|People often think there's something wrong with a hard drive when the problem is actually (a) software problem(s). |
"Before I took our computer apart, defrag ran very slow so I suspect the hard drive was faulty before I took the computer apart."
When you load Windows normally and run Defrag, there are often programs running that cause Defrag to stop and re-start many times, resulting in it taking a lot longer for Defrag to completely finish. That's COMMON.
If you load Windows in Safe mode rather than loading it normally, in most cases those programs that cause Defrag to stop and re-start are NOT running when Windows is in Safe mode, and Defrag will take the minimum amount of time to complete.
Defrag was a very useful program in the past when computers were A LOT slower than they are now, but for modern computers, running Defrag yields you no more than a 10% performance improvement, and that's a temporary improvement - your Windows partition will have fragmented data again in a short time, how much time that takes depending on how much free space is left on the partition Windows itself was installed on - the less free space left, the faster it gets fragmented again.
If running Defrag doesn't improve the performance of Windows much, there are zillions of OTHER things that can cause Windows to run much slower than it once did, and it's those causes you need to find and fix.
E.g. if the partition Windows itself was installed on has less than about 10% free space on it, that alone will cause Windows to run much slower than it is otherwise capable of.
Running Defrag on partitions other than the one Windows was installed on has very little if any affect on the performance of Windows.
How long it takes Defrag to finish running is directly dependent on how much data is on the partition(s) you are running it on.
E.g.if your C partition is 1 tb and 60% full, it will take a lot longer than when your C partition is 500 mb and 60% full, perhaps twice as long.
Were there OTHER symptoms BEFORE you took the laptop apart ?
If yes, what were they ?
You claim the original hard drive was "physically damaged".
What symptoms led you to believe that was the case ?
(Defrag taking a long time to complete does NOT necessarily indicate there's a physical problem with the drive.)
The original hard drive can easily be tested if you install it in the laptop again.
Check your hard drive with the manufacturer's diagnostics.
See the latter part of response 1 in this:
If you don't have a floppy drive, you can get a CD image diagnostic utility from most hard drive manufacturer's web sites, but obviously you would need to make a burned CD, preferably a CD-R for best compatibility, on another computer if you need to.
Seagate's Seatools will test (almost) any brand of hard drive.
Do the long test.
The bootable Dos versions of SeaTools can be used even if Windows is not working properly.
If the hard drive itself tests okay, any data problems found can be fixed, one way or another.
OR - SeaTools for Windows can be used to test the hard drive if you install it in an external drive enclosure and connect it to a working computer (Dos Seatools versions cannot find hard drives in external enclosures).
"I do have a warranty however I think the warranty states if anyone works on the computer while it is under warranty, you loose the warranty."
It is not allowed for anyone who is not authorized to work on your brand of computer by the brand name to work on it during the warranty period, but if you live in a reasonably sized place, there are probably local places that repair computers that ARE authorized to work on it. If whatever is wrong is covered by the warranty, then it costs you nothing, other than possibly a small fee - you have nothing to lose getting it repaired by a local place if you actually DO have something about it that is defective, rather than you just having (a) software problem(s), which is not covered by the warranty and you would have to pay for if you had them fix that.
You are supposed to unplug your AC adapter from AND remove the main battery from the laptop whenever you fiddle with the ram, hard drive, or anything inside of the laptop.
If you did that, then it's extremely unlikely you damaged the hard drive further, even if you DO have it in an environment where static electricity is a problem.