This past weekend my workplace did a power-down to do some maintenance on our battery backup systems (and other various power related checkups). So I was into work at 5AM Saturday to shutdown computers, servers, network closets, and anything else with an electronic pulse. Finished our work at 8AM and had breakfast on company dime (score!). Came back at 1PM to do the inverse and complete some patches.

After the power was restored, my cubicle blew a fuse at our circuit breaker (something about having too heavy of an electrical load on the circuit... I guess 24 computers all plugged into 1 outlet is too heavy of a load). So I unplugged about half and had one of the certified electricians flip the breaker (I seriously cannot do it due to "shock hazard", but its hardly even dangerous). Everything got back up and running and I turned on my surge strips 1 at a time. All good and powered on.

Then I heard it. The whirring. The constant whirring. Sounded as if a fan in my PC had gone kaput. So I unplugged the fan, turned on the computer again, and the noise was still there... WHAT?! Stuck my head in the tower and found the hard-drive was the source of the whirring. CRAP. I hate having to replace hard-drives.

So, as I type this now, we are getting a snapshot of this drive (using the best freeware tool I have ever used, http://www.drivesnapshot.de/en/

This tool will backup my entire HDD in about 30 minutes, and when its done, I will swap in a new HDD, use a boot from disk OS (think Bart PE, http://www.nu2.nu/pebuilder/ ), launch drive snapshot within the booted OS, map a drive to the NAS drive that has my HDD's snapshot image, and then start the load. It will take another 30 minutes to complete that process. If all goes well, I will have a whirring free HDD, making me 100% more sane.

Advertisement

A little more about drive snapshot freeware... This is seriously a powerful little tool. Anytime I replace a computer with a new one, I take the time to run the drive backup, put the image file on an external HDD, and a copy of the drive snapshot .exe. From there, I can open the drive snapshot program and load the image file in a virtual attached disk format. I don't even have to replace the entire drive to get the files that I want. It allows me to use Window's standed Explorer and copy files directly from the snapshot onto my desktop. Its brilliant! The software is small, and the backup files it creates are reasonably compressed. It prevents me from having that sinking feeling after wiping a drive, you know, the one where you forgot that oh so very important file...

Well, snapshot is about finished. I will report back when this badboy is done. TTFN (sidenote: I initially thought that TTFN = Tater Tots For Nerds.)