When Storage Media Fails

By In Data Backup, Data Recovery 0 comment

Yes, Hard Drives Can Die


Devices with moving parts like any machine can breakdown from use over time. The spinning hard disks in our computers and laptops that contain our critical files, photographs, and other important data can fail unexpectedly. Data is transactional currency and this simple construct gives rise to the online space. This is where reality and the Internet meet and the currency of data is the exchange between people.

Most businesses have some form of data protection, whether it is online cloud storage, attachments from email residing on a server, there are many ways to ensure data is retrievable from elsewhere. Everyone can benefit from learning to recognize the symptoms of a failing drive in a data driven world.

Hearing strange noises coming from your computer?


It may not be the fan clogging with dust so investigate any new sounds coming from your computer. A failing hard drive will sound like grinding, chipping, and clicking. Do not hit or kick a computer to ‘fix’ it, turn off the machine and inspect the source of the noise.

In some cases you may begin to notice software failures or your computer might be resetting for no known reason if your hard drive is close to the end of it’s life. Another symptom of hard drive failure is missing files that inexplicably disappear, when your data begins to go missing this is an indication that your hard drive is already in the process of failing.

Even if you backup your files regularly or have archives tucked away somewhere there is going to be a time when an important device storing data becomes corrupted or otherwise inaccessible. With hard drive storage playing an ever increasing role in the day to day activities of people’s lives, recovering and security experts Ancile Security has risen to meet burgeoning demand.

Modern hard drives use magnetic plates on a spindle with an arm that reads the various sectors of the drive. There is nothing you can do to realign or repair anything in the drive and unless you have a lab­grade clean room in your home don’t try to open your failing hard drive. The arm skates just above the surface of the platters holding the read/write head aloft. Defective wiring or impact damage may cause the arm to misalign rendering the drive useless. Even the smallest dust particles can ruin a hard drive so do not open your hard drive chassis.

In fact, there are many ways to retrieve or restore the data that you ‘lost’ but none of them can be accomplished by the average person. Many DIY types incorrectly believe they can do something to help a crashed hard drive but the opposite is usually the case so take care when diagnosing a failing hard drive.

While less common, hard drive controllers can fail or the firmware may have a programming error. In these cases, the solution is to simply update the drive’s firmware usually done by following the manufacturers instructions.

There are many ways to retrieve and restore the data that you ‘lost’ but none of them can be accomplished by the average person. Trusting a professional makes sense, but the tinkerers out there should remember the golden rule.

The Golden Rule of Data Recovery: Thou shalt not open thy hard drive, ever.

Stop Cartoon

If your data is truly valuable then don’t take the risk of destroying it completely. Many times data recovery services can restore much of what you believed was gone forever but not if you make the damage worse.

Professional Data Recovery Services

Ancile Security specializes in all types of data restoration techniques and possess fluency with nearly every industry standard certification.

Lost & Deleted Files

Deleted files may be gone from your operating system but the professionals at Ancile Security can restore data in many cases.

All Types of Media

Hard drives, portable storage, USB sticks, SD cards, etc.

External Media / Memory Cards

Recovering data from damaged USB sticks or SD cards

Environmental Damage (Fire/Water)

Ancile Security specializes in data restoration with fire or water damaged storage media.

Data Destruction

A managed service to guarantee that the data from your old storage media can’t be retrieved. Donate or sell your used hardware with confidence.


When your data is the most important element of your life and business, trust the professionals at Ancile Security. Use our contact form to speak with one of our data experts today!