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Disk Read Failure press ctrl alt del

Last response: in Storage
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July 13, 2011 7:22:35 PM

I have a 640 Gb Western Digital Caviar WD6400AAKS-22A7B0 Hard Drive. I have used it with Windows XP 32 bit and Windows 7 32 and 64 bit. I have gotten a disk read error on boot on occasion with all versions I have tried. My solution to the problem at first was to reinstall Windows just to see it happen again. After a couple weeks or so it would happen again and after one too many clean installs I found the real solution to my problem. All I have to do when I get the error message is turn off the computer unplug it and then remove SATA and power cables from the Hard Disk and plug them back in. I then turn the computer back on and Windows usually boots right up, but once in a while it states there was an error and asks how I would like to start Windows. I have been choosing to Start Windows Normally and it has been working fine. So has anyone else experienced this problem? Is my hard drive failing or is it something else? Either way it is still working. I know booting into safe mode would be a good suggestion but what would tell me what the problem really was?
a b G Storage
July 13, 2011 7:33:27 PM

The first thing you do is Pull any USB that's plugged on the Computer Out... If doesn't work, go into BIOS and set your WD First boot device... Also, If this doesn't work, Do what you did and download Crystal Disk Info and check if there's any error and if there is, do a CheckDisk which came with Widows Utilities... Hope these thing can help :D ...
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July 14, 2011 7:12:43 PM

Thank you for the tip. I just turned on my PC a few minutes ago and got the error again, but like before I just disconnected/reconnected the SATA cable and Windows booted right up with no other error messages this time. I will change boot options and see what happens then run chkdsk.
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a c 117 G Storage
July 14, 2011 9:17:10 PM

Replace the disk now unless you want to deal with paying a few thousand for data recovery. Not worth taking any chances when a 1 gig drive is $50-60. I'd also use new SATA cables. checkdisk will do nothing to fix any errors, it will just try to mark sectors as bad and tell windows not to write to those areas. A very bad way to dealing with things. It's like painting over a hole in the road without filling it.
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Best solution

a b G Storage
July 14, 2011 11:42:24 PM

Why pay thousands when you can solve a problem with $0.00? He ain't ganna be pulling out his MoBo/CPU/RAM/VideoCard/PSU so how is it ganna be thousand? The CheckDisk mark the sector bad so there wont be any problem when that bad sector is blocked... If the HDD is dead, you can buy another one but no need when it's still working and there's a way to solve it... Also, I think I just figured how to solve it, Take out your HDD and plug it onto another computer and do a Full Format and it should solve the problem but it just clean the Sector which could be the cause of the problem... Also Quick Format just removes all your files but not clean the sector!...
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a c 117 G Storage
July 15, 2011 3:24:04 PM

legendkiller said:
Why pay thousands when you can solve a problem with $0.00? He ain't ganna be pulling out his MoBo/CPU/RAM/VideoCard/PSU so how is it ganna be thousand? The CheckDisk mark the sector bad so there wont be any problem when that bad sector is blocked... If the HDD is dead, you can buy another one but no need when it's still working and there's a way to solve it... Also, I think I just figured how to solve it, Take out your HDD and plug it onto another computer and do a Full Format and it should solve the problem but it just clean the Sector which could be the cause of the problem... Also Quick Format just removes all your files but not clean the sector!...


You never want to keep using a drive that develops errors, it's just asking for trouble. Sure you could reformat it, but any drive that starts with errors has a much greater chance of a future full failure. If your parachute rips, you going to patch it or replace it?

At which point when your drive is dead, you are dealing with data recovery which can cost a few thousand. I don't think you read things too well.

It's much better to stop using the drive now while you can get to the data for backups, get a new drive to use, and copy your data to the new drive. Or you can just format the drive again like some people say and cross your fingers.
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October 4, 2011 11:11:24 PM

Not that big a deal. I will just do a full format next time.
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October 4, 2011 11:18:38 PM

Best answer selected by think4.
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a c 117 G Storage
October 5, 2011 2:06:11 PM

Even a full format will not fix a bad disk. Like I said before, you are masking the issue not fixing it. Do you have backups of the drive? If not, you need to make some because a drive that starts to show errors has a much greater risk of failure.
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October 13, 2011 12:45:07 PM

Solved a related problem:
Dell D400 laptop running Windows XP
Cloned hard disk 100 GB C: drive onto a 149GB partition of a 320GB drive attached to a USB port via adapter cable (using xxclone).
Swapped clone into laptop and it booted for a few days, then stopped booting.
I learned that Windows XP cannot boot properly from a partition larger than 137GB or thereabout; but after it boots, it can access larger partitions.
Apparently my 149GB partition worked until Windows wrote a scratch file after it booted normally that was above the 137GB boundary. Trouble is, next reboot the critical file cannot be reached.
I put my original boot disk in laptop, attached the 320GB drive onto USB adapter, restarted Windows XP, then used "EASEUS partition manager to shrink my "new 149GB" partition to 130 GB, then the remainder of drive I let be a separate partition around 160GB. Put the 320GB drive into laptop with its reduced size partition and it booted! I only shrank the partition and did not replace any files at all.

Summary: 149GB partition with Windows XP booted for a few days, then stopped booting; I shrank the partition to 120GB with a partition tool but replaced no files in the partition, then the disk booted.

Lesson -- C: drive boot partition must not get near the 137GB boundary. 130GB was found to work.
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a c 117 G Storage
October 13, 2011 4:41:45 PM

tomtom9 said:
Solved a related problem:
Dell D400 laptop running Windows XP
Cloned hard disk 100 GB C: drive onto a 149GB partition of a 320GB drive attached to a USB port via adapter cable (using xxclone).
Swapped clone into laptop and it booted for a few days, then stopped booting.
I learned that Windows XP cannot boot properly from a partition larger than 137GB or thereabout; but after it boots, it can access larger partitions.
Apparently my 149GB partition worked until Windows wrote a scratch file after it booted normally that was above the 137GB boundary. Trouble is, next reboot the critical file cannot be reached.
I put my original boot disk in laptop, attached the 320GB drive onto USB adapter, restarted Windows XP, then used "EASEUS partition manager to shrink my "new 149GB" partition to 130 GB, then the remainder of drive I let be a separate partition around 160GB. Put the 320GB drive into laptop with its reduced size partition and it booted! I only shrank the partition and did not replace any files at all.

Summary: 149GB partition with Windows XP booted for a few days, then stopped booting; I shrank the partition to 120GB with a partition tool but replaced no files in the partition, then the disk booted.

Lesson -- C: drive boot partition must not get near the 137GB boundary. 130GB was found to work.


Where did you hear about the partition limit? I have worked on many computers with way larger drives than 137gig. Our main systems at work now come with 160 and 250 gig drives, all work fine with XP.
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