external hard drive failure

Posted by & filed under Blog.

You're almost there, the final level of the game you've been trying to beat for months. Then right before you reach the demon's lair…your computer shuts off.

To make things even better, things aren't normal when you turn your computer back on.

Sound familiar? If you've been in a similar situation, you may have seen this dreaded message pop up on your computer screen: “Your PC needs to be repaired.”

What do you do if this message appears? What does it even mean? Is all your data lost?

You may want to head directly to a professional, but hold your horses and think things through for a minute.

Your computer needs to be repaired. That doesn't mean it's completely dead.

There's still hope for your computer. Read on to find out what to do when your PC device needs to be repaired.

Troubleshoot it Yourself

First things first, go ahead and troubleshoot the problem yourself. There's no need to hop in the car and run your computer to a specialist. Admittedly, things may come to that, but you're not at that point yet.

Your computer comes with built-in programs that will walk you through the process of repairing your computer. If you do get to a point where you're completely lost or confused, or your computer isn't responding, you can always seek professional help.

Since repairing the issue on your own won't cost you anything, we suggest trying that route first.

Use the Error Code

When the “Your PC needs to be repaired” screen appears, it won't only tell you your computer needs to be repaired. Other information will be on the screen too, and you should pay attention to it.

One thing you'll see is an error code. This is important information, so use it! The code will allow you to troubleshoot the issue.

The error code will look something like this: 0xc000000f.

The code will tell you why your computer reacted the way that it did. You will likely need to research what the specific code means.

For example, the code above means your computer had an issue reading the boot configuration data.

Potential Causes

There are several reasons why your PC may need to be repaired, thus sending you the dreaded screen message.

There may be errors in the boot configuration data for your PC. Or, your computer may not be able to access a device that it needs in order to boot properly.

It's also possible that information is missing from the boot configuration file.

Whatever the problem is, you'll likely need to use your computer's recovery programs to repair the computer. You may have installed these programs on DVDs or a USB drive when you first got the computer.

Attempt Repairs

Before running recovery/repair on your computer, make sure you disconnect all unneeded external devices. This includes extra monitors and any other devices that aren't strictly part of your main computer setup.

If your monitor, mouse, and keyboard are external (i.e. not in a laptop setting) you'll want to leave those hooked up.

Once this is done, connect or insert the device that holds your repair program, then boot from that device. From there, you can repair your computer, troubleshoot, and reset your PC if needed.

Resetting your PC will delete your data from your computer. At this point that can't really be remedied, so hopefully, you backed up your data before your computer needed repairing!

If you aren't in a habit of regularly backing up your important data, get in the habit now to prevent loss of data in the future.

Other Potential Fixes

If using your computer's repair software doesn't help, there may be other options. External programs exist that might help you repair your computer.

If possible, you'll want to choose a route that allows you to keep your data. This may not be possible in every case, but you should always aim for a solution that keeps your data available.

Depending on the situation, a professional may be able to remove your data from your computer for you.

Seek Professional Help

If the previous steps didn't help, you'll need to move on to advanced options. There are various things you'll be able to try in that event.

However, if you aren't finding success in your own troubleshooting quest, it may be time to hire a computer repair technician.

When soliciting the help of a professional, do your best to describe the problem thoroughly. The more you can describe and the more specific you can be, the better.

When Your PC Needs to be Repaired

The biggest thing to remember when your computer has an issue is to remain calm. You really don't need to panic. Doing so won't fix the problem in the least.

Your PC needs to be repaired. That's okay! Chances are it can be repaired, just like it says, and you'll still be able to use your PC as you normally do.

There is a chance your data will not be recoverable, though. In which case we really hope you've backed up your data. If not, make it a point now to always perform regular data backups in the future.

Computers aren't perfect. They're bound to have issues at some point, no matter what type of computer or operating system you have. But as long as you protect our important information and are willing to do a little troubleshooting, you'll never have a need to panic.

In a lot of ways we live on our computers, so when they have issues it can really put a damper on things. If you're experiencing issues with your PC we'd love to help. Fill out our contact form today and we'll get back to you as soon as we can!