I'm guessing the hard drive just gave up, as I couldn't get the PC to restart and after several attempts trying different things, realised that this could be serious but hoped that it was recoverable.
I took it down to the local PC Repair shop - handily, just down the road and they said 'worst case' it would need a reformat but they'd save the data first, so I left them to it.
Several hours later after having heard nothing and hoping that I'd be getting it back at the end of the day, I called. They were just starting work on it and would leave the back-up running overnight.
Next morning and after three hours of effort - they'd given up. It was pretty terminal and the only solution was a new hard drive! :( So, a few more hours later, my laptop was returned with the operating system but not much else.
Fortunately, I have got a backup of the data - unfortunately it's only from mid May, so I've lost a few weeks work ... but better than nothing. I've also got the entire C: drive backed up from the beginning of the year - again not current but better than nothing. I'd set up a weekly data backup but it wasn't working and I hadn't managed to sort out why and of course you never think it's going to happen.
If you lost your computer - what would the impact be to you and your business? How would you function? What would you need to keep going?
- Make sure you backup your data regularly - not just the documents you use but also your mail files, calendar etc.
- Sync up with a PDA/Blackberry/Mobile Phone - for your calendar, contacts and email.
- Have an online mail system - at least you can temporarily access your email. Most local libraries offer free internet access.
- Keep a note of userids/pswds somewhere - in coded form obviously.
It's an ideal opportunity to declutter the hard disk and get rid of all those programmes you rarely use but I don't recommend it.
The older your computer is - the more likely it is to happen. Of course, we all know we should take regular back-ups but how many of us actually do?
Don't get caught out.