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2nd Hard Drive dead in 2 weeks, need HELP!

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August 18, 2012 4:14:55 PM

I seriously need help figuring this out before I have a panic attack =(. I lost my secondary drive 2 weeks ago . It was a 4 years old WD but I recently built a new computer and transferred that HD to it. It took a month or so for the drive to start clicking. Then the HD I bought to be my new main HD (a Samsung Spinpoint 1TB) has started clicking and it's failing. Right now I'm too scared of turning the PC off because it might not spin again and I have no backup since I had to do backup for my other drive.

I need to know if these drives are just THAT bad or if I should be looking at something else. This place has brownouts etc all year long but I've had a Belkin UPS and a surge protector and I never had any power issues before this. However, I bought a Corsair 650 PSU to go with my new MoBo etc. Now 2 HDs are dead and sometimes the window panel fan turns on and off by itself. And it happened with 2 different fans so I'm wondering if something else, aka the PSU, is killing the HDs. According to HD Tune Pro the drive is Healthy (yeah, right) and it's not over-heating. The other drive was perfectly "healthy" too.

Im not sure if everything is fine here: http://i.imgur.com/ciOMO.jpg

Specs:

Corsair TX650 PSU
AsRock Extreme 3 Gen3 MoBo
EVGA 560ti Graphics card
Gskill 8GB RAM
Windows 7 SP1

Please help me figure this out. I just bought a 3rd hard drive WD Black 1TB off newegg but this is turning into a nightmare.
August 18, 2012 5:57:03 PM

I got an electricity usage monitor ("Kill a watt") so I went ahead and connected the power strip/surge protector that gives power to the Belkin 1100 VA UPS which my computer is connected to. With the PC+LCD Monitor+Modem connected it reads

143 Watts
126.8 volts
161 VA
1.28 Amp
60 Hz

I don't know much about these measurements but a friend just told me the voltage should be less than 125 but that my Belkin UPS should fix that and give the PSU "clean" electricity. Right now I'm torn between buying a new HD or a new PSU or a new UPS. Need advice =(.

Also, is 0.96 vcore voltage fine? It goes up to 1.0 and back to 0.96 again etc.
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a c 129 G Storage
August 18, 2012 6:10:56 PM

the voltage you want to watch is the 12v plus line. that powers the cpu and the hard drives. the first four year old drive i can see it just up and rip on you. (things happen). the new drive unless the shipping company dropped it a few times should last you a long time. i would see if a friend has a volt meter and see what the 12v reading is going into the hard drive. ps if you have any files or music you need use google email it gives you 4g of storage and it free. just email your files to yourself.
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a c 353 G Storage
August 18, 2012 7:58:42 PM

1st HDD failure, could be age, 2nd HDD failure could be the luck of the draw. and since 1st HDD was 4yrs old, hard to draw a conclusion. In general the saqmsung F3 are about the same relaibility as the WD Blacks. Infact I prefer the F3 over the WD black.

On voltages. HW Monitor looks fine. Myself I like to verify software readings with a DVM, at least initially.

DVMs are cheap an very easy to Use. About $18 at walmart. and Just google "how to use a voltmenter" You can measure the +5 and +12V at a open molex connector. Center two Black wire pins, Insert Black meter lead. The end RED wire is + 5 V and the Yellow (or orange wire at the Other end is the +12 V lead.
NOTE: THE +12V should be measured when the Computer is under Load, not at idle. You can load the computer very easily by running either Furmark (in a window, which also checks GPU), or By running Prime 95 in Blend Mode (Also check cpu and memory stability).

A couple of things on UPS.

They normally provide NO Regulation if AC is flucuating between around 95 to 125 VAC. Then it depends on the quality of the UPS, NEED to read fine print. Also, when the Voltage droops below a set point (need to read your manual) the UPS switches to battery operation. The output waveform is terrible on some AGAIN, need to look at your specs. For battery operation it should indicate NEAR Sinusoidal (Sine wave). Also some UPS are NOT recommended for newer PSUs that employ a PFC circuitry.

If infact you are causing the PSUs to prematurely fail (ie PSU, UPS, or MB) it could be hard to state which it is with 100% certainty. Would require a O'scope.

On your 126.8 VAC measured with a "$20" Kill-a-watt meter.
Yes I have one and like it, But accuracy might not be great.- LOL.
PS Just checked mine against a $200 DVM and it was very close, with in a Volt.
Mine states Max AC is 125 VAC.
And In general a 126.8 VAC input is BETTER than a 115 VAC input. TRUE max AC input to a PSU is probably at or above 130 VAC.
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August 18, 2012 8:33:33 PM

Thank you RetiredChief and smorizio! I will get a voltmeter as soon as I can. What about those 2 fans going on and off, could that also be something related to the PSU? They're just regular 80mm case fans with blue leds. I've tried 2 so far and I had to disconnect them because after a while they would just turn off and on again at random so the lights were annoying, and i dont have any fan controllers or anything that would automatically switch the fans off. Could that mean not enough power going to those fans?

