Predicting the Future

Garage Fire

by Steve Deal on November 1, 2012

Your garage will burn down soon

Let’s say that ‘destiny’ requires that your garage burn down this weekend.   The Fire Department will arrive quickly, and put out the blaze, and save what they can.  But your car and those prize winning flowers you have been nursing for years are beyond saving.

What if mid-week the Fire Department could just call up and say “Hi, hate to bother you, but we have word your garage is going this weekend.  We can’t stop it, but maybe you want to move those flowers somewhere else”.

Your computer will stop working soon

Predicting future fires is still pretty difficult.  But with computers, sometimes we can predict disasters.

Often before a PC quits working, it starts to act erratically.    Modern hard drives also have software built into them that predicts failures based on the change in various operating parameters over time.   Often Windows detects failures and records them on your PC (“Event Logs”), but you probably never see them.

We noticed an error like this on one of the PCs we monitor recently.   We notified the Customer, and she (oh so wisely) decided to take to heart my previous discussions about backups.   She installed and started  a backup.   One week later, the PC displayed a pretty blue screen, and just stopped working.  This PC was gone, but we restore her data to a different computer.

I hope your garage never burns down, and I hope your computer never stops working for you.  But just in case, make sure you have fire insurance and backups please!

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