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Windows 7: How to check Hard Drives

31 Jul 2012   #1

Windows 7 Pro
How to check Hard Drives

This morning my pc started acting up for some unknown reason. After numberous attempts to fix it, I decided to restore from a restore point. It said it did restore but things got even worse.

I then decided to restore an Maxium Reflect image I had made a couple weeks ago. When I made the image, the pc was working fine. The restoring of the image went normally.

I have two strange things occurring.

1. I have two hard drives with 3 partitions on each drive. After about 10 minutes I can NOT see second hard drive in either windows explorer or Disk Managaer.

2. When the pc is first booted and a few minutes pass, I get what sounds like a radio station playing. It only lasts for about 20-30 seconds then goes off. It comes back randoms times. I have checked the processes that are running and nothing stands out that would cause this.

I built this PC in 2009 and the combination of these identical hard drives (1 TB Sata) have always acted strange at times. Example the second hard drive would NOT always boot when windows booted. This was usually fixed by just rebooting.

I have checked and all fans are working normally and inside the case is relatively clean.

Is there any software that can be used to check hard drives???

My System SpecsSystem Spec

31 Jul 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1

Yes. Western Digital has a hard drive diagnostic program that you can use to test your drives. You can find the download on their website.

I recommend using the bootable CD ISO download to test the drive outside of the operating system.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jul 2012   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium x64

The "radio" is very interesting. (Briefly reads a bit on the subject) Consensus seems to be purely hardware based, not software; as you could plug the speakers into a non pc device and pick up the same station. Are your speaker wires tangled together with other wires, or is the ground (as in the electrical ground) not good in your house, or maybe have you dropped a speaker recently?

That's all I got.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

31 Jul 2012   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Seagate and WD have drive tools you can download to test the drive. Mostly they are doing a SMART analysis.

I've had odd issues in the past similar to what you have experienced. Mostly it was due to one or more of the following, a dying power supply unit, a dead/compromised rail on the power supply unit, a dead/compromised SATA/IDE cable. To check the power supply unplug as much as you can to boot your system. If all runs well, shutdown, add another device, start-up and check again. If when you add a device it all acts odd, switch the power rail and try again. If it is still acting odd, switch the drive cable. If all goes well at some point, rinse and repeat.

Sorry no silver bullet fix here. Just a lot of repetitive testing. You just might find that your PSU isn't providing enough juice for all the components at the same time, not by spec perhaps but by luck of a poor build.

good luck!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Aug 2012   #5

Windows 7 Pro

This morning the PC would boot but eveything seemed to screwed up so right now I am installing an Acronis Image I made on 7/12/2012 to see what will happen. Even with just the my main harddrive connected it did not want to work. Freaking Adobe Flash wanted to install or update and that even failed.

Since I have Windows 8 installed on my secondary harddrive, I may hook it up and see what happens. That would give me a clue if the power supply is going bad.


Western Digital has a hard drive diagnostic program that you can use to test your drives.
Thanks my drives are Western Digital and I may have that diagnostic program somewhere but it should be easy to get it again.


The "radio" is very interesting.
I have seen this before but for the life of me I can't remember how I corrected it. At the present this is the least of my problems


I've had odd issues in the past similar to what you have experienced. Mostly it was due to one or more of the following, a dying power supply.
I guess this is a real possibility that the power supply is failing.

I have a lot to consider before re-installing Windows 7 again. That is a PITA since I have a lot of software installed.

Thanks for all the help guys.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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