Jump to content


 


Register a free account to unlock additional features at BleepingComputer.com
Welcome to BleepingComputer, a free community where people like yourself come together to discuss and learn how to use their computers. Using the site is easy and fun. As a guest, you can browse and view the various discussions in the forums, but can not create a new topic or reply to an existing one unless you are logged in. Other benefits of registering an account are subscribing to topics and forums, creating a blog, and having no ads shown anywhere on the site.


Click here to Register a free account now! or read our Welcome Guide to learn how to use this site.

Photo

All things die . . . including computers


  • Please log in to reply
22 replies to this topic

#1 godzilla1347

godzilla1347

  • Members
  • 347 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Long Island, NY
  • Local time:06:00 AM

Posted 19 March 2016 - 02:28 PM

I'm running Windows Vista on a Dell 410 XPS desktop. I hope I finish this message before my system crashes.

 

I leave the computer on in sleep mode and mode the mouse to activate it. About a week ago, I notice that the system was off. I turned on the computer and the hard drive sounded like it was a train coming out of the station. It kept accelerating and the system didn't come on so I shut it down manually and tried again. This time, it rebooted and worked. I had noticed that firefox, which is up to date, kept crashing, but worked for a period of time until crashing again about every 12 hours. Also Windows kept shutting down and I got an error message that Windows had recovered when rebooting. 

 

So I did a chkdisk but the problem persisted. i also did the Firefox fix but got the same results. Today, the system froze and when I did a cold start, I got that express train hard drive set up so, again. I did a cold shut down and the system started up again. 

 

At this point, the jury seems to be suggesting that the hard drive is fried. Yes, it works when it works and it, for some reason, is faster than it used to be. That might be because some of the sectors are damaged. I don't know. Is there a way to check?

 

In any case, at this point, a Vista system doesn't pay buying a new hard drive for. If there is no way of actually fixing this, the most logical solution would probably mean to go out and buy a new computer.  I was planning on doing that anyway before Vista loses Microsoft support in 2017, but I have a lot of work that has to be done online for business and requires the use of Excel and Word files in the next 3 months and this isn't an optimum time for me to start playing around with setting up all my programs on a new system and transfering datat files (which I have on a travel drive, thankfully).

 

If there is something fixable here, I'm all ears but the fact that the system starts accelerating at startup suggests, at least to me, that there is a problem with this hard drive.

 

Any suggestions?



BC AdBot (Login to Remove)

 


#2 godzilla1347

godzilla1347
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 347 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Long Island, NY
  • Local time:06:00 AM

Posted 19 March 2016 - 02:31 PM

I should have added that I could re-install windows from the Dell recovery disk but my suspicion is that hard drives are not supposed to start accelerating without stop and that leaves me with the impression that the drive has a hardware problem. If so, reinstalling windows won't help.



#3 ranchhand_

ranchhand_

  • Members
  • 1,752 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Midwest
  • Local time:04:00 AM

Posted 19 March 2016 - 07:13 PM

First and foremost, make a backup of your operating system and data (if you haven't already). 

Next, test your hard drive so that you don't have to be guessing if it is failing or not. This method by-passes the HDD and runs a check on it, as follows:

 

Go here and download Seatools For DOS (free)
http://www.seagate.com/support/downloads/seatools/

Accept the EULA and download the ISO file.
When download is complete burn the ISO to a CD or DVD.
Make sure your BIOS is set to:   1st Boot Device = CD drive, 2nd Boot Device = Hard Drive.
When the program opens, click the upper left corner for the Long Test.
> Note: if you get a pop-up window telling you that SMART has tripped and asking if you want to continue, choose Yes. Be sure to post that in your next reply along with the result of the test.
At the end of the test, you will get either a Pass or Fail notice. Post the result in your next reply.
Be sure to have your hard drive directly installed internally to the motherboard, not in an external case.


Help Requests: If there is no reply after 3 days I remove the thread from my answer list. For further help PM me.


#4 Niweg

Niweg

  • Members
  • 802 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:US of A
  • Local time:05:00 AM

Posted 19 March 2016 - 07:21 PM

 Just add the /f to the chkdsk command.  That will check for and attempt repair of bad sectors.  However it's not going to fix that sound you describe.  Are you sure that sound is coming from the hard drive and not a fan?  I guess you know that you can buy replacement drives for as little as $20 these days.

