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Windows 7: Any way to disable SMART reporting during install?

10 Jan 2016   #1
teckneeculler

XPPSP3, Win7Ultimate
 
 
Any way to disable SMART reporting during install?

(oops-that's INstall, not IMstall)
I'm doing a W7 test install onto a SATA HDD that's past its prime. But I know it works OK because it was dispensing files a few minutes ago as a logical in another system.

At first, I couldn't boot the test machine at all because a Smart control in the BIOS (UEFI) was blocking it at the first boot screen. So I entered UEFI and set SMART to OFF.

The machine booted okay and the install progressed normally, but when it to got the point where Windows asked 'Where do you want to install Windows?' and I answered 'THAT disk and partition', it told me, 'You can't pal. The disk's stuffed, U\S, poked. It's an ex-disk'.

Well, words to that effect.

Here's my question: I can go into the CMD box at this point by hitting Shift\F10. Is there a command line for turning off the SMART control so Windows will stop being granny-ish and let me install to this 'failing' HDD?

Obviously, I don't care if the drive gets the death rattle tomorrow, I just want do this test install today.

Command line geekery desperately needed, please :-)


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
11 Jan 2016   #2
maxseven

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by teckneeculler View Post
'You can't pal. The disk's stuffed, U\S, poked. It's an ex-disk'.

Well, words to that effect.
I thought that there might be something in Windows you could turn off re: SMART but I ain't finding it, possibly because it does not exist.

I think we need a better description of the message you're getting, or a screen shot.

Have you run the mfr's diagnostics/test util on the HDD and it reports OK?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Jan 2016   #3
LMiller7

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

What is the exact error message you are getting?
Some are serious and should not be ignored.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

12 Jan 2016   #4
teckneeculler

XPPSP3, Win7Ultimate
 
 

maxseven, thanks. I couldn't find anything either, apart from the BIOS control, which got the machine off the initial black screen that shows the BIOS number, etc etc., and into normal running.

Actually, I did find a way to bypass the 'No way you're gonna install to this disk, buddy' message. Very technical. After six or seven reboots, Diskparts and button clicks I pushed the 'Next' button and away it went!

However, the message persisted right through the subsequent install of W7, plus the upgrade to W10, where it's still popping up. I'm sure it's not the disk - I've run Hard Drive Regenerator on it, which found no errors, and I've been using it for storage (in logical form) for 2 years without a hiccup. Neither is it overheating, which Seagate says is a common cause of the 'failing' message.

I downloaded every Seagate tool that I thought was appropriate but I've no idea which one to use. There doesn't seem to be anything that works on SATA drives in DOS, so I'd probably have to pull the drive and slave it into another machine, which is too much bother at the moment.

As I said, it's not a big deal, I'm only doing test installs until I get the bugs ironed out, at which time I'll do a serious install onto my shiny new SSD drive. My biggest problem right now is trying to assemble a slipstreamed W7 ISO that's as up-to-date as I can make it. I'm not clever enough to use DISM or SYSPREP, and I haven't found anything else that's simple and effective. NTLite Free came fairly close but wasn't the silver bullet I was hoping for.

Cheers :-)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jan 2016   #5
maxseven

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by teckneeculler View Post
...the message persisted right through the subsequent install of W7, plus the upgrade to W10, where it's still popping up.
We have asked twice what "the message" is exactly, and you haven't told us. Not nice to dangle an issue in front of us and leave us hanging, because it does sound very unusual/peculiar indeed!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jan 2016   #6
teckneeculler

XPPSP3, Win7Ultimate
 
 

Sorry, I didn't realize it was an unusual message.

Okay, I've never seen it before in the 25 or so years I've been doing IT, but I thought it might have been familiar to some of you guys.

The main reason I didn't spell it out was because I'd already passed that phase of the install when I posted, and couldn't remember the exact wording.

Apart from the initial Boot screen warning (after which I turned off SMART reporting in the UEFI BIOS) the message appeared around about the time when the installer says, 'Where do you want to install Windows?'. When I clicked on Disk 0 (or Disk 1, I can't remember, but it was the only disk\partition on offer, because I'd previously cleaned and formatted the drive with Diskpart), the message said something like, 'You cannot install to this disk (or partition, drive). It is about to fail.' Or that last part might have been, 'It will fail soon.'

Hang on, I'll boot it up again and see if the message is persisting.

It kept appearing right through the install of W7 and its updates, and then through into the W10 upgrade (which I opted for out of curiosity).

I could have clicked, 'Don't ask me again', but decided to leave it, and see what developed.

Okay, W10 has just booted up. 10 seconds after it settled down, up comes the message. The wording is different from W7, but the import is the same. It says:

'Windows detected a hard disk problem. Back up your files to prevent information loss, and then contact the computer manufacturer to determine if you need to repair or replace the disk.'

There are two options:

'Start the backup process'

'Ask me again later. If the disk fails before the next warning, you could lose all of the programs and documents on the disk'


I've always clicked, 'Ask me later'.

So there you have it. Obviously, because the BIOS warning has been turned off, Windows itself must be monitoring the HDD. Which is why I asked my question originally. I mean, if Windows has some mechanism that enables it to spit out a warning, I would have thought it could be circumvented. According to Seagate, such warnings don't always forecast disaster.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jan 2016   #7
maxseven

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by teckneeculler View Post
'You cannot install to this disk (or partition, drive). It is about to fail.' Or that last part might have been, 'It will fail soon.'
...
Obviously, because the BIOS warning has been turned off, Windows itself must be monitoring the HDD. Which is why I asked my question originally. I mean, if Windows has some mechanism that enables it to spit out a warning, I would have thought it could be circumvented. According to Seagate, such warnings don't always forecast disaster.
That clears things up for me anyway. I have never seen that "It is about to fail" message at all. No doubt a very rare thing only a handful here may have encountered in their experiences. Maybe you could surf on the couple variations on it that your memory speculates about and find something that MS has documented about it.

I read about SMART a very long time ago, something like "Enable it in BIOS or leave it to Windows" or maybe it was "Windows applications" but basically not to bother with both. But while I get now your interest to possibly circumvent, I can't agree to use a failing drive for any reason, even a test setup, given drives are so cheap these days. But then too I have a bunch of old drives laying around, so that's easy for me to say!



P.S. It occurs to me that perhaps reading the drive's SMART data is happening at the driver level, and not Windows at all. But it sounds like a bad enough drive that I doubt even trying different/other drivers is worth your time.

Anyway thanks for coming-back here and explaining--now I've learned something from this!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jan 2016   #8
teckneeculler

XPPSP3, Win7Ultimate
 
 

Hey, I agree 100% about the dopiness of using a failing drive for anything.

But as I said earlier, the drive has been fine as storage for two years, since I pulled it from a customer's non-booting pc. I replaced it with a new one, then, because I hate throwing anything out (frugal upbringing in the post-war 40's) ran HDD Regen on it, plus a few other recovery apps and it ran like a 'two-bob watch', i'e., 'no problems'. Still, I wasn't game to use it for anything important.

However, it was the last SATA HDD I had on hand. The other two spares are both holding earlier W7 test installs with different integration methods.

As far as that project goes, NTLite is stacking up pretty well, so far.

Cheers :-)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Any way to disable SMART reporting during install?




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