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Dead or deader?


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#1
rch427

rch427

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I have a homebrewed (not by me) P4 desktop, running Win XP Pro. It had been working fine until about a week ago, when I started getting a "S.M.A.R.T. error" notice at boot. It gave me the option of trying to start normally, or to have it search through my drive to find errors. I did that once, and (after about 15 minutes of processing) it found a few hundred sectors of my HD that apparently were messed up. I had to reinstall a couple of apps that now didn't want to work, and I backed up most of my data, but kept using the computer; I'm not in the position right now to put in a new HD.

And so I limped along for a while, until today. I was using PhotoShop (and had a couple of Firefox windows open) when suddenly, PhotoShop just "went away". Worried that it might do it again, I shut it down, to let it rest for a few minutes, but when I went to restart, it refused to load Windows. It would give me the SMART error message, offer me the option of starting normally, in Safe Mode, or booting off the network. No matter which I selected, it would just go into a loop--very slowly going through line after line such as this:

multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)_windows\system32\NTOSKRNL.exe

...after which it would just go back to the error message about not being able to start Windows properly. I unplugged it again, let it rest for a minute, then tried again. This time: nothing. No sound of the HD turning, no lights on, nothing at all.

Any suggestions? Just how screwed am I?
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#2
gerryf

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the SMART warning was the harddrives way of telling you I AM DYING REPLACE ME RIGHT AWAY

Running the chkdsk bought you a little time. As more parts of your disk died you were losing more and more data


So, what is your question? You simply cannot continue with this harddrive....you might be able to run chkdsk /r from a recovery console and squeeze another couple days out of it, but you must bite the bullet and move on.
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#3
rch427

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Actually, I just noticed that the LED on the mobo was still on, so I tried swapping power supplies, and now I can at least get to the "SMART error has been detected" screen. However, it still just loops back to trying to start Windows, no matter what I do.

Also, I should mention that, since I bought this thing used, I don't have Windows installation or troubleshooting disks, or I'd give System Recovery a try.

When I first started getting the SMART error, I did a little research and found that the SMART error reporting process is apparently far from reliable. (As one poster wrote "I've yet to have a hard drive manifest issues through SMART. On the other hand, I've had lots of false positives, including a hard drive that's been running almost continuously for the last four years that pops up a SMART error on every reboot.")

It seems equally foolish to plunk down $100 for a new HD, install it and all that, just to find that you're that one in 5 (or whatever) that were misinformed. Nevertheless, I DID back up my vital data, and I'll replace the HD this Thursday, the first chance I'll have to go buy one.

In the meantime, could you please let me know how to--as you put it--squeeze another couple of days out of it? How do I access the Recovery Console and/or run Chkdsk /r?


Thanks
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