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Old 03-21-2009, 03:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Dead Laptop Hard Drives

Hello All,
This is my first post, so hello to everyone and thanks in advance for any help you can give me. Here's my problem:
A friend of mine had his hard drive fail on a Compaq Presario M2105us. He bought an OEM -IDE replacement at TigerDirect. I reinstalled the new HD and installed XP pro on it. I installed SP2 and got 3/4 of the way thru SP3 and the laptop died-went to a blank screen. Re-booted and the error said that there was a bad HD. Ran the bios HD repair utility and that said it was bad. Tried reloading XP and it failed during the reformat-"damaged Drive". Got a second HD from TigerDirect and reformated......error screen appeared saying that the HD was damaged. I then ran the bios HD utility, which stated that the HD was ok. Tried to reformat and got the error screen again. Is it possible that we got 2 damaged drives in a row? Is there something else I should look for? The HD is a Seagate Momentus 5400.3, 40GB IDE, the old-original HD is a Seagate Momentus 5400.2, 60GB IDE.
Thanks for any help that you can give me.

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Old 03-21-2009, 10:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Dead Laptop Hard Drives

This sounds strange.... if you ever fix it let me know, I had a computer do this to me once, but it fixed itself after a week (that was an old 286, though).

Just out of curiosity, how do you format a drive with it not loading? Is there an option in the BIOS?

Is it at all possible that the power connection is loose but still semiconnected? And also if you need HD Tools, I check for Freeware Progs on for utilities. Most of the time they will tell you the problems. They wont all fix them for free though as modern freeware is actually like a sampler to get you to unlock the remaining parts of the program

Could be a problem with device drivers, hardware or software. This problem can be solved by uninstalling new software, updating device drivers and making minor configuration changes . From Fix computer hanging, blue screen of death, troubleshooting . You can also run a free registry scan using utilities from Registry cleaner software, utilities

Download a program called HDD Regenerator form this link
Open your computer, take the hard drive out and plug it on another computer and scan it wiht HDD Regenerator. It will tell you what's wrong wiht your HDD, maybe fix it or cancel the damaged sectors and will let you to continue to use the non-damaged sectors on your drive, Good luck.

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Old 03-22-2009, 07:52 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Dead Laptop Hard Drives

Thanks for the reply and ideas. I can get thru the intial setup screen, install drivers and files and start the reformatting of the HDD, but at the end of formatting it states that"the HDD cannot be found and to check to see if its connected. If I keep rebooting I will get a phrase that says the drive is damaged from time to time. I don't know of any other utilities that will check on the drives status with out windows installed other than the laptop's bios utility. Maybe someone knows of one? My friend doesn't really need this laptop as he is buying another new one. I thought I could bring this one back with a simple install of a new HDD and reinstall xp. Any other suggestions would be appreciated.
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Old 03-23-2009, 01:34 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Dead Laptop Hard Drives

The problem is very likely not with the drive but with the laptop. One drive failing is unlikely, but not unheard of, two consecutively failing at the same point, highly unlikely. I would check the connectors on the laptop. if at all possible put the drives in another laptop and format them, if all goes well then I would turn to the laptop itself as the culprit.

There are several things that could cause this, faulty ide/sata connectors, bad power connector, failing hard drive controller, corrupted BIOS. its hard to tell, and if you determine the laptop is the problem then it is hard to fix. More often than not if there is an issue with the laptops motherboard, as all of the ones I listed are, it is cheaper to replace the whole unit instead of repairing it.

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