install on bad sector drive or not?

Dell / PC
March 26, 2009 at 08:38:41
Specs: xp sp3, lots
Hey fellow techies,

I have an Inspiron B120 with a hard drive that has two bad sectors found by running HD Tune from the UBCD set of tools. I did a clean install of XP Pro on it, and it runs just fine. Did a chkdsk just for fun on boot and didn't find any errors. When I run the Pre-Boot System Assessment (Build 3019) on this laptop, I immediately get this message:

--Start DST Short Test--
Test Results : Fail
Error Code : 1000-0146
Msg: Unit 0:IDE status failed. Status byte = 64 ControlCode = 1 Msg = No additional sense information

Choose Retry test:
Test Results : Fail
Error Code : 1000-0141
Msg: No drive detected. (me - BIOS sees it just fine btw)

yet, as I mentioned, XP installs and runs just fine. How so?

Dell stated that of course, those codes mean a failed hard drive. really? never would've guessed that guys. (I was on the phone with them about another machine to get it worked on under wty, so don't razz me about that!) ha ha ha

Should I chance it sending it back to the client with a potentially failing drive? not much time left to get a new drive right now.

What would you do?

Thanks for any helpful feedback.

See More: install on bad sector drive or not?

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March 26, 2009 at 08:46:52
Hi There

If the extensive testing of the hard drive has revealed that the hard drive has bad sectors on it, I would not recommend sending the machine back to your client with the potential that it may fail as this is very bad for business, maybe you should contact your client and advise them of the damaged sectors on the hard drive and advise that a new drive maybe required for a smooth running of the operating system.

Hope this helps
Tor Fey

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March 26, 2009 at 09:08:05
What brand is the HDD? Test it with the manufacturer's diagnostic software & see what you come up with. You can also try a low level format.

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March 26, 2009 at 09:42:51
Brand new drives sometimes come with a few bad sectors, and that's usually nothing to worry about. It's normally due to a manufacturing defect.

However when 'new' bad sectors begin showing up, that is something to be concerned about. They would usually be caused by the head(s) hitting and damaging the platter(s). That can sluff off material which can cause more damage:


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Related Solutions

March 26, 2009 at 09:52:24
If there are reported and marked bad sectors that means all the reserve sectors have already been put into use and there are no more reserves.

This indicates that many more than TWO have already failed and the drive should be replaced. This is especially true if this is not your computer and you are charging for your services.

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March 26, 2009 at 10:11:05
Had the same thought Jam, but went to Tohiba's site and they listed there is no hd testing utility for drives from OEM machines, and to refer to manuf's site. "Toshiba does not provide diagnostic tools for hard drives, currently." from, but I am running other utils I have right now that are generic for any drive. will report back later. ....

Thanks! :)

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March 26, 2009 at 10:18:39
Hitachi fitness test is suppose to work on any drive. That said, the drive is dying, get authorization to replace it.

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March 26, 2009 at 13:34:02
"went to Tohiba's site and they listed there is no hd testing utility for drives"

Toshiba doesn't manufacture HDD's. You need to identify what you have (Hitachi, Maxtor, Seagate, WDC, etc), then download the diagnostic software for that particular drive.

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April 23, 2009 at 07:35:20
Hi all, thank you to everyone who responded. I put in a new one and sent his old one with it back to him after a clean rebuild of all sw. Ran great. done deal.

Thanks again,

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