Do I need a new hard drive

February 18, 2009 at 05:44:19
Specs: Windows XP Pro sp 2
I have been having trouble with my computer. It crashed a couple of months ago. I managed to install XP, then when I started it the next day, it took ages to come on. I tried to do a disk check, but it was unable to. It then crashed again, when it came back on it said the windows/config file was missing. I am wandering if it needs a new hard drive. the computer was purchased around 2002. If it does need a new hard drive, do I have to be specific on type etc. The comp is a packard bell, but I don't have any other specs at the moment.I know I'll beable to get the compuetr running again, by installing again or using my boot disk that I've got, but was wandering whether to bother or just get new hard drive, could it be another problem causing this? maybe the processor?

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#1
February 18, 2009 at 05:52:44
Open the box and look for the manufacturer of the HD. Then go to that site and download the diagnostic tools, create a boot disc and boot the machine with it. Run the tool. It will tell you if you need a new HD.

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#2
February 18, 2009 at 06:02:28
Okay thanks, I'll give it a try

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#3
February 19, 2009 at 07:53:23
I tried to run the diagnostics tool, it warned me that the computer had previously run temperature more than 70 deg, but I still clicked continue, did a short test first - said found 2 errors and to do a long test -
This couldn't complete and said to check the cables and power drive, but I hadn't unplugged anything, so not sure what to think. The hard drive is over six years old though, so I think best to invest in a new one.

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#4
February 19, 2009 at 10:38:16
which specific component is bad is hard to determine. what i can say with a certain degree of confidence is that it's probably time to get a whole new computer.

"check the cables and power drive"

could be that the HDD just can't spin as fast as it used to, and it's just your HDD that's bad. but this could also mean that your power supply unit (PSU) can't get the HDD the juice it needs to operate correctly. A faulty or dying PSU will slowly cause damage to ALL of your other components (motherboard, CPU, video card, RAM), and if you've been having stability issues for a while, it probably already has. it could be a dying motherboard or bad RAM, causing data corruption that cause your HDD to fail tests. The "it could be" list is quite long.

i know buying a new PC to fix the issue is like shooting a fly with a bazooka, but consider the alternative: you spend money on a new HDD, and a bad PSU, RAM, motherboard, etc causes damage to your new HDD over time until 6 months from now you're having the same issue. The same scenario would hold true if you only replaced the PSU, motherboard, cpu, etc., so the safest thing to do is upgrade everything. in other words, get a new PC. 6 years is ancient by PC standards.

hopefully, you've already backed up the data on this HDD?


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#5
February 19, 2009 at 16:30:29
Do you remember exactly what those errors were? Bad blocks maybe? If they were bad blocks, I'd go for the new drive.

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#6
February 19, 2009 at 17:52:30
"was purchased around 2002"
thats 7 years
"computer had previously run temperature more than 70 deg"
get a can of compressed air, remove the side of the case & blow out all the crap and dust.
use the skinny straw like attachment, to get around the various fans.

larry


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