This is a question about my husband's computer. It runs on Windows 7. Recently he has started getting some error messages that I'm not sure are legit or not. The main one is that, every 5 minutes or so, a window pops up that says "Windows detected a hard disk problem" It goes on to say "Back up your files immediately to prevent information loss, and then contact the computer manufacturer to determine if you need to repair or replace the disk" and gives the choices "Start the backup process" or "Ask me again later"
I am always suspicious of messages like this, and became moreso when I found that Avast would/could not update itself (this has never been a problem before).
I clicked the X to close out of the error message, and did do a backup just in case, then scanned with Avast and Malwarebytes and didn't find much (just looked like adware).
Also, when the computer starts up, I get a black screen. At the top it has "Phoenix -- AwardBIOS v6.00PG" then has a bunch of stats about my computer. At the bottom it says, "ST3500418AS: Hard disk failure is imminent. Please back up your hard disk and have it replaced!" then has options F10 for setup or F2 to continue. I hit F2 and it loads normally; on logging in I immediately get the "hard disk problem" error message, though if I hit F8 and load in safe mode I don't EVER get that message.
I have photos of all of these error messages if needed, but don't know how to attach them here.
Is this a virus, or is the hard drive genuinely about to fail (sure hope not; the computer is lightly used and is less than 3 years old)?