Hdd troubleshooting Input please.
A friends's computer that won't boot, passed to me to have a look at, of course it has all of her photos from holiday and the kids n stuff not backed up as always.
Its a Seagate 500Gb sata drive, 7200 rpm just under 4 years old. Jumper hasn't been moved since first install.
System wouldn't boot: normally, in safe mode, nor from the the vista install disc (64 bit btw)
As a result no recovery tools are available, no cmd prompt, no system restore etc
Adjusted some BIOS settings, reset BIOS, changed board plugs, power leads, no dice.
Connected the drive via internal connections to 2 seperate other working systems,
Could not access the drive as both systems seemingly attempted to boot the problem hdd instead of their default setting drive, regardless of BIOS configuaration. I attempted this as both normal and safe mode, turned on boot logging but found no helpful clues except those that point to either crcdisk.sys or tunnel.sys
When loading in safe mode, it displayed crcdisk.sys as the last item on the list, at which point the system would hang indefinetly. Indeed when attempting to load the two test systems with the problem drive attached they would crash in the same fashion.
A caveat to this was that if the hung system was shut down via the power button, 5 secs depress, the same problem could be repeated. if a soft reset was used, the drive would no longer be recognized in the BIOS, the recovery CD would then load starting at directory X:/ with no C:/
Personally I thought that if a drive didnt appear in BIOS it typically pointed to a dead hdd, but this only occurs with a soft reset, a hard shutdown sees it reppear in the BIOS every time.
Created a vista recovery cd (no OS) wouldn't boot,
Tried using Knoppix to access drive, loadng screen came up then crashed to a snowy analog tv style screen.
Have just obtained an external sata caddy, placed the drive within and hot plugged it to a booted, working system, going through control panel, admin tools, disk management, i can see the problem hdd and all partitions. However a couple of opened windows later the live system will hang and explorer.exe will crash.
It does not appear in the My computer screen, I was hoping if I could get a scandisk on it at least but alas it has not come to pass.
Even attempting to go through disk management will result in a system hang shortly.
At this point I'm settled on it either being a physical failure of the hardware, although it makes the right sounding clicks and humming noises, generates heat as per usual, Or such a severe corruption as to be unrecoverable. (How it got in this state if it is a corruption is a mystery to me in itself)
With my current equipment and the state of the drive I couldn't even format it If I wanted to.
I haven't yet tried freezing or slamming the drive as a last ditch data recovery method and in all fairness I'm pretty convinced that the drive is now scrap.
However I am keen to hear if anyone has encountered anything similiar, suggestions to try out that I haven't already listed or any other thoughts any of your clever people may wish to put forward.
I'll be gearing up to argue with seagate warranty dept in due course, that is if it is indeed a hardware failure, somehow I'm still not totally convinced that is the case.
I'm just trying to help a mate out and I'm out of ideas, any of yours would be read with gratitude =)
Thank you for taking the time to read me.