Laptop hard drive

  taffy101 21:41 10 Feb 2008

I have been having trouble with the hard drives on a Samsung laptop. About one year ago the hard drive started clunking and after having rebooted a few times it seemed to have failed. It gave the message 'Operating system not found' on boot up. I looked in the BIOS setup and under Primary Master it stated - None.

I fitted another hard drive and everything was working fine for about eleven months. Then I got another hard drive failure with the same messages (no clunking this time though).

After some deliberation I fitted another hard drive and things seemed fine until the other day when if failed again with the same message 'Operating system not found'. It had only lasted a month.

Could a fault on the laptop be causing these hard disc failures? I am loathe to fit another hard drive to the laptop.

  PalaeoBill 23:06 10 Feb 2008

Did you try any of the drives in another laptop or PC?

It is not impossible that the laptop could be to blame, just improbable given that it was fine for eleven months after the first replacement. I think that you may have just been unlucky (generally if a new component is going to fail, it does so in the first month). However to answer your question, the IDC cable could be faulty or the IDE controller or the power lead or the supply to the power lead. The action of disconnecting the drive may be clearing the fault.

I would be tempted to cut my losses and buy a new laptop, there are so many bargains to be had now on what will almost certainly be a a much higher spec machine.

  taffy101 23:31 10 Feb 2008

Yes I did try the first two hard drives in another machine and they could not be detected as a drive. I haven't yet had a chance to check the latest drive to fail.

I agree with you that it would be best to cut my losses and get a new laptop. I also didn't mention that the DVD drive in the laptop developed a fault about three years ago (the laptop itself is five years old) - it will read DVDs fine but will not see CDs at all. I have been using a external drive since. I had posted a question about this fault on Helproom previously but to no avail.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 11:30 11 Feb 2008

it will read DVDs fine but will not see CDs at all.

often use a second laser or realign the laser to read cd / dvd either laser dead or alignment electronics dead, scarp drive.

  taffy101 12:57 11 Feb 2008

The reason I mentioned the CD drive is I wondered if the faulty drive could cause the problems I am having with the hard drives. Would it be advisable to remove the CD drive completely? Or as PalaeoBill said scrap the laptop?

  computerboy1000 13:06 11 Feb 2008

don't scrap the laptop, there is a great piece of software that you can use inorder to get the os back on all your drives it is called spinright click here or click here

please note that i have used this and it has saved my life quite a few times

  Totally-braindead 13:08 11 Feb 2008

I'm not saying it couldn't be something to do with the laptop thats causing the failures as its certainly possible but like PalaeoBill I think its unlikely because it worked for 11 months.
I assume the drives you fitted were new and if so I think you have been terribly unlucky. The last time a drive failed on me was maybe 5 or more years ago and that was my first failure.
The DVD drive as said has 2 sets of lasers and its common enough for one set to fail but the other to continue to work.
Bearing in mind that you now need 2 drives and that the laptop in question is now 5 years old I would be tempted to get a new one.
You don't have to off course but how much will it cost to replace the drives and will something else fail? Newer laptops are cheaper and faster now as well.

  PalaeoBill 18:28 11 Feb 2008

If it was a desktop PC with these symptoms I would be very interested in the mains power supply to your house, spikes etc, but given it is a laptop, the battery should be smoothing out all of that sort of thing.
I'm with Totally-braindead, I think that you have just been terribly unlucky.

  taffy101 19:50 11 Feb 2008

Thanks for those answers. I'm still undecided about what to do with the laptop but am tempted to replace it.

With regard to the spinrite program, would it still work if the hard drive is not being detected in BIOS setup?

  computerboy1000 22:14 11 Feb 2008

you have to take the drive out and put it into another computer !! Spinright is only 187k !!! so you might end up with more than one copy when you download it, the site is secure

  Totally-braindead 23:08 11 Feb 2008

Never heard of spinrite at all. What do you mean you might end up with more than one copy? That doesn't sound that good.

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