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Old 15th Jul 2005, 09:36 PM   #1
Arethusa
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Hard Drive Failure!

So, first my power supply died. Antec, I shall curse you from my grave. I waited a week for a replacement to arrive. A day after I got my power supply installed, I started having serious speed problems with my computer. Everything got extremely slow and choppy. I assumed this was software related, and figured I'd just live with it for a few days before reformatting. The next day, it failed to boot, saying that hard drive failure was imminent and that I should back up immediately— impossible for obvious reasons. So this rocks! Good bye, 36 gigs of music! Good bye, writing! Good bye, some digital work I've done! Good bye, gig of CS:S models!

But just for the hell of it, I dropped the drive off with a friend of mine to see what she could do with it. She ran some diagnostics and came up with this. I can't afford a clean room rebuild for data revoery (prices start and $400 and fly upwards rather quickly), so I probably lost everything, but just in case, let me know if you think I can salvage anything without dropping half a grand on data recovery.

Quote:
-Hooked up the apparently defective Fireball HDD as the secondary
master (primary master is a Western Digital 1200JB)
-Computer was set to boot from the WD HDD. The Fireball was
recognized, but the system would not boot.
-The Fireball was also recognzied in the BIOS but repeated restarts
still would not allow the system to boot, even though it was set to
boot off of the WD HDD.
-Upon another restart, when the system displayed the error message to
insert the system disk and press enter, I attempted to switch the
jumper on the Fireball - it was originally set to Master (not a good
idea, but anyway) - with a pair of tweezers. As soon as the tweezers
touched the jumper (and simultaneously the pins), a green LED lit up
on the underside of the Fireball. I thought that it might be a power
problem that had just needed jump-starting, but the system still
wouldn't boot.
-A diagnostic program for the Fireball came up with the following:

MAXTOR POWERMAX LOG FILE
-------------------------
Maxtor PowerMax 4.21
Date Tested: 07/10/2005
Serial Number: 196103039660
Model Number: QUANTUM FIREBALLP AS60.0
FirmWareRev: A1Y.1300
Cylinders per Drive: 28741
Heads per Cylinder: 16
Max LBA: 117266688
SPT: 255
FE: S01
Installation Confirmation: FAILED
Diagnostic Code: 64696968

MAXTOR POWERMAX LOG FILE
-------------------------
Maxtor PowerMax 4.21
Date Tested: 07/10/2005
Serial Number: 196103039660
Model Number: QUANTUM FIREBALLP AS60.0
FirmWareRev: A1Y.1300
Cylinders per Drive: 28741
Heads per Cylinder: 16
Max LBA: 117266688
SPT: 255
FE: UK0E02
Advanced Test Result: FAILED
Diagnostic Code: 64696978

MAXTOR POWERMAX LOG FILE
-------------------------
Maxtor PowerMax 4.21
Date Tested: 07/10/2005
Serial Number: 196103039660
Model Number: QUANTUM FIREBALLP AS60.0
FirmWareRev: A1Y.1300
Cylinders per Drive: 28741
Heads per Cylinder: 16
Max LBA: 117266688
SPT: 255
FE: S01
Burn Test Result: FAILED
Diagnostic Code: 64696968

The codes indicated that the drive was "failing" and that I should
back up any information on them as soon as possible, if possible.

Also, an install confirmation on the same diagnostic program gave the following:

Power connection: pass
Interface cable connection: pass
Master/Slave jumper: pass
BIOS extention support: pass
Partition info: read fail
SMART enable function: fail

-I also noticed that the Fireball took a very long time to slow down
after the computer was turned off.
-The green LED did not consistently remain on; it was on for a little
while but ano more than a couple of minutes, and then not at all
afterwards.
-After finishing the diagnostic tests I disconnected the Fireball and
stored it in a static bag.
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Old 18th Jul 2005, 01:26 AM   #2
Lt.
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wait, if it failed to boot then it is not clear to me what said that hard drive failure was imminent?
unless your motherboard is the bee's knees that doesnt seem like something bios would tell you.. bios just kind or craps out: BOOT FAILED.


in any event that diagnostic seems to hint at the drives partitions being all screwed up, but otherwise the drive seeming functional (bios can detect it and all its info). did your friend even try putting the drive as slave and booting windows off her known good drive?


if after doing so you can see it as a d: disk or whatever, then sit tight and back it up to your new drive!

but if you cant see it, you might be able to save it with a linux boot disk.



if you cannot see a device on hdb or where ever you put it then the drive is dead. if you *can* detect a device on hda/b then partman can probably set the bootable flag on partition 1 and perform any other partition repair the drive needs.

compared to windows, partman is a complex, tough, commandline tool. but it can actually save your machine from what most people consider a complete and total "OS not detected"-style failure. however short of a data recovery company, partman is usually your last hope.





oh and ive wrecked a 200gb disk before so i know what its like. you just go "shit". frown once. then start your life over.
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Old 18th Jul 2005, 02:39 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lt.
wait, if it failed to boot then it is not clear to me what said that hard drive failure was imminent?
unless your motherboard is the bee's knees that doesnt seem like something bios would tell you.. bios just kind or craps out: BOOT FAILED.
S.M.A.R.T does that kind of thing.
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Old 18th Jul 2005, 06:03 AM   #4
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RAID is always good. With the kind of capacity you can get these days (seriously, who needs 500GB?) you'd be much better off getting 2 slightly smaller disks - shouldn't cost much more than one big disk - and put them in RAID 1. That is, if you have a RAID controller.
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Old 18th Jul 2005, 10:35 AM   #5
Arethusa
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Lt: It's not the BIOS telling me that failure is imminent; it's SMART. And now it just tells me that the drive fails when trying to boot with the drive as secondary master.

