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New Life in Old Plot Complications

September 8, 2012

© – Garðarskagiviti

I’ve been a geek for a long time.  In the last 19 years I’ve owned probably a dozen computers.  Each of them came with a hard drive.  Many of them had hard drives added to them after the fact to satisfy one storage need or another.

When computers are no longer working or meeting any valid use, I dispose of them properly.  Sometimes that means taking it to the local electronics recycling event.  Sometimes it means donating it to a school for use as a cadaver for their kids to work on or steal spare parts from.

What is neither recycled nor donated is the hard drive.  Hard drives are a treasure trove of information.  There are techniques to minimize the chance the data will end up in the wrong hands, but there still exists a chance that the info is still going to be present.

Over time I have built up a stack of these hard drives.  Retrieving all the old data and reformatting the drives is a project that I knew I needed to do, but I never seemed to have the time to do it and I really didn’t want to go through the pain of opening up another computer, mounting the drives, etc, to get the info off.

So for about $17 plus shipping I picked up a device from Amazon that will allow me to hook up these drives via a USB port and retrieve all of the old data.  This plus an external hard drive to store all the stuff on and I was ready to rock and roll.  It works like a champ.  It took me all of about 2 minutes to connect the cables, plug in the AC adapter, and turn it on.  Windows 7 recognized it immediately, displayed the drive, and allowed me to start copying.  No tools, no bloody knuckles, no spurts of profanity.  Awesome tool for just a small price.

In and among all of the saving of data I found my own treasure trove.  They were the original files of the images I made with my first digital camera–an Olympus D-220L.  Finding that buried treasure was worth many more times what I spent at Amazon.  And that reminiscence will eventually find it’s way into being a blog post as well.

While I’m moving data on my main machine, I am able to pop the drive into my Frankenstein machine that has a tool that will wipe the drive to my level of comfort and then I’ll put it in a stack for me to use some other time.  Like throwing into another refurbished computer running some form of a Linux distribution so I can spend more time being a geek again 🙂

About the Image:
One of those infamous buried treasures saved from the old hard drives.  This image of Garðarskagiviti was one of the first 30 or so images I made in Iceland with the D-220L

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