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Catastrophic HDD failure strikes KiwiArcader


KiwiArcader
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Well .... sad news all round with this posting I am afraid.

After setting up a Windows Home Server and copying all my mags, books etc onto it and setting duplication up I forgot to do the same with my working drive. I didn't think it would be a problem as my WD 640GB portable has been rock solid since I bought it. Well today my lax attitude came back and bit me the ass BIG time!!!!! Today my HDD decided it emit some strange sounds and presto ... it stopped working. Thinking it might be USB related I tried different ports, changed the power adapter etc, all to no avail. I still have to remove the drive from the case and try it on a SATA port directly but I am not confident that it will work.

The net result of this is ALL my work that wasn't complete appears to have got up in smoke. That encompasses all issues of RISC User awaiting editing, approximately 20 issues of PC Gamer (some 3500 pages), a number of half finished mags in the process of editing for here and OoPA and also some super secret stuff being worked on for OoPA.

To say I am devastated would be an understatement given the number of hours of my life spent on those files which is now gone. Many of the mags on that HDD have been sold, dumped etc after being scanned so may be irretrievable if I don't have backups on some of my old unused HDD's sitting in the basement. Time will tell as I get them out to see what is on them so let's hope some stuff is backed up still.

At this point I don't know what to do or where to go from here.

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Awww man that's awful. Same thing happened to me years back (except for the server thing) I had my files backed up on an external HDD and both my external and my laptop drive crapped out on me within days of each other. So I feel your pain because that was when I was doing a lot of work on my card fighter project.

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The HDD is well out of warranty and the costs of data retrieval off dead drives are mortgage material ...some thing I simply cannot afford.

It's ironic though that I had the server up and running off an old PC I had lying around but I decided to go the whole hog and have just bought a full-blown rackmount Xeon instead ... dual redundant PSU's, ECC RAM etc ... but the HDD chose to crap out before I could get it up and running. I was just talking to triverse about it too ... geez ... what a frikin' nightmare!!

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Well .... I removed it from the case and tried it off the SATA port directly and still no go. It was making some strange high pitched noises (not grinding noises) before it went belly up but now nothing so I'm more inclined to think it's something to do with the drive power mechanism than the electronic PCB. No burn smells or signs of an issue ...

At this stage I am dead in the water while I get all my old smaller 250Gb/320GB HDD's out and start working through them to see what is still stored on those which is going to take a few days. You know, I used to think people stating their HDD's had died was just an excuse to get out of having to do anything ... " My HDD died so I can't finish that emulator you've been waiting for but which I haven't really made at all" kind of thing ... so having a HDD die on me (my first since a 100MB died over15 years ago) has been a bit of a rude shock to the system.

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Yeah ...well ... in hinsight maybe ... but I find I like scanning a whole bunch of stuff before working on something as I find editing one mag boring and need a break by doing something else. I had scanned all RISC Users a long time ago but because everyone here didn't really appreciate them I stopped processing them and moved onto other things. I have a feeling they may be backed up on one of the 10 or so small HDD's in the basement. About 4 months ago I secured a 80 mag pile of PC Gamers and had scanned a whole heap for editing over time.That lot of scans are definitely lost along with the Coleco stuff I obtained although I still have the debinded mags for those PC Gamers in a box so can scan them in again .... ugh!!!!!

At this stage I'm taking a couple of weeks out for my sanity while I get my Xeon Server up and running and implement some file-saving backup systems so it doesn't happen again.

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To say this sucks would be an understatement.

I've had external HDDs go corrupt in the past so I know what that feels like. Although it wasn't of the same magnitude as this.

Luckily that thought me to be very cautious so I bought a 1TB Time Portal when my old wireless router crapped out almost 2 years ago.

Knowing that everything I work on gets automatically back-uped after only a couple of minutes gives me a lot of peace of mind.

Besides that I have a 500GIG external HDD to copy the things that I'm not working on immediately, and on top of that I burn 2 DVD copies of all the original and fully edited PSD files ones I finish a magazine.

I certainly wouldn't give up on the HDD that quickly.

If it's even half salvageable in one way or another by getting someone to look at it, it certainly would save you a lot of headaches.

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  • Retromags Curator

...and on top of that I burn 2 DVD copies of all the original and fully edited PSD files ones I finish a magazine.

I am truly afraid to ask how many DVDs you have in your house just containing scans!

I have been lucky and haven't had a hard drive die on me yet. But I have one drive in my computer that is just used for back up, and I have SyncToy for Windows run a back up of my files everyday.

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Not that many actually.

Since I started redoing all my scans, those are the only ones that take up a lot of space.

A magazine of 100 pages takes up a bit over 2 GIG as PSD files.

So I think I have about 15 DVDs of these kinds of scans, along with duplicate copies of them.

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