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HDD Failure?

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June 11, 2012 9:23:28 PM

Hello,

I've been experiencing what I believe to be HDD failure, or, possibly Power supply failure.

The computer will randomly reboot, usually when I'm playing a video game. But it's not consistent. Some days i get no reboots, some days i get over 3.

I've been gathering data with HD Tune Pro 5.00 - to see if it is legitimately HDD failure, the drive is quite old, but the power supply is also that old. I'm quite confident it's not malicious software.

when i bench-marked it with HD Tune Pro 5.00 I found that about 100 GB of my HDD was accessed at roughly 1.8MB a second. If I was playing a game and this happened, i figured it would crash the computer.

What do you think? I'm currently doing other scans also, and will post my results.

More about : hdd failure

a b ) Power supply
a b G Storage
June 11, 2012 9:37:34 PM

i dont belive a slowing hard disk would crash your machine. random reboots in games could be overheating/bad drivers/software, or a bad power supply as u mentioned.
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June 11, 2012 9:46:25 PM

Tinytox said:
Hello,

I've been experiencing what I believe to be HDD failure, or, possibly Power supply failure.

The computer will randomly reboot, usually when I'm playing a video game. But it's not consistent. Some days i get no reboots, some days i get over 3.

I've been gathering data with HD Tune Pro 5.00 - to see if it is legitimately HDD failure, the drive is quite old, but the power supply is also that old. I'm quite confident it's not malicious software.

when i bench-marked it with HD Tune Pro 5.00 I found that about 100 GB of my HDD was accessed at roughly 1.8MB a second. If I was playing a game and this happened, i figured it would crash the computer.

What do you think? I'm currently doing other scans also, and will post my results.



It sounds more like an overheating issue. If any major components get too hot (your cpu or gfx card), your computer will turn off to protect those components. Is it rebooting, or just shutting off?

Check your event logs to see if there are any red error messages. (to do this, go to Control Panel - Administrative Tools - Event Viewer). Check the Application and System logs in particular.
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a c 713 ) Power supply
a c 265 G Storage
June 11, 2012 9:46:29 PM

Yes most likely power issue or heat. Clean your computer internally and pay special attention to Heat sinks and fans. Post your full system config as well.
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Anonymous
a b ) Power supply
a b G Storage
June 11, 2012 10:14:05 PM

a BSOD would be a symptom of a HD failure. rebooting would be heat or power issues as rolli59 stated.
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June 12, 2012 10:12:39 AM

It is a definite reboot, not power-down.
I do have something that reads overheating in "speedfan" and other heat-identifying programs - Though I couldn't figure out what it was and it never seemed to previously cause reboots.. It's "Temp 3" in speedfan, and I can find nothing more about it. it doesn't seem that anything is overheating and I'm not sure what i could be.

This shouldn't be an overheat issue. I've somewhat recently installed a new heatsync/fan combo as well as reapplying thermal paste (AS5), though I may have layed down a bit much, it shouldn't be a deal breaker.

I do dust it with compressed air now and again, and my heat sync is properly clamped down. I've monitored my computers heat levels while playing games, they don't seem to get out of control. except the alleged "Temp 3" which I hear could be a phantom reading.

I'm running on a fairly new GFX card, but it doesn't suck much power, and the reboots should be consistant if its a overdraw on the power supply.. though a shotty power supply could possibly still be the issue.

My event logs had nothing helpful in them, I've also used WhoCrashed to get an idea on any dumps, but being that I'm not having a BSOD.. I'm not really getting crash dumps.

