HD doesn't always start

  wee eddie 11:51 13 Feb 2003

IBM Aptiva K500 running W98se.

Several times of late.

When I hit the "On" button. The system light and the HD light come on then the HD light goes off after a few seconds.

This happened a good half dozen times this morning. When it finally boots, it does not run Scan Disk or mention a faulty boot. It just starts as if the previous attempts to switch on had never occured. Thereafter everything works normally.

My office is unheated and it has been quite cold and slightly damp, of late.

Any ideas?

ps Couched in simple terms.

  Philip2 14:55 13 Feb 2003

If your HD was not working for what ever reason it would come up as disk boot failure it would not just start up on it's own later the LED comes on when HD is searching for data and is not showing all the time.
It might be worth while doing a format and full OS reinstall a pain,you might have picked up a virus.

  wee eddie 17:49 13 Feb 2003

No virus either.

Tomorrow I will check all the connections.

If HD dying. Will I have to replace with a similar HD as Recovery Disk Drivers based on current HD?

This click here does not really help. The Computer is to old for IBM help. The Seller, local small trader, did a bunk about 3 months ago.

Have gone to Zip Drive file backups on a daily basis. Just in case.

Could sub-zero temperatures in my office be part of the cause. It's predecessor ran 24/7 for nearly 5 years, as I was told cold start-ups could be a problem.

  wee eddie 17:24 14 Feb 2003

This will be of no interest to anyone other than those that are experiencing similar problems.

Usual back-up of Files - each Monday.
Current back-up regime - each evening.

This morning - Cold and slightly frosty - Office temprerature is the same. 5 Switch-on's and Turn-off's to get started. Windows did not indicate that it had been Closed Down incorrectly. Therefor: it had not been turned on, I think!

During the day, I turned it on and off a number of times. There was a successful first time response on each occasion.

I opened the Case and made sure that all contacts were tight. I have Norton System Works, so ran Disk Doctor and Speed Disk. There were No reported errors!

I will update tomorrow.

  wee eddie 10:46 15 Feb 2003

This morning - Frosty, sunny, dry. Yesterday was a little damp.

Heated Office before attempting Turn-on. Success first time.

Thoughts - although all connections were made. One moved in about 1/8 inch when pushed hard, it might have worked a little loose and/or dampness/cold was causing a problem there. Cold may have affected the HD. Defrag may have solved problem, but I did that regularly anyway although the fragmented count was high.

Thanks Philip2 - I did not fancy a format etc. so tried everything else first.

I shall close this and will only post if the problem returns.

  AMD 4 ever 12:04 15 Feb 2003

Defrag does not help the sectors, I think you mean scandisk?
Anyhow it is possible when the drive is cold the arm maybe sticking, I think it is recommended that the ambient temperature of the PC should not fall below 10°C...Could be wrong here.
With Hdd being so cheap , it wouldn't hurt to get an extra hdd, and swap them over possibly, use the old one as a slave!

  wee eddie 11:46 17 Feb 2003

but like the curates egg, only in parts.

Warming the room for an hour or two seems to work. Better for me, as well. Just means that I cannot access my diary untill after 10am.

During Defrag, the option to display the process (Map) is there, although it slows everything down, so I rarely use it. It displays assorted types of sectors including (Bad) damaged ones.

  wee eddie 12:12 19 Feb 2003

"Memory size changed"

However memory size appears to be unchanged.

I have read that this means that one of the memory sticks is failing, but which one or should I replace both.

Visited Crucial site. They have my Model listed. It is an IBM Aptiva 2170-27G. However there are about a dozen 2170's listed but not a "-27G"

Should I ring them.

How do I find if PC100 or PC133 suitable or should I just go for the cheaper if I am replacing all my memory.

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