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Hard disk drive failure

Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2018 9:26 am
by tom hardwick
It had to happen of course, but I've just had my first HDD failure. It's over 10 years old and has been used a lot, so I can't complain.

Western Digital. 500gb. Made 21 Jan 2008 in Thailand, fitted by DVC into my Edius pc that I bought Feb 2008. The other two drives in the pc look to be just fine.

What about you guys .. had any drive failures in your time?

Re: Hard disk drive failure

Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2018 10:39 am
by John Roberts
Not a single one, yet... *touches wood* :lol:

I have some ancient 80GB drives that I regularly use, but my oldest drive is actually a Samsung fitted to my desktop PC, which I use for all my film and music work as the data drive (leaving the system drive 'clean'). The PC is now 6.5 years old, but the drive was transferred from a previous PC, where it was used for exactly the same purpose, that failed after 7 years. I had the retailer fit the Samsung drive to the original PC when I bought it, and I swapped it (with some difficulty with connections and physical size) into the new PC when I bought that, because the retailer said it was 'too old' to be fitted to the second machine. Still going strong after nearly 14 years.

Oldest HDD still working but not used regularly is in an Amiga 1200HD from about 1995-ish.

Curiously a recent HDD health check revealed my newest HDD to be faring the worst of all, it re-writes data almost constantly and the culprit is the Windows 10 O/S. Thankfully I use an external drive for data.

Re: Hard disk drive failure

Posted: Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:36 am
by TimStannard
The other day I discovered I couldn't read from a 2006 Hitachi 500GB Deskstar - one of a pile of disks I keep for archiving, but a full reformat and it appears to be fine again. About three years ago I had another of the same model and vintage.
I like to think I replace my main drives (ie those in daily use) every three to 5 years but i suspect I really take much longer between refreshes.

What I have noticed is that (at least in the businesses and schools I support) hard drive failures appear to be much rarer now than 10-15 years ago, and this is in a world where people tend to keep their PCs for longer (hardware limitations are no longer forcing upgrades)

Re: Hard disk drive failure

Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2019 1:11 pm
by Alistair Biggar
I had a failure a few years ago which destroyed all my film clips. I have learned a hard lesson about securely backing up everything on a NAS drive just in case of failure in the future. I'm not sure if SSD drives are any more reliable. I just purchased a 1TB one at £125 for my C drive and cloned the old 125G drive on to it. From working in Video System support a while back, the best way to avoid this is to keep them running 24/7, but this could prove expensive for some. Drives do tend to fail on startup when they are "shocked" into boot up. Anyway just my tuppence worth.

Re: Hard disk drive failure

Posted: Tue Apr 23, 2019 4:10 pm
by TimStannard
As a caveat to Alistair's post above: This only works if the NAS is set up with a RAID level that includes redundancy (eg RAID 1,5,6,10) and then only if a failed drive is replaced before a second drive fails.

With RAID 0 or JBOD (just a bunch of disks) a failed drive means, in the case of JBOD, anything on that disk is lost and, in the case of RAID 0, everything across ALL disk is lost!

Re: Hard disk drive failure

Posted: Sat May 04, 2019 9:09 pm
by tom hardwick
Just as a post script to this, I used one of those simple HDD caddies to connect the failed drive through USB to my working laptop, just to see if I could retrieve any of the files. Sure enough, bit by bit, and by letting it cool down between bursts, I managed to retrieve all 450gb or so of info off it.

So just to say don't bin a 'failed' HDD, because by treating it gently you might just be able to get it to give up its contents, as I did.

Re: Hard disk drive failure

Posted: Sat May 04, 2019 10:11 pm
by Dave Watterson
Good tip, Tom. Thanks.

It is also worth checking with your friendly local computer repair shop (if you are lucky enough to have one) since they may be able to rescue data from a damaged disc for a fair price. There are major Data Recovery companies who will bring two pantechnicons of gear, park outside and do their best to rescue data ... but the bill will blow your mind. You would do better just to re-shoot all your missing films !