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How to make External HD feel 'fresh' and 'fast' again?


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I do own a Toshiba 1.5TB External HD and recently by some stuff I was doing the device fell a couple of time on the floor. It's still working well, but since then it got slower to access and even to zip/unzip a file I store there (sometimes even WinRar kind of 'freezes' when attempting doing that, as it calls 'cyclic redundancy check' error and sometimes even points 'lack of memory' as reason to not unziping the folder. Also moving files and folders from the 'normal' HD to there became hard due to slowness and later freezing when attempting to stop


Is there something I could do (wihout formatting it and therefore losing all I have there) to solve this problem (like making the external HD feel 'fresh' and fast and without sometimes boggling when moving/zipping/unzipping files and folders? 

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When Windows reports an error, it sometimes does it after five unsuccessful attempts to do what you asked it to do.  When it comes to disk drives that have performed gravity tests (falling on the floor), that could easily mean that disk heads are no longer in alignment.  Depending on where data is on the drive, errors in alignment could be large or they could be small.  Based on that, it could work, not work, or eventually work...sometimes.  I can't speak to a "lack of memory" error, but a cyclic redundancy check (CRC) means that data does not match what was expected, and that could very easily be due to disk alignment problems.


Reformatting a drive -- while not what you want to do -- could possibly make the drive perform better after performing that task, but you may encounter errors trying to get information off that drive beforehand.  Bottom line is that proper handling is important.


While I have always handled drives gingerly (I have worked for more than one disk drive manufacturers), I have still had problems with portable drives.  They're cheap for a reason...they generally have poor MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures).  I have a box full of drives that I have taken out of service, and I have replaced them with RAID arrays.  RAID5 storage is awesome for someone who wants to trust their storage, and know that even in the event of drive failure, the system will fix itself.  Its more expensive, so its a question as to how valuable your stored information is.


Bigger answer than what you probably wanted, but it hopefully leaves you better informed.

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i too have found a higher than the normal failure rate of HDDs in laptops and most portable devices as opposed to their stationary brethren .


as you have "dropped" the machine at least a couple of times (jarring and such count as well) while it is running ...

i would hedge the bet and replace the drive .

drives are pretty cheap these days ...

pull the data off of the old drive before it fails to the point of becoming a paperweight .


i have had good luck with replacing those very large drives with a 250 gig unit .

if one is keeping 250 gigs of information on their laptop , they might want to re-think their thinking .

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yes , you could have problems with the external drive slowness ... moving the files could take some time .


a possibly faster way would be to pull the HDD and then hook it to a SATA port on the inside of your *real* comp .

when you boot the comp , it should show up , from there moving/stashing the files to another HDD  (possibly yet another new HDD hooked into a sata port) is pretty straight forward .

this method bypasses the usb "bottleneck" speed limit .


once you are finished moving all the files , it is best to create a snapshot and backup .


if you do not need the portability/security of a drive that can be removed , you might think about leaving the new HDD in the/your desktop .

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