Monday, August 6, 2012

"Boom" - Computer Crash

Last Thursday, my computer crashed. When I logged on, I was greeted with a message that said my laptop was in critical condition, and there was something wrong with my hard drive. I literally watched my files disappear, one by one, from my desktop. Next, I was prompted to purchase file recovery for $80. The first thing I thought was, "what about my Prince book?"

Luckily, I have the current draft of the book and all of my research saved on the pink and black external hard drives and blue flash drive. I was so relieved that I'd recently saved an updated version of my interview transcripts on the flash drive--I would have lost my mind if I had to re-type the five-hour interview with Howard Bloom. I also have hard copies of almost everything. Unfortunately, I lost some new notes that I'd jotted down for the book, but that information was not crucial.

It turns out that I'd acquired a virus that wiped out all of my files. I correctly guessed that the file recovery prompt was also part of the virus, and I took it to a local computer shop. I paid $150 to get Windows 7 re-installed on my laptop. I don't download music, but I was told that I could have received the virus from any website, such as Facebook, which is rampant with viruses, apparently. The technician also gave me a couple other tips based on his experience:
  • Don't use Internet Explorer because it increases your chance of getting a virus. Use Google Chrome or Firefox.
  • Don't save files to your desktop. Always save them on external hard drives.
I was always fairly good at backing up my files, but now I'm going to back up each day. I'm not sure how many important files, other than the Prince material, that I lost. I'm not looking forward to finding out. I did lose a lot of my music, though, including some Prince tracks. What a pain!

Some good things happened, so the week wasn't a total loss.  I interviewed Art Erickson, Prince's youth group leader at Park Avenue United Methodist Church! I will post about that interview next week!

I'd also like to give a shout out to Rakabash, one of my readers who passed along some very important content for my book! Thanks so much!

Happy Monday!


  1. Invest in Dropbox ( (not much an investment - limited storage is free). It will automatically sync your files between all your computers and the cloud. So, instant backup in multiple places.

    I got this when I started my thesis, and it has saved me multiple times!