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Old 08-27-2013, 11:01 AM   #1
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Default HDD Issue

Hey there.

This maybe a long story but sometimes details make the difference...

So we had some people over last week and I was playing music from my laptop that was on a table, when typically it ended up getting knocked off but it didn't hit the ground directly as it landed in our dogs bed!

It was hooked up to some speakers and the music was still playing so I thought it was fine, but when I tried to load Chrome not long after it seemed to "lock up" with the busy pointer spinning, music was still going but the drives activity light was on solid and nothing was happening. Chrome was half loaded up but I was unable to do anything while in this state, so I left it for a little while only to find still nothing was happening, I had to try a hard reset and turned it off, but once Windows (7) started loading the HDD just give up after a lengthy wait, it just sits there at the Windows logo.

So about the HDD: It's just a 250gb SATA with 3 partitions, one for the OS, one for my data and another one as other storage. I'm not really bothered about data loss on the OS partition, but there is data I would like to retrieve from my data partition before I bin it, I don't have the money for a new one right now so it would be good just to get it in a working state for a little while at least.

I assumed the drive (or OS partition) had sustained some physical damage so I thought a surface scan would resolve this, I tried to boot into Hirens CD's Mini-XP only to find it stops just before it loads the desktop as it required some drive activity and at this point it just gives up, next I booted into a recovery console (Using a disk I created a while back) and started a chkdsk surface scan, things were going OK up until it hit 25% where again, the drive just gives up; I tried this twice with the same result.

Next I borrowed SpinRite from a friend and tried this. For any of you who are unfamiliar it's an advanced surface scanning tool... the trouble I had with this is the sheer time it was taking was completely unrealistic, it was scanning through bad sectors but it took 3 DAYS to "complete" 0.348% of the 64gb OS partition, this just isn't good enough.

So since then it's just been sat there, I was wondering if anybody knew of any surface scanning tools that are any good for this situation. I think SpinRite isn't what I need yet Windows check disk isn't good enough.

I've been away for a few days so I'm just going to look on the Western Digital site to see if they have any tools that can help.

Thanks in advance
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Old 08-27-2013, 06:44 PM   #2
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Default Re: HDD Issue

wow. that really suck man.
Yeah those physical spinning drives really don't like to by dropped.
I haven't tried many scanning tools for the HDD. I always have backup and i'll just buy a new drive if the main drive get's old, damage or corrupted.
but have you tried to connect that drive to another computer as a second HDD.
you might be able to pick op the files that you want to keep and copy them to your computers C:\ drive or Linux drive.
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:51 PM   #3
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Default Re: HDD Issue

The reason why SpinRite is taking so long is because there is damage. It is not so much just a scanning tool, but more of a recovery tool. Picture this: SpinRite meets damage; SpinRite tries to recover data from damage; SpinRite fails because it sees more damage; SpinRite tries again...

If it is taking a long time, yielding little progress, then don't waste your time. Not that SpinRite is a bad tool, but there is just so much damage on the drive. You could take the HDD to a recovery professional to recover the data (if your data is worth a lot to you); or just give up.
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Old 08-28-2013, 07:41 AM   #4
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Default Re: HDD Issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by dale View Post
The reason why SpinRite is taking so long is because there is damage. It is not so much just a scanning tool, but more of a recovery tool. Picture this: SpinRite meets damage; SpinRite tries to recover data from damage; SpinRite fails because it sees more damage; SpinRite tries again...

If it is taking a long time, yielding little progress, then don't waste your time. Not that SpinRite is a bad tool, but there is just so much damage on the drive. You could take the HDD to a recovery professional to recover the data (if your data is worth a lot to you); or just give up.
Cheers for your response's.

Yeah I kinda figured there would be a lot of damage SpinRite was going through, I understand how it tries to read the data in small chucks many different ways, but on this particular partition I don't want (or need) any data recovered, all I do need is a scanning tool that just marks the bad sectors, Windows check disk doesn't seem to be up to it but there must be other tools as such.
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Old 08-28-2013, 09:23 AM   #5
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Default Re: HDD Issue

its highly unlikely the damage is just on the os partition so it will need be a pro to recover your data.
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Old 08-28-2013, 09:40 AM   #6
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Default Re: HDD Issue

There could be platter damage from the head crashing in to it. If that's the case then running chkdsk won't help. From what you describe the boot sectors are intact but there appears to be damage to the rest of the disk. Hook it up to another computer using a laptop drive to desktop drive adaptor and retrieve your data from the other partitions if they're intact. If they are then that's a good thing. If not while you have it connected to a desk rig, format the entire drive.
Doing that will pinch off the bad sectors automatically. If there's too much damage it will let you know.

When you get this all squared away I'd look at a set of Bluetooth speakers. With a range of 30 feet or so you could leave your laptop in a safe place and set the speakers out where you want to have the music. There's too much risk of damage when there's a lot of people around.
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Old 08-28-2013, 06:39 PM   #7
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Default Re: HDD Issue

Yeah I should really just try and get the data from it I want. I was hoping to get it in some sort of working state for the time being but whatever's happened it's caused some mechanical damage or something.

I downloaded some DOS scanning tool from the WD website for my drive and that reported that the HDD basically was on it's "last legs" just from the basic scanning mode, and it would not do an extended test; in fact this somehow made it worse because then every time I started my laptop just after post it would complain that there's some error with the drive and "drive failure is imminent" ... F1 to continue or F2 for BIOS.

Though SpinRite still picks it up, since using that tool it now says that SMART reports that the drive is dying etc etc. *rolls eyes*
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Old 08-28-2013, 06:45 PM   #8
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Default Re: HDD Issue

Ouch... But at least you are now well-versed in the states of HDD death!

Sorry for your loss, Venus.
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Old 08-28-2013, 10:06 PM   #9
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Default Re: HDD Issue

That stinks like yesterday's diapers. Well if you go for a new drive I'd highly recommend an SSD. With no moving parts it would be a better choice over a mechanical drive.
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Old 09-01-2013, 04:32 PM   #10
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Default Re: HDD Issue

SSD's are quite expensive, it would be good but I don't think it's realistic for me to pay all that money out for something that isn't that important.

It's not imperative that I have that laptop working since I do have another one which I use now, so I've left SpinRite scanning the data partition, I've read the longest time was around 6 months scanning but unbelievably the drive was readable afterwards so it's worth a try. The drive doesn't have the click of death or anything, in fact it's pretty normal sounding so It's not as bad as that really.
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