Iím worried that my Dell PCís 320-gigabyte hard
drive is running out of storage space. I keep getting
warnings that nearly all of "backup/recovery
E:" capacity has been used up; only 2.57 megabytes
remain out of 14.6 gigabytes.
canít afford a new laptop. Should I move files to an
external drive to free up space?
Grantham, St. Paul, Minn.
Your PC isnít running out of hard disk space. Some
data is in the wrong place and needs to be moved.
what happened. Dell "partitioned" your PC hard
drive into three segments that are electronically walled
off from each other. Thereís the "C" drive,
which contains more than 90 percent of the 320
gigabytes. It stores most programs and data. Then thereís
the "D" or "E" drive, a 14.6
gigabyte segment that contains Windows recovery
software. And thereís a "Dellutility"
segment that contains about 100 megabytes of diagnostic
of your data that should have been stored on the C drive
was instead stored on the E drive, nearly filling it up.
You need to copy that data to another location, such as
an external hard drive, then delete it from the E drive.
Windows Explorer to open your E drive. Copy, then
delete, all files except the following vital files that
must be left alone: $RECYCLE BIN$ (may not be visible
because itís a "hidden file"); Dell; Program
Files; Program Data (may not be visible); Sources;
System Volume Information (may not be visible); Tools;
Users; Windows. Once you delete the other files on E,
your PC should operate normally. If youíve deleted any
programs, reinstall them on your C drive. You can move
data from the external drive to the C drive as needed.
My Toshiba external hard drive abruptly stopped working.
No PC I connected to the drive could read it, and for a
while I got the message that there was no data on the
drive. Because there are pictures on the drive that I
canít replace, I took it to a local repair shop, where
I was told they could read the data on the drive for me.
I didnít take them up on it, and now the disk drive
seems worse off because no PC can even detect it. What
should I do?
Sanor, Alliance, Ohio
The electronics that run the disk drive arenít
functioning, but the photos may still be stored on the
driveís magnetic disk, which doesnít require any
power to retain its data. The fact that your PC got a
"no data" message from the damaged drive doesnít
mean the data isnít still there.
best option is to take the device to a repair shop that
has equipment that can power-up the damaged drive long
enough to copy the data from the disk. This isnít
always possible, but it often can be done.
the disk drive is less than two years old, you may be
able to make a claim under Toshibaís warranty, though
that will be only for the drive itself, not the cost of
retrieving data. For warranty details, see tinyurl.com/ohz3uak.