Statistically speaking hard drives are the number one most common piece of hardware to experience a fault in your typical laptop computer. A hard disk drive, often referred to as just hard drive, is a digital data storage device comprising of rotating rigid platters on a motor-driven spindle.

Intricate magnetic technology is used to read and write data using heads which float on a thin cushion of air above the platters. If that sounds like a precarious arrangement, you’d be right. According to a study conducted by Carnegie Mellon University, the chance of a non-recoverable failure of an average 2.5″ hard drive is rated at between 2% and 4%, with rates reportedly as high as 15% in certain circumstances.

You want my advice? Don’t leave it to chance and ensure you have a stringent backup plan in place for when (not if) your hard drive fails. An external hard drive should do fine, making full use of your operating system’s auto-backup feature (Windows Backup for Windows 7+, and Time Machine for Mac). Providing you keep an up-to-date copy of your important files at hand, replacing the faulty piece of hardware and restoring data should be a breeze.

I have had to do this recently for a friend’s 2009 model MacBook, so it does happen; even to Apple products! So to summarise this very important point in case you missed it, keep everything backed up!

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