Computer Clunking Sound

Dear Computer Lady,

Recently I had to take my computer back to factory level because it was behaving as though it had a virus. Since then at odd times it makes a clunking sound. What is this? And can I eliminate it?
I have a Hewlett Packard (5 years old) and Windows Vista.
Thank you for your help. I read your website faithfully.


Dear Betty,

A clunking sound is usually the sound a hard drive makes when it is starting to die.

I would suggest that you make sure your files are backed up and think about either replacing the hard drive, or the entire computer. Since the average computer lasts about 5 years, it might not make sense to put a large amount of money into fixint it.

If your files are not yet backed up, don’t use the computer until you get them backed up. The more you use an ailing hard drive, the less your chances of being able to get the files off of it.



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Elizabeth Boston is a Web designer, Social Media Consultant and managing editor of, “Ask The Computer Lady”.
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