I guess I could attempt a reinstall, but that would really suck if it IS the HDD.
I guess I should look into getting a new PSU and HDD to play it safe. They honestly, both really need to be replaced.
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Anonymous
a b ) Power supply
a b G Storage
June 12, 2012 11:51:26 AM

you are not looking at the HD getting hot. which would be causing the crash; not a hot cpu/gpu.
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a b ) Power supply
a c 353 G Storage
June 12, 2012 1:53:08 PM

1) For PSU, have you looked at your voltages (ie the +5v and the +12 V. If not try CPUID HWMonitor. Specs for +5 V is 4.75->5.25 V; for +12 V is 11.4 V -> 12.6 V (I use 11.6 V as a Min. Need two checks one at idle, and one under load. The difference between idle and load for the +12 V is that it should not drop more tha 0.3 V. For load you can use prime 95 blend mode, which will also verify NO memory or CPU errors. The other program I use is Furmark (run in a window) this will also load the =12 V and check your GPU.
This is NOT a conclussive PSU test as it will not show if you have exccessive Spikes on the rail.
ALSO When running prime95 KEEP an eye on CPU temperatures. To check PSU only need to run for 15 Min. to check CPU/Memory stability need to run for a MIN of 2 -> 4 Hours.

There are programs that you can run to verify the integraty of the HDD (Looks for bad sectors). for Example: with a command prompt (Dos window opened with admin) you can run chkdsk /R. The /R tells chkdsk to locate bad sectors and to relocate data if sector is bad (if it can).
You can type cmd in the START menu search box. Then Rt click on cmd and say open with admin.


To see what switches are avalible type chkdsk /?

You may get a message saying that it requires a reboot to run.

On that Temp 3. What is it when the computer is first powered on (after sitting for an extended period of time. If it looks normal and starts climbing then may not be a bogus temp. If it just jumps right up to "OUCH) and stays fixed then is a bogus reading.

If No problems noted with PSU and No Bad sectors, probably a Driver conflict.
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June 13, 2012 5:22:27 PM

The temp on everything is amazing except for that Temp3.
Currently Idle my PSU readings are:
+5 - (Current) 5.03, (min) 5.03, (max) 5.03
+12 - (Current) 12.03, (min) 11.90, (max) 12.03

And my intensive PSU readings
+5 - (Current) 5.03, (min) 5.03, (max) 5.03
+12 - (Current)12.03 (min) 11.90, (max) 12.10


I can't imagine what kind of Driver conflict I would have. I don't have many unnecessary drivers running. Wouldn't a driver conflict prompt a BSOD?

Allegedly my GPU was getting a little toasty during all of this. my CPU stayed nice and cool though. 55C should still be a reasonable temperature for my GPU, right?
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June 13, 2012 5:26:14 PM

55C is really low for most new cards. What card do you have, and how intensive is the game (what game, settings)?
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a b ) Power supply
a c 353 G Storage
June 13, 2012 5:51:53 PM

1) PS voltages look OK. There can still be a problem with older PSU (ie spikes on the rails), but the ONLY way to rule them out is replacement with a know good PSU.

2) Have you run chkdsk yet. May be time consumming but should be done. Most are familar with a sector that is dead - but there is also the possiblilty that the sector is not reliable, that is it may read correcty 90 % of the time, but the other 10% it does not. It only takes one Bit (say a zero that gets read as a 1) to mess things up.
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June 13, 2012 7:26:08 PM

My GFX Card is Nvidia Geforce 8400 GS

It ran more intensive games than this without problems too.
The current game is Eden Eternal - on the lowest settings.

It got to 60C over the course of a few hours of intensive gameplay.

It's not that much of a taxing game however, the card runs smooth and inside is relatively dust-free, as i do open the case and dust it once in a while.

To be honest, it hasn't crashed AT ALL yet today, which is quite strange. It seems to do it without any exact reason, though it is usually while playing an intensive game.


chkdsk - Yes, I've run it about 3 times actually, just incase. Every once in a while after a crash I'll get frustrated enough not to use the PC anymore and I'll throw it on chkdsk. It actually seems like it helps, then it crashes again and I doubt it did any good.
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June 13, 2012 7:42:28 PM

Yeah those temps are more than acceptable. You're monitoring the temps WHILE playing right? Temps drop almost instantly after you stop.