I haven't tried (secondary or otherwise) slave, but I have trouble believing that'd do much. You really think that might make it work?

As for a linux boot disk, any suggestions? I'm really pretty (unforgivably) ignorant when it comes to that.

In any case, partiion failure'd be nice, but with SMART telling me that the drive fails, I'm getting the feeling it's worse than that.

Crowze: I've been thinking about a couple 500g SATA Seagates in RAID 1 for my next machine, but I was hoping that my machine would last to the end of the summer before I did all that. It didn't.
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"Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take a boat in the air you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of worlds. Love keeps her in the air when she oughtta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keels. Makes her home."
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Old 18th Jul 2005, 11:45 AM   #6
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Well it's the BIOS S.M.A.R.T funktion. The HD has sensors and stores values, the BIOS reads them and tells you about the sorry state of your drive.

RAID 1 is nice but doesn't protect against software errors, malware and OSI layer 8 problems. Good to have and would have sufficed in this case but doesn't replace backups.
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Old 18th Jul 2005, 12:32 PM   #7
Arethusa
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Yeah, that much I realize. I take it, in this case, there's nothing I can do in terms of software and would have to try swapping out the logic board?
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"Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take a boat in the air you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of worlds. Love keeps her in the air when she oughtta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keels. Makes her home."
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Old 18th Jul 2005, 01:21 PM   #8
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Did you try to unplug it and leave it overnight to see if it works for another few hours the next day? I know that sounds retarded but I managed to save data from a laptop drive that way... I guess the chances are about the same as winning the lottery, though. Damn; I could have been rich.

I don't know that much about swapping circuit boards because I never had to do it or stumbled over a nice article when I had some spare time. However, you would need a board from a HD with the same firmware. Else it might work or cause a nuklear explosion.
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Old 18th Jul 2005, 01:55 PM   #9
Arethusa
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It's been over a week since it failed, so no luck there.
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"Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blickt der Abgrund auch in dich hinein."

"Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take a boat in the air you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of worlds. Love keeps her in the air when she oughtta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keels. Makes her home."
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Old 18th Jul 2005, 06:21 PM   #10
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Well I just talked to a friend and swapping boards is possbible ........ god knows if thats reliable.
-How.
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Old 19th Jul 2005, 05:00 AM   #11
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How about turning off the SMART function in BIOS?
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Old 20th Jul 2005, 02:59 PM   #12
Lt.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nightmare
How about turning off the SMART function in BIOS?
so your motherboard *is* the bee's knees.
if your BIOS does have smart support and this is what's telling you the drive cannot be booted, then go with nightmare's suggestion and turn it off.




linux newbie huh? well if you feel up to it, http://www.sysresccd.org/download.en.php is a bootable disk, just download the 100mb .iso and "burn image" with nero.


linux crash course:
master disk is /dev/hda
slave disk is /dev/hdb

c:\ drive is hda1. if you're on slave, make that a into a b.


to view your partition data probably use the command:
Code:
fdisk /dev/hda
p
if something has gone wrong at this point and you cant find a device on either a or b, the drive is dead.

if you do get the table to (p)rint out, you can try to access your data, first (q)uit out of fdisk with the following command:
Code:
q


to access the data on a partition on a disk use the commands:
Code:
cd /mnt
mkdir mydrive
mount /dev/hda1 mydrive
cd mydrive
Ls
ls will print out all the files it found on your c:\ drive,



if you had a c:\ and d:\ on one drive, then d:\ would be 6, (ie, hda6)



either fdisk, or the GUI program(!!) called QtParted can be used to repair the partition table.

may the force be with you?
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Old 20th Jul 2005, 05:51 PM   #13
Arethusa
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It's an Asus A7V266-E. Not crap, but a bit old and certainly not the best out there. That said, I definitely don't try and skimp on motherboards, considering how important they are.

If it refuses to boot with SMART on, should I try with SMART off? I'm really worried about doing more damage to the drive— at least, before I can locate an identical drive and try swapping logic boards.
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"Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blickt der Abgrund auch in dich hinein."

"Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take a boat in the air you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of worlds. Love keeps her in the air when she oughtta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keels. Makes her home."
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Old 20th Jul 2005, 08:57 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arethusa
If it refuses to boot with SMART on, should I try with SMART off? I'm really worried about doing more damage to the drive— at least, before I can locate an identical drive and try swapping logic boards.
Well, if the data isn't critically important there's no harm in waiting until you can try swapping that logic board. If the fault is in there instead of the mechanical parts you've solved the problem.

I just suggested booting with SMART off so you could try to transfer everything to a sound HDD right away.
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Old 20th Jul 2005, 09:05 PM   #15
Arethusa
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I may try it (and the boot disc), depending on whether or not I can find a Quantum Fireball Plus AS60.0. Not exactly the most common of old hard drives, these days.
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"Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blickt der Abgrund auch in dich hinein."

"Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take a boat in the air you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of worlds. Love keeps her in the air when she oughtta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keels. Makes her home."
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