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  1. #1

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    Default A Hard Lesson Learned About Computer Hard Drives

    So myself, my mini-boss, and my boss just finished getting lectured about how all employees at my facility should automatically be having their computers backed up to the server, how it should be mandatory, etc.

    Last night an employee called at 9pm saying that her computer just "shut off" on her from home. She rebooted the PC and it said "Missing media, no OS found." She brought it in today for us to look at it from what we can tell her hard drive completely died. No hard drive utility can recognize it, it's not spinning, it's toast.

    About a year and a half ago we installed an application called second copy on all employee given PC's which backs up their hard drive to our server in case of failure. Turns out people didn't want this application because it slowed down their PC so about 90% disabled it or removed it all together. This was one of those employees. To top it all off, she saved EVERY single file she has ever done in her years and years of work for the company on her local hard drive and never once backed it up to the server. Talk about 5-6 years of files, maybe more. Today was judgement day and the hard drive died. We got her up and running on a spare PC but she couldnt do a thing because she had nothing to work on.

    In the end, my department gets blamed for not making it mandatory that employees back up their hard drivers or that employees use the server drives rather than their local drives. Keep in mind they can still access server drives from home as well. Now this employee has nothing, it's costing that employees department $3,500 to have the drive overnighted to a data recovery company who says it's 50/50 that they can fully recover the data.

    Needless to say, by the end of the afternoon, people heard what happened and all those employees that deleted the application or disbled it now were requesting it to be reinstalled on their PC's.....funny how things work...

    Lesson of the Day:

    BACK UP YOUR PERSONAL HARD DRIVES. THIS CAN HAPPEN TO ANYONE!

  2. #2

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    I like to live on the edge.. i rarely back up anything. good lesson though.

  3. #3

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    I run a RAID at home, do a hardcopy backup every couple months. Data loss sucks.
    If you will it, dude, it is no dream.

  4. #4

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    I just started doing a side job at my wife's work as IT consultant. It's a small company and there's a lot of work to be done. No passwords on computers, no backups (expect the accounting part of the company which does 30GB tape backups of critical data), no domain server etc. I built a RAID Linux server for them and put it on the LAN, and now we are in process of getting everyone to do daily backups of their important data to the server.

    Accounting data, we will start doing remote backups very soon, in case something happens to the building (fire, theft...) .

    It would suck if I lost all my videos and pictures I have on my personal computer. Work stuff, there's always CCM database.

  5. #5

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    it's one of those things that never gets to them.....lesson learned
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    Too bad she wasn't running Ad-Aware.

  7. #7

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    In the end, my department gets blamed for not making it mandatory that employees back up their hard drivers or that employees use the server drives rather than their local drives.
    Not to be hard on you, but your department should be blamed. We have group policies on all our users PC's. They don't get to decide what gets enabled, disabled, installed, or un-installed.

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    That's part of the reason I don't use 'Outlook'. It sucks having to wait for webmail, but if & when my pc/ laptop crashes, I can get to my mail.
    F*cked up thing happened a cpl. of weeks ago. I had installed Norton Utilities, did a 'Back up', and the next day, IE locked up! It would open, but that's all! Couldn't get to favorites, nothing in the tool bar, nada!!!SO, I had to reformat the laptop.
    I refuse to argue with idiots, because people can't tell the DIFFERENCE!

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by WilliamM2 View Post
    Not to be hard on you, but your department should be blamed. We have group policies on all our users PC's. They don't get to decide what gets enabled, disabled, installed, or un-installed.
    Sometimes you need to give admin rights to users. Not sure if that's the case here but for me, the first thing I need to request from IT when I get a new computer is admin rights. Most of the times it comes with standard user if not specifically requested.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by obieone View Post
    That's part of the reason I don't use 'Outlook'. It sucks having to wait for webmail, but if & when my pc/ laptop crashes, I can get to my mail.
    Even with Outlook the mail should still be in the server anyways, if you're doing it right in company environment (harder to do at home).

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by BaggedLancer View Post
    No hard drive utility can recognize it, it's not spinning, it's toast.
    Since you already sent it out, it's a moot point. But number one thing I would have done was grab a similar hard drive that was working and swap the controllers and see if you can get the disk to be slaved into another computer. If it spins and is recognized, grab that data off that disk. Shut the system down and pull the old disk out, turn the system back on and back up those data files. Replace the hard drive in the broken machine and reload it and restore the data to the machine. Install that software you have under an admin account and give her an account on her machine that lacks the ability to change that software in any way. Change the Group Policy settings in the Local Policy Editor too.

    Once that system gets restored, I'd still do everything after backing up the system.

    You should be able to mandate the software be used by pushing out the policy changes and file system permissions across the domain.
    You're just jealous 'cause the voices don't talk to you!

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sami View Post
    Sometimes you need to give admin rights to users. Not sure if that's the case here but for me, the first thing I need to request from IT when I get a new computer is admin rights. Most of the times it comes with standard user if not specifically requested.
    The only reason you really need local admin is to burn CD's and DVD's. You really don't need to do anything else with it unless you are an administrator.

    Still, you can get admin priviledges on your account either through specific group settings or through group privileges. Or do like William said and push out Group Policy edits on the domain controller through the Group Policy Editor. That is assuming your have your Domain Accounts set up. But you can also push out changes to the Group Policies on the local machines through SMS if you have it installed.
    You're just jealous 'cause the voices don't talk to you!

