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Elusive bad sectors

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November 19, 2011 10:59:52 AM

Hi, guys. Something strange is going on with my Seagate 500GB hard drive. I was installing a videogame and the power went out. On the next startup, Hard disk sentinel showed 56 bad sectors. I was shocked as there were no bad sectors before that. So, i decided to run HDD regenerator. I ran it in DOS and it only showed "delays", 13 of em to be precise. No bad sectors at all. I regenerated all the delay sectors and they disappeared. Logged in again and now hard disk sentinel was showing 64 bad sectors, saying the contents of those sectors were moved to spare area. And today it is showing 72 bad sectors. Im not having any problems with the hard drive whatsoever; been playing battlefield 3 for hours :sol:  . But this increasing number of bad sectors "undetectable" by HDD regenerator is really annoying. I scanned with check disk on startup and that showed nothing either, maybe cuz the file system is NTFS.

HELP!!!

More about : elusive bad sectors

a c 104 G Storage
November 19, 2011 7:11:32 PM

Hi there,

I am always concerned when you begin to see "bad sectors" on a HDD. Have not used "Disk Sentinal" but have extensively used and own HD Tune Pro, which is one of the gold standards in HDD monitoring.

HD Tune is a Complete HDD testing utility, the basic version is free, & there is a 15 day free trial of HD Tune Pro.
The URL for HD Tune is www.hdtune.com

Download a trial version, and run the "Health Tab" section, and the "Error Scan" section which will scan the complete surface of your HDD and report any errors (takes a couple hours).

If there are significant errors, I'd take appropriate backup action. If there are no problems using HD Tune Pro, and Chkdsk /r, run at startu,p doesn't report significant bad sectors, then I wouldn't be concerned.

Having the power go out when downloading or installing an application is no fun and may corrupt open files in the process, but shouldn't be generating bad HDD sectors. If "Disk Sentinal" was running in the background, possibly something could have happened to that utility program in the incident.




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November 19, 2011 9:57:13 PM

John_VanKirk said:
Hi there,

I am always concerned when you begin to see "bad sectors" on a HDD. Have not used "Disk Sentinal" but have extensively used and own HD Tune Pro, which is one of the gold standards in HDD monitoring.

HD Tune is a Complete HDD testing utility, the basic version is free, & there is a 15 day free trial of HD Tune Pro.
The URL for HD Tune is www.hdtune.com

Download a trial version, and run the "Health Tab" section, and the "Error Scan" section which will scan the complete surface of your HDD and report any errors (takes a couple hours).

If there are significant errors, I'd take appropriate backup action. If there are no problems using HD Tune Pro, and Chkdsk /r, run at startu,p doesn't report significant bad sectors, then I wouldn't be concerned.

Having the power go out when downloading or installing an application is no fun and may corrupt open files in the process, but shouldn't be generating bad HDD sectors. If "Disk Sentinal" was running in the background, possibly something could have happened to that utility program in the incident.


HD tune also shows 72 reallocated sectors in the "Health" tab. I ran the "error scan"and it showed 0.0% damaged blocks. All green. Took about 1 and a half hour. So, all good?
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November 19, 2011 10:17:45 PM

Not entirely unusual. The HDD will just ignore the bad sectors and HDD nay be reduced in size, but act normally
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a c 104 G Storage
November 20, 2011 12:55:47 AM

Hi again,

Agree with Delroy, some reallocated sectors are not unusual, as the HDD manufacturers factor in a certain of sectors to be reallocated when bad over time.

An important step, and something you can do with HD Tune, is recheck it periodically, say after one and two week's time. If you don't see any change, that's encouraging, If you see the number of bad sectors increase, then it's time to back up the drive, and replace it.

Please compare the bad sector count using "Disk Sentinal", and report back how they compare now, and after a week or so's time.

Also what is the make and model # of your drive, and how old is it?
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November 20, 2011 11:08:46 AM

John_VanKirk said:
Hi again,

Agree with Delroy, some reallocated sectors are not unusual, as the HDD manufacturers factor in a certain of sectors to be reallocated when bad over time.

An important step, and something you can do with HD Tune, is recheck it periodically, say after one and two week's time. If you don't see any change, that's encouraging, If you see the number of bad sectors increase, then it's time to back up the drive, and replace it.

Please compare the bad sector count using "Disk Sentinal", and report back how they compare now, and after a week or so's time.

Also what is the make and model # of your drive, and how old is it?


The drive model is ST3500413AS. I bought it 4 months ago. Hard Disk Sentinel is also showing the same 72 reallocated sectors. I'm thinking may be they are just logical bad sectors and if/when i format the drive and reinstall windows, they will be gone. Will report back if anything changes :)  .
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a c 104 G Storage
November 20, 2011 1:03:15 PM

One additional test you can do on this drive, is with HD Tune, run the read "Benchmark" tab test. That will give you the read transfer rate, with a 6GB/s SATA III drive, you should get 100 - 125 GB/s read rate, or higher. It will slowly drop in rate as the HDD size gets larger along the horizontal axis.

You can then save the screenshot of the graph or copy/paste from the clipboard to word or other image appl to print out for a hard copy, to compare its performance down the road to make sure there is no problem.
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