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Check Your Hard Drive!

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Elliot Thompson View Drop Down
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    Posted: 04 February 2020 at 9:21pm

After 16 years of service, one of my Traktor computers started reacting very slowly. Windows was not at fault for anyone that is computer literate knows, 99% of all Windows files being corrupted is due to being subjected to the Internet. So Windows XP was not an issue as all my Traktor computers literally, have their networks disconnected whether it be by Bios or through Device Manager.

 

The root of the problem was the Hard Drive or should I say was 2 out of 5 Hard Drives having bad sectors. Not a big deal due to having four computers solely for Traktor offering identical music files.

 

So I decided to check my Digital Audio Workstation computer and discovered this...

 

 

 

I was actually shocked to find out the status of the 3 terabyte drive considering that was the last drive I purchased (2015). Needless to say, I just spent 16 hours transferring the files from the dieing 3 terabyte hard drive to a new 3 terabyte hard drive.

 

Had one of my Traktor computers not showed signs of lagging, I would have lost all my software I've accumulated from 2015 to date on the 3 Terabyte Drive residing my Digital Audio Workstation. Although, I have software residing on the drive dating back to 1998, I stopped creating CDR/DVDR backup discs from 2015.

 

So do check your hard drives to prevent one day turning on your Computer and finding "RAW" on a drive that is supposed to have your music files.

 

Best Regards,    



Edited by Elliot Thompson - 04 February 2020 at 9:29pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sypa Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2020 at 1:58am
I love the forced fresh start LOL

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Elliot Thompson View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elliot Thompson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2020 at 5:17am

LOL!! LOL

 

The benefits of a extracting files from a dieing external drive. If the LED keeps blinking with no files being transferred after 5 minutes, yank out the external drive's power cord so the external hard drive can reset itself and start again. You will get prompt by Windows that there is an error while transferring the file and have the option to try again or skip the file.

 

At 5% Health, I am doing whatever it takes to get those .exe & .dll files transferred.

 

I would not recommend the above method if you are not using a Workstation since all Workstations use ECC RAM. If your CPU is using non-ECC RAM you can definitely get some corrupted files transferred to the newer drive. It may be more beneficial (Yet time consuming) to transfer by sub folder than by the parent folder. Then right click to verify all the files in the subfolder in the new drive matches the files in the subfolder residing in the older drive.   

 

Once I got the essential files (2015 - 2020) transferred, left the remaining files (1998 - 2014) on the hard drive and reformatted the hard drive, the health was 3%  

 

 

Best Regards, 

Elliot Thompson
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Shortrope Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2020 at 7:43am
Out of interest was that a Solid state drive or a conventional one?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote odc04r Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2020 at 11:49am
Any HD over 10 years old in my experience and you are pushing your luck for bad sectors, only a matter of time. But as you have found it is a lottery even with newer drives.

While there are plenty of solutions out there from domestic to enterprise I have always got on every well with Macrium Reflect for cloning and rebuilding dead hard drives. You can slipstream windows PE for recovery as a boot option to RAM, or to a USB etc. And it is free for personal home use.

The next thing to do is build a NAS, and store your cloned images/backed up data to a mirror RAID array. I will always go this route over cloud storage for anything important.

If you are comfortable with Linux/Unix then they offer a powerful array of options to recover files from dead HDs etc. TestRec and PhotoRec in particular are great for file recovery fo dead/failing HDs.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elliot Thompson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2020 at 3:45pm
Originally posted by Shortrope Shortrope wrote:

Out of interest was that a Solid state drive or a conventional one?



It was a conventional drive. I am definitely not going to complain about the quality of the brand (Western Digital) for I have Western Digital drives that are older than the one that was malfunctioning in use offering no issues whatsoever.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elliot Thompson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2020 at 4:48pm
Originally posted by odc04r odc04r wrote:

Any HD over 10 years old in my experience and you are pushing your luck for bad sectors, only a matter of time. But as you have found it is a lottery even with newer drives.

While there are plenty of solutions out there from domestic to enterprise I have always got on every well with Macrium Reflect for cloning and rebuilding dead hard drives. You can slipstream windows PE for recovery as a boot option to RAM, or to a USB etc. And it is free for personal home use.

The next thing to do is build a NAS, and store your cloned images/backed up data to a mirror RAID array. I will always go this route over cloud storage for anything important.

