Hard disk problem

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by pawihte, Mar 16, 2009.

  1. pawihte

    pawihte Guest

    My son's hard disk developed a problem after a severe power
    fluctuation and could no longer boot from the OS partition (C:,
    FAT32). He managed to format the partition with a DOS bootable CD
    (full format, not quick), albeit with some error reports. He does
    not remember the exact wording of the error reports, but he says
    that it was something to do with bad sectors. Attempts to install
    the OS (XP) again fail during the file copy process.

    He says surface scan from DOS got stuck at some point. I've
    hooked it up to one of my computers and am running surface scan
    from Windows XP, but it's been stuck partway again for more than
    an hour now. All other partitions can be accessed normally.

    We're not overly concerned about data loss. All important data
    has been backed up. Just want to be able to use the disk again
    for non-critical purposes. Is there anything we can do except
    delete that partition?

    I remember working on a hard disk with some bad sectors with my
    Amiga some 15 years ago. I don't remember the details, but I
    could set a partition boundary just short of a defective sector,
    skip that area and make another partition starting just after it.
    Is something similar possible with Windows?
    pawihte, Mar 16, 2009
    #1
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  2. pawihte

    cizzo Guest

    On Mar 16, 10:55 am, "pawihte" <> wrote:
    > My son's hard disk developed a problem after a severe power
    > fluctuation and could no longer boot from the OS partition (C:,
    > FAT32). He managed to format the partition with a DOS bootable CD
    > (full format, not quick), albeit with some error reports. He does
    > not remember the exact wording of the error reports, but he says
    > that it was something to do with bad sectors. Attempts to install
    > the OS (XP) again fail during the file copy process.
    >
    > He says surface scan from DOS got stuck at some point. I've
    > hooked it up to one of my computers and am running surface scan
    > from Windows XP, but it's been stuck partway again for more than
    > an hour now. All other partitions can be accessed normally.
    >
    > We're not overly concerned about data loss. All important data
    > has been backed up. Just want to be able to use the disk again
    > for non-critical purposes. Is there anything we can do except
    > delete that partition?
    >
    > I remember working on a hard disk with some bad sectors with my
    > Amiga some 15 years ago. I don't remember the details, but I
    > could set a partition boundary just short of a defective sector,
    > skip that area and make another partition starting just after it.
    > Is something similar possible with Windows?


    Hello,

    If the disk is still under warranty I would go that route by trying to
    get it replaced.
    If not then try a low-level format, which will write all zeros to the
    drive.
    You can do this with most hard drive diagnostic utilities. I would
    also recommend Darik's Boot and Nuke: http://www.dban.org/
    After the low-level format run it through some integrity scans and see
    if you get any more errors.

    If all is well then you should be good, but I would only use this is a
    secondary drive for storage and not the main drive running the OS.
    cizzo, Mar 16, 2009
    #2
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  3. pawihte

    thanatoid Guest

    "pawihte" <> wrote in
    news:gpm0ad$6d5$:

    > My son's hard disk developed a problem after a severe power
    > fluctuation and could no longer boot from the OS partition
    > (C:, FAT32). He managed to format the partition with a DOS
    > bootable CD (full format, not quick), albeit with some
    > error reports. He does not remember the exact wording of
    > the error reports, but he says that it was something to do
    > with bad sectors. Attempts to install the OS (XP) again
    > fail during the file copy process.


    <SNIP>

    A few bad sectors do not make a HD unusable, but other damage
    MAY have been done.
    Hard drives are so cheap, just get a new one.


    --
    "Who knows what the OP is talking about?"
    (about thanatoid)
    thanatoid, Mar 16, 2009
    #3
  4. pawihte

    chuckcar Guest

    "pawihte" <> wrote in
    news:gpm0ad$6d5$:

    > My son's hard disk developed a problem after a severe power
    > fluctuation and could no longer boot from the OS partition (C:,
    > FAT32). He managed to format the partition with a DOS bootable CD
    > (full format, not quick), albeit with some error reports. He does
    > not remember the exact wording of the error reports, but he says
    > that it was something to do with bad sectors.


    Anytime you get bad sectors on a drive, it's a sure sign that it's close
    to death. Backup what you can and replace the drive. And when you *do* get
    everything back, back up at *least* once a month. To CD's or DVD's *not*
    to another drive. You never know when you will have one fail.


