Dead Hard Drive

Sunday, February 7, 2010, 08:35 AM – Tips and Hints

It happened again last night. It always does. I am getting ready to go to Macworld, getting ready for our user group meeting this week, handling business matters for my father who can no longer do it for himself, and I get the call from a friend.

“My screen is all white except for this little folder in the middle with a question mark on it. How do I make it go away?” In the background I can hear her restarting her machine over and over.

I’m not a technical person, but I know this is bad, so I say to her “Do you have everything backed up?” She uses her Mac for work.

She doesn’t. I have told her over and over that she needs to back up her Mac, told her how to do it, and what software to use (SuperDuper is my recommendation), She always says that she will do so as soon as she can afford to buy an external hard drive. External hard drives are around $100.

When I researched her problem on the internet last night it seems very likely that her hard drive has died. That means she has lost all her applications and data. All her email, all her address book entries, all her photos, and all her calendar entries – not to mention her work documents.

She said, “The staff at the Genius Bar will be able to get it all back won’t they?” I told her that if her hard drive is dead there are places that can try and retrieve some of her information but it will cost in the thousands to have it done.

Since she couldn’t get on the internet, I made an appointment for her to go to her local Apple store first thing this morning to have them look at her Mac so they can tell her what is wrong.

If her hard drive is bad she may be able to get a new one or she may have to replace her machine. For less than $150 she could have protected all her important applications and information. No matter how good our Mac’s are, they are still just machines.


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