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Windows 7: Sudden Catastrophic Hard Disc Crash -- Any Options?

27 Jan 2014   #1
cooltouch

Win7 Ulitmate x64, XP x86 (Dual Boot)
 
 
Sudden Catastrophic Hard Disc Crash -- Any Options?

Howdy folks,

Whenever I run into a problem with my Win7 machine that I can't solve, I come here and usually one or more of you have an answer. This time, however, I don't hold out much hope.

I walked away from a normally functioning Win7 system early this afternoon (I'd left it on as I frequently do) only to come back to it a few hours later to a screen informing me that the system was unable to boot properly -- I didn't write down the message, but it's one I've seen before. Basically, it can't find the boot sector on the hard drive.

So I start going through the "Repair" process and keep getting stymied. Well since I've had the system set to dual boot to WinXP as well, I finally booted XP, took a look in Windows Explorer, only to find that one of my system's two hard drives was missing. It was a 2TB drive I had installed barely a year before -- a year and 3 months, actually, to replace a 750 GB drive that had suddenly started tossing error codes, warning me of an eminent failure. Which is why I bought the 2TB drive. Can I name names? A Seagate. Never have cared for Seagates. Guess what brand of drive the used one that failed was. Uhhuh.

So, still unwilling to face the fact that my primary partition (and largest extendedl partition) had disappeared, I tossed my Linux Parted Magic (and other useful utilities) CD into the machine and had a look around. Yep, the Linux utilities found the 2nd hard drive, no problem. But they could find no trace of the 2TB drive.

I figured I'd give things one more try before I give up and write off this drive, which I know has only a 1 yr warranty, and toss it out to you folks, see if you might know of something else I could try. The Windows Repair disk is saying the Boot configuration is corrupt, that the repair action taken was partition table repair, and that the result was failed with an error code given as 0x490.

You're not gonna hurt my feelings if you tell me there's no hope. But it isn't gonna stop me from getting pissed off. I mean, tell me this -- how on earth, short of backing up your files to an online storage source, does a person back up a 2TB drive? I have a 1 TB backup drive that is full to capacity with as many backup files as it can hold from the last scare I had. Fortunately because I was able to clear a lot of "old files" off the remaining disk's partitions, this allowed me to move many more current files onto this disk's partitions, so that the crash will result in a lot of time spent reinstalling and reconfiguring software, but I don't think I lost all that much. And in case you're wondering why I have so many files -- I'm a photographer, and one moderately sized .tif file can easily take up 100MB or more. So it doesn't take all that long to fill up a really big drive. The files I've lost, though -- well, it does sting a bit cuz I dunno if I'll ever have a chance to replace them.

Oh Well. Tomorrow I shop for a NON Seagate replacement.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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27 Jan 2014   #2
ICIT2LOL

Desk1 7 Home Prem / Desk2 10 Pro / Main lap Asus ROG 10 Pro 2 laptop Toshiba 7 Pro Asus P2520 7 & 10
 
 

Well Seagate happens to my favoured brand but however. You could try these to see if you can open the drive and or scan it.


BOOTABLEUBUNTU

Make a bootable Ubuntu disk http://www.ubuntu.com/download

Set the BIOS to boot from theoptical when the machine boots it will show you a screen with TRY or INSTALL> select TRY

When it is finished - it takes verylittle time you will get a screen like in the pic .

Open the drive you want > Userand dig down until you get to the data / settings you may be able to copy /paste the material you want to an external source or other installed drive doingthis.

I am not sure if it will but I haverecovered tons of data etc using this method both on "dead" or justplain drives that you cannot get data from using Windows.
To scan
Use Partition Wizard to surface test the drive
Best Free Partition Manager Freeware and free partition magic for Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Vista and Windows XP 32 bit & 64 bit. MiniTool Free Partition Manager Software Home Edition.


Attached Thumbnails
Sudden Catastrophic Hard Disc Crash -- Any Options?-pw-surface.png   Sudden Catastrophic Hard Disc Crash -- Any Options?-ubuntu-screen.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #3
madcratebuilder

Win8/8.1,Win7-U64, Vista U64, uncounted Linux distor's
 
 

Quote:
how on earth, short of backing up your files to an online storage source, does a person back up a 2TB drive?
Personal cloud storage, WD My Cloud.

I added a 3tb My Cloud to my router, quick and easy setup, I later added a usb 3 2 tb external drive to the My Cloud for a total of 5TB of NSA storage I can excess from any devise I own.

Seagate has been taking a beating about failure rates lately. You can't predict sudden catastrophic failure of HDD's, a monthly check of the SMART report can sometimes tell you things are not well. I assume you have double checked all connections, tried a different SATA cable?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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27 Jan 2014   #4
cooltouch

Win7 Ulitmate x64, XP x86 (Dual Boot)
 
 

Well, you folks don't disappoint. I knew it would be worthwhile checking in here. Never hurts to ask, I always say.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ICit2lol View Post
Well Seagate happens to my favoured brand but however. You could try these to see if you can open the drive and or scan it.

