My laptop hard drive is dying.
This may be a world first: My laptop hard drive is dying almost immediately after a full backup.
Most hard drives die immediately before their first full backup.
I've noticed that the quality of hard drives as measured by how long they last has been steadily going down. Having a hard drive last two years is almost a notable event now. But I think they've been getting better about somewhat gracefully failing; while I almost never see a drive last more than a year and a half, it's also been a long time since I heard anybody say their hard drive just died with no warning at all. (I'm sure it happens but it seems to happen less often.)
One of the lessons I've learned: Once you see the warning signs, backup everything and get off the drive as quickly as possible. Don't wait for it to finish dying. Failure is inevitable and there's really no point in trying to hobble along with a failing drive for very long. The worst case scenario is that it lasts just long enough for you to get lazy about your backups again.
I always appreciate the periodic reminders by various webloggers to back up, so here's my reminder to you: Back up!