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Old 07-24-2008, 02:12 AM   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Illinois, USA
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Default GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! Laptop drive issues!

Ok, so I've had my trusty IBM ThinkPad A21p for a few years now (got it used on eBay). It's my secondary laptop as I just got a new HP dv9700, and I don't really want to put a lot of money into it. That said, it isn't a bad PC, and it has a nice screen. I still use my ThinkPad for Web browsing and other light tasks.

However, today I'm sitting here at my desk (a corner desk, with my dv9700t on the left, my w2007 monitor in the middle, and my A21p on the right), playing Garry's Mod on my new laptop, and I start hearing this clicking sound occasionally coming from my old laptop. I've heard this clicky noise before from it, but never really bothered paying attention. I always assumed it was the floppy drive clicking because there was no disk inserted. However, later on in the day, I hear a faint buzzing coming from the ThinkPad, accompanied by more frequent clicks. I'm in Ubuntu on it, and I open up Firefox. However, it crashes and doesn't finish loading, and I'm forced to power off. I boot back up, but Ubuntu drops to terminal, so I power off again, this time opting to boot XP. XP loads fine and I open PC Wizard 2008 to look at the SMART report. The Health and Performance are both above 80%, I think Performance was 86% and Health was like 92%, though I could be mistaken and have flipped those numbers. I took out the drive and it felt warm, so I let it cool off and then put it back in. Booted up into Ubuntu fine and everything seemed to be going well. However, after browsing around for a while, it again started clicking and crashed.

What I want to know is where I can get the cheapest replacement. I would prefer a new drive, as used drives are just going to fail sooner. The laptop uses IDE drives, currently using a 32GB. I don't know if it supports over 120GB since it's a Pentium 3. I don't really need a big drive, I just want a cheap replacement that works, even 40GB would be plenty.

Also, what's the best thing to do with my data? I want to back it up, just in case (probably already have everything on my new PC, but not 100% sure), but I'm wondering if I could copy the whole entire drive to my desktop. I have a 120GB secondary drive in my desktop that has plenty of empty space on it, and if there were some Linux tool that could make an image of a drive and save it to another drive, that'd be good (reason for Linux is that it boots from Live CD, as the primary 80GB drive on my desktop that holds Windows would be temporarily swapped out for my failing laptop drive). Obviously, since my laptop holds no "truly" important data (no life-threatening financial nonsense on it, just some random music files that I might not have backed up or some unimportant school documents from a few years ago that I most likely copied already), I don't see a reason to spend money on a backup tool (I'd rather put the money toward a new drive).


CalcProgrammer1 is offline  
Old 07-24-2008, 11:17 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! Laptop drive issues!

I use Acronis True Image to backup/clone all my 2.5" drives using external USB enclosures. Making an image of drive partitions are OS independent. So you could use your HP to clone the Linux IBM drive. The image files can stored on the HP's hd or on CD/DVD. There may be freeware programs that will do the same thing.

You may need a bios update for the IBM to see drives greater than 40gb.

KurrentEweser is offline  
Old 07-24-2008, 01:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! Laptop drive issues!

I was thinking GParted had a way to copy partitions, but apparently it doesn't. I took the drive out and installed it in my desktop (using 2.5" IDE adapter) and booted from it. I'm just going to backup files, since I can't find a good way to copy partitions or image my drive for free. As long as I have my files I should be able to reinstall Windows XP and Ubuntu on my new drive fine. I updated my BIOS a while back (when I first got the PC) but it's the latest update, dated 2004.

So, now the only thing left is to get a new drive ordered so that I'll have it before this one completely fails.

CalcProgrammer1 is offline  
Old 07-24-2008, 02:50 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! Laptop drive issues!

it shouldn't matter if the drive is a p3 I would imagine... - ATA-6, Laptop Hard Drives, Hard Drives, Computer Hardware

seems pretty cheap

also, make sure to take advantage of microsoft cashback if you are not aware...pass it around
atomic tofu is offline  
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