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Conflicting S.M.A.R.T Data for WD Hard disk


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13 replies to this topic

#1 Romeo29

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 12:07 AM

Hi,

I have a Western Digital 750 GB Caviar Green hard disk that I bought few months ago. When I check it using CrystalDiskInfo, it shows Caution and two errors. But when I check it using Western Digital Data LifeGuard Diagnostics, it shows all okay. The same two values - Current Pending sector count and Uncorrectable sector count are different in both. Which one should I trust? Do I have to worry about the hard disk crashing on me?

Posted Image


Thanks in advance.

Edit : attached a snapshot.

Edited by Romeo29, 29 April 2012 - 12:10 AM.


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#2 kisk

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 12:18 AM

Being that both of those values are crucial in hd failure, I wouldn't trust the drive very much longer even if WD's tools say its fine.

I've been noticing a LOT of newer WD drives failing quickly lately. Something is up.
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#3 Dalewyn

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 07:47 AM

Both applications are reading back correct SMART values to you. Notice how both CrystalDiskInfo and WD Data Lifeguard Diagnostics report 200 in C5 and C6? CrystalDiskInfo is simply giving you more detailed information by also giving you the raw value which WD Data Lifeguard does not.

With that said, I second what kisk said and suggest you look into replacing that drive ASAP.

#4 hamluis

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 08:48 AM

I would take the manufacturer's diagnostic...over 3d-party tools, based on what I have seen with my own hard drives and 3d-party tool (HD Sentinel).

Manufacturers are not trying to be jacks-of-all trades for every brand/manufacturer...when they create their diagnostics...which are the basis of RMAs by customers. Manufacturers also have historical data from returned drives...so they can address faults found when they create/revise their tools.

Given the fact that any tool can be incorrect in interpreting hard drive status...I'll go with the manufacturer's diag every time.

Louis

Edited by hamluis, 29 April 2012 - 08:49 AM.


#5 AustrAlien

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 08:42 PM

Interesting!

I'd like to suggest that you check the S.M.A.R.T data using a few other tools and see what they come up with. For a start, try the following two tools .... and if necessary, I can suggest a couple of others to try also:
It certainly appears that there may be a problem with the hard drive, namely one un-readable or difficult to read sector ... but it is not necessarily terminal, and may well be correctable without ill-effect. None-the-less, I suggest it advisable to keep a vigilant eye on the S.M.A.R.T data watching for any change in the values. I would be less than completely comfortable seeing that value reported on one of my own hard drives.
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#6 James Litten

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 09:35 PM

Interpreting S.M.A.R.T. values can be confusing if you don't know what all the numbers mean. Here is a pretty good non-technical explanation of how to read them...
http://www.easis.com/smart-value-interpretation.html

James

#7 hamluis

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 07:51 AM

Just a note re choosing :).

I had a (Hitachi) hard drive die yesterday.

I attached it to my other system and ran HD Sentinel and was advised that there was a minor problem with "weak" sectors and nothing more that could not be overcome by moving data from bad to good sectors.

I ran the Hitachi diagnostic...failure.

I knew that the drive was failing, since functioning had devolved yesterday morning to clinks...found it interesting that HDS erred. I have another HD which HDS says will fail in 2 days...it's been running well for about a year now, I believe...after the Seagate diagnostic gave it a clean bill of health.

Louis

#8 Romeo29

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 10:51 AM

Thanks everyone for great advice and links. Sorry for being a little late. I backed up my data to another hard disk.
While I was backing up (copy paste folders), I found the drive stuck on one folder. So I skipped it.

@AustrAlien
I ran Speccy but it cannot read S.M.A.R.T. from any of my hard disks. I tried HD Sentinel and it says health is 98% and shows same S.M.A.R.T. data as CrystalDiskInfo. Can someone explain why it still says Excellent Health ?
Sad part is that I cannot yet ask for replacement from WD. Do they want smoke to come out before one can ask for replacement? :angry:
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@hamluis
Sorry to see your hard disk die. I saw HD Sentinel show 99% health for my perfectly healthy Samsung hard disk. I got panicked and rebooted. Later it showed 100% health. I think HD Sentinel is unreliable. And you are right, the manufacturer diagnostics seem to be always right.

