Protecting external hard disc drive with simple methods
(Bochum, 12.02.2013) External hard disc drives are very popular. But external drives are challenged by a lot of threats. Also the higher density per magnetic layer, in case of hard disc drives with storage capacities exeeding 1 TB, can be a challenge for every professional data recovery company in case of head crash scenarios. Thease different hazards can be avoided or reduced by simple tasks of organisation and really low financial efforts.
1. Choose the right place for your external hard disc drive
Depending how your workplace is positioned, choosing the right place for your external hard disc drive is important. Take care that this place is protected from direct sunlight, further take care that the cabling of the drive is done in a way that no one can pull them accidently from the table. Cable ties can help you bringing more and better structure into external cabling of USB and Power cord. Besides that, it looks more attractive and structured.
2. Vertical / Horizontal positioning of hard disc drive
To secure your stored data, you shouldn´t consider any compromises based on questions to optical details.
Fact is: External hard disc drives with vertikal stand, do mean a stronger risk for shock or accitential fall over. Once thease drives fall over while theay are powered, the risc for getting a head crash or serious physical damages to the magnetic platters of the hdd is really high. Werden diese Platten im laufenden Betrieb umgeworfen, so ist die Gefahr eines Headcrashs und einer ernsthaften physikalischen Beschädigung der Magnetscheiben sehr hoch. This risc can be avoided by placing them in a horizontal way.
3. Fixation of hdd / Power Strips
A basic level of protection doesn´t alway have to cost that much. Sometimes it needs a combination of simple things, already existing in your household combined with some creativity. External hard disc drives can be mounted with PowerStrips, so that they are sticked and fixed to the surface of the table. This isn´t a one hundret percent protection for unattended fall over of your storage device, but it limits the potential risc of getting into such a situation dramatically. One of the advantages using powerstrips is the fact, that you can remove them very easily without leaving any damages to the surfaces fixed on.
4. Organisation of data / Backup of the most important files and folders
Regardless if you want to generate a full backup or just a synchronisation of your most important files and folders, the bottom of the line is, that a frequently generation of backups is mandatory. Structure your folder organisation in areas with really important, irreplacable data, replacable and unimportant data. I simple synchronisation of single folders can be an efficiant and less time consuming solution to duplicate data in a most convieniant way. There are plenty of freewares helping you to automatise (e.g. PureSync), even within Netzwork-Volumes or MediaServers.
5. Frequently defragmentation of hdd
Freqently defragment your external hdd. This generates a faster data access rate of your hard disc drive and in general shorter time for booting up the whole OS. Windows-OS does contain a automatic defragmentation. This service can be switched off in order to replace it with a more advanced solution like the Freeware "Defraggler" or buy choosing a payable tool like "Disktrix Ultimate Defrag", which is able to influence the way data is getting defragmented. By this you do move Programms which are used very often into a physical area of your hard disc drive there the access time to data is the shortest.
6. HDD Info - Control of SMART-Error Reporting
Every hdd contains a so called „Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology“ (in short: S.M.A.R.T). This enables the user to read certain drive parameters early enough and get informed once a problem occurs. Freeware-Tools like „HDD Health“ do inform the user, as soon as special parameters (like hdd temperature) do cross a critical level.
7. Protection against overvoltage
The ones who want to protect themselves against overvoltages can use surge protection. The electronics of hard disc drive does react very sensitive in case of overvoltage.
8. In case of working with several external drives - Mark the power adapter in different colors
Especially if you do work with several hard disc drives standing next to each other, it can happen that you accidently swap the power adapters. This can have a dramatic consequence to the electronics of the hard disc drive, because wrong voltage can result in shortages, damaging the electronics of the hadd. To avoid that kind of scenario, we do recommend to mark the plugs and boxes with unique colors.
9. Clean your hard disc drive periodically
House dust deposits can lead to the fact that the air vents of the enclosure do prevail. Especially if you own an older enclosure with active cooling, a failure of the cooling caused by dust deposits can lead to high temperatures harming your hard disc.
10. Encryption of data
The one who encrypts his data, e.g. with AES 256-Bit, should keep in mind that a data recovery can be very difficult, in case of physical damages to the external hard disc drive, even for professional data recovery labs. Especially if the Password for data encryption has been lost, it is nearly impossible to recover the data. In case of encrypted partitions and volumes, it is the more important to generate backups of your data.
„Storing data frequently is more easy and cost efficient, compared with recovery. The internet is offering lots of possibilities for downloading different sorts of softwares and programs, which does make your life a lot of easier. But it depends on the user, if he likes to invest time tinking about the importance of his data, folders or files. The ones who do only rely on technological and marketing promises made by different manufacturers, believing that nothing will happen or affect them, thease ones are acting negliently. Whereever a device is in need of power to function, a damage can appear, this should be dept in mind. The rest is a question of personal organisation, placing and using its storage devices", says Martin Eschenberg, CMO at KUERT Datenrettung Deutschland GmbH.
KUERT Datenrettung Deutschland GmbH
Tel. 0049 (0)234 962 90 390
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