For computer users, hard drive failure is a scary nightmare. But all hard drives will die sooner or later. No one can prevent it. What we can do is to take some effective measures to prolong the drive’s life.
When a hard drive fails, all the internal data will disappear. Thus, before taking actions to prevent hard drive failures, you had better back up your data. For example, you should back up PST files, such that you can recover Outlook PST data even if the drive goes on strike.
On average, a hard drive’s life is 6 year or so. If the hard drive fails earlier than it, sometimes it may be the fault of manufacturer. But actually in most cases, it is due to our daily behaviors. As long as we take good care of the drive and keep tabs on external threats, we can prolong its life with ease.
Tip 1: Prevent Vibration
As we all know, the fastest and most common way to render a hard drive failed is physical damage. Even if subjected to a very slight disturbance, the moving parts in the hard drive can malfunction. No matter a knock, hit, bump or shock, all of them can destroy the hard drive, particularly when the heads are trying to read and write data on the platter. Therefore, for desktop computer users, you should never remove the hard drive from the computer case by yourself once it has been installed. In addition, no matter using a laptop or desktop computer, you should be careful with the drive. If possible, keep it in a safe place where is far away from knocks or jostles.
Tip 2: Control Heat
Apart from physical damages, overheating is another issue in hard drive failures. More often than not, rising temperature can occur from inadequate ventilation, extreme weather, overheating environment and so on. All computer components, including the drive, come endowed with a specific range of optimal temperatures. Once the drive’s temperature surpasses the range, it will get in danger. Hence, in order to protect your hard drive, you should control its heat. You can take actions from two facets. One is to guarantee sufficient ventilation for your computer. The other one is to regularly check and clear the dust buildup in the computer to keep fans working normally.
Tip 3: Defragmentation
Actually file fragmentation is a factor which is almost ignored by common users. To be honest, it won’t be able to directly cause hard drive corruptions. But it can make it harder for hard drives to read and write data. Over time, the hard drive will go through more wear and tear, and lastly suffer damages. Therefore, in this scenario, your unique approach is defragmentation. It is capable of reducing your hard drive workload of seeking the file pieces. In the long run, it will prolong the hard drive’s life absolutely. Yet, you should bear in mind a fact that defragmenting too frequently is not suggested. Only when there are 5-10% fragmentation will defragmenting your drive can gain the best results.
Tip 4: Don’t Turn On and Off Drive Frequently
Without a doubt, if you frequently boot up and shut down your hard drive, it will lead to additional wear and tear on the drive, in that it will be required to repeat the actions of frequent spinning up and spinning down. Apparently, excessive attrition will absolutely reduce the drive’s life. Hence, you had better leave your computer and hard drive in hibernation or sleep mode if you just go away for a few hours or even less. But if you will go away for several days, remember to shut it down, which will save electricity as well.
Shirley Zhang is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including repair SQL Server corruption and outlook repair software products. For more information visit www.datanumen.com