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by WilliamM2 View Post
    Not to be hard on you, but your department should be blamed. We have group policies on all our users PC's. They don't get to decide what gets enabled, disabled, installed, or un-installed.
    Too large of a company to be doing that. Procter & Gamble is a wee bit large to be backing up entire hard drives of every employee. There is a reason every employee gets their own private server drive...and that's to put data on it. It gets backed up nightly and we've never had an issue restoring a user. All of our employee computers are deployed images that not even the site IT admin has full admin rights to. It's all managed by big brother off shore.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sami View Post
    Sometimes you need to give admin rights to users. Not sure if that's the case here but for me, the first thing I need to request from IT when I get a new computer is admin rights. Most of the times it comes with standard user if not specifically requested.
    Employees have zero admin rights. I have limited admin rights. Had this user put her data on the server like all the training modules demonstrated, I could have had her a new PC and back up and running in 1 hour.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sami View Post
    Even with Outlook the mail should still be in the server anyways, if you're doing it right in company environment (harder to do at home).
    The mail is still on the server however every Saturday Procter & Gamble empties out the deleted items and sent items folder. If you want to save your sent emails you need to save them to a personal folder which should be located on the server drive.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jstas View Post
    Since you already sent it out, it's a moot point. But number one thing I would have done was grab a similar hard drive that was working and swap the controllers and see if you can get the disk to be slaved into another computer. If it spins and is recognized, grab that data off that disk. Shut the system down and pull the old disk out, turn the system back on and back up those data files. Replace the hard drive in the broken machine and reload it and restore the data to the machine. Install that software you have under an admin account and give her an account on her machine that lacks the ability to change that software in any way. Change the Group Policy settings in the Local Policy Editor too.

    Once that system gets restored, I'd still do everything after backing up the system.

    You should be able to mandate the software be used by pushing out the policy changes and file system permissions across the domain.
    Changing the controllers was non optional. Because the actual hardware isn't owned by my site, we aren't allowed to modify or change it anyway other than replacing broken parts.

    As for installing the software and not letting her change it, no can do. It's not a mandatory software from Procter & Gamble and it's something that only our site put in place by our site admin. The only way it would become mandatory would be to make it mandatory for all of P & G and it's subsidiaries since we all run the same deployed image. That isn't going to happen. This is why P&G made the everyone get a private and shared server drive which gets backed up nightly....and this is why people are supposed to use it.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jstas View Post
    The only reason you really need local admin is to burn CD's and DVD's. You really don't need to do anything else with it unless you are an administrator.
    I wish that was the case but it's not.

  15. #15

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    I don't see her loss of data as being your problem. We have a simple policy at our hospital. We are not responsible for data saved on your hard drive. Use your "My Documents" or departmental folder and everything is kosher, otherwise it's not our problem.

  16. #16
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    Hard drive issues do suck more than most computer problems. IT would be a hard job. Luckily, I just work with people who have memory problems!

  17. #17

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    If the 'dee-dee-dee' in question lost all their work, give 'em UNPAID admin leave until the issus resolved, then send out a memo explaining what happens when you don't follow co. procedures!
    If you can't make it mandatory, give them an INCENTIVE!
    I refuse to argue with idiots, because people can't tell the DIFFERENCE!

  18. #18

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    Haha obieone...I get calls asking if I can set up their computer so it doesn't require passwords anymore. I get people asking if I can remove their black & white laser printer and just let htem print to the color laser printer because they don't know how to change printers when printing documents.

    My job is nutty.

  19. #19

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    Zero symathy here.

  20. #20

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    I have a 1TB one touch digital backup hit one button walk away great only thing i did is replace the maxtor hard drive with a western digital
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  21. #21

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    $3500 seems a tad high, doesn't it ?

    Never had to use a data recovery service, but their ads always show hard drives that were in 5-alarm inferno fires and half melted; can't remember pricing, but it sure seemed a lot cheaper than $3500.
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  22. #22

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    That type of recovery is ridiculously expensive.
    If you will it, dude, it is no dream.

  23. #23

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    We've had to do it a couple of times, never paid more than $700 + red label each way.

  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by WilliamM2 View Post
    We've had to do it a couple of times, never paid more than $700 + red label each way.
    we could have had it done for around $1000 using the standard service but due to the employee and the importance of the data it was chosen to overnight it and go with the express service.

  25. #25

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    The cheap easy solution is assign everyone portal USB hard drives.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phasearray View Post
    The cheap easy solution is assign everyone portal USB hard drives.
    How would that help anything? Those can die too...
    If you will it, dude, it is no dream.

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phasearray View Post
    The cheap easy solution is assign everyone portal USB hard drives.
    That would be the absolutely LAST thing to happen. Actually, it wouldn't even be the last, it would never happen for as long as the company is open. They aren't even allowed to have USB sticks....only a select few and those are all 256mb.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BaggedLancer View Post
    That would be the absolutely LAST thing to happen. Actually, it wouldn't even be the last, it would never happen for as long as the company is open. They aren't even allowed to have USB sticks....only a select few and those are all 256mb.
    What's the reason behind that?
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    The lady should be written up for costing her department $3500 for being stupid.........Make an example out of being a dumbass......
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  30. #30

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    I imagine the chances of someone losing a usb drive is much higher than the chance of someone have a hard drive fail.

    Real work is done and saved on the servers which are backed up *hourly* and eventually put on tape drives here. Corporate policy is no good if you can't/won't enforce it.

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