24,000 some songs gone

I took my 200 GB external drive with all of my music on it to CompUSA this weekend to have it put in a new enclosure, because the old one was going bad. I had this happen before to a Maxtor drive – the enclosure doesn’t spin the drive fast enough, apparently, so the disk kept crapping out while transferring music. I considered trying to back up the 120 GB of music on the drive, but I don’t have another drive that big, and I was afraid I’d kill the bad one while copying the music over. We were planning to get a music server soon for our home WAN, so that we could both use the same music library for our multi-platformed (PC and Mac) household, so I didn’t want to invest in a whole new external drive right now, with all the other household expenses.
I know I was taking quite a chance in handing the drive over to teen-aged clerks without having a backup copy – I certainly knew better. They reformatted the drive and wiped all my music from it, along with all the cover art I created for my mix cds.
I’ll have to run the totals from iTunes when I get home, but it was something on the order of 24,000 songs on the drive. Fortunately, most of the important stuff to us is on CD, but trying to figure out about music I bought from iTunes is my biggest concern.
Sigh. We have a lot of re-ripping to do. At least it was only music, though. If it had been my photos or design stuff I’d be bouncing off the ceiling right now.

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Jerame

    There is good news, Steph. iTunes will allow you to redownload everything you’ve ever bought from them ONCE for free.
    You have to contact iTunes support by email. Tell them you lost the music in a hard drive crash. They’ll allow you to download every song again. That doesn’t count for any videos, just the songs. They won’t let you do it again, so make it count!
    If you need help ripping CDs, may I suggest a CD ripping party? Offer beer and ask your friends with laptops to all come over and bring the gear. Then give them all stacks of CDs to rip, tell them what settings to rip the songs at, and then have them get to work. You can copy the files by wireless or ethernet. Or since the drive is external, at the end, you can just go to each laptop, plug in and scoop up the tunes.
    I’d come to that party! (As long as I got to keep some of the tunes of course!!)

  2. Jerame

    Oh…I forgot. Maybe we should sit down and talk about a backup plan for your media. If you’ve got 24,000 in just songs, you need to work on backup plan that takes care of it all for you. Since I know you’re a Mac person too, I have plenty of cool suggestions.

  3. Dustin

    Nobody likes advice after the fact, but don’t hate me because I have some. (And I must say you’re being remarkably calm about the whole thing, so I hope this comment doesn’t send you into a rampage towards my office…)
    About a year ago I got an internal 250GB hard drive (which can now be had for $75 or less) and an enclosure for that drive ($40-50). 10 minutes of installation time later, I had an external USB hard drive to back up my stuff.
    Recently I’ve seen external 250GB drives for under $100, so you can save 10 minutes and some money by going that route. Or you can grab an old, unused hard drive and slap it in an external enclosure and re-use the old hardware. (Am I too much of a geek for having old computer parts lying around?)
    I guess my point is, you work with a bunch of geeks, so talk to any of us before you ever take any part of your computer to a retailer for repair ever again. I’m willing to bet I’m not the only one in the office who has built systems from parts.

  4. Steph Mineart

    I’ve been pretty bonehead about the whole thing, frankly, Dustin. I should have had a music backup regularly; I should have at least done that before I decided to do something to the drive, and I certainly shouldn’t have left my music in the hands of teen-agers when I have competent adults around. I’m pretty phobic about opening up my hardware myself – I should probably get over that.
    It seems that the data recovery didn’t work after they reformatted because the drive itself, not the enclosure, is bad. Had they not reformatted, I’d still be able to get the data, but now I’ll need to send it to a professional recovery service to get a quote on.
    We’re looking at a terrabyte server for our home WAN; I’ve been pricing them for awhile and I just haven’t pulled the trigger because of the other stuff we wanted to accomplish financially first.
    In general, I back up my hard drive, including all my photos and my design work to another external drive, so there are two copies of all that work. It was just the music I didn’t have backup for.

  5. Steph Mineart

    Oh and yes, a CD ripping party is definitely in order, Jerame. I’d have a blast, actually.

  6. mike

    Yow, I don’t have near that volume of songs, but I certainly need to backup files somewhere safer(er) than where they are now.

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