Thursday, October 15, 2009

Just Venting......

This little piece of metal has been the source of many hours of frustration, anger and self pity. This is one of the external hard drives used to back up all of my images, documents and any data entered into my computer.

As a former bookkeeper and accounting major, I know the importance of keeping good financial records. All of my sales and expenses are usually entered as they happen. I pride myself on the fact that I can call up the information needed to fill out my sales tax form in seconds and have the return ready to file in a matter of minutes. That is…… until last week.

I started to notice last Thursday that my computer seemed a little “off”. After entering some transactions into my Quicken program, I went to back it up and was unable to. I was sure that this was a temporary problem that would fix itself after restarting my computer, but I was wrong and things got worse. Not only was I unable to back anything up, I could not even open my Quicken program.

To prevent panic from taking over, I called the “Geek Squad” (I have an HP that I bought from Best Buy) and made arrangements for them to come by the next day.

I was feeling optimistic as I waited for the “Geek” to arrive, but that feeling didn’t last long - turns out that my external hard drive had crashed. Normally this would not be a big deal because I use the external drive as a “back up”. This means that everything that is on it, is also stored somewhere else – usually the “C” drive.

After unplugging the hard drive, everything seemed to clear up - except one major problem still existed. For some strange reason, since I had installed that hard drive, all of my Quicken transactions were being run through the external drive – not my “C” drive. This meant that when I did backups, all the files were being recorded onto the same drive that they resided in. In other words – they were not backed up.

The “Geek” assured me that there was a good chance the files could be recovered. This was good news because the last transaction showing on my Quicken check register was from November of 2008!

I wish this story had a happy ending. A couple of days after I dropped the hard drive off at the store; they called to tell me that they were unable to retrieve anything off it. They said they could send it out to have it looked at, but depending on the problem, it could cost anywhere from $250 to $1000, and there was no guarantee of recovering anything! I told them not to send it anywhere and that I would be by to pick up the offending piece of hardware the next day.

I am not happy to report that I will be spending the next several days recreating all my transactions from the beginning of the year. I am going to start with the third quarter because the sales tax return is due at the end of the month.

In the scheme of things, a crashed hard drive is not a big deal. Sure, I won’t be working on any photographs for awhile, but things could be much worse. I just felt like venting…………..


  1. Wheeeeeeew! I'm glad you did. It sounds like you needed to. By the way, this has nothing to do with the computer being a PC or a Mac. Hope everything works out.

  2. Dianne: I feel the pain, having lost an entire computer a few months ago. I had about 80% backed up but it amazes me that the loss of the last 20% continues to plague me. As I write, I am backing up to an online service so that I don't have to deal with the angst of lost data.

  3. Oh, so sorry about this. Computer problems can be so frustrating! Especially when you're already doing everything you're supposed to be doing.

    I recently starting using an online backup service too - just in case I'm not home to retrieve a backup device during a disaster.

    I hope your data input is speedy and you're back to your art soon.

  4. Yes - looks like an online service will be next. I will keep you posted!