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Old 01-01-2008, 10:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Computer Fried 2 HDDs in Less then one year.

Im trying to figure out what my problem is, just full out crappy harddrives or computer is frying them. Heres my story. I purchased a maxtor 200gb ATA harddrive for my dell computer. My old 40gb in it worked for around 2 years no problem, but i needed more space. After about 6 months with the 200gb, one day windows wont start cuz that sections corrupt. I end up having to send it to seagate and get a seagate 200gb HDD since they bought out maxtor. Work fine until today. I bought half life 2, installed it then i restarted my computer. Then after my bios loaded, it was stuck at the black screen with the flashing cursor. I then flipped out. Then i tryed a repair install to see if maybe a windows file just got misplaced or corrupted during my half life 2 installation. the repair install was a failure so once again, my harddrive is fried. My dell is a compact under monitor style case. So it has a long PSU. There is an exhaust fan on the psu which is place right under the bottom side of the HDD to keep it cool. So overheating was not the issue that caused this. I have narrowed it down to crappy harddrives or electrical issues. The reason i have to believe it may be electrical issues is because the pc has only a 180w PSU (Dell claims there PSUs are low power, and 180 is eq. of a normal 300w ^.^) Anyway, this is powering 1) 1.8ghz P4 socket 478 2) DVD rom drive 3) PCI fx5200 4) 5.1 pci sound card 5) 200gb harddrive. I'd love any input youd like to give on helping me with this situation. I am definately going to build a powerhouse pc in the near future though.
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Old 01-02-2008, 12:51 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Computer Fried 2 HDDs in Less then one year.

Are you sure the hard drive is actually dead? Windows may have broken beyond a repair install. Windows is known to do that, because Windows crashes a lot. Get a bootable Windows, BartPE, or Linux LiveCD that has a disk checking utility (ScanDisk, fsck, etc...) and run a scan on the hard drive. If it returns that the disk is OK, then Windows just got corrupted, else if it does report an error, replace the disk, though you may have a PSU issue. If the fan is blowing on the HDD, it may overheat. If the PSU is weak, it may put out fluctuating or surging power which could damage the drive's circuitry.

Most likely the drive is actually fine, I'd check it first.
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Old 01-02-2008, 02:28 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Computer Fried 2 HDDs in Less then one year.

Yes i can still get to my files, but the section windows always gets installed to is bad. I ran the chkdsk command in the windows repair console, it came back good with only one error, which was the windows files i take it.
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Old 01-03-2008, 04:57 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Computer Fried 2 HDDs in Less then one year.

Update on things.
I ran repair console, fixed the file it said, then when i restarted it said it was still missing or corrupt. I ran a repair install on my windows xp version. It worked. Got everything back to normal, but when i shut down the pc. Then starte back up today, blacks screen with cursor again. This is exactly what happened with the previous harddrive i had to send in. Any way i can fix this? cause i do not want to have to got thro the process of moving all my files to another harddrive, changing the rights on everything, reinstalling everything, redownloading a bunch of stuff, especialy cuz i only have access to dial up at my house.
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Old 01-03-2008, 05:00 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Computer Fried 2 HDDs in Less then one year.

I ran the chkdsk in the windows repair console, and it came back all fine, with 1 error. Any help would be appreciated, my day has been going sooo bad, and this is only making it more irritating.
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Old 01-03-2008, 05:47 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Computer Fried 2 HDDs in Less then one year.

Well you answered the first part of your question yourself...Maxtor. Are you sure the 2nd drive isnt just a maxtor that got relabled seagate?
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Old 01-03-2008, 09:29 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Computer Fried 2 HDDs in Less then one year.

Seagat bought out maxtor, so it could be. What im still trying to find out is if there is anyway that i can install windows, and have it not fail again when i power down compeltely. Like i stated early, have to get everything i want off onto a small HDD i have, then reinstalling all i got and being on dial up doesnt help either.
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Old 01-05-2008, 03:56 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Computer Fried 2 HDDs in Less then one year.

180w PSU??? I didn't know they made them that low??? 400w PSU's are very cheap I would reco picking one up

Newegg.com - COOLMAX CA-400 ATX v2.01 400W Power Supply 115/ 230 V - Retail
$6.99 after mail in rebate!
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Old 01-05-2008, 09:41 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Computer Fried 2 HDDs in Less then one year.

Except he cant get a regular power supply in that case. If you have a Windows 98 floppy disk. Boot off of that without cdrom support and at the A prompt type fdisk. Then select 4 and see how many partitions are on the drive. Then delete all the partitions and make a new active partition. Then run your windows install. At the format part of the install do a full format not the Quick format.

Oh and that does seem like a skimpy power supply for sure.
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