About the UPS battery/surge protector, it's 5 years old and so far so good, but I'm not sure what to think anymore. I only have 2 drives, my GeForce 560ti and 3 fans connected to this Corsair 650w + a 22" ASUS WH226H connected to the Belkin 1100 VA 660watts UPS -- Does it matter if the PSU is 650w and I have other things connected to the Belkin UPS as well? I read that even if the PSU can go up to 650w, it only uses around 200-300 max with this kind of equip connected. Do I need a better UPS battery?

Here's the manual for this battery: http://cache-www.belkin.com/support/dl/614-07166-00_ups...
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a c 353 G Storage
August 18, 2012 9:37:25 PM

As to power> My I5-2500K w/6870 GPU, 16 gigs ram, 2 SSDs, 1 HDD, 1 BE-RE Blueray drive = 350 Watts Running furmark (So with games Less ).
Have too run but will look at Ups - 4 to 5 years is about make for UPS internal batteries, But does depend on charge/discharge cycles.

Fans going on/off could be a connection problem - NOT a PSU problem, If PSU +12 V rail is out long enough for fan to stop spinning - computer would have powered off.
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August 18, 2012 10:49:44 PM

my money is on the powersupply being bad
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August 19, 2012 2:24:25 PM

The only other suggestion I would have is whether you've knocked the case in the past few weeks. That caused my main HDD to fail last year.
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a b G Storage
August 19, 2012 2:54:22 PM

I would install "speedfan" and check your voltages there. (check your temps as well)
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a b G Storage
August 19, 2012 3:03:59 PM

Where did you get it? For boxing day sales a few years ago, I went to the Tiger Direct store and bought a new 2TB. Brought it home, delayed write fail right away. Brought it back, got another one, bad sectors within 20mins of copying to it, got another clicking. Also tried in different PC's with the 3rd one to eliminate PSU/MB corrupting it. Was just a bad, crappy batch that TD had. Took it back and bought another one elsewhere, been running fine for 2 years in a MAME cabinet on 24/7 in the same PC, so wasn't the PSU, wasn't the MB, was just a crappy batch of "C" grade HD's they were trying to dump in a boxing day sale.
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August 19, 2012 4:42:21 PM

MrGroggle said:
The only other suggestion I would have is whether you've knocked the case in the past few weeks. That caused my main HDD to fail last year.


I don't remember ever knocking the case but thanks, I'll keep that in mind!


Quote:
Where did you get it? For boxing day sales a few years ago, I went to the Tiger Direct store and bought a new 2TB. Brought it home, delayed write fail right away. Brought it back, got another one, bad sectors within 20mins of copying to it, got another clicking. Also tried in different PC's with the 3rd one to eliminate PSU/MB corrupting it. Was just a bad, crappy batch that TD had. Took it back and bought another one elsewhere, been running fine for 2 years in a MAME cabinet on 24/7 in the same PC, so wasn't the PSU, wasn't the MB, was just a crappy batch of "C" grade HD's they were trying to dump in a boxing day sale.



The Samsung Spinpoint I got off newegg on Black Friday. I didn't get to use it for 4 months or so, then it worked fine for 3 months. It started clicking after I woke up the pc from sleep. I hardly ever turn it off, just leave it asleep. The first drive did last 4 years and it was a Western Digital but it died the same way. Clunking noises after powering up the PC.

As an update to this post: The hard drive I bought 2 weeks ago (WD 1TB Caviar Black SATAIII) is also clicking at random times. I made a separate post for that because I want to run tests and need help reading results on that one HD before I return it. http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/288740-32-western-dig... . In this drive's case, I used a separate external enclosure to clone all my data from the dead Samsung (2nd clone I've made in 3 days, it's getting old lol). So it can't have been the PSU/Mobo but i guess it could be the UPS battery everything is connected to? I don't know, I'm at wits end here. I will have to replace the Sourge Protector Srip + UPS Battery + PSU and the 3 drives. Possibly get a SSD because this is insane. And it's a 3-months-old system.
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August 19, 2012 5:31:12 PM

anonymous1 said:
I would install "speedfan" and check your voltages there. (check your temps as well)


Thanks! Just downloaded it - Temps are all around 38-40 C for CPU/MoBo/drive - ambient temp is 80-85F

here's the 12v , Are those fluctuations normal?

http://i.imgur.com/ditmQ.jpg
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a b G Storage
August 19, 2012 5:35:22 PM

If the battery in your UPS is 5 years old, I would suggest you buying a new one, After checking to see if your PSU is a PFC supported model. Source one that will work with it, if it is. I've owned APC UPS's for over 10 years and never had issues, other than the batteries swelling after 4-5 years, and me needing to buy a new unit.
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August 19, 2012 5:46:11 PM

dingo07 said:
yes that's normal


Thanks! Does it mean I can rule out the PSU? Or should I still manually test the 12v with a voltmeter?



After launching APB Reloaded :: http://i.imgur.com/aVqHf.png
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a b G Storage
August 19, 2012 6:16:26 PM

If you have to buy a VM, then I wouldn't bother - one tenth of a volt is like a blink of the eye, power is always fluctuating +/- a couple tenths of a v

like RetiredChief said, you would ned an Oscilloscope to really know what's going on

another option, and I'm not sure if the software that comes with your UPS has this feature, is to look at the output in the software. I know APC Power Chute software provides a lot of useful information
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