Prevent Hard-Drive Crashes

tgeller's picture

Prevent Hard-Drive Crashes

Every columnist has written about their catastrophic hard-drive crash, so I won't bore you with the details of the one I had last week. Suffice it to say I'm doing fine, thanks for asking. I also won't harangue you about making (and testing!) regular backups - you know that already, right? (I bet Mac|Life senior editor Eugene Robinson still hasn't gotten over his loss.)

 

Instead, I'm going to tell you about something that could have saved my tuchus at the expense of ten minutes per month of (unattended!) Mac time. To wit: Disk Utility - it's included in Mac OS X, installed by default in /Applications/Utilities.

 

In particular, you should make it a monthly practice to run the Verify Disk command in Disk Utility. If it finds problems, you may have to startup from an external disk to repair them. The Mac OS X installation CD or DVD that came with your Mac functions nicely for this, since it includes both Disk Utility and the software your Mac needs to boot up. But be warned: This "repair" might destroy some files, so try to do a backup first. (Unfortunately, the catalog file problem I had returned errors when I tried to do a full backup. Woe!)

 

Also, run Disk Utility at the first sign of anything odd, like the existence of files you can't delete or Finder changes that mysteriously don't "take".

 

The Lessons:

 

1. Backup regularly, like MacLife.com's smug webmaster, Rik Myslewski.

2. Run Disk Utility regularly, or immediately if you notice anything odd.

3. Accept that all life is transient, and data doubly so.

 

Good luck!

 

Ah, the sign of success! What the results of Verify Disk should look like.

 

Check out more from Tom Geller on his website, TomGeller.com.

 

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Anonymous

I just want to ask suppose we make Download burn notice full episodes from the internet and the hard disk crashes in between, at that will our dat that we recently downloadd be safe?.

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