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OS or Hard Drive Problem?


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#1 JAquillus

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 12:09 AM

The answer to this question will determine to which section of the forum I go next (since I really don't know if this is a hardware or software issue).

So, a few days ago my computer wouldn't exit sleep mode despite my efforts. I had to force a shut down. Upon restarting, it proceeded to BSOD while at the "Starting Windows" screen. Next screen included "No hard disk is detected". Successive attempts to restart did not reach the former but went straight to the latter (The hard disk message is really the only reason I'm posting here). However, it appears to me I simply can't boot from that hard drive with Windows 7. I am currently using Knoppix from USB. Thing is, I'm not sure if this is a hardware issue or a problem with Windows 7.

So here's the status so far:

1. Running Knoppix from USB, the hard drive in question is listed & accessible. All recent data I hadn't backed up on an external drive is now backed up.
2. The data on the hard drive is not corrupted (copied most of it to an external drive & tested it with a different computer). I can also save new data on it.
3. The hard drive in question is not showing signs of disrepair (clicking noises, etc).
4. Normal startup includes displaying options from the motherboard (BIOS setup, boot menu, etc) as always. Now it momentarily displays "Loading Asus Express Gate..." before this screen. Just a change I noted; idk if it's related.

So in your opinion, is this a hardware or software problem? I suspect it's the latter, but I normally don't trust myself 100% with computer issues.


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#2 AustrAlien

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 12:36 AM

I am not familiar with Knoppix: I don't think it comes standard with GSmartControl.

Are you familiar with downloading and installing apps in Knoppix. If so, download and install GSmartControl and then post the report generated by GSmartControl.

Let me know if you would like directions to use a different method.

Is Knoppix your only computer system or do you have the use of a Windows system on another computer also?

Edited by AustrAlien, 15 November 2012 - 12:38 AM.

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#3 JAquillus

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 12:51 AM

I don't really have any experience with Knoppix myself. I just found it to be the quickest way to temporarily circumvent the problem. Installing GSmartControl in Knoppix seems out of my knowledge considering I had a self-taught crash course in this OS.

I do however have another Windows system I can use.

#4 AustrAlien

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 12:55 AM

No worries: We can do this by downloading PartedMagic which comes with GSmartControl.

Let's have a look at the hard drive's S.M.A.R.T. data.

On a working computer (using Windows), please download the latest version of PartedMagic:
Write (in the appropriate manner) the downloaded .iso file to either CD or USB/flashdrive:
Boot the problematic computer from the PartedMagic CD or flashdrive:
  • At the first menu with Default settings (Runs from RAM) selected, press <ENTER>.
    Be patient while PartedMagic loads into memory, and then displays its Desktop.
Success? Let me know if you can successfully boot to the Desktop of PartedMagic, and whether you are using a bootable CD or a flashdrive.

Posted Image
The Desktop of PartedMagic (version 2012-08-09)

At the PartedMagic Desktop:
  • Double-click the Disk Health icon on the Desktop.
  • In the GSmartControl window that opens, double-click on the device that represents the hard drive.
  • In the Device Information window that opens, click View Output.
    A Smartctl Output window will open.
  • Right-click in the text output > Select All.
  • Right-click in the selected area > Copy.
In the next step you will paste this text into your topic reply.
At the PartedMagic Desktop:
  • Double-click on the Firefox icon to open the Firefox browser window.
  • Enter the BC forums address www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums in the address box and press <ENTER>.
  • Sign in to the forums and locate your topic.
  • Paste the text from the Smartctl Output window in a reply to your topic.

    Note: Please enclose the pasted report in CODE tags so that the spacing/formatting is preserved.
  • Firstly, click on the "Insert code snippet" button Posted Image
  • You will then see the "start" and "end" code tags (highlighted in dark blue/selected in the image) in the text box.
  • Click between the two tags to insert the cursor between the tags and then press <Ctrl+V> to paste the report there.

Edited by AustrAlien, 15 November 2012 - 12:56 AM.

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#5 JAquillus

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 01:43 AM

So that took a while. PartedMagic worked; used a flashdrive.

Code:

smartctl 6.0 2012-10-10 r3643 [i686-linux-3.5.6-pmagic] (local build)
Copyright (C) 2002-12, Bruce Allen, Christian Franke, www.smartmontools.org

=== START OF INFORMATION SECTION ===
Model Family:     Western Digital Caviar Blue Serial ATA
Device Model:     WDC WD1600AAJS-00L7A0
Serial Number:    WD-WMAV2S795560
LU WWN Device Id: 5 0014ee 00222c2eb
Firmware Version: 01.03E01
User Capacity:    160,041,885,696 bytes [160 GB]
Sector Size:      512 bytes logical/physical
Device is:        In smartctl database [for details use: -P show]
ATA Version is:   ATA8-ACS (minor revision not indicated)
SATA Version is:  SATA 2.5, 3.0 Gb/s
Local Time is:    Thu Nov 15 00:38:59 2012 UTC
SMART support is: Available - device has SMART capability.
SMART support is: Enabled

