A disk read error occurred

Dell/Dimension 8100
July 4, 2007 at 13:42:37
Specs: XP, 1.3GHz/256KB

I replaced my hard drive about 3 months ago and everything has been going fine so far. I may have accidentally set it up originally as the slave or something, because it always says "Primary hard disk drive 1 not found" but after I get that message it starts up just fine. Starting yesterday, after I get past the "Primary hard disk drive 1 not found, now it says "A disk read error occurred." Does anyone know why this might have occurred. Like I said, the drive is brand new and there wasn't any indication of a problem until now. Thanks for your help.

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July 4, 2007 at 13:55:38

I think the two things are not linked. the 'Disk 1 not found" message may be because the drive jumper is set to Master with Slave and there is no slave present, or it may be you need to go into bios and have it re-detect the drives. Usually the Master drive on the first IDE controller is identified as Disk 0.

The "Disk read error" may be a bit more difficult to isolate. Try re-seating the data and power cables to the drive. If you can, download and run a harddrive diagnostic prog from the manufacturer to test the drive integrity.

I used to have a signature but it disappeared and I just couldn't be bothered writing another so please feel free to ingore this.

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July 4, 2007 at 14:04:27

I agree that the two are not related.

Disk errors can be caused by a drive problem or a memory problem.

I would suggest running a memory test first.

There is a version to create a bootable floppy diskette and/or an ISO for creating a CD.
Run it overnight and any failures are unacceptable.

Then run chkdsk /R on the drive. It will check every sector on the drive for reliability. Note that it could take many hours.

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July 4, 2007 at 14:23:17

Thanks for the quick replies. It seems the two aren't related. The primary drive message is been with me since I installed and there's never been a problem.

To follow up, how do I go about re-seating the power and data cables to the drive? Not sure how to do that.


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Related Solutions

July 4, 2007 at 15:22:47

"how do I go about re-seating the power and data cables to the drive"

All that was meant is to ensure that the power cable and the signal cable plugs on the HD are firmly pushed home. It might be best to remove them and pop them in again (note which way round they are first).

Check the other end of the data cable in the same way.


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July 4, 2007 at 15:44:10

Sorry. Yeah, I checked the connections and there's no problem. The new HD is 250 Gig. Could it be some sort of capacity issue if my motherboard is about 7 years old?

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July 4, 2007 at 16:12:19

I scanned my hard drive and the problem turned out to be my partition (Partition 1(NTFS(250 GB))) Result: failed with critical errors.
-One or more errors were found in the index.
-One or more errors were found in metadata file records.

Does anyone know how to decipher all this for me? I'm not sure exactly what to do next. Thanks.

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July 4, 2007 at 16:33:53

If you have a 7 year old computer it most likely isn't 48bit LBA compliant. That means it doesn't support HDrives larger than 127GB. Additionally, if your original WinXP CD didn't include at least SP1 then your XP isn't 48bit LBA compliant either. Lood at the provided link below for an explanation of 48bit LBA. Post your MBoard model, but I think you need to buy a PCI based controller card that supports 48bit LBA. Your HDrive is most likely corrupt. I live version of Linux, like Knoppix MAY be able to recover some data.

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July 4, 2007 at 16:40:05

Just out of curiosity, if the computer isn't 48bit LBA compliant, why did it take 3 months before I had any problems?

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July 4, 2007 at 16:44:32

Excellent advice by Othehill. Way back when I intsalled a big drive on a system without 48LBA and it seemed to work at first. But then had some really strange things happening, folders and files disappearing, etc.

You might have started having problems when the amount of data on the drive exceeded 127gb.

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July 4, 2007 at 16:49:18

Because when you installed the drive was seen and formatted as 127GB. When you wrote data to parts of the drive not seen but physically present that data becomes upreadable. Do a Google on 48bit LBA and look at the link I provided. Look at the MSoft article linked below. Pay special attention to the Warning heading about half way down. http://support.microsoft.com/defaul...

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July 4, 2007 at 16:53:13

If I install the new PCI based controller card, will I be able to recover the data that is already on the HDrive? Also, since I can't even make it to the Windows boot screen, will I be able to install the card without any problems?

Thanks everyone for your help on this.

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July 4, 2007 at 16:57:38

First post what service pack is included on the WinXP CD and the model of your MBoard. Connecting the drive as is isn't going to do anything new. The only way to gain full use of that drive is to have full 48bit LBA compliance. Did you read the TWO links I provided?

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July 4, 2007 at 17:07:11

Sorry. WinXP W/ SP2. I'll get right back to you with the MBoard info. Looking it up now, but having a hard time finding that data. I did read both links. Still trying to comprehend the MS link. The first one makes sense, but when they say upgrade BIOS, does that mean replacing the MBoard?

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July 4, 2007 at 17:44:57

OK, that mean the OS (WinXP) IS 48bit LBA compliant. That is even worse than is it weren't. As I stated above the OS can write to parts of the drive that aren't partitioned and formatted. There are some Intel chipsets that are Upgradable to be 48bit LBA compliant. Assumming you can't make your BIOS 48bit LBA compliant the add in card will solve the issue of recognising the entire harddrive. However, in order for that to happen you will need to repartition and format the drive. That means ALL data will be wiped. You may be able to recover some data as mentioned above but you need somewhere to store it. Do you have an external drive, or an extra HDrive or you could use DVDR. Knoppix runs off a CD but does install some data to the harddrive. Installing anything to the current drive isn't the best idea as it will corrupt additional data.

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