Hard Drive Crashes

Hard Drive Crashes can be a very costly problem. Here are a few ways to help prevent your hard drive from crashing unnecessarily.

Believe it or not, sometimes, and actually quite often, we could have prevented our hard drives from crashing. By crashing I’m talking about fried, to where your computer no longer boots and you have to go down, have the info extracted if at all possible, and then have another hard drive installed. Here are some ways to prevent your PC or Laptop hard drive from kicking the bucket.


  1. The name Laptop can be misleading. You should actually NEVER have your machine sit in your lap despite the name. Always be sure that your laptop is sitting on a flat sturdy surface. Your laptop has to be able to breath properly. Most intake fans are located on the bottom of the laptop. If these intake fans are blocked then the laptop has no way to cool itself off. If the laptop heats up enough, it fries.
  2. Make sure that the laptops exhaust fan is free of any obstructions. Your laptop has to be able to rid itself of the heat that’s been building up inside it. This is done through the exhaust fan which is located in the back of the laptop. If the hot exhaust is kept from blowing out, then once again the laptop will heat up and fry the hard drive.
  3. If you are lying in bed using your laptop, DO NOT just set it down on a blanket. This will hamper both the intake and exhaust from cooling the laptop. Sad to say, I personally fried 2 laptops this way before realizing what was causing the hard drives to crash. A very expensive and preventable mistake.


  1. Make sure that your desktop has room to breath. You sometimes see desktops shoved into a tight spot with inadequate ventilation…..this is a no no. Your desktop has a fan located inside the tower, if it gets too hot inside the tower then you can fry the hard drive or even ruin the motherboard. Be sure that you have adequate space for your desktop

Canned air is a great way to ensure that your exhaust and intake fans are properly dusted. Be sure to first unplug and remove the battery (if applicable) before doing this as sometimes the canned air can spray out in liquid form. If your machine is on then this will cause a short and you could possibly ruin your machine. Better to be safe then sorry, unplug and remove the battery. Clean your intake and exhaust fans at least once a week. Preventative maintenance can really add years to your machine and it only takes a few minutes to do.


Viruses, viruses, viruses. Quite the little buggers. There’s nothing worse then having your machine in Tip Top performance only to be sabotaged by some pricks killer code. It doesn’t take a lot to get infected with some type of viral bug. You can pick one up simply by browsing the Internet. Let’s go over a couple of symptoms, and then we’ll talk about the fix.

  1. Computer is suddenly SUPER slow.
  2. Computer keeps crashing.
  3. You click on link and are taken to a DIFFERENT website other then the one you were supposed to be taken to.
  4. Programs won’t open.
  5. Programs won’t close.
  6. You computer is acting  a little weird, pages hang, it’s not quit as responsive.

So as you can see, a viral symptom can be just about ANYTHING. It all really depends on the virus and what it was built to do, but if you have noticed something a little amiss with your pc, then 9 times out of 10 it’s because you are infected. Now I’ll take you step by step as to what I do to get rid of even the most troublesome of viruses…..and believe me, I’ve been infected with some doozies.

  1. FIRST AND FOREMOST! Here is a list of the BEST VIRUS PROTECTION software on the Internet: I make sure that I have all of these programs ALREADY downloaded and installed onto my computer:
    A) Free AVG. B) Free Ad Aware. C) Free Malwarebytes. D) Free CCleaner. E) Free SuperAntiSpyware. F) 30 Trial Trojan Remover. G) Free Avira. H) Free Spybot Search & Destroy. I) Free Yahoo Antispyware. J) Free Combofix. – If the before Antivirus Software DO NOT WORK, then don’t worry, their is still hope yet. These last 4 should only be ran with help from someone located on this forum BleepingComputer.com You will need to create an account and then be sure to follow the rules as to how you are supposed to post the log files from the last 4 antivirus killers.  1) Free Rooter. 2) Free Combofix (You will need it again)  3) Free ATF Cleaner and last but not least 4) Free HijackThis.
    This isn’t a joke :) I really do have ALL OF THESE installed on my pc. Now this may seem like overkill, but if you’ve ever been infected with a virus that has forced you to reformat your entire hard drive, then you will appreciate the fact that these will most likely save you from having to wipe your pc. (Many viruses will not let you install antivirus software, so you must have all of these before hand, otherwise you might have a really tough time getting rid of the bug)
  2. Clear you cache, cookies and temporary Internet files. Sometimes all it is is a bug you’ve picked up that was saved into one of these folders, and once you’ve cleaned them out, all is good again. If not, then read on.
  3. BE SURE TO UPDATE YOUR ANTIVIRUS BEFORE RUNNING IT! If you don’t have the latest virus definitions then your antivirus program might just overlook a virus if it’s new, updating is very important.
  4. BACK UP YOUR PC! If you are running Windows XP then you can create a restore point by doing this…….
  5. Start running the software mentioned above, save Rooter, ATF Cleaner and  HijackThis as a last resort. Be sure that when you are running an antivirus program that their is not ANOTHER antivirus program running in the background as this could interfere with the virus detection process.
  6. When a virus is found, delete it. When using CCleaner, do not run the registry cleaner because unless you know what you are doing your system will become unstable.
  7. 9 times out of ten if you run all of the programs above, excluding the last 4, you’ll be rid of your viruses and can move on to a much happier life ;)
  8. If the first of the list do not work then use the last resort 4 and you’ll most likely be able to rid yourself of your virus that way.

Run these programs at least once every 2 weeks. It might seem like a pain int he butt…..but it sure does beat having to wipe your system every few months :)



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