BOOTABLEUBUNTU

Make a bootable Ubuntu disk http://www.ubuntu.com/download

< . . . >

Use Partition Wizard to surface test the drive
Best Free Partition Manager Freeware and free partition magic for Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Vista and Windows XP 32 bit & 64 bit. MiniTool Free Partition Manager Software Home Edition.
I will give these a try. I can also do a surface test with the Linux-based Parted Magic. Do you think Partition Wizard will do a better, more thorough job?

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by madcratebuilder View Post
Quote:
how on earth, short of backing up your files to an online storage source, does a person back up a 2TB drive?
Personal cloud storage, WD My Cloud.

I added a 3tb My Cloud to my router, quick and easy setup, I later added a usb 3 2 tb external drive to the My Cloud for a total of 5TB of NSA storage I can excess from any devise I own.

Seagate has been taking a beating about failure rates lately. You can't predict sudden catastrophic failure of HDD's, a monthly check of the SMART report can sometimes tell you things are not well. I assume you have double checked all connections, tried a different SATA cable?
Interesting -- seems like "cloud" is the new buzzword in computing these days, although I'm still on the periphery as to its usability. My 1TB exernal drive is on my local ethernet already. So what's the difference between it and your 3TB My Cloud, other than physical size? Software? Back-up Options, or? If the latter, I guess it reminds me of an old SCSI Tape drive I still own (2GB, 4GB compressed), where I was able to set all sorts of backup options with the software that came with it. Haven't used that thing in over 15 years.

So, answer me this -- is there a substantial difference between your My Cloud setup and what I could manage just by buying a big hard drive and an enclosure for it? Probably software, I'm guessing?

I guess I was avoiding the notion of additional backup storage devices after seeing how quickly that 1TB drive got filled up. But I suppose the answer, short of an online backup source, is to do just as you are doing. It's a significant added expense, but the alternative is not worth considering anymore. I suppose my luck couldn't hold forever. This is only the 2nd time in 20 years that I had a drive fail on me without any sort of warning.

No, I haven't been running the SMART tests on my drives. I guess I should have learned to do this after the failure of my 750 GB drive, which was at least polite enough to warn me of an impending failure. And it was thanks to folks here at Sevenforums that I became aware of the SMART tests and specifically what the error was that my 750 GB drive was tossing.

As a matter of fact, I have not yet checked my drive's connections. I don't hold out much hope in that regard. I do have spare SATA cables, however -- both power and data -- so I may as well give them a try. Won't hurt anything, I reckon.

Thanks again, and I'll report back with any additional findings.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #5
Ztruker

Windows 10 Pro X64
 
 

The Cloud method is very slow compared to a local 2nd internal drive or a USB attached drive (USB 3 especially).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #6
cooltouch

Win7 Ulitmate x64, XP x86 (Dual Boot)
 
 

I probably would have eventually given another SATA data cable a try, but I'm glad Madcratebuilder reminded me to check. I replaced it and I'll be dinged if the computer didn't boot. In fact, the computer made a chime kind of noise when it first booted. Never heard that before. *whew* Dodged a bullet on that one.

All of a sudden I'm interested in having a personal cloud storage device. Ztrucker, is cloud storage slow when it's being used on a gigabit switch?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #7
OvenMaster

Win7 Pro 32bit; Zorin OS 9 Core (in VM)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by cooltouch View Post
You're not gonna hurt my feelings if you tell me there's no hope. But it isn't gonna stop me from getting pissed off. I mean, tell me this -- how on earth, short of backing up your files to an online storage source, does a person back up a 2TB drive? I have a 1 TB backup drive that is full to capacity with as many backup files as it can hold from the last scare I had.
This is one reason I am wary of super huge hard drives. My daily drivers are a pair 160GB WD's, and I use a 1TB Seagate (crosses fingers) for backup and archive purposes, as well as a stack of DVD+RW discs. Losing a 160 isn't a huge problem so long as my backups are available. But if the 1TB backup drive fails, I'm going to be in a world of hurt... 450GB of irreplaceable movies and TV shows, 135GB of Internet video, and 90GB of Macrium system images.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2014   #8
Ztruker

Windows 10 Pro X64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by cooltouch View Post
is cloud storage slow when it's being used on a gigabit switch?
Compared to a local internal or USB attached hard drive yes, it's painfully slow because it's limited by your upload bandwidth which is normally capped at 1/10 of you download speed. For me, download is 30Mbs but upload is 3Mbs.

When I tried it a year or two ago using Carbonite, it took 7 days running 24 hours a day to backup my entire boot drive which was around 21GB if I remember correctly.

It has some definite pluses though.
1. Offsite backup
2. Continuous backup
3. Accessible from anywhere
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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