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Hard Drive Failing?

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#1
My brother in laws laptop has been acting screwy today. It sounds like the hard drive is making clicking noises and he had his windows crash and go thru a re-configure screen.

My money is on his hard drive is failing, just double checking before I have him backup onto my external and stick a new one in there for him.
 

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#2
click of death
back it up NAO
 

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#3
Test it with some harddrive testing software.

You can use HDTune to do an error scan, or use SeaTools booted from a boot cd.

Clicking on a laptop drive is not always bad.
 
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#4
Grab Ultimate Boot CD and burn to CD. It has several testing tools on it, especially for testing ram and hard drives.
 

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#5
don't bother with the testing if its clicking then its near death
get what you need off the drive NOW because you don't have very long
 
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#6
just back it up first coz you never know next
then do test your hdd.
btw how long your hdd? over 3 years
 
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#7
I guess all of the ppl here yelling if its clicking its bad have never heard of parking the heads.
I have a dell laptop right now that will park with even the slightest bump i thought something was wrong, tested it drive is fine.
 

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#8
don't bother with the testing if its clicking then its near death
get what you need off the drive NOW because you don't have very long
No it isn't, laptop hard drives can click during normal use.

I guess all of the ppl here yelling if its clicking its bad have never heard of parking the heads.
I have a dell laptop right now that will park with even the slightest bump i thought something was wrong, tested it drive is fine.
+1

This! Desktop drives can do it now too.
 
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#9
I guess all of the ppl here yelling if its clicking its bad have never heard of parking the heads.
I have a dell laptop right now that will park with even the slightest bump i thought something was wrong, tested it drive is fine.
it clicks when it sitting still on a level table. Apparently the clicks are new too, so that plus the random windows crash and reconfig im gonna assume hd as I cant think of any other hardware that would cause that
 

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#10
it clicks when it sitting still on a level table. Apparently the clicks are new too, so that plus the random windows crash and reconfig im gonna assume hd as I cant think of any other hardware that would cause that
If the clicks are new, that is a different story.(Though sometimes they can be unnoticed until something is going wrong, then every little noise is "new".)

I say backup the data to be safe, but test the drive aftwards to confirm it is or isn't failing.
 

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#11
Test it on another comp and back it up!
 

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#12
and he had his windows crash and go thru a re-configure screen.
= drive is FUBAR
never take a chance with your data always backup FIRST then worries about the hardware fault
 

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#13
check the builtin hard drive diagnose test in the bios! if it fails your in trouble! still opened it up if its a sata drive connect it to pc and test it on another pc in windows or try formatting or hiding the sectors BUT still if its making noises replacing is the best option :)
 

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#14
and he had his windows crash and go thru a re-configure screen.
= drive is FUBAR
never take a chance with your data always backup FIRST then worries about the hardware fault
I agree with backing up first then worrying about the hardware fault later.

But a windows crash and then going through a re-configure can be a number of things. There have been a few viruses that have become popular in the recent few months that cause this behavior, I've had at least a machine a week in my shop for at least the past 3 weeks with a varient of this virus. It really just causes the OS not to boot, and because Vista and Win7 are stupid, when it detects that the system didn't boot, the default option the next time the machine is turned on is to run through Windows Recovery.
 

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#15
no the default option is to ask ( if to boot in safe mode ect ect ) and its exactly what should be done
or would you rater it ignore the unexpected power down and attempt to boot anyway ?
causing all kinds of bad things to happen to the file-system .. *cough windows 9x"
so what we have is

system lockup or reboot
+
hard drive making a clicking sound
= drive fault
EOFS

I can't stand the blame-a-virus mentality there is no virus or software that I know of that can cause clicking(clicking = more the one click)
ALWAYS CHECK hardware FIRST then worrie about possible software issues
hardware issues > cause software issues not vise versa
 

jd82

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#16
There some malware which pretends your computer has crashed and claims lots of silly things like the drive has failed. In this case it sounds like a simple case of a dying laptop drive, it is extremely common.
 
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#17
my sister sent me a text today saying it BSOD's now to a c0000021a fatal system error.
 

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#18
Why is it still powered up, the longer a suspect drive is powered up the hard any data recovery will be. Laptop drives cost less than £30, it is not worth the risk. Slave it, try and get data off it and buy a new drive.

When you slave it you can use Cystal Disk to have a look at the SMART data, you can always do a surface scan just to confirm a dying drive too but but I would try and back up any data first.
 
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#19
Sounds like the "Head is Dead!!!" xD That Rhymes!
BAck up as long as you can and dont run any HDD intense applications!!!
 
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#20
Why is it still powered up, the longer a suspect drive is powered up the hard any data recovery will be. Laptop drives cost less than £30, it is not worth the risk. Slave it, try and get data off it and buy a new drive.

When you slave it you can use Cystal Disk to have a look at the SMART data, you can always do a surface scan just to confirm a dying drive too but but I would try and back up any data first.
Its not my laptop, safe to say my sister and brother in law arent as computer literate as me and I dont live with them soooo..
 

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#21
no the default option is to ask ( if to boot in safe mode ect ect ) and its exactly what should be done
Not it isn't, when a Win7/Vista machine fails to boot the default option is "Launch Startup Repair (recommended)", which looks just like the original setup screen, essentially, and could be mistaken for a "re-configure screen".

Yes, check the hardware, I don't think anyone said not to, but I'm also saying this behavior is easily caused by a virus or some other software issue(anything that would cause a bluescreen at boot would cause a windows to go though a "re-configure" screen), and the clicking can be normal with laptop(and some desktop) drives. You want to go on about how it can only be hardware issue, when from experience I know that isn't true, it can be hardware issue or it can be a software issue. Clicking doesn't immediately mean dead drive, you are totally wrong there. All of these symptoms I've seen happen from a software issue. And I've also seen people complain about noises that have always been there as being "new", the fact is that human nature doesn't notice things until something goes wrong, then every little noise is "new". I've had customers come in with machines that had viruses that made it look like the hard drive was failing(reporting bad sectors, files on the desktop and my docs all gone, no programs would open and every one that was tried to be run would report being corrupt), and they complain about how the computer makes a loud humming noise from time to time that it wasn't making before. It was the CPU fan speeding up as the processor got hotter, and I know for a fact it has always done it because that is normal behavior, but they claim it is new because they just noticed it when they actually started paying attention because something had gone wrong.
 
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#22
1) backup drive to another drive .imaging it would be easiest, Acronis True Image for example.
2) Run tests. a quick test would be run HDTune's speed test. if its extremely slow then something is wrong. but don't solely rely on that. run other tests as well (this will be time consuming) if it passes those test then check for viruses/spyware, etc.
3)replace drive and load the image of the last drive to it if you determine it is the drive itself.