Reasons for physical damage to the hard drive
- Mechanical failure, clicking noise
- Electrical failure
- Misalignment of Read/Write Heads
- Damaged Read/Write Heads
- Hard drives not being recognized by the BIOS.
- Drives with burned chips on the logic board
- Drives with physical damage, such as being dropped, flooded etc.
- Drive Platters with excessive bad sectors
Reasons for non-physical (logical) damage to the hard drive
- Corrupted Partition Tables
- Corrupted File Allocation Tables (FAT)
- Corrupted Master File Tables (MFT)
- Deleted Files
- Formatted Drives
- Virus Attacks
If you notice any irregular noise coming from the hard drive, it means that the hard disk drive in question has either crashed or is going to crash very soon. Please, try to back up your data, while the computer is still running.
Increased noise signals some unstability and is usually the first sign of a hard drive crash. Shut down your computer, if the Operating system has stopped working and there is clicking, scratching or grinding noise coming from hard drive. Keeping the system running at this stage may damage the platters to the extent that it will destroy all the data. Do not even try to hook it up with another computer as the drive is already crashed and the data is inaccessible.
Sometime, you feel that the drive is spinning but it is not detected by BIOS. This is another sign of hard drive crash. This case should also be treated with care. If you feel that physically, the hard disk drive in question is fine and being detected by BIOS and the BIOS is reading the correct size of hard drive, then you can hook it up with another computer to see if data is accessible. If you can access the data, then that is good news. Do not try recovering data by using repair utilities if you still cannot access them. These utilities are designed for few specific problems and if the problem is not the one that these utilities are designed to fix, this may lead to further damage to the data. You should only use the repair utilities, if you are sure of the problem and that the repair utility will fix that particular problem.
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