=== START OF READ SMART DATA SECTION ===
SMART overall-health self-assessment test result: PASSED

General SMART Values:
Offline data collection status:  (0x82)	Offline data collection activity
					was completed without error.
					Auto Offline Data Collection: Enabled.
Self-test execution status:      (   0)	The previous self-test routine completed
					without error or no self-test has ever 
					been run.
Total time to complete Offline 
data collection: 		( 3060) seconds.
Offline data collection
capabilities: 			 (0x7b) SMART execute Offline immediate.
					Auto Offline data collection on/off support.
					Suspend Offline collection upon new
					command.
					Offline surface scan supported.
					Self-test supported.
					Conveyance Self-test supported.
					Selective Self-test supported.
SMART capabilities:            (0x0003)	Saves SMART data before entering
					power-saving mode.
					Supports SMART auto save timer.
Error logging capability:        (0x01)	Error logging supported.
					General Purpose Logging supported.
Short self-test routine 
recommended polling time: 	 (   2) minutes.
Extended self-test routine
recommended polling time: 	 (  40) minutes.
Conveyance self-test routine
recommended polling time: 	 (   5) minutes.
SCT capabilities: 	       (0x3037)	SCT Status supported.
					SCT Feature Control supported.
					SCT Data Table supported.

SMART Attributes Data Structure revision number: 16
Vendor Specific SMART Attributes with Thresholds:
ID# ATTRIBUTE_NAME          FLAG     VALUE WORST THRESH TYPE      UPDATED  WHEN_FAILED RAW_VALUE
  1 Raw_Read_Error_Rate     0x002f   200   200   051    Pre-fail  Always       -       0
  3 Spin_Up_Time            0x0027   132   131   021    Pre-fail  Always       -       4366
  4 Start_Stop_Count        0x0032   098   098   000    Old_age   Always       -       2243
  5 Reallocated_Sector_Ct   0x0033   200   200   140    Pre-fail  Always       -       0
  7 Seek_Error_Rate         0x002e   100   253   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
  9 Power_On_Hours          0x0032   088   088   000    Old_age   Always       -       8917
 10 Spin_Retry_Count        0x0032   100   100   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
 11 Calibration_Retry_Count 0x0032   100   100   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
 12 Power_Cycle_Count       0x0032   098   098   000    Old_age   Always       -       2236
192 Power-Off_Retract_Count 0x0032   200   200   000    Old_age   Always       -       91
193 Load_Cycle_Count        0x0032   200   200   000    Old_age   Always       -       2243
194 Temperature_Celsius     0x0022   113   101   000    Old_age   Always       -       30
196 Reallocated_Event_Count 0x0032   200   200   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
197 Current_Pending_Sector  0x0032   200   200   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
198 Offline_Uncorrectable   0x0030   200   200   000    Old_age   Offline      -       0
199 UDMA_CRC_Error_Count    0x0032   200   200   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
200 Multi_Zone_Error_Rate   0x0008   200   200   000    Old_age   Offline      -       0

SMART Error Log Version: 1
No Errors Logged

SMART Self-test log structure revision number 1
No self-tests have been logged.  [To run self-tests, use: smartctl -t]


SMART Selective self-test log data structure revision number 1
 SPAN  MIN_LBA  MAX_LBA  CURRENT_TEST_STATUS
    1        0        0  Not_testing
    2        0        0  Not_testing
    3        0        0  Not_testing
    4        0        0  Not_testing
    5        0        0  Not_testing
Selective self-test flags (0x0):
  After scanning selected spans, do NOT read-scan remainder of disk.
If Selective self-test is pending on power-up, resume after 0 minute delay.


#6 AustrAlien

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 01:51 AM

The hard drive does not appear to have a problem!

Sorry, must be away for dinner right now. Back in an hour.
  • You may wish to use GSmartControl and run the Short Self-Test and the Long Self-Test while waiting? They will most likely complete within an hour and give you the reassurance that the hard drive is not the problem.
There's no need to post a new topic in a different forum. I will attempt to assist you here.
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#7 JAquillus

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 02:43 AM

Both the Short Self-Test and Extended Self-Test: Completed without error.

I thought as much; my next guess is Windows 7 is quite messed up.

#8 AustrAlien

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 03:16 AM

We are still looking at a "hardware" issue I believe.

The error message "No hard disk is detected" is a strange one that is not familiar to me and I do not recognise it. I don't know what is producing it/where it is coming from. After googling the error message, I get the impression it may be coming from the BIOS (?) and if so it is not a Windows 7 software matter.

Would you please describe in detail exactly what is happening when you attempt to start the computer normally. Please ensure the message that you see is exactly what you have posted initially.

Would you please post the make and model of the computer in question and whether desktop or laptop. If it's a custom made desktop, then post the motherboard make and model.
AustrAlien
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#9 AustrAlien

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 03:25 AM

It's OK, got the info in your first post. Googling now, and it seems we might be onto something here.

Google search term: Asus P6X58D-E "No hard disk is detected"

Edited by AustrAlien, 15 November 2012 - 03:27 AM.

