Wednesday, February 15, 2017

bad system drive

Without warning, the C: drive of my main computer quit a couple of days ago.

I was able to keep working on a backup machine which is physically the same as the main computer but without all the software.

Fortunately most of my work was on another drive which I backup regularly. I seem to have lost my sent mail however. My mail program data was on the failed drive. I should be able to retrieve my sent mail from my mail server? More learning.

I did not have a current backup to restore from. I have reloaded Windows 10 on a brand new C: drive, an upgrade from the failed 750MB to a new Seagate Barracuda 2TB.

The reload experience with Windows 10 was interesting. I had made a Windows 10 recovery disk (the CD in the picture) back in December and it did boot the amchine into Windows 10. It did offer to restore from a backup, if I only had one.

So I had to reload Windows 10 using the Microsoft Windows 10 Media Creation Tool. This makes an installer on a USB drive, a fresh copy of Windows 10 from the source and it automatically licenses somehow from my Microsoft ID.

Now I am reloading my programs: Adobe, Corel, LibreOffice, Thunderbird, Chrome etc and all their helper plug-ins. Apps in new speak.

Don't think this can't happen to you. Have a backup.

One piece of learning was that I had S.M.A.R.T. reporting turned off in the motherboard BIOS.The drive may have been trying to let me know there was a problem but I was not allowing it.

That system did seem to be taking a long time to boot and there was an occasional cryptic memory error message from Windows that I have captured somewhere. Also Windows Backup was nagging me that it had not completed (for some time now).

So maintenance was overdue, perhaps a system swap, test backup. I had the hardware but just had done none of those things.

The failed drive starts. I can hear and feel it start in my hand. The disk is turning, a few clicks and then it just spins. But it is not recognized on any of the live SATA ports I have tried it on. Maybe I can swap the circuit board if I can find another like mine. (click the picture to read the lable)

I had written about having twos of things.

George Plhak
Lion's Head, Ontario, Canada