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Posts tagged with: lost work

Learning a Hard Lesson – Catastrophic Hard Drive Failure

Happy Friday, everyone!

How was your week? Mine started off like this:

“Let me show you this hilarious clip I saw on facebook,” I said to my 19yo daughter. I brought over my Lenovo Thinkpad laptop and lifted the lid. The normal Lenovo sign in red popped up on the normal black background. We waited. And waited. I did a hard shut off and closed the lid, waited a few seconds and reopened. With the same results. Crap.

My hubby wasn’t home, so I started texting him with lots of panicky exclamation points. But he is very IT savvy, so I didn’t completely freak out.

When he got home, he took the back off and removed the battery and replaced it, read all the complaints online and tried every trick mentioned. Yet only the red Lenovo letters on black would appear. They are forever etched into my memory, those stark letters of my non-responsive laptop.

Tearfully, I made an appointment with the Geek Squad at Best Buy for the next day, and hubby took off work to take us, me cradling my 13-month old computer (the warranty expired at 12 months).

Fast forward 30 minutes after arriving, and I’m crouched on the floor, trying not to cry or throw up as the Geek says there’s nothing he can do without sending it off for 3 months for data retrieval. The Hard Drive failed, as in died. With no warning and no trauma.

Hubby helped me to the truck and drove us to Undead Electronics for a second opinion. The computer doc there was optimistic, but after working on it for two days, trying every trick and download he knew, he called the time of death. My sweet laptop was dead, the hard drive completely fried. <clears throat and takes a deep breath>.

“Heather, don’t you back up your work?”

Yes, but not enough. I have jump drives where I periodically save the latest copy of the books on which I’m working and the final versions. There are other old files on it, but most of my new work, blog posts, the marketing graphics I created, FB party scripts, etc are not something I usually back up. I know! I know! Yes, I should have backed it all up!

Big sigh… So, today we started rebuilding my new non-Lenovo laptop (goodbye $1000 for a new Dell). I’ve lost so much in time and data files. I’ve lost the week of work I’d already typed on my new book, this week of rebuilding the basics and then another week to re-write the chapters that went up in cyber smoke. I’ve lost the Word versions of the last four books I wrote and my mailing list for sending readers post cards. I will spend hours re-downloading the marketing material I created on Canva and pictures from my phone that I took over the last 13 months. My files (which we salvaged from an old Dell computer I used to have) are in shambles and out of date. It will take hours to organize, and each hole I see will turn the knife in my gut.

I’ve learned a VERY hard lesson, and hope my little walk through technology Hell this week will encourage you to make certain that your files (ALL of them) are being backed up on a regular basis, not just when you remember (like me). My hubby is now looking for an automated system, which will backup my entire computer on a daily basis. We are still trying to figure out the best/least expensive way to do that.

There are cloud subscriptions, google docs, large jump drives, and external hard drives.

This is where I need to learn from all of you. If you use a back up system (and YOU ALL SHOULD), please tell us what you use and if you find it easy. Are you happy with it? Has it saved you the mental turmoil that I’m currently enduring? Is it expensive?

Let’s get the conversation going here today, so that our fellow authors don’t find themselves crying on the floor at Best Buy.

The Latest Comments

  • Laurie Kellogg: What a wonderful post, Beth. I hope your book helps to educate the public on the challenges of Autism.
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  • Elizabeth Langston: So many people could be thanked, but it’s nice to get an opportunity to give a special word...
  • Julia Day: Yes, and you’ve been great and supportive, too. I can thank you enough!
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