May 29th, 2008
|04:04 am - Hardware question|
My external hard drive has suddenly ceased showing up in any fashion. The only sign of life is that the light still comes on when I plug it in, but that's the limit of its functionality. So, might there be some way of remedying this problem or should I assume the drive is dead and acquire a new one? Both of my computer's USB ports function normally for other devices, and the USB to miniUSB cable on the drive also works fine on other devices.
Edit: The drive mysteriously started working after a 2nd reboot of the computer. Should I assume this was a random glich, or is this likely a sign that the drive will fail soon?
It will fail soon.
Backup, then see if it's still in warranty and get another.
I would also advise backing up your data and not relying on the drive for anything important. But once in a long while I get a scary error when starting my computer, and yet my computer and harddrive have kept on working anyway, after rebooting. So sometimes, it seems it can just be a glitch. Better safe than sorry, though. Glitches like that always make me hurry to backup my data.
If you can open the case and install the hardrive inside a desktop using an IDE interface you might consider buying and running Spinrite http://www.grc.com/sr/faq.htm
Start -> Programs -> Admin Tools -> Event Viewer
Go through your event logs and see if there are any disk errors for the USB device.
Ah, I had no idea that sort of record existed, many thanks. No, nothing of the sort is recorded. I know roughly when any error would have to have occurred and there's nothing remotely related listed. I'm definitely backing everything up on DVD, but now I'm also less worried. From the lack of any date, it looks like may have been some sort of odd software thing.
Not a problem.
Is the external drive clicking, spinning up, and then shutting down over and over?
Backing up your data is always a good idea, regardless of the circumstances.
If nothing's showing up in the event logs, it's my guess that your drive is fine, and that it was an OS hiccough.
Nothing of the sort, the only symptom was that the computer ceased to recognize it.
In that case, back-ups seem in order. How old is it? Do you know the manufacturer?
My guess is that it is mechanically failing. Just a guess.