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Old 01-16-2014, 02:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Hard Drive Issues!

Hey everyone, about two weeks ago my computer would no longer boot up and I have come to find it is not recognizing the HD installed anymore. Now, I have read about the death of hard drives though I would like to point out that it has never made any odd sounds, or done anything unusual at all.

One day it worked fine.
Went in the next morning and turned it on and it fails to boot.

Computer as a whole doesn't make any unusual sounds, just hums from the fans running.

I do not have a lot that HAS to be saved, though there are a few picture folders I wish I could retrieve cause yes, im that idiot that did not back up anything...and we learn the hard way don't we.

So, long story short, I have a hard time identifying it as a malfunctioning problem due to every other story i have read online talks about those "sounds" and it always ran like a pro.

Here's my issue: To have it diagnosed is $70. I can buy a new one 1TB 7200 rpms for $60 online.

So I can not see a point in taking it in somewhere just to tell me "yup, it's not working" so is it worth my time to buy a new SATA cable and see if that could be the issue?
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Old 01-16-2014, 03:08 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hard Drive Issues!

You can diagnose it yourself with our help .

What's the error message you're seeing on screen? Does BIOS recognize it? Have you tried plugging the SATA cable into a different port? Have you plugged a different power connector into it? Can you feel it spin up when you turn the computer on (put your hand on it and see if you can feel it vibrating, like the platter inside is spinning)? If you have an external enclosure, or even a different computer, you could hook it up and see if the other computer recognizes it as well.
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Old 01-16-2014, 03:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hard Drive Issues!

Thanks for quick the reply.

Error message is "DISK BOOT FAILURE, INSERT SYSTEM DISC AND PRESS ENTER",
BIOS does NOT recognize it.
I have tried two other SATA ports with no luck, though the ROM drive is plugged into a SATA port, and is recognized.
It does vibrate so it appears to actually run.

So I think the SATA ports are fine, appears the power cords are fine, Hard Drive runs without any sounds...so...it appears fine.

I do NOT have another PC or anything to test out the actual hard drive.

Any other thoughts then? Im still pondering this SATA cord though I have heard it is very, very rare that the SATA cord is fried inside. The plugs on both ends seem secure and in perfect condition, would have to be an internal wire issue.
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Old 01-16-2014, 03:32 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hard Drive Issues!

One extra embarrassing bit of info: When I took the side of the tower off, I am AMAZED at how much dust and huge chunks of "dust bunnies" are stuck to nearly everything, I mean, I blow out the fans with a can of air occasionally but I had no idea the inside had become this dirty.

Is it possible at all that a heavy amount of dirt cover would be causing some kind of issues with all parts inside getting good connectivity and all working properly?
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Old 01-16-2014, 03:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hard Drive Issues!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Egarim View Post
Thanks for quick the reply.

Error message is "DISK BOOT FAILURE, INSERT SYSTEM DISC AND PRESS ENTER",
BIOS does NOT recognize it.
I have tried two other SATA ports with no luck, though the ROM drive is plugged into a SATA port, and is recognized.
It does vibrate so it appears to actually run.

So I think the SATA ports are fine, appears the power cords are fine, Hard Drive runs without any sounds...so...it appears fine.

I do NOT have another PC or anything to test out the actual hard drive.

Any other thoughts then? Im still pondering this SATA cord though I have heard it is very, very rare that the SATA cord is fried inside. The plugs on both ends seem secure and in perfect condition, would have to be an internal wire issue.
Most likely it's dying then. If BIOS doesn't recognize it, then it may be totally dead. If you can, test it on another computer (friend? relative?) and see if it is recognized on their system... If not, then you know you have a dead drive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Egarim View Post
One extra embarrassing bit of info: When I took the side of the tower off, I am AMAZED at how much dust and huge chunks of "dust bunnies" are stuck to nearly everything, I mean, I blow out the fans with a can of air occasionally but I had no idea the inside had become this dirty.

Is it possible at all that a heavy amount of dirt cover would be causing some kind of issues with all parts inside getting good connectivity and all working properly?
Possible, but not really in the sense of disrupting connections. More so in the fact that dust traps heat, and makes it harder for hot air to escape from components. Basically acts like as insulation, keeping heat trapped. It's a good idea to blow dust out fairly regularly so that doesn't happen.
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Old 01-16-2014, 08:31 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hard Drive Issues!

Understood. Well, two final questions then.

If the hard drive runs and makes no horrible sounds, would it still be dead just in the sense that something with the inner components other then a mechanical issue has become toasted?

Secondly, if I try to test it on another PC and it is NOT recognized, I have heard for hundreds of dollars there are places that can still somehow do data retrieval. If I keep the HD packaged up safely and put away, would I be able to retrieve data years later?

I am in no financial situation to pay that kind of money for a few treasured pics and other random items i'd like back.

If all else fails, I shall chalk it up to learning lessons the hard way. Many men have come before us as they say, and leave tiny clues so that we may learn from them...unfortunately it does not help when your lazy and procrastinate.

Thanks for all your help. I really do appreciate what you do.
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Old 01-16-2014, 09:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Hard Drive Issues!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Egarim View Post
Understood. Well, two final questions then.

If the hard drive runs and makes no horrible sounds, would it still be dead just in the sense that something with the inner components other then a mechanical issue has become toasted?
If anything, the least that could have happened would be the controller card on the hard drive (the exposed pc board on the bottom of the drive). If that's what's wrong, it can be replaced, but you would have to replace it with a controller card from the exact same model, and usually revision of board as well.

Quote:
Secondly, if I try to test it on another PC and it is NOT recognized, I have heard for hundreds of dollars there are places that can still somehow do data retrieval. If I keep the HD packaged up safely and put away, would I be able to retrieve data years later?

I am in no financial situation to pay that kind of money for a few treasured pics and other random items i'd like back.

If all else fails, I shall chalk it up to learning lessons the hard way. Many men have come before us as they say, and leave tiny clues so that we may learn from them...unfortunately it does not help when your lazy and procrastinate.

Thanks for all your help. I really do appreciate what you do.
In regards to the data recovery... yes, it costs around a minimum of $500 to retrieve data off of a drive like that (if it's not something wrong with the platters that is). Yes, you should be able to put it in an anti-static bag and keep it if you so choose to and for some reason would like to try and recover the data at a later date.
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