Otherwise, I'd probably say it's your PSU.
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a b ) Power supply
a c 353 G Storage
June 13, 2012 8:15:24 PM

When you run chkdsk with the /R does it report any problems.
If you run it day x and it finds some, then a week or so later you run it again and it now finds additional error - then that indicates the drive is failing.
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June 14, 2012 5:57:32 AM

I would have thought it was my PSU based on everything I've done thus far. =/ , But it does sound possible that it could be the HDD too.

I usually walk away from the PC when I do a CHKDSK because it takes like 2 hours from start to finish, but i never saw it report any errors, I just figured if there were some errors it would fix them. is there a switch to make it dump a log of results or anything like that?

Edit: Windows 7, 32 bit.
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Best solution

a b ) Power supply
a c 353 G Storage
June 14, 2012 12:23:47 PM

Did not see a specific switch that you could designate a log file filename,
SEE: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/2172-63-win7-chkdsk-f...

As I indicated, your voltages look good, BUT that Does NOT conclusively rule out the PSU. Some Monthes ago someone had simular problems and voltages looked good, But infact did turn out to be the PSU. Reason I stated, the ONLY conclusive check is Replacing with a KNOWN good PSU. The average person just does not have the expensive Test hardware to truely test a HDD - ie O'scope and load bank.

Also found:
.. In Windows 7 after you run chkdsk, open the Event Viewer and navigate to Windows Logs / Application.
.. In the right side section, look for:
.. Source: wininit
.. Event ID: 1001
.. Double click this event and select the Copy button on the lower left corner of that dialog.
.. Open Notepad and Paste the results.

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June 14, 2012 8:59:14 PM

Thanks again, I checked around for this already actually, and was unable to find any logs in the event viewer for it. I looked for it listed under 4/5 different source names.. I have no logs of it =/

Then, if i continue to have these problems with my computer, I'll have to try replacing the PSU and see if it solves it. Fortunately, Fry's Electronics has an amazing return policy, and I can return it if I'm still having problems.

Thanks again for all your help RetiredChief. You stuck with me through the whole thing :) 
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June 14, 2012 8:59:23 PM

Best answer selected by Tinytox.
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a b ) Power supply
a c 353 G Storage
June 14, 2012 10:24:24 PM

Best of luck, Hopes the PSU solves the problem.
Keep in mind ther are some PSUs that are best used to prop the door open (they should never see the light of inside a computer.
Just do a google sure on the PSU.
Corsair are normally what I buy, seasonics are great and Antec makes some good one.
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June 17, 2012 11:40:56 PM

Thanks again, I'll go with a corsair when i give it a shot.
Time for an hour drive to Frys! :p 
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July 6, 2012 8:42:57 AM

Zombying this thread. Sorry.

So- My PSU died all together and I placed an older but unused PSU in it as replacement, it works, and the computer fired up. I also did a nice clean install of Windows 7 and detached as much hardware as possible. Currently I am only using a USB wireless mouse, USB keyboard, Ethernet, Back audio, and front audio port, as well as VGA, hooked up into my GFX Card.

I found that my microphone was crashing my computer INSTANTLY when plugged into my USB hub.
I also found that i crashed more frequently when my USB hub was plugged in, regardless of if stuff was plugged into the USB hub.

Now that I have replaced the PSU, though, It's still crashing frequently when the PC is under some form of stress. Seemingly most frequently when I'm running Winamp and Eden Eternal (A MMO game, I'm running it at minimal settings, too.)

If the HDD was failing, i should see it in the software i used to test it. I -should- get a dump for this, right?
The RAM should be good, it's fairly new, and if it was the problem, i -should- get a dump for this too. (Right?)

The PSU doesn't seem to have been the problem, the HDD looks okay, the external hardware should be fine, the software seems okay. Now I'm getting concerned that it may be my Mobo? I can't afford to replace it, it's not in production so it's like $300 wherever I could even find it.

Any input now? Technically I have a PS3 HDD (Which is basically a laptop HDD) And I could plug that in and test for a while with it, but, It seems unlikely that my HDD is failing according to everything I've heard.

Ugh.

Edit: I don't think it's a confliction between the game and winamp, either. I've never heard of anyone having that problem.
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