Is my hard drive dead?

Ok, so this morning i woke up, turned on my computer from sleep mode, and the windows login screen popped up. I left my computer there, and went to have breakfast, and returned to a black screen showing "Error Loading Operating System". Rebooting yeilded the same results. (Also, I still don't know why, but BIOS loaded up much slower than usual.) I looked this up, and found it was an XP related problem, (I have Vista x64). But i did have XP installed on a seperate HDD. Sure enough, i looked and my 500gb HDD with vista on it was not seen either in BIOS setup boot order, or when i pressed F8 to get to the boot menu.

Attempting to boot with only the HDD with vista on it connected yeilded the computer telling me to attach a valid boot device.

So, is my HDD dead? I just want to make sure so i don't go out buying a new one and finding that my old one is dead.

Also, could this be caused by a virus, i wouldn't think so, because viruses can't cause physical damage, but whatever.

The HDD is a 7200.11 Seagate Barracuda, 32mb cache

Other specs, if you need them:
(Ugh, forgot motherboard, its like P5Q-E i think P45 chipset)
HD 4870
4gb cosair dominators @ 1066

K, thats it for the problem. If i need to get a new hard drive, what should i be looking at?

Theorectically, anywhere between 500-1000gb is good, but less than 100 USD no matter what.

Also, my CD/DVD drive is pooped out, can't run a vista boot disk correctly, so i need a new one, any suggestions for that?
5 answers Last reply
More about hard drive dead
  1. When did the CD/DVD drive go poof? Same time?

    Only thing I can think to try is take the power and data cable from the disk drive that *is* recognized by BIOS, and plug it into your Vista HD instead. Then check BIOS with only the Vista HD installed.

    If BIOS doesn't recognize it, the disk drive would seem to be dead.

    WD caviar black is a very popular suggestion here. Check Newegg, eg, for capacities/prices.

    Everyone has a favorite CD/DVD drive, except for those who don't care which one they use lol. Being the latter, I usually check Newegg for recent customer reviews of +/-$25 optical drives. Helps me avoid recent bad manufacturing runs.
  2. No, the CD drive has been on its last legs for a long time.

    I've also tried switched the power cables and such--even switched SATA ports--nothing.

    So its dead? Could it have been done by a virus (my parents refuse to buy me a new one if its from a virus, becuase i have no anti-virus, but they are slow, and im very careful about what i download--i use online virus screeners)

    Also--thanks for the advice about the caviar black--ill look into it.
  3. If you have access to another computer, and your computer will boot from a flash drive, you could download and run Seatools from Seagate to see if the HD is indeed shot.
    Here's an optical drive worth considering:
  4. Ok, will do, also--arn't the WD caviar black drives old? Arn't the 7200.12 drives newer?

    Could somebody direct me to a comparison between the two?
  5. A number os users have stopped buying Seagates due to the .11 models bricking.
    Also the WD has a 5 year warranty and I think the Seagate is 3 years.
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