    --
    (setq (chuck nil) car(chuck) )
    chuckcar, Mar 17, 2009
    #4
  5. pawihte

    thanatoid Guest

    chuckcar <> wrote in
    news:Xns9BD0CBC5D8DBFchucknilcar@127.0.0.1:

    > "pawihte" <> wrote in
    > news:gpm0ad$6d5$:
    >
    >> My son's hard disk developed a problem after a severe
    >> power fluctuation and could no longer boot from the OS
    >> partition (C:, FAT32). He managed to format the partition
    >> with a DOS bootable CD (full format, not quick), albeit
    >> with some error reports. He does not remember the exact
    >> wording of the error reports, but he says that it was
    >> something to do with bad sectors.

    >
    > Anytime you get bad sectors on a drive, it's a sure sign
    > that it's close to death. Backup what you can and replace
    > the drive. And when you *do* get everything back, back up
    > at *least* once a month. To CD's or DVD's *not* to another
    > drive. You never know when you will have one fail.


    AMEN, brother.


    --
    "Who knows what the OP is talking about?"
    (about thanatoid)
    thanatoid, Mar 17, 2009
    #5
  6. pawihte

    PeeCee Guest

    "pawihte" <> wrote in message
    news:gpm0ad$6d5$...
    > My son's hard disk developed a problem after a severe power fluctuation
    > and could no longer boot from the OS partition (C:, FAT32). He managed to
    > format the partition with a DOS bootable CD (full format, not quick),
    > albeit with some error reports. He does not remember the exact wording of
    > the error reports, but he says that it was something to do with bad
    > sectors. Attempts to install the OS (XP) again fail during the file copy
    > process.
    >
    > He says surface scan from DOS got stuck at some point. I've hooked it up
    > to one of my computers and am running surface scan from Windows XP, but
    > it's been stuck partway again for more than an hour now. All other
    > partitions can be accessed normally.
    >
    > We're not overly concerned about data loss. All important data has been
    > backed up. Just want to be able to use the disk again for non-critical
    > purposes. Is there anything we can do except delete that partition?
    >
    > I remember working on a hard disk with some bad sectors with my Amiga some
    > 15 years ago. I don't remember the details, but I could set a partition
    > boundary just short of a defective sector, skip that area and make another
    > partition starting just after it. Is something similar possible with
    > Windows?
    >




    Pawihte

    If you are seeing bad sectors then it would be best to just junk it and buy
    a new drive.
    All drives have bad sectors, it's just that modern drives keep spare ones
    and remap bad ones as they occur so the user see's a perfect drive.
    When you do see bad sectors on a modern drive it means all the spares are
    used up and the odds are the drive has reached dying point.

    You could try zeroing the drive out followed by a full low level format with
    the manufacturers utility.
    But in my experience drives requiring this usually die shortly afterwards
    anyway.

    Best
    Paul.
    PeeCee, Mar 17, 2009
    #6
  7. pawihte

    chuckcar Guest

    "Brian Cryer" <not.here@localhost> wrote in
    news::

    > "chuckcar" <> wrote in message
    > news:Xns9BD0CBC5D8DBFchucknilcar@127.0.0.1...
    >> "pawihte" <> wrote in
    >> news:gpm0ad$6d5$:
    >>
    >>> My son's hard disk developed a problem after a severe power
    >>> fluctuation and could no longer boot from the OS partition (C:,
    >>> FAT32). He managed to format the partition with a DOS bootable CD
    >>> (full format, not quick), albeit with some error reports. He does
    >>> not remember the exact wording of the error reports, but he says
    >>> that it was something to do with bad sectors.

    >>
    >> Anytime you get bad sectors on a drive, it's a sure sign that it's
    >> close to death. Backup what you can and replace the drive. And when you
    >> *do* get everything back, back up at *least* once a month. To CD's or
    >> DVD's *not* to another drive. You never know when you will have one
    >> fail.

    >
    > Backing up to another drive is sound provided its removable and you
    > remove it.


    You're completely misinterpreting what I said. No, sorry it's *not*.
    Portable drives fail quicker than internal drives because they're moved.
    This means they're subjected to g-forces for which they're not designed
    putting their movable components under stress.

    > I backup to removable usb disks which I then take off site. However,
    > what chuckcar means is don't backup to another disk in the pc (or in a
    > pc the other side of the room), and the advice is sound.


    No, I *don't* say that. Don't try to "explain" my meaning. I said *exactly*
    what I meant and meant only what I said.

    Backing up involves saving your documents *only* and keeping your install
    disks away from the computer in at *least* another room.

    --
    (setq (chuck nil) car(chuck) )
    chuckcar, Mar 17, 2009
    #7
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