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Failing Hard Drive?


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#1 stillwaters

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Posted 15 October 2009 - 03:18 PM

Hi!

My wife has a Toshiba Satellite L305 - S5944, running Windows Vista Home Basic. A couple of weeks ago, it started randomly freezing (open apps not responding, the "wait wheel" spinning endlessly, usually task manager wouldn't open and I had to do a hard reboot. It started getting more and more frequent, and I tried updating some drivers (from the official Toshiba site.) In the past couple of days Windows would show a popup that Warning your hard drive is about to fail! back up you data immediately. When I try to back up it freezes before it gets very far. I called up Toshiba, and the tech person said she thinks it's a software problem and I should restore the system to factory defaults from the image.

Any ideas how to backup?
What do you think the problem is? Can it be fixed without replacing the hard drive?

Thank you in advance for your help!

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#2 DaffyKantReed

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Posted 15 October 2009 - 04:56 PM

Hi!

My wife has a Toshiba Satellite L305 - S5944, running Windows Vista Home Basic. A couple of weeks ago, it started randomly freezing (open apps not responding, the "wait wheel" spinning endlessly, usually task manager wouldn't open and I had to do a hard reboot. It started getting more and more frequent, and I tried updating some drivers (from the official Toshiba site.) In the past couple of days Windows would show a popup that Warning your hard drive is about to fail! back up you data immediately. When I try to back up it freezes before it gets very far. I called up Toshiba, and the tech person said she thinks it's a software problem and I should restore the system to factory defaults from the image.

Any ideas how to backup?
What do you think the problem is? Can it be fixed without replacing the hard drive?

Thank you in advance for your help!


Quick and dirty:
Run chkdsk c: /f/v from the command prompt. Do you see any bad sectors?



Find out what brand of hard drive the laptop uses then download and burn the utility to a CD. Boot from the CD and run the utility.

Example:
SeaTools for DOS Version
http://www.seagate.com/www/en-us/support/d...ols/seatooldreg

#3 stillwaters

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Posted 17 October 2009 - 03:37 PM

I tried Checkdisk, the 1st 2 stages were ok, and then it booted up before I could see the rest. I tried finding the log in Event Viewer, but I couldn't find it. Does anyone know where chedisk logs in Vista are? Google shows many people have trouble finding it.

The hard drive shows as Disk Name: WDC WD2500BEVS-26VAT0

Does that mean it's Western Digital? Would Toshiba put WD hard drives in cheap laptops? I downloaded WDs diagnostic tool, burned it to cd, and booted with it, and it said disk not found. :thumbsup: I assume that's bad if it's the right brand. It still boots and works at least for a couple minutes. Any ideas for backing this thing up?

Thank You for all your help!!!

#4 DaffyKantReed

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Posted 17 October 2009 - 11:12 PM

I tried Checkdisk, the 1st 2 stages were ok, and then it booted up before I could see the rest. I tried finding the log in Event Viewer, but I couldn't find it. Does anyone know where chedisk logs in Vista are? Google shows many people have trouble finding it.

The hard drive shows as Disk Name: WDC WD2500BEVS-26VAT0

Does that mean it's Western Digital? Would Toshiba put WD hard drives in cheap laptops? I downloaded WDs diagnostic tool, burned it to cd, and booted with it, and it said disk not found. :thumbsup: I assume that's bad if it's the right brand. It still boots and works at least for a couple minutes. Any ideas for backing this thing up?

Thank You for all your help!!!


It's a Western Digital. My HP laptop came with a Hitachi hard drive.

Was this the utility you burned to a CD?
Diag504fCD.iso
http://support.wdc.com/product/download.as...=30&lang=en


You could connect it as a second hard drive in a desktop and try copying your important data. You can also try a live Linux distro as shown below.
http://lifehacker.com/192982/geek-to-live-...-with-a-boot-cd

#5 stillwaters

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 03:37 AM

That was the utility I downloaded. I don't have access to a desktop so I guess I'll try Linux - you are the vehicle for my 1st Linux experience!

#6 DaffyKantReed

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 07:14 AM

That was the utility I downloaded. I don't have access to a desktop so I guess I'll try Linux - you are the vehicle for my 1st Linux experience!



Here's how to find the chkdsk log in Vista.

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums...b0-98ae1a0b8e5c



Given the circumstances, Linux may be your best bet this time. Knoppix makes it quite simple.

Good luck and please post back with your results or any questions.

#7 stillwaters

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Posted 21 October 2009 - 02:40 PM

Hi!

I'm writing this from Iceweasel on Knoppix! After a lot of research and trial and error I finally succeeded in backing up on a DVD! Thank you so much for all your help!!! :thumbsup:

I'll keep you posted on my hard drive issue.

#8 DaffyKantReed

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Posted 22 October 2009 - 06:20 AM

Hi!

I'm writing this from Iceweasel on Knoppix! After a lot of research and trial and error I finally succeeded in backing up on a DVD! Thank you so much for all your help!!! :thumbsup:

I'll keep you posted on my hard drive issue.


Well done, stillwaters.

Now that you have your important data on DVD-R, the hard part is done. Now, you can shop around for a SATA hard disk drive or you can opt for an SSD, which is a solid state hard drive. It seems to me hard drive failures in laptops are much more frequent than those in desktops.

The other issue is that of an operating system. If you have created a recovery disk when Vista was still bootable, then you should be fine. If not, you will want to contact Toshiba and see if they'll ship you one for some nominal fee.

#9 stillwaters

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Posted 04 November 2009 - 02:50 PM

Well done, stillwaters.

Thanks!

Sorry I took so long to reply, been busy. After backing up, I did the Toshiba restore to factory default condition. Now, the computer works perfectly, but the same message about the hard drive failing comes up. It's still under Warranty, but I don't want to have to send it in to Toshiba if I don't have to. It seems to be some bad sectors or something. Do you have any more advice for me?

THANK YOU!!!

#10 DaffyKantReed

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Posted 04 November 2009 - 05:30 PM

Well done, stillwaters.

Thanks!

Sorry I took so long to reply, been busy. After backing up, I did the Toshiba restore to factory default condition. Now, the computer works perfectly, but the same message about the hard drive failing comes up. It's still under Warranty, but I don't want to have to send it in to Toshiba if I don't have to. It seems to be some bad sectors or something. Do you have any more advice for me?

THANK YOU!!!


If it's still under warranty, then contact Toshiba and explain what you've done so far. You will end up replacing the hard drive, one way or the other. After the HDD swap, you will need the Toshiba recovery DVD/CD to reinstall the OS.




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