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Bad hard drive?


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#1 millipede

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 10:58 AM

So, I tried to turn on my wife's laptop just now and it didn't work. Went to a screen I've never seen before. Tried going into the boot menu, selecting the HD, and it would click click click click click... before going back to that screen.
Well I was going to just do a quick upload to imageshack but looks like they require registration... grr, I used to use them for non important photos because I didn't have to waste time logging in and all... oh well... Guess I'll login to photobucket
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My wife is going to be SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO furious if I tell her that it's not working. This thing is just over a year old.
It's a Dell Inspiron n4030, windows 7. If you need any more info I'll do my best. Please let me know what you think, what I should do.

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#2 cryptodan

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 11:04 AM

Did you create the system recovery CD's?

#3 millipede

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 11:07 AM

ack, I don't remember... will have to look but I'm thinking I might have forgot on hers. I bought a desktop at the same time and I created them for mine...

#4 cryptodan

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 11:14 AM

You maybe able to download them on yours, via the dell website: http://support.dell.com/support/topics/global.aspx/support/dellcare/en/backupcd_form?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs

#5 millipede

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 11:26 AM

Thanks, I'm looking... doesn't look, so far, like there's a download link... but it looks like I can request them via usps.

Should I try booting to the system repair disk from MY computer? Would that work or would it cause any issues? I'm going to go try booting again and see if safe mode or anything at all will work. So far it isn't looking good though... and that clicking the hard drive is making, I'm just not sure about it. Sigh... I don't want to have to tell her that her computer isn't working but she'll find out soon enough. :(

#6 millipede

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 12:00 PM

Okay, I was already leaning towards it being the hard drive but I'm definitely feeling more certain of that. When I pressed F12 earlier and tried booting to the HD, it just repeated the problem. The last few times I tried F12, boot menu, the HD option was not even there. There was an option for "diagnostics" which was nice. Ran it. Everything passed except for the HD of course. First time I tried it when it got to the HD in tests it said "not applicable". This last time it said no HD was detected.
At one point after all this started I took the HD out just to look, popped it back in... I think I might pop it back out again...

IF it is the HD and we have to get a new one or something... am I then stuck having to purchase windows 7 since I have NOTHING to put on it here? Drives me NUTS that computers don't come with any installation or recovery these days... just makes no sense. sigh...


Edit: popped it out, everything looks okay, popped it back in... when to boot menu... HD was listed there this time so, I ran diagnostics again... and again it told me that NO HD ws detected... grrr...


Edit: Well I submitted a request for cd's from Dell and they got back to me... Here's part of it.

The dispatch details are given below:

1. CDs included in the dispatch:

Windows 7 Home Premium CD
RESOURCE CD

Daniel, we have sent you the operating system and driver?s disc.


So, it looks like I'll get what I need as far as software goes. 3-5 days anyway.
But for the hard drive... well, the warranty has expired for this computer... So, I believe it needs a new hard drive but I'm open to second opinions here. So far it looks like the computer wont even recognize it and, as I mentioned before, earlier it was clicking in a way that wasn't normal for it.
Is there anything I should do to test it? (the repair cd from my system just brought up an error)

Lastly... if the hard drive is junk... do you think there's any way to get any of the data off it? My wife is bummed.
Anyway... thanks for the help so far.

Edited by millipede, 08 May 2012 - 03:31 PM.


#7 cryptodan

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 03:40 PM

Yes the drive is dead, and there is no way to get data off of it since it clicks.

#8 millipede

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 04:20 PM

Thanks. My wife is SOOOOO mad right now. She wasn't too upset earlier because she had some hope I could do something. But now that the data is not recoverable, she's mad. Mad partly at walmart since we bought it there. In my mind, it's a Dell so Dell should bear some of the blame... ha. Anyway, it really stinks for her that the data is gone... I'm upset that we have to spend more money on it and it's not even a year and a half old yet. Computers are so handy and yet so frustrating...

Oh yeah, if we get a new hard drive, will the CD's they're sending be all I need to get windows running? By the description in the email it looks like it will be.

Edited by millipede, 08 May 2012 - 04:21 PM.


#9 cryptodan

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 05:52 PM

Yes the CD's you will be getting will be all you need to get it working.

#10 millipede

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 09:46 AM

Thanks
Someone suggested I still try to get dell to replace the HD but I'm thinking that would be pointless. I figured asking them on the phone would be the best option BUT when they have you put in the express service tag or whatever, they tell you that the warranty has expired(expired in February) and they will charge you money just to talk to them any further. We of course hung up at that point.
Sigh... so not ready to spend more money... looked around and most hard drives were $65 or more depending on the capacity. Her old one was 320 GB but the 250GB drives are a little cheaper so we might do that, not sure yet.
I'm thinking of ordering the drive directly from Dell since the prices are about the same as other places. Any thoughts on that?

And to my surprise... the CD's came today via FedEx. Hasn't even been 24 hours has it? Wow. They said 3-5 days.

#11 cryptodan

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 10:05 AM

They are usually faster, and I would recommend going to Bestbuy or another store to buy a hard drive.

#12 millipede

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 11:55 AM

Yesterday when I first realized that we needed a new one and all data was lost, I started opening up walmart's site and my wife practically yelled at me "I'm not buying something from walmart". She blames them. her brother told her that the hard drive could have failed if the lap top had been dropped... she said it had been, about 6 months ago. No damage to the outside of the laptop so I'm not sure about that myself but who knows...
Anyway, there's a best buy about 30 minutes from here that I might just take a drive to later today. We don't get out that way often and who knows what they have in stock but, picking one up at a store means I could have one today and that would be nice. We'll see what happens I guess.

Thanks again.

#13 cryptodan

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 01:37 PM

Not only will you have one the same day, but if you have issues with it you can return it same day as well.

#14 millipede

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 08:24 PM

update... got a new hard drive yesterday. Accidentally switched power cords with my friend's wife's laptop while I was working on it so I'm just now starting to attempt to install windows.

Got a few questions about it... let me know if I need to ask in a different section though.

The Cd says it's for windows that's already installed on your computer. I'm hoping that's not an issue... I'm just following the onscreen instructions so far. Didn't format but in looking it up, even windows says that wasn't necessary. It's been a while since I've done a fresh install... since xp or earlier where you were always supposed to format and partition before you did anything. Anyway, doesn't look like that's all necessary now?
And I believe it said I'd need the windows code but I'm looking at the computer and there sure isn't a sticker on it. Was bought brand new at walmart Feb 2011... I bought my desktop there the same day and it sure has a sticker on it. Why wouldn't this one? And if it pops up that I need that info, do I need to contact Dell to get it?
Why can't computers just do what they're supposed to and never malfunction in any way? ha.


Never mind for now... It seems to be sitting in windows, finished with installation... didn't ask me for a thing. LOTS of stuff to update and change but, it's working. And the hard drive I got says "low power" so it should use less electricity which is always nice. Ended up being about $56 before tax I believe. Not as bad as I was expecting but still.... would have been nice to have gotten a few more years out of the old one.
Anyway... thanks for all the help.

Edited by millipede, 11 May 2012 - 09:15 PM.


#15 cryptodan

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Posted 12 May 2012 - 01:18 PM

You are welcome.




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