Thanks again :)

Edited by Romeo29, 03 May 2012 - 10:55 AM.


#9 James Litten

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 12:23 PM

Initially it looked pretty excellent to me. One bad sector.

The question would be whether or not it is stable or if it is getting worse.

If you run the original report that showed the raw value for C5 as 1 and it now has a raw value of 2 or 3 then it would start to concern me to the point that I would check it daily to see if it continued to increase. If it did, I would not trust it with anything critical and make regular backups while continuing to monitor it to see if it stabilizes. If C6 starts increasing, that is a serious concern.

The reason I ask specifically about C5 is because this latest report claimed to find 2 weak sectors reported. It may just be that the different programs are looking at the disk differently and they will consistently post these results over and over because the drive is stable and not degrading.

Let me know if any of this does not make sense :)

James

#10 Romeo29

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 01:16 PM

NeverSayDie, I removed that hard disk from my computer and formatted it to see what happens. I attached it to another computer to use HDSentinel on it. I do not think I can trust that hard disk anymore so I cannot monitor it :) I am just going to dump it.

You are right. C5 has increased to 2. May be this happened when I tried to take backup and it got stuck on a folder.

Thanks for all the help :)

#11 AustrAlien

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 07:53 PM

I am just going to dump it.

That is likely an unnecessary waste of a hard drive that may well be perfectly good. I would like to suggest something that may get the hard drive back into useful service, and allow you to feel comfortable about it.

The situation that you have reported sometimes happens: It is not necessarily an indication that the hard drive has a "terminal" condition. The problem can often be overcome by wiping the HDD with an application such as dban or killdisk run from a bootable CD or flashdrive. After doing that, the hard drive should be as good as "new" .... unless there is an on-going physical problem with the hard drive.

Step 1: Download dban (Darik's Boot and Nuke):

"Darik's Boot and Nuke ("DBAN") is a self-contained boot disk that securely wipes the hard disks of most computers. DBAN will automatically and completely delete the contents of any hard disk that it can detect, which makes it an appropriate utility for bulk or emergency data destruction."

If you do not already have a suitable burning program for writing .ISO images to disc ...
  • Download and install ImgBurn.
    Ensure that you UN-check the box agreeing to install the Ask toolbar during the installation.
  • Place a new (blank) CD disc in the drive tray.
  • Choose Write image file to disc.
    • Under Source, click on the Browse button: Navigate to and select the .ISO file that you wish to burn.
    • Place a check-mark in the box beside Verify.
  • Click Posted Image

    When the CD has been burned and verified as successful, it will be bootable.

Step 2: Disconnect ALL hard drives (including external hard drives and flashdrives) except for the hard drive that you wish to wipe.

Warning: The following procedure will completely wipe ALL hard drives connected to the system!


Step 3: Boot from the CD, and with ONLY the one hard drive connected to the system ...
  • Warning: This will completely wipe ALL hard drives connected to the system!
  • Type autonuke at the prompt and press the <ENTER> key.
  • Allow to complete.
    Please be patient: It may take some considerable time, depending on the size of the HDD.

In an extreme case it may be necessary to run dban more than once.

When complete, remove the dban CD or flashdrive. Re-connect the hard drive on which the Windows system resides and boot to Windows. The problematic hard disk drive should now be showing in Windows Disk Management: Create one or more partitions and format it/them using "full format" rather than "quick format".

======================
A good example (rather more extreme case than your situation) of success with refreshing a hard drive and removing a number of read errors:
  • http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic442562.html

AustrAlien
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#12 Romeo29

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 03:18 AM

AustrAlien, I tried to run DBAN on it but its going to take more than 9 hours. So I will do it on Sunday and see what happens :) Thanks :)

#13 AustrAlien

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 05:14 AM

There is no reason that the procedure should not be 100% successful. Test it afterward and check out the S.M.A.R.T data. Please let us know the result.

Good luck.
AustrAlien
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#14 Romeo29

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Posted 13 May 2012 - 09:44 PM

Okay. Here is update. I tried DBAN but it was just taking too much time (count was going up into many days). So I quit it. Then I used Active KillDisk to Zero out the entire hard disk. It took 2.5 hours. SMART data is changed. C5 error is gone. C6 is still counting 1. What do you say guys? Should I zero it out once more?

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