Hard Drive Data Going to 0kb on GA-EX58-UD5

I have been having hard drive problems previously. Windows would consistently flag one of my drives as needing to be checked for consistency on startup, after time I noticed that this drive was loosing data and files were going to 0kb in size. As this problem was not happening on other drives, I assumed it was the drive and have since had it RMA’s.

I have now had a similar run in with the replacement drive, so I am starting to think that the problem might lie in the SATA drivers or something else.

On a recent boot, Windows flagged the replacement drive as needing to be checked for consistency. I skipped the chkdsk and let Windows start. Once in Windows I was unable to access the drive although it appeared under My Computer, albeit with only the drive letter, and not the previously designated name. I rebooted and allowed chkdsk to run. Chkdsk took 10-15 minutes to run, as thousands of file names wizzed by. The second half of this the phrase ‘recovering orphaned file’ preceded the thousands of file names as they sped past. After chkdsk finished and Windows loaded, I did a quick search and found that 200 some files on this drive had gone to 0kb. :fou:

Can anyone help me diagnose this issue? I am starting to think that the problem is not in the hard drive as this is two in a row (even though they are the same make/model). This replacement drive had not shown any problems for the previous ~two weeks that I had it installed.

My configuration:
GIGABYTE GA-EX58-UD5
Intel Core i7-920 Bloomfield 2.66GHz
G.SKILL Trident 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2000
SAPPHIRE 100281SR Radeon HD 5870
CORSAIR CMPSU-850TX 850W ATX12V 2.2
Western Digital VelociRaptor WD1500HLFS 150GB – OS Drive
Western Digital Caviar Green WD10EADS 1TB – Current Problem Child
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More about hard drive data ex58
  1. It could be two bad HDDs in a row. What SATA mode are you using in your BIOS? The choices are likely to be IDE, ACHI, or RAID. Have you tried using another SATA power cable? Another SATA data cable?
  2. The odds against you getting two bad drives in a row, showing the same symptoms, are such that, were it true, I'd run out and buy some lottery tickets first thing - you'd have to be in such an unlikely 'branch' of quantum probability (well - improbability) that anything could happen! :sol:

    Seriously though, the suggestion about power cable is something to check if you're using MOLEX to SATA adapters - thay have problems, and they're hard to diagnose - flex 'em one way - thay work fine - flex 'em another (or, worse, let 'em 'relax' for an hour in place) and they're defunct! However, I doubt that, as the common symptom for that set of troubles is a completely 'disappearing' drive, not data corruption...

    Most important question I can think of is what port(s) are you attached to? And, as above, are you using AHCI? Do you have SMART turned on, and do you have a way to monitor it?
  3. The following are values from the CMOS Setup Utility:
    HDD S.M.A.R.T – Disabled
    SATA RAID/AHCI Mode – Disabled
    SATA Port0-3 Native Mode – Enabled
    (Is there another SATA mode that I might be missing?)

    During the startup I can see the following flash by: RAID Bios 1.06.59 (I think it says SATA somewhere on this line also)

    The power cable seems to be okay, and I have had different drives plugged in using different power and SATA cables. I couldn’t say for sure if this problem happened twice with the same cable configuration. Also, I am using cable with a built in SATA adapter so that should cut down on any power issues.

    I tried using WD’s tool, when I started having problems with the first drive, to monitor hard drive health, but it does not work with Windows 7 x64. However, that drive was causing the ‘check for consistency’ message at each boot, this drive has only done it the one time so far (one too many though).
  4. First suggestion:
    Enable SMART in your BIOS; download one of these:
    http://www.passmark.com/products/diskcheckup.htm
    http://www.versiontracker.com/dyn/moreinfo/macosx/32454
    to 'read' the drive's condition...
    Second:
    ...still haven't posted which MOBO ports you are connected to! Makes a big difference in diagnosis...
  5. My OS drive and the drive that was most recently acting up are in the two SATA ports at the bottom of the motherboard. The OS drive is in GSATA2_2 and the drive that just had the problem is in GSATA2_3. According to my manual, this bank of connectors is running off the GIGABYTE SATA2/JMB322 controller.
  6. That's the first thing I'd nix... I always tell people to start with the ICH ports, and use 'em until you 'run out'! The jMicron controllers are best reserved for SATA connected DVDs, and eSATA ports. The Intels are much more 'robust', with infinitely better firmware/software support - as evidenced by the fact that the ICH throughput 'blows away' the new Marvell SATA3 hardware like it's 'standing still'... The jMicrons also have some problems (likely, driver oriented) with 'loading up' the deffered procedure call stack/queue, leading to degradation of audio/video.

    If you're intending to use 'straight' SATA (no RAID, no AHCI...), you want to plug your OS drive into SATA2_0, and the other into SATA2_4; this allows you to use both of the SATA controllers built in to the ICH; if AHCI or RAID - doesn't matter, as it'll only use one controller for all the ports anyway in those modes - just plug 'em in in 'serial' order, according to how you want your drive letters apportioned.

    On the "Integrated Peripherals" page of the BIOS:

    the first "SATA RAID/AHCI Mode" item refers to the ICH, and should be set to how you want them run; note that "Disabled" does not actually disable anything - it simply declares "neither RAID nor AHCI", and enables 'compatibility mode'...

    the second "SATA Port0-3 Native Mode" item also refers to the ICH, and should always be set to "Enabled", unless you're one of the approximately seven people who ever bought windoze ME:??:, as it's the last OS offering that does not support interrupt sharing...

    the rest of the items lower down on the page are for setting up the GSATA (jMicron) ports, which, as I've said, I wouldn't use for anything unless 'forced to', having 'run out' of ICH-connected ports...

    If you enable S.M.A.R.T. in the BIOS:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S.M.A.R.T.
    you can take a look at the diagnostic information your drives are always maintaining - unless RAIDing, in which case the data remains inaccessible...
  7. Thank you for the advice. Makes sense that the ICH controller would be better. I have moved my hdds over to this controller. I need to double check on those setting in the Bios, read up on and try out the S.M.A.R.T to take a look at that diagnostic information.
  8. bilbat said:
    The jMicron controllers are best reserved for SATA connected DVDs, and eSATA ports.

    If you're intending to use 'straight' SATA (no RAID, no AHCI...), you want to plug your OS drive into SATA2_0, and the other into SATA2_4; this allows you to use both of the SATA controllers built in to the ICH;

    ........ setting up the GSATA (jMicron) ports, which, as I've said, I wouldn't use for anything unless 'forced to', having 'run out' of ICH-connected ports...

    This is only a slight contradiction, I think. Use the jMicron controllers for eSATA and DVDs but you wouldn't use them for anything unless 'forced to'.?

    I'm reading your intent as being don't use the jMicron ports for eSATA or DVDs either unless you have to. Otherwise, use the Intel ports *only* for all connections.

    No?
  9. Well, I guess I've mis-spoken again and not made myself clear - that's exactly what I'd use them for, and right from the beginning, not once 'out of ports'; I actually keep a Seagate 1.5 on one of my jMicrons for backups, as I have six RAIDed WDs on the ICH, and to 'free' a port to get hot-plug on my front-panel eSATA, I'm forced to use an IDE-connected DVD...

    I don't really use the eSATA much, but it's handy to hook up drives for USB enclosures and machines to be built for other folks, for quicker initialization and partitioning. I'm old, and won't live long enough to be formatting Tb and larger drives using USB :sleep:
  10. Ahhh. Ok, thanks for the clarification. That makes total sense now.
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