Hey there! Well, Friends, it finally happened to me...I got caught with my computing pants down.
In other words, my computer died on me and I have no recent back up of my data. :-(((
My computer has been sharing the symptoms with me for a few weeks now, but I ignored them. My cooling fan in my desktop cpu began whirring randomly. What did I do? Banged the cpu with my fist until it stopped and went on with my life.
I was so smug. I researched and determined it definitely wasn't my hard drive, because that would be a grinding and I would not be able to make it stop like I did. But, did I stop to wonder what in the heck it could be?
Yes. I finally discovered it was my fan, but my mistake was thinking it would go on forever like that or I would know when it quit working. Wrong.
Then, my monitor began acting wonky. And my screen began to blink black, which was highly annoying, but when it started blinking every 3 seconds, I finally got scared.
You shoulda seen me. I was able, using remarkable perseverence brought on by panic, to navigate through a black screen every 2 out of 3 seconds onto the internet, find my latest video graphics card driver, download it, and then install it! After rebooting, problemo solved!
Or so I thought. It lasted about a day. Did I use that day to do a backup? Oh Hell No. No, I spent that day looking for computers online, taking my usual turtle-speed time. Then, I went to sleep for 10 hours and left the machine on. That is pure D confidence, lemme tellya.
It proved to also be stupid and fatal, cuz Monday morning the blinking started up again and when I rebooted, I got the Dell screen, then the Windows XP screen, then...a blue screen. I could hear the familiar sounds of the hard drive accessing the programs to load them at startup. Just could not see crap. Dead screen.
So, the bottom line is, I am pretty sure that my hard drive is okay, but I needed to figure out a way to be able to access it. I would have to, at the very least, replace the fan and the video card...and I also read that a few people had their ram cooked, too, so just repairing the pc innards might not let me see my info.
Missy to the rescue! I've been able to use her laptop when she is at work. I learned all about hard drive external enclosure cases that connect via usb. I learned that I could take my hard drive out of the desktop, put it into one of these cases, and then it becomes an external hard disk to my new computer. I can then access all my old files: my emails, my address book, my bill receipts, my usuernames and passwords, my photos, and last but not least, my personal and client tax return files.
Well, this concludes Part 1 - stay tuned for the exciting conclusion! ;-p