-up
- Abrupt startup failure
This problem of electric failure is often noticed when UPS is not able to deliver the needed power supply; either it is too high or too low. It can also happen if the user is using unreliable power sources that are supplying interrupted power.
Try to ensure that the system hardware is getting power of the required amount. If you are not sure then you can troubleshoot this problem by using an UPS bought from a trusted brand. Besides, you should always take care that you switch off your system when not in use. If even after this your hard disk is inaccessible or not getting detected then you should prepare yourself for using assistance from iDevice Data Recovery experts to recover your data immediately.
4. Mechanical or Internal failure
This hard disk failure mainly happens internally due to the creation of bad sectors/blocks, or when the spindle or motor stops functioning, the PCB board is damaged, or the read/write head beoames immovable.
- Strange sounds coming from the hard disk like clicking and grinding.
- Files and folders becoming obscure with time. They can also become a reason for corrupting hard disk.
- Entire system freezes
- Black screen appears after booting process that prevents you from starting the system.
The hard drive carries movable parts and these parts starts to degrade with time and eventually result in a hard disk that is mechanically damaged. A malware/virus attack can also erase hard disk data, make the system corrupt and alter the operation of the hard disk. All this leads to mechanical corruption of the computer system. Earlier, several rootkits viruses were introduced, which used to become active as you start the system and corrupt the functioning of the system at BIOS level. However, the latest Windows operating system like Windows8 or Windows8.1 has the ability to detect that malware/virus and remove it by using UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) technology.
If you update your system regularly, run the latest antivirus program, back up your data and replace the hard drive after every 3-4 years of usage etc., all these are the common measures that you can take to increase your hard disk life.
5. Corrupted Files Symptoms
- Critical system files have gotten corrupted, which is preventing any user from accessing their system
- Unexpected shutdown due to power surges or failure can corrupt the files and make the hard disk inaccessible.
A wrong way to shut down the PC, closing running programs accidentally, usage of malicious or any faulty applications, or power surges are some of the factors contributing to the system file corruption.
You should always use the standard method to shut down your PC which would help your computer to close every running program and command the kernel to stop powering CPU equipment. It is also suggested to close all the running programs before you try to shut down the system. Also, try to avoid malicious or faulty software installation into your PC to make your hard disk live longer.
6. Human Errors
This section comprises the errors that only happens due to human errors and mistakes and may cause serious damages to the computer system. For instance— modification of the system registration settings, changing attributes and location of system files, improper installation of operating system, etc. are some examples of human errors. These types of errors are hard to resurrect and require the most powerful recovery software to deeply scan and recover severely damaged data.
- Try to avoid using the drive or the problematic computer instantly after the hard disk issue has occurred
- Unplug the hard drive from the CPU case and cautiously place it in a highly cleaned environment.
- Make sure that the hard disk hasn’t got any mark or ‘hot spots’ on its external controller board.
- Try to ensure that drive parts are not broken or damaged.
Step1: Firstly replace/change the SATA/USB cable and also the power adapter. Sometimes we tend to overlook the problems that are very common and can easily be removed by following the basic actions.
Step2: If you use a laptop and your hard drive is on it and a problem surfaces when you are trying to connect it externally, then consider buying a new hard disk case or just switch the USB ports. Also, you can try to connect the same to some other computer and see if the problem persists or there is a problem with your laptop only.
Step3: If the above-mentioned are not helpful to you yet, then check your drive controller board. Always remember that a traditional hard disk drive used to carry a controller board that was mounted externally and needed to be replaced carefully. The drive controller can damage the platters of the hard drive and can make the stored data inaccessible. But here, be careful about the make and the model of the controller board prior to replacing.
Step4. Sometimes, Windows is not able to detect the drive due to the file system corruption. However, a Live CD of any Linux Distros (e.g., Ubuntu) has the capability of detecting it and allowing users to recover data accurately in the form it was earlier. Next, just grab an Ubuntu Live CD and try to boot the system once again by using it. After you’re all set, traverse through the hard disk partitions and restore all the data safely.