HDD dying?

Discussion in 'Troubleshooting Help' started by surfdabbler, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. surfdabbler

    surfdabbler Member

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    I have had a weird problem 3 times in the last week. The 2nd HDD stops working. It just seems to disappear. I can't save files to it, and browsing to it in explorer just gives me the spinning wheel.

    Reboot fixes it and all is well again - until next time. I use my computer all day every day, so it's a pretty rare problem.

    I had assumed it was the HDD failing, but there is a similar thread nearby on this forum, and it doesn't seem to question the HDD, but just the MB HDD controllers.

    My system is set up with windows on SSD, but I have mapped the Users directory onto my HDD. (I do full-time software development, and I didn't want to wear out the SSD.) So when the HDD vanishes, it results in some weird behaviour. But it is coming good again on reboot. I recently (several weeks ago) installed Win 7 SP2, and windows did report a disk failure, but only that once. This week, the HDD has simply disappeared.

    So, should I run out and buy a new HDD and swap everything over before it fails completely, or should I be looking at a new MB? I'm really not looking forward to spending a week reinstalling a new system.
     
  2. Jim G

    Jim G Member

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    Back up anything important. Also, don't worry about the longevity of the SSD - unless you write many, many GB per day you're not going to wear it out any time this decade.

    What does the SMART data for the drive say? There's a few programs you can use to check it out, Crystaldiskinfo is one iirc.
     
  3. lazyboy1984

    lazyboy1984 Member

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    what's the MB chipset?

    I think Intel P67 and H67 have this problem where the HDD will cease to detect and the problem gradually gets worse until the SATA fails completely.
     
  4. OP
    OP
    surfdabbler

    surfdabbler Member

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    CrystalDiskInfo says "Caution" for this drive, although the only highlighted issue is the "Current Pending Sector Count", which is 4, so this looks pretty minor to me.

    Motherboard is Intel DP55WB, which uses the P55 Express chipset. If I'm getting this issue from the chipset, then that will mean either a new motherboard, or an add-in SATA card, which will probably mean slower HDD speeds.

    I will try switching the HDD to a new SATA port, just in case there is any difference on the motherboard.
     
  5. de_overfiend

    de_overfiend Member

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    current pending sector count of 4 is bad. that means it has bad sectors and it has run out of spare space to copy the data from the damaged areas. it has 4 sectors that are damaged and are pending a rewrite. usually when this happens it will write the pending sectors to the spare space on the drive but it cant because the spare space has been used already by the repair process on other sectors.

    get a new drive and clone your data to the new one and then run a full chkdsk /b over it

    a good tool for analysing hdds in your system is Speedfan. You can do SMART analysis and an online generated report.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    surfdabbler

    surfdabbler Member

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    Update, just to let you know what happened...

    I swapped my SATA cables over between the HDD and the DVD drive. My PC has been running perfectly since then. No more errors.

    :)
     
  7. karlcloudy

    karlcloudy Member

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    Nah, Current Pending Sector Count refers to sectors that are waiting to be remapped due to them being suspicious. If it successfully reads the sector again in the future without trouble, it will rollback the counter without remapping it, or if it is indeed a bad sector and remains dodgy, it will also rollback the counter, but increment the more serious "Reallocated Sector Count" (or "Reallocation Event Count", seems to depend on the drive as to which one it uses), which indicates the true number of remapped sectors.
     

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