If you are comfortable with Linux/Unix then they offer a powerful array of options to recover files from dead HDs etc. TestRec and PhotoRec in particular are great for file recovery fo dead/failing HDs.




I have boxes full of backups upon backups on CDR and DVDR Discs from 2014 - 1998. It was just laziness on my behalf I did not have any software backups from 2015 - 2020. I got caught up in the convenience of using a larger drive for storing everything. Such convenience is the mentality of the average consumer in the States in which, I knew better not to get caught up in.


I was a strong advocate of Cloud Services pre-2010 when they were not popular. However the rise in their popularity has steered me away from such options. I rather not have such dependencies of the Internet and prefer having everything accessible offline on something tangible.


I have been slip streaming since Windows 2000 and dabbling in Linux around the same time frame. I have a few Windows PE CDR discs in my collection as well.


Solid State will be the next means of software backup. If Solid State is as robust as USB Flash drives in terms of storage, it will be well worth the investment.


Best Regards,


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote odc04r Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2020 at 4:54pm
Be careful with optical media, especially CDRs. The optical layers do degreade with time, another 5 years and you might find out those discs are not readable.

Not sure about SSD for NAS etc yet. They do die eventually, just as traditional HDs will. I have seen a few issues where a traditional HD was replaced with an SSD and results were not always quite as expected. Maybe just unlucky with failure rate, but they aren't always the best option. Unless you need fast data recovery/backup e.g. large databases, personally I'd stick with magnetic enterprise level HDs in mirror RAID.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote levyte357- Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2020 at 5:26pm
My 2x laptops have OS installed on brand new M2 sata, and data on separate brand new 1TB SSD.

In 2x years, I'll be replacing them. No questions asked.

Will prob replace data drives with top quality HDs, SSD always leaves you with Question mark about long term reliability.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elliot Thompson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2020 at 5:56pm
I have found the best way to store optical CDRs/DVDRs are in their spindles with their frosted covers in a dark (preferably a box) low moisture environment. Some have reached the 20 year mark and show no signs of decay. I do however, have so many backups I would not fret if one started offering pits on the surface.

My issues with platter driven hard drives as storage only devices is having some of their platters freezing when not in use for years or offering the inevitable clicking sound. The 3 terabyte (5 years old) that dropped down 5% health was a storage only unit. In the meantime, an identical 3 terabyte hard drive used for music playback that is 8 years old offers 100% health.   

I lost a USB Flash Drive in a Commercial Freezer and, found it a week later. Once found, l plugged the USB Flash Drive in the computer and, it worked without any issues. If Solid State Drives can offer such durability, they will meet my requirements. Eventually, I will transfer all the software residing on  CDR/DVDR discs to Solid State Drives. I am waiting for Solid State Drives to mature before making such an investment.

Best Regards,

 




Edited by Elliot Thompson - 05 February 2020 at 5:57pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jazomir Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 February 2020 at 8:47pm
I think the estimated useful life of a SSD is 5 years so not good for many jobs - there are certain rules that need to be followed with SSDs for instance not using more than 85-90% of storage if you want a reasonable, safe working life. HDDs like any complex mechanical device can have problems even after little use especially with the high capacities now on offer  - hence the shorter warranty periods introduced by the likes of Seagate & Western Digital some years back (i haven't checked recently but the warranties on Seagate went down from 5 to 2 years in 2011/12). 
Regards

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Elliot Thompson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 February 2020 at 9:54pm

When IDE Hard drives with nothing greater than 20 Gigabyte were standard, many computer builders would stress on only using 50% of the hard drive to ensure longevity and, maintain your computer's reaction speed. Since SSD follows a similar principal, it would not be a big issue on my behalf.


When I look at the ratio of which hard drives died and which ones survived during a 20-year-period it was always the drives that had to store thousands of miniscule .dll files. I do recall upon transferring the files from the old hard drive to the new hard drive, the time duration was longer transferring .dll files than .exe files despite the .dll files offered a smaller folder size than the .exe file folder. I would imagine quantity over file size is a heavier workload.


This is pretty much how I store my backup files that are on CDR/DVDR discs. The discolouration on the paper towel is due to it's age (13 years old).





Best Regards,



Edited by Elliot Thompson - 18 February 2020 at 9:56pm
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