Signs of Dying Hard DiskIn this article, I am going to cover the subject on signs of dying hard disk.

In this 21st century, almost everyone has a computer whether it is a desktop or laptop. These devices became an integral part of our lives. As the use of our devices increases the need to store data also increases. Nowadays we stash our digital data like photos, videos, TV shows, games and other software on these devices. In most cases the data size keeps increasing until hard disk space on our PC runs out to accommodate them, afterward, we procure extra hard disk drives whether internal or external.

Every electronic device comes with a lifespan and a hard disk whether it’s an internal or external also among them. Usually, the average lifespan of a PC internal hard disk is 5-10 years while an external one is around 3-5 years.  The lifespan of these devices drastically decreases when exposed to temperature variations, humidity etc.

Since external hard disk drives are quite commonly used these days and given the fact that they are highly portable, they may encounter some rough use from time to time, which can decrease their lifespan even more. In this article, we are going to cover the subject on how to detect if your hard disk is dying, signs of dying hard disk and steps you need to take in order to save your precious data.

1. Slow Processing or Blue Screen of Death

In most of the cases, these are not related to the health of your hard drive but certainly among one of the possible symptom or signs of dying hard disk. If your system is too slow or you are frequently getting Blue Screen of Death error, back up your data and go with the clean installation of OS after formatting the hard drive. If you still face the slow processing or Blue Screen of Death on newly installed OS, then certainly you need to worry about your hard disk.

2. Files get corrupted or vanish without any reason

If your files get corrupted without any reason or you copy a file without error and can’t open afterward or suddenly you find out that your file is missing, then certainly your hard disk has an issue and this is one of the signs of dying hard disk. Most of the time, these are related to bad sectors on the hard drive. Too many bad sectors are an indication of the bad health of the hard disk drive.

In Windows, you can check the bad sector by visiting the drive partition through “My PC”. Right click on “My PC” and click on the “Properties” option, then go to tools and click on “Error Checking.” If you would like to optimize your hard disk drive, click on “Optimize and defragment drive” option there.

You can also use “chkdsk /f /r” command inside command prompt window to fix bad sectors and recover readable information. Click on start and type “cmd” inside run. Right click on cmd icon at the top and click on “Run as administrator”. Type “chkdsk /f /r” and when it asks for “Y/N”, type “Y” and press enter. Chkdsk may run next time when you start windows.

3. Receiving a warning in windows “Windows Detected Hard Disk Problem”

If you receive this error frequently, then certainly you need to back up your data and find another hard disk. Of course, you can perform some action and may succeed in fixing the issue. Here is a link of the article you can follow for fixing this issue:

4. Grinding/Screeching sound coming out from hard disk

If a peculiar repetitive sound or grinding/screen sound coming out from your hard disk drive, then the drive may be quite close to dying. This repetitive sound is called as “click of death” which is produced by the head when attempting to write and recovering from the error. Grinding sounds also suggests about the dying hardware parts like the spindle motor, bearing etc.

We cannot always be prepared for hard disk failures. Therefore to avoid loss of your most precious data, it is always advisable to backup them on another hard drive as chances of both the drives failing simultaneously are very thin. Otherwise, you can also choose cloud backup services like Google Drive, OneDrive etc.


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