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Is my hard drive fried????

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#1 Dborns


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Posted 29 June 2009 - 10:27 AM

For the past week I've had a problem with my computer and I think I've narrowed it down to the hard drive. The computer is a Dell Dimension running Vista. Last week I noticed it had a blue/ black screen and no keys would bring it out of that state. I turned it off then on and it came to a "Windows Error Recovery" screen. Clicking on Startup Repair just kept bringing me back to this screen. I've tried everything and can't get windows to load; I can't get to safe mode at all, and I can't boot from the Dell Windows Disk. I've played with it continually and I've gotten nowhere. I tried to get to a C prompt to erase the hd and start over but I can't get to a command prompt. I finally was able to boot from the disk and it shows that windows is loading files, but I then get a blue screen showing a recent hardware or software change is causing problems and asks me to boot into safe mode, (which I can't do). I tried loading the Windows XP disk and it loaded files, but it came back to a blue screen with an error code, (googling the error code got me nowhere), and that windows was shut down to stop the computer from being damaged. I remember doing a self diagnostic on the hd while it was in the computer and it checked out ok. I read a post from a person having troubles with their hd and someone told them to remove it, put the windows cd back in and restart the computer. I did that and it noticed that the hd was not there and I had the option of f1 to retry or f2 to go to the system setup. Neither button did anything.
So my question is how do I find out if my hard drive is fried? I don't want to spend money on a hard drive that can't be returned if its something else. If anyone has any ideas please let me know. Remember I CAN'T download anything onto the computer or get to safe mode.

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#2 hamluis



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Posted 29 June 2009 - 12:01 PM

Simple test...remove the drive and attach it temporarily as a secondary drive in a known-good protected system (adequate AV and other malware-defense programs). If data on it can be read...it's not a drive problem entirely (but it might be a problem impacting the section of the driver where the boot/system files are stored). It could also be the file system (NTFS) or XP.

Or you can simply download the respective hard drive manufacturer's diagnostic, burn it to CD...and run the long/extended test. The diagnostic is not dependent on the Windows install, but you need to change the BIOS boot options so that the system will boot from the optical drive and not the hard drive.

Hard Drive Installation and Diagnostic Tools - http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/28744/hard-drive-installation-and-diagnostic-tools/


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