W8 Laptop HDD SMART Error - Error Remains After Replacement

February 23, 2013 at 20:35:13
Specs: Windows 8, i5/4GB
Good evening,
I have a rather perplexing question related to a hard drive on my laptop. I have an HP pavilion dm4 running Windows 8. 2 weeks ago I started receiving smart errors 301 and 305 on the hard drive. I ran check disk on the drive and booted Ubuntu from a cd to run fdisk against the hard drive. Both checks confirmed that the disk was indeed bad. Internet research further confirmed that the errors were considered a death knell for the hard drive. So I got a new drive.

I placed the new drive into my laptop and booted it up, only to be confronted with the same smart error messages. I started to reinstall windows and I noticed that the capacity of the drive listed in one of the installation steps was not for the new drive, but for the old, failing drive. Windows still listed the drive as having errors that would result in an imminent failure. Attempting to fix the fact that windows was apparently confused I repaired the master boot record using windows cd. After that I was able to complete the installation. Once again I got the smart errors at startup... I ran fdisk and check disk again and did not receive any errors for the drive. I'm not sure where to go from this point because it appears that the smart error can't be reset and I don't know of any other things to change. Is there any way I can force the computer to reevaluate the drive for SMART errors?

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February 23, 2013 at 21:16:30
Did you do an actual clean installation, a restore from recovery DVD set, or clone the old drive with its errors onto the new drive?

Before installing the OS on the new drive, make sure that it is properly recognized in your BIOS.

Run Memtest via a bootable CD to see if memory errors are being reported as hard drive errors. Let it run through all tests. Any errors are cause for replacing the memory. Rerun the test for one stick of memory at a time to determine and confirm the bad stick. Modern systems run memory in dual channel mode and for that to run at its most efficient, memory should be replaced as a matched set.

Run the hard drive manufacture's hard drive test utility via bootable CD to verify the hard drives integrity. (Seatools for Seagate, etc.). This will give you the most reliable proof of a bad drive and the fastest possible way to get it replaced without charge. Original drives should be covered on the machines warranty for the first year (or extended period if you took that option) and other drives you purchased are covered by the drive manufacturer.

Assuming that your laptop is under warranty (Windows 8), contact HP support with the results of the tests if the memory, like the drive is bad (unless you prefer to purchase more or better memory anyway).

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.

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February 24, 2013 at 08:37:43
If the laptop is still under warranty you may have voided that warranty by opening the case.

Enter the BIOS (setup) screens and toggle the listing for SMART. That should reset things.

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February 24, 2013 at 08:41:35
Another thing to try is to power off, remove the battery and then hold the power off/on button in for about 30 secs.

Always pop back and let us know the outcome - thanks

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February 24, 2013 at 11:09:30
Thank you for the responses.
Fingers - I did a clean installation of windows onto the new hard drive. I also ran Memtest from a boot cd and had no errors. The seagate tools return no errors for the drive. The warranty on my computer expired at the end of December, so there is nothing I can do to get a new one for free. However, I did go purchase a new one and am unable to get the SMART errors to go away. The recognition of the drive in the BIOS is the problem I can't seem to resolve.

OtheHill - The HP BIOS doesn't give me drive specifics or SMART settings. All I can change related to drive settings is the boot order. Do you know of another way into the BIOS besides the usual (pressing F10 at startup) that will allow me to access the drive or SMART settings?

Derek - I tried the power off reset option and nothing changed. I also removed the CMOS battery in an attempt to reset the settings, but to no avail.

The predict failure setting via WMI shows that predictfailure is still set to true on the hard drive, but it shows the old device. It makes no sense that the smart settings would not be reset upon replacing the old drive.

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February 24, 2013 at 11:44:16
According to your manual, linked below, you should have a DIAGNOSTIC tab or screen. You can run a hard drive self test from there. Running that test may correct the problem.

Your laptop has a newer type of BIOS (EUFI) that may be accessible from inside Windows. Look around in Control Panel.



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February 25, 2013 at 18:31:35
I'm unable to get to any BIOS setting that allows me to change the hard drive settings. I guess for now I'm just going to have to deal with the stupid error knowing that it's not real. Since I don't plan to sell the laptop I'm not as worried about it. Thanks again for the responses!

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February 25, 2013 at 19:00:06
Did you look in Windows Control Panel for any settings there?

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February 26, 2013 at 01:14:03
Have you followed the HP recommended procedure: http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/... ? If not you may want to place the old drive back in the computer and run the tests described. These may either reset the error message or give you a Warranty ID.

As most laptops allow you to replace the hard disk without opening the case I doubt you have voided the warranty. But you will only be able to get the original disk replaced under warranty (if applicable) not the new one.

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February 28, 2013 at 19:12:53
OtheHill - I can't find any BIOS or smart related settings in the control panel.

ijack -I did follow the HP guidelines (albeit not knowingly) but the smart check immediately returns the same error (301) even though this is a different drive.

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February 28, 2013 at 19:30:57
What about under Disk Management?

I have virtually no experience with this newer type of BIOS.

Maybe clearing the CMOS by temporarily removing the coin battery. If you try that be sure to also first remove the power battery and press the start button. Then remove the coin battery.

You MAY need to reset some values in the BIOS after that. Date and time fore example. Possibly boot order.

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