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I am at a loss... community please help - HD failures

Last response: in Storage
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February 9, 2011 2:33:33 PM

Hello everyone,

I'll start off by saying that I do know what I am doing when it comes to computers (for the most part, at least). I've been building for 8 years now and this is the first HD problem I have ever run into.

This all began a few weeks ago. I have a WD Black WD1001FALS 1TB as my primary HD and a Seagate Barracuda ST31000528AS CC38 1 TB as my backup HD (not in RAID.. just extra drive for storing downloads, movies, apps, etc). I had replaced my vid card from ATI to Nvidia GTX 460, replaced mobo from EVGA x58 SLI to gigabyte UD3r (rev. 2) and the power supply from 750w corsair to 850w corsair. Everything was all fine and dandy until my windows install began BSODing... which resulted in chkdsk at startup... which resulted in me losing some files.

I learned up on SMART and download gsmartcontrol and saw that my drive showed read error and signs of failing. I ordered a new Seagate, same model, to replace it as I was having no problems with current one. While it was coming in I also decided to use the warranty on my WD and get a replacement sent to me.

Seagate came in, I installed windows, was working fine, until I was installing files and windows would keep hanging. Did SMART scan and HD had about 144 errors so I RMA'ed with newegg.

WD came in and I tried this one. Nearly the same problem so I used the WD DOS HD utility and it came back with error 0226 so that was DOA. Called for replacement.

Ice storm hit (from ohio) so I ended up getting the new WD and new Seagate (this time rev CC46) at the same time. Installed WD on Monday, ran WD utility to find no problems, and seemed to not be having any problems until I got BSOD with a kernal inpage error or the like which either indicated bad RAM or bad HD... plus windows was telling me it had problem reading HD. Ran WD DOS drive utility on that one, came up with error 0223 which says it fixed itself. OK, no files lost.

Upon startup I start gsmartcontrol and check my WD and my Seagate (the backup that has always been in there). The seagate is showing some red flags but the WD looks fine. So ***, I move all my backup files onto WD just in case.

Today I install the Seagate and am writing to you on its windows install. So far so good except for I am getting some hanging during program installs and gsmart is giving me some raw values that are ok, but that I still don't like. Backup drive still showing red attributes signaling possible failure so also copying on this seagate drive.

I have a strange feeling that this HD is bad too but has not proved itself to be quite yet.

So, I have been through 2 WD blacks (now on my third) and I'm on my second barracuda. Am I just having the worst luck in the world? Can a bad second hard drive start to cause read errors on other hard drives? I have seen power supply as culprit, but how do I check that save buying a new power supply and new, non DOA hard drive? I have not done a memtest yet, don't think that it's the problem, but could it be?

Thanks for the help...
February 9, 2011 2:34:26 PM

for further clarification all HDs are running in IDE mode per PC wizard
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February 9, 2011 2:48:00 PM

as for even further clarification, I tried running HD tune on both the new seagate and old seagate. As expected, the old one popped up a couple attribute erros. However, I also wanted to run the speed test and while the new seagate performed perfectly, the old one errors in about 5 seconds with a "read error". Would upgrading the firmware in the old HD help at all? I am now convinced it is starting to go bad as well......
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February 9, 2011 3:02:44 PM

It could just be extremely bad luck, but the fact that the problems started after you changed to a new motherboard / power supply does seem suspicious. How long did it take for the HDD problems to appear after you installed the new parts?

I'm pretty sure a bad HDD shouldn't produce problems for other HDDs (at least I've never seen such a case).
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February 9, 2011 3:08:16 PM

nearly a month or so. You are right, but it's this fact that leans me away from pinpointing the mobo (rare that it would be mobo in the first place). To me there are three possible problems:

1. bad luck
2. psu mucking up the HD's
3. the backup HD (which has been a constant and always connected throughout this whole process) is causing problems. Esp. the fact that it is the barracuda rev CC38. Nothing but bad out of those revisions to be honest from the research I've done.
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a b G Storage
February 9, 2011 3:31:05 PM

so disconnect the backup hard drive.

I would tend to suspect a mobo or memory issue.

try running a memory test off a linux live cd or similar. (linux mint 10 works)
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a c 377 G Storage
February 9, 2011 4:40:26 PM

Definately test the ram. Gigabyte boards can be finicky with ram.
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February 9, 2011 4:45:32 PM

I will do so soon. shut down and unplugged backup. started up and my windows install is not recognized (yay...). went into startup repair not recognized there either. HD is recognized though. doing chkdsk now.
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February 9, 2011 7:39:06 PM

update: chkdisk is clean. 75% through memtest86+ run off dos and error free so far. Guess I'll reformat the HDD?
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February 9, 2011 8:39:37 PM

memtest came back fine (only did a couple passes)... chkdsk was fine... reinstalled windows fine... rebooted to get into windows and hung on "finalizing registry settings" or w/e with a periodic "clicking" noise every 5 mins or so that I have come to expect with seagate. never booted into windows. restarted and now it blue screens and restarts itself. trying safe mode but so far hung trying to load it seems.
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