Dead HDD ???

  Ollieole 07:54 02 Mar 2005

Last night I took the plunge and tried to upgrade my Sony Sonic Stage to v2.3. All went fine until it had "successffuly installed and your machine will be rebooted".

On rebooting the windows XP load screen came up and the PC just hung for a while. It then automatically rebooted and again and again. I tried getting into safe mode but got a blue screen advising that "one of your disks requires to be checked for consistency". I allowed it to do this but part way through it hung. I started it again, got the same message but this time it seeed to finish its checks and I got into Windows safe mode. However, it was not in English but just a load of gibberish symbols.

Immediate thought was that the software upgrade had somehow corrupted windows so I booted the XP disk and ran repair. All seemed to go OK but got into windows safe mode with the same gibberish. Tried again but this time on the initial boot up screen the raid driver was recognised and the two Maxtor disks were recognised but one disk was marked "error occurred". It then moved on from that screen to a blank grey screen and zero activity. That is now as far as it will go

Anyone got any ideas what the problem may be?

P4 3.2, Asus P4C800E Deluxe, 1Mb Ram, 2 x Maxtor 120Gb in Raid 0, Windows XP Home

Many thanks

  harps1h 08:01 02 Mar 2005

i would take out the offending disk if you can identify which one it is and do a repair then. if that fails try reformatting

  Jeffers22 08:19 02 Mar 2005

Taking out one drive will not allow you to achieve anything. A RAID 0 array provides data striping (which spreads out blocks of each file across multiple disk drives) but no redundancy. This improves performance but does not deliver fault tolerance. If one drive fails then all data in the array is lost as it is spread across the drives.

It is hard to see how upgrading software could, in itself, cause a disk error, but it would seem that for whatever reason, one of the heads may have crashed.

It looks a bit like a fresh start and a rethink on the RAID score to RAID 0+1 perhaps.

  Ollieole 08:52 02 Mar 2005

Yeah it's Raid 0 so as you say removing one ain't going to work

The Maxtor disks have always been very noisy (compared to a WD one bought a couple of weeks ago for an old PC that is whisper quiet) - more so than any HDD I've had in the past. I'd always put it down to the fact that there were two operating at the same time but maybe that wasn't the case. I've also read that recently Maxtor drives have had a higher failure rate than other HDD manufacturers - though I have always used them up to now and never had a problem.

Maybe the burst of activity in upgrading the software was the final straw for a failing drive?

Just wondered if anyone had any other thoughts as to what may be the problem and maybe it's not a HDD failure?

Not too worried about the Raid 0 set up - all of my data is backed up - it's just a pita to reinstall windows/drivers/software/data etc but that would be the same in the event of a non Raid single disk failure.

Just a thought, although there is double the chance of a HDD failure in a raid set up - is a disk more likely to fail if it is used as part of a raid set up - can't see why but just wondered.

  Jeffers22 11:30 02 Mar 2005

Can't see any reason why a disk would be more likely to fail under RAID, it's not really working any harder after all.

Agree with you about the noisiness of Maxtor Disks. My 80Gb Plus 9 (I think) started life off very noisily, settled down after a bit though. My recent 120Gb Maxtor was much quieter.

Have you got Partition Magic? If so what does it tell you about the state of the drive. It may be the partition table.

Another thing to try might be some sort of disk doctor and disk recovery software that can be run from a command prompt. See click here

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