Need advice on hardware? Ask questions and share your opinions here.
#67908 by jimgoodman
Thu Dec 24, 2015 1:53 pm
I was working away this morning and all of a sudden, the hard drive that holds my data disappeared as if it were never there. A few restarts, a check of the drive status of in the startup bio screen, and it is no where to find. Various diagnositics utilies were unable to find any trace of it.

I am assuming that his is just an old fashioned hardware failure, but wanted to check with the hardware gurus out there to see if anyone had any other ideas.

Thankfully, I keep the operating systems and programs on a separate SSD and the data is all on Dropbox, so once the hard drive is replaced and the Dropbox folders are populated, I should be back in business.

Nothing say Christmas like a hardware failure.
#67909 by Roger D
Thu Dec 24, 2015 2:09 pm
open the box and unplug the hard drive and then reconnect. Sometimes the contacts get coated and need to be cleaned by unplug/plugging. Sometimes it helps.
#67910 by Dave
Thu Dec 24, 2015 4:00 pm
For the cost of a second harddrive I would set up as RAID1 and then use something like Acronis True Image to image the SSD drive across each night in case that fails. On my system I have 1 x SSD as boot drive, 2 x 1TB SATA drives set as RAID1. Little used programs and demo/test programs I install into d:\apps instead of c:\prog.... I use Cobian Backup to copy the data to a NAS unit and Acronis True Image to make an image to a 1TB USB3 RDX drive Once a week. I have Onedrive and Dropbox also.

Can never have your data in too many places.

Wishing all a Very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
#67911 by Robert Scott
Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:47 pm
Jim,

No help here but curious if you have software set up to automatically back up your data to a seperate SSD?
Which reminds me...I need to gift myself another SSD for Christmas ;)

On a side note, I do have Carbonite but find Dropbox is a pretty handy source for backup. That along with a couple external passports I use and throw into the safe.
We've come a long way in 15 years since using floppies or tape to back up.

Bob
#67912 by jimgoodman
Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:45 pm
Dave wrote:For the cost of a second harddrive I would set up as RAID1 and then use something like Acronis True Image to image the SSD drive across each night in case that fails. On my system I have 1 x SSD as boot drive, 2 x 1TB SATA drives set as RAID1. Little used programs and demo/test programs I install into d:\apps instead of c:\prog.... I use Cobian Backup to copy the data to a NAS unit and Acronis True Image to make an image to a 1TB USB3 RDX drive Once a week. I have Onedrive and Dropbox also.

Can never have your data in too many places.

Wishing all a Very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year


I will definitely check out Acronis True Image to clone the SSD. Reinstalling the operating system and program files is much more time consuming to recreate.

Our Dropbox for Business account includes an online backup and even keeps copies of every version of every file, including deleted files, in it's archive, so the cost is a true bargain considering.
I do backup the entire Dropbox data to a separate USB drive about once a week or so, just in case the Chinese take over Dropbox and all run off with all of our valuable data.

I agree, that there no such as thing as too much redundancy when it comes to data.

(If you have time between football games this weekend, why don't you come over an help me set this up :roll: )

All the best to you and your family Dave.
#67913 by jimgoodman
Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:49 pm
Robert Scott wrote:Jim,

No help here but curious if you have software set up to automatically back up your data to a seperate SSD?
Which reminds me...I need to gift myself another SSD for Christmas ;)

On a side note, I do have Carbonite but find Dropbox is a pretty handy source for backup. That along with a couple external passports I use and throw into the safe.
We've come a long way in 15 years since using floppies or tape to back up.

Bob


I don't keep any data on the SSD - only the OS and Program executables and support files. Even our DataCAD support files are all kept on a Dropbox folder and not on the SSD. All the data is stored on a standard HDD which is all sourced from the Dropbox account.

The Dropbox for Business account eliminates the need for Carbonite, MozyPro, or other online backup accounts.
#67917 by joshhuggins
Sat Dec 26, 2015 4:14 pm
Yeah once you get back up and running Acronis True image is great for imaging the system so when you need to reload quickly you just restore the image, install and updates and new changes, the create a new image for next time. Soooo much faster. I tried using windows built in imaging for a while but had several images not restore so I went back to True Image. When you have to get back drawing fast it's a life saver.
#67919 by jimgoodman
Sat Dec 26, 2015 8:09 pm
Well, I was able to install the new hard drive without any issues. As an old timer in the computer universe, I am constantly amazed at how inexpensive hardware components are these days. Ordered a 4TB, 7200 rpm SSHD from Amazon for $150.00, including free same day shipping.

Since I was working on hardware, I also decided to upgrade the data HDD in my Dell M6600 notebook to a 2TB HDD at the same time ($97.95 from Amazon.)

The installation of the new hard drives was very easy. Windows 10 saw the drives right away, a quick format, and I was off and running.

But I screwed up things when I went to restore the Dropbox folders and wound up spending several hours restoring deleted folders from the Dropbox website. I include this as a cautionary tale for those who may be using Dropbox for Business.

In an effort to save some time, I manually added the root Dropbox folder to the new drive thinking that everything would re-populate. Instead, Dropbox decided that I wanted to delete everything since the other folders weren't there. Pretty obvious now that I think of it, but still....

This is definitely the Achilles heel of Dropbox because when you mess with the local folder structure, it translates directly to the main cloud database. Fortunately, Dropbox for Business keeps copies of all files and folders that have been deleted or even moved. Still a pain the rear to go back and restore all the folders.

Still, all-in-all, fairly painless for a major hardware failure.
#67920 by jimgoodman
Sat Dec 26, 2015 8:27 pm
joshhuggins wrote:Yeah once you get back up and running Acronis True image is great for imaging the system so when you need to reload quickly you just restore the image, install and updates and new changes, the create a new image for next time. Soooo much faster. I tried using windows built in imaging for a while but had several images not restore so I went back to True Image. When you have to get back drawing fast it's a life saver.


So, I wound up getting Acronis True Image and would like to create Clone Disk images for the OS and Program SSD for each of our machines. I created a separate 1TB partition on my new HDD hoping to use if for the disk image, but it appears that each image must be saved to a separate drive. The manual user's manual says that an external USB drive cannot be made bootable in Windows.

What would your and/or Dave recommend as the best destination media for the disk clone files?

(You can probably tell that I have wandered into the deep end of the pool without my floaties....)
#67921 by Dave
Sun Dec 27, 2015 12:52 am
Disk/partition backups can be saved on any drive and as many as will fit
Clone will overwrite the drive.

I make disk/partition backups to a 1TB USB3 RDX drive. The RDX drive has removable cartridges that are a 2.5" HDD.

To recover a crashed system from a Disk/Partition TIB file you need to boot from an Acronis boot device that you can create from within Acronis - you can create CD, DVD or USB flash drive.

With the full version of Acronis installed you can open a Disk/Partition TIB file and just copy out individual files.

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