I have had two hard drives connected to my iMac — an 80Gb internal and a 250Gb external (via FireWire) — and yesterday my internal one died – one minute it was working fine, then it started making a noise and then about 30 seconds later it died.

Fortunately I was able to simply install Mac OS X onto my external drive and carry on. My automated weekly backup had run successfully the day before so I’d only lost one day’s worth of “work” but unfortunately I’d spent most of yesterday picking new colours for this site’s planned seasonal colour changes – not a big job but I’m crap at colour coordination and it’d taken a lot of effort to get it right. And, of course, I’ve got to reinstall all my programs and get everything set up the way I like it.

One ray of sunshine was the fact that I have a .Mac account and have it set to keep my address book, calendars, email and website bookmarks in sync so I can access them from any PC or Mac connected to the internet – this also means that to restore them all after reinstalling my machine is easy: they’re just copied back from my .Mac account onto my iMac. One more reason to be glad that I stumped up the £60 to renew my subscription.

I’ve ordered a shiny new 250Gb drive (which Tugger is going to fit for me on Wednesday) to replace the fried internal one and an equally shiny 500Gb external one to add extra backup space – I didn’t have enough room to backup everything that I wanted and so I’m taking no chances from now on.