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Hard drive is making a clicking noise...


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#1
TeadHead

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Hey guys.

I have had my share of hard drive problems in the past but haven't seen something like this before.

I've been using the hard drive for about a year now and never had any problems at all.

Yesterday I recorded a TV program from my cable box to my PC and everything went fine (I've done this plenty of times in the past). This is a big file. A couple of gigs (1080i HD)

I open the recorded show in a media player and it plays just fine. However, once it gets to 19m 28s it freezes and I can hear small click coming from my hard drive that repeats every 2 or 3 seconds. The noise goes away when I close the media player.

I installed a different media player and the same thing happens at the 19:28 mark.

I tried to copy the file to a new hard drive but once it gets to about 55% the clicking noise happens again and I can't copy the file.

I can play this file just fine if I skip past the 19:28 mark. So the file appears to be fine, just not at that 19:28 point in the video.

Is this a hard drive problem? or just something wrong with this file?

Since this problem started happening, I have written and read over 40gigs worth of data and everything seems to be perfectly fine. The hard drive is fast and there is no noise or read errors at all. It's just that one file that is causing the problem.

So I wonder if this really is a hard drive problem? Should I be concerned and get a new hard drive? I've already backed up any important files just in case.

Any ideas? Suggestions? Advice?

Edited by TeadHead, 23 November 2008 - 09:07 PM.

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#2
jt1990

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It sounds like the file could be corrupt...The fact that it freezes at that specific time in multiple players indicates that to me, at least.

I would try running a chkdsk on the drive. The easiest way to do this, is to go to My Computer, and right click on the drive. Click properties, and then the tab that says tools. Click the button that says Check Now in the error checking section. In the window that comes up, I would select both the check boxes, and then click Start. The computer will most likely tell you that it can't continue because it needs access to files that are still in use, and ask you if you would like to run the chkdsk at the next startup. Click yes, and reboot the computer. When it boots up, it should go through and check the disk and files for errors and corruptions and will attempt to fix them. It can take quite a while to complete - especially if you have a large drive with lots of data on it. Just be patient and let it complete. Report back what you find.
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#3
TeadHead

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thanks for your reply jt1990.

I went ahead and ran chkdsk (leaving "Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors" unchecked). The scan took less than 60 seconds to complete that way and probably didn't accomplish much but it didn't find any errors. I didn't do the full scan because I had another thing in mind that I wanted to try first.

I did a secure delete of the file because I know that would overwrite every bit of that file and if there was some hard drive error where that file is stored then it should give me the clicking noise during the overwrite. The secure delete went by smoothly and successfully.

I then had about 45gigs of free space on that drive. So I filled it up to the max with good files from another hard drive and then read them back bit for bit. All the files were fine. No clicking noise. And the hard drives seems to be OK.

I guess it was just a corrupt file all along. I always thought clicking noises coming from a hard drive means death will come soon. That's why I was worried.

Well, I am prepared for a crash if something does happen. So I guess that's the most important thing. But for now I will go on as if everything is fine and just do backups more often than I usually do.

Thanks again.
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#4
jt1990

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Good idea :)
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