In my last post, I described how my desktop computer wasn’t booting up. This evening, I found the problem. I have three drives in my computer: an SSD for Windows, a new 2 TB mechanical drive I bought three months ago for games, and a nearly ten year old mechanical drive. It turns out that the old mechanical drive was failing and it was preventing the whole system from booting. I noticed it was really warm to the touch, so I yanked it out, both the power and the data connections. The system booted fine after I did that.

Interestingly, even just having the bad drive connected via power, no data connection, was preventing the computer from booting into Windows. Unfortunately, I was an idiot and using that drive for my data. I did backup my data but my last backup was ten months ago. So there are definitely files in there that I didn’t archive. Off the top of my head, I can think of my latest tax return file and some photos that never got backed up.

I’ll need to replace this drive as I want to leave the 2 TB exclusively for games. In the meantime, I’m going to try to recover the data off the old drive using an external hard drive enclosure so I can connect it via USB. My computer won’t boot with it connected normally, so this is the way to go. Hopefully, I can get it to read at least once and I can transfer all the data over to the backup drive.

Let this be a lesson to everyone, backup your files regularly.

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