A hard drive failure is an unplanned event, which can happen anywhere, anytime. Collapse is unpredictable, but it can not stay unnoticed if it happens. A variety of symptoms can accompany the device’s malfunction, but many computer users ignore warning indications such as unusual sounds, frequent error messages, slow performance, etc.
Common Signs of Hard Drive Failure
Files Corruption and Inaccessibility
If you can not open the files, or your folders are disappearing, this is not a good sign. Data corruption is another sign of failure, and complete data loss is not rare in failure situations.
- Scrambled File or Folder Name
- Random Error Messages
- Lost Access to the Files
- Files Contain Corrupted Data
- The Disappearance of Files and Folders
Often the reason for data corruption is a virus or just bad sectors accumulation.
If the hard drive has started emitting strange sounds, it usually spells trouble for your hard drive. There are several failure noises that come from the hard drive when it faces malfunction.
Hearing no sound from a hard drive is another bad sign that can not bring anything good.
Frequent and Intermittent Boot Errors
If your laptop or desktop computer starts showing messages like “no bootable device found,” “hard drive not found,” or “boot device missing,” it usually indicates a failure. So when you are seeing these messages for a long time, do not try to use them to retrieve lost files stored on these devices.
However, one of the most common signs of hard drive failure is slow performance, which often results in complete data loss.
Computer Running Slow due to Head Failure
Head malfunction often results in a hard drive failure and, consequently, slow performance. The most tricky part of the device is the read/write head assembly, also known as actuator heads. When the laptop or desktop computer sends a request for a file, the actuator heads fly across the surface platters to locate the appropriate sectors that contain the file. For many reasons, within some time, sectors on the platters become inaccessible.
The hard drive usually keeps a list of bad sectors to avoid writing data to those areas. When the hard drive is healthy and functionality is normal, it will not write the data on bad sectors. However, the actuator heads are exceptionally precise, and a slight collapse can prevent them from working accurately.
When the actuator arm begins to fail, the heads will mark all sectors as “bad” since the drive cannot read the requested data from the area.
However, the device can still get some data, and the computer may continue to function, but read/write speeds will suffer severely. Thus, the hard drive’s heads become less effective at accessing files.
As a result, your computer’s performance will suffer. A slowdown will be seen when using particular files and programs. It is also common to see general performance issues with your computer.
What to Do If Your Computer Slows Down
Understanding why the sudden slowdown is a potentially severe issue is essential. Hard drives contain many sensitive internal components, so you need to take appropriate steps after the device fails and the computer stops functioning normally.
Computers can slow down for many reasons, and sudden performance issues do not always indicate an upcoming hard drive failure. If your device acts abnormally after downloading and installing new programs, then back up essential files and revert the modifications that caused the problem.
If your hard drive is operating so slowly that you cannot carry out regular actions in a proper amount of time, do not try to copy data from your storage drive. By using the failed device, you can cause severe damage and corrupt valuable data.
When a hard drive is physically damaged, you may notice sounds indicating your computer attempts to read data. Files might suddenly become inaccessible and disappear, and you might receive error messages.
As soon as you detect any malfunction symptoms, power down the computer. There are many free online recovery tools and repair tutorials on the Internet, but they do not guarantee successful results. Moreover, installing unverified recovery programs on the failed device can put your drive at more risk, including virus attacks. Opening your device in unspecialized facilities is another thing you should not do with your failed drive.
Instead of figuring out the problem yourself, contact a professional data recovery company. PITS Global Data Recovery Services has thousands of successful hard disk and solid-state drives recovery cases. Our engineers work in specialized facilities, including Class 10 ISO Certified Cleanroom, using state-of-the-art tools.
Contact us now to learn more about recovery options by calling our customer service line or filling out a request help form.