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Jan 1 2009

Annual Hard Drive Maintenance


Many of the problems encountered by users of hard drive storage devices can be avoided by simple annual maintenance. You clean and maintenance your car and other things around the house, why should your hard drive be any different? You've defragged, run other maintenance programs, but have you bothered to open it up and give it a good cleaning? For optimal hard drive performance, follow the easy steps below. (As always, read through all the instructions before beginning.)


Gently pry around the edges of your hard drive case and separate the cover from the main unit. It just pops off. Don't worry about any small plastic pieces that break off, they won't affect anything.

Click "Continue reading" for the rest of the steps.


Time to start unscrewing screws! These are the easy ones, a simple phillips screwdriver will do the trick.


Keep going, some of the screws are a little hidden. Be sure to save the screws for reassembly later.


Finally, we get everything unscrewed and unplugged from the hard drive, wrapped in thick foil in the center.


Carefully peal away the thick sticky foil from the hard drive.


Once you get all the foil off, you'll have to remove the screws from the hard drive itself. Some are hidden under stickers and all are the uncommon torx type. By this point you've probably figured out that the manufacturer hasn't made it easy for you to perform maintenance on your hard drive. Duh, that's because they are in the business of selling hard drives! Imagine if other manufacturers could convince consumers never to clean or maintain their product? What a scam!


Here's one of the hard drive's reading/writing heads. Oops, is that a scratch? Ha, ha, don't worry, modern drive's aren't affected by little surface scratches. Have you ever seen the back of some CD's and how scratched up they are but still play perfectly? Hard drives are far more technologically advanced and are even less affected by simple surface scratches.


In fact, feel free to scratch up the surface all you want. At this point in the process, I can promise you, you won't adversely affect the hard drive's performance. Some people like to scratch in the date, so they can tell the next time they open up their hard drive when the last time was that they cleaned it.


If you happen to bend the read/write head, don't worry, just bend it back. Be sure to press it down real good so it's as close as possible to the drive's surface.


Time to give everything a good wash! A little dish soap, some warm water and a scrub brush. Don't hold back with the elbow grease! Give it a good scrubbing.


Finally, you may find that some of the parts have worked themselves loose and are just spinning around uncontrolled. Good thing we caught this before it completely spun itself apart! Get yourself a hammer or a hatchet and pound them down until they are solidly in place. Once everything dries, reverse the steps to reassemble your hard drive.

In the first paragraph I promised "optimal hard drive performance." Following the steps above is the only way to absolutely guarantee you will never again lose valuable data and time to a failed hard drive. I know I'm certain the drive pictured will never again cause me problems!!! Not to mention, sometimes it just feels good to get "hands on."

Finally, yes, this is a joke.

Posted by Don |


  1. #1
    Jeff Frady said on January 19, 2009 | Reply

    Ahh! I thought you were serious at first. Scared the crap out of me.

  2. HA! LOL. That's just the laugh I needed to get my weekend started.

  3. #3
    Mumm said on June 8, 2011 | Reply

    No need to dry, as it comes with a built-in spin cycle.

    The advantage is that the drive will be permanently immunized against nasty software like viruses, trojans, Windows, etc.

  4. #4
    Don replied to Mumm on June 8, 2011 | Reply

    Mumm, I don't know that it will be "permanently immunized" but a good coating with a non-stick spray will certainly keep the nasties off for a long time.

  5. #5
    Mumm said on June 8, 2011 | Reply

    Sent this to my boss. He replied: "You have my permission to apply the procedure to all of our hard drives."

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