Do not waste your time to look for your data and hundreds of files, just because the hard drive of your computer stopped working. Save your data on a regular basis to prevent a bigger catastrophe.
Make backups from all important (and unimportant) files regularly.
Especially when you mainly work with portable devices you should save your data more often. External hard drives and laptop computers have a shorter life span than hard drives in desktop computers.
Get yourself an external hard drive so you can save a copy of all relevant data on it. If you keep updating the files on it you will have access to all important files in case of an emergency.
Additionally, you can save backups on the hard drive – with the help of the backup function on your computer.
If you are still worried about your files, you can burn them to DVDs. However, you need to make sure you use DVDs of high quality. Also, you should not burn your DVDs with the fastest speed available, as this might cause a loss of data. Files are not as safe on DVDs (or CDs) as you might think. When using cheap DVDs/CDs files can be lost a few months after burning them and pictures might only be shown half way. A good alternative to regular DVDs are so called archival DVDs that have a golden layer (and are also more expensive).
You should keep your different media in different places. So in case your office burns down and you only have your files saved to your desktop computer and the data DVDs are next door, you will loose everything. This can also happen after a break-in or when a pipe bursts.