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#10 AustrAlien

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 03:39 AM

Re: the message "No hard disk is detected"

Have a look at the following two links:
  • http://forums.extremeoverclocking.com/showthread.php?t=342104
  • http://www.eggxpert.com/forums/thread/600326.aspx
Look in the box and determine which SATA port your hard drive is connected to.
  • Is it connected to one of the "Marvell 9123 Controller" ports?
If so, plug the cable instead into one of the other SATA ports and try it.
  • While in BIOS, check that BIOS is set to boot from the SATA port that you have connected the hard drive to.
Let us know what you find and what you try, and what the results are.

Edit: You might wish to disable the Marvell controller so that message is not displayed.

Edited by AustrAlien, 15 November 2012 - 03:41 AM.

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#11 JAquillus

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 03:48 AM

Unfortunately it's rather late where I am so taking a look at that is going to have to wait until the morning.

I'll report what happens then. Thanks for helping me until now, though.

#12 AustrAlien

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 03:49 AM

:thumbup2:
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#13 JAquillus

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 11:00 PM

Sorry I couldn't respond sooner. My week was rather busy.

I'm assuming a Marvell 9128 Controller is roughly equivalent to the 9123 one you're speaking of.

I'm unsure of what you mean by "one of the Marvell controller ports". I did disable the Marvell controller found on page 3-24 of the manual below. Tried starting (hard drive still in SATA 1 port) & got nothing. Connected this hard drive to SATA 4 & tried again, still the same result. I've made sure this hard drive was always #1 in boot priority.

P6X58D-E Manuel: http://vip.asus.com/forum/view.aspx?id=20100420203842531&board_id=1&model=P6X58D-E&page=1&SLanguage=en-us

At this point I'm not sure what the next move is.

#14 AustrAlien

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 11:59 PM

You wrote: "I'm unsure of what you mean by "one of the Marvell controller ports""
The motherboard has 6 ICH10R SATA ports (blue)
and ...
2 Marvell SATA ports (gray).

You wrote: "I did disable the Marvell controller found on page 3-24 of the manual below"
Good. Do you still see the message "No hard disk is detected" on startup?

You wrote: "Tried starting (hard drive still in SATA 1 port) & got nothing."
What exactly do you see happening on-screen?

Can you access the Advanced Boot Options menu? If so, can you start in Windows in Safe Mode?
  • Please describe as fully as possible what you see happening when attempting these things.
Please do the following:
(the screenshots are from Windows XP, but things will be essentially the same in Windows 7)

Get a look at the error message presented by the BSOD (blue screen of death) ....
  • Start tapping the F8 key after you press the ON button, and continue tapping until you are presented with the "Advanced Boot Options" menu screen.

    Posted Image
  • Use the UP/DOWN arrow keys to select "Disable automatic restart on system failure" and press the <ENTER> key.
  • Your system will attempt to start normally, but when it crashes, it will not re-start: Instead, you will see a BSOD with error message.

    Posted Image
  • Record the error message details (contained in the areas outlined in red, in the above example image), and post in your reply.

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#15 JAquillus

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 12:47 AM

You wrote: "I did disable the Marvell controller found on page 3-24 of the manual below"
Good. Do you still see the message "No hard disk is detected" on startup?


No, the message does not appear. That step is skipped & goes to Windows Error Recovery (of which no options resolve the problem).

You wrote: "Tried starting (hard drive still in SATA 1 port) & got nothing."
What exactly do you see happening on-screen?


It failed as it did before, although without the "No hard disk is detected" message. Froze at Starting Windows screen (if I choose Start Windows Normally), quick BSOD, and a restart.

Can you access the Advanced Boot Options menu? If so, can you start in Windows in Safe Mode?

  • Please describe as fully as possible what you see happening when attempting these things.


Yes, I can access the Advanced Boot Options menu. First F8 takes me to the select boot device screen. I select the hard drive in question. Then hit F8 until Advanced Boot Options. Safe Mode starts with Loading Windows Files (I don't know if it finishes as I don't know what the last file should be) then reaches the quickly displayed BSOD before restarting.

Please do the following:
(the screenshots are from Windows XP, but things will be essentially the same in Windows 7)

Get a look at the error message presented by the BSOD (blue screen of death) ....

  • Start tapping the F8 key after you press the ON button, and continue tapping until you are presented with the "Advanced Boot Options" menu screen.
  • Use the UP/DOWN arrow keys to select "Disable automatic restart on system failure" and press the <ENTER> key.
  • Your system will attempt to start normally, but when it crashes, it will not re-start: Instead, you will see a BSOD with error message.
  • Record the error message details (contained in the areas outlined in red, in the above example image), and post in your reply.


There is nothing listed in the first red area you outlined.

The second contains:

*** STOP: 0x0000007B (0xFFFFF880009A9928, 0xFFFFFFFFC0000034, 0x0000000000000000, 0x0000000000000000)

Or code version:
*** STOP: 0x0000007B (0xFFFFF880009A9928, 0xFFFFFFFFC0000034, 0x0000000000000000, 0x0000000000000000)





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