how to tell if hard drive is dead?

i've got a laptop that won't boot. sometimes it says boot device not found, other times it just hangs on the windows load screen for ~10 minutes before BSODing with that boot device not found message

how can i determine if the hard drive is actually failing?
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More about hard drive dead
  1. What i would do is open up the laptop carefully, remove the hard drive from the laptop and then mount that drive in an external SATA-to-USB adapter and plug it into another computer. Once done, install HDDscan ( http://www.hddscan.com/ ) and run a scan, it should tell you if there are any errors with your hard drive!

    Hope this helps!
  2. what if i don't have a SATA-to-USB adapter? do you have any suggestions for a boot CD i could run to find out if the hdd is dead?
  3. http://www.kvipu.com/CDCheck/download.php seems to get the job done with a CD but I have not used it personnally. Cheers.
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