 

 Good luck.


Edited by Niweg, 19 March 2016 - 07:22 PM.

Make regular full system backups or you'll be sorry sooner or later.


#5 godzilla1347

godzilla1347
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 347 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Long Island, NY
  • Local time:06:00 AM

Posted 20 March 2016 - 12:55 AM

Thank you for your detailed feedback.  I was at a crossroads and a conflict. One one hand, I like to learn and not give up and when offered a solution or a check if a resolution is possible as you have provided, I appreciate it and follow the breadcrumbs. On the other hand, I have taxes that need to be done and a business with Amazon and an free solar and discounted energy business that can't afford to have a computer down while I fiddle with it (and usually screw things up before they are resolved).

 

So I made a compromise and went out and bought a new desktop today. I won't even set it up (I have to figure out how to create a network connection for my printer to both computers and don't have a clue) but need at least one printer working while I fiddle with this) until I get through some of the business issues I need to complete this month. But as soon as they are completed, I will follow your advice and do the troubleshooting as you have suggested, and at that time I will post that data here. This system is working presently and hopefully will get me through the month and the immediate business issues I need to address. I crashes intermittantly but does reboot (for now) and hasn't crashed since my last post. I am also curious to do the tests you have instructed me to do because I would like to know what the problem is.I don't understand the runaway hard drive issue but don't know how hard drives work so it's all conjecture to me. If it were the fan, I doubt it would reboot and work the second time and not speed up.  If it can be fixed, I will follow your lead.  If it is the hard drive, I will replace it after I get the new system up.

 

I like the idea of having both computers working so I have a backup.  The other thing that forced my hand to buy the new system was the fact that this system is living on borrowed time as it is Running Windows Vista and I believe that Microsoft is ending support next year.  When that had happened with XP, I was saddened as that was a good OS but without Windows updates, I would have been hacker bait. I think it's always good to have a backup system anyway and I can use this computer to learn on.

 

Thanks for your support and I will be sending that data once I get through the month.



#6 Niweg

Niweg

  • Members
  • 802 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:US of A
  • Local time:05:00 AM

Posted 20 March 2016 - 10:39 AM

 It sounds like you're doing a good bit of juggling, trying to keep everything going.  When it comes to business needs, there's really no substitute for backup.  You just simply can't afford to have something crap out that you depend on to run the business.  I assume you're making regular backups of your data.

 Printer sharing is pretty simple, but sometimes Murphy can make it more difficult than it should be.  You just turn on file and printer sharing in the Network and Sharing applet of the Control Panel, then mark the printer as shared.  You do have to decide whether you want password protected sharing or not, weighing the trade offs either way, and some older printers don't support sharing with Windows 10 I discovered with my Samsung ML-2525 printer.  I ended up buying a wireless printer for $55 that works with everything just fine without having to set up any networking in the usual sense.

 

 Good luck. 


Make regular full system backups or you'll be sorry sooner or later.


#7 dc3

dc3

    Bleeping Treehugger


  • Members
  • 30,756 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Sierra Foothills of Northern Ca.
  • Local time:02:00 AM

Posted 20 March 2016 - 11:33 AM

 Just add the /f to the chkdsk command.  That will check for and attempt repair of bad sectors. 

If this is not a SSD you should use the /r switch.  It has same functionality of the /f switch, but also checks for bad sectors on the HDD and recovers any readable information which the /f switch does not.


Edited by dc3, 20 March 2016 - 11:34 AM.

Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#8 mjd420nova

mjd420nova

  • Members
  • 1,885 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:02:00 AM

Posted 20 March 2016 - 12:06 PM

So many strange things happen to machines when in the sleep or hibernate mode.  Mouse activation, keyboard or network, many options to choose but they all seem to give strange events when returning from sleep/hibernate, whatever the activation mode is.  Laptops really get strange when using the lid close options.  The startup with jet noises (from the hard drive?) goes away if powered off and reset. points to the power supply being at fault.  Double check the options in the BIOS for "awake ON" events and turn them all off.  Same for other options involving activation from sleep/hibernate.



#9 godzilla1347

godzilla1347
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 347 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Long Island, NY
  • Local time:06:00 AM

Posted 20 March 2016 - 02:11 PM

Two things: 1) pardon my ignorance but I don't know what SSD means. 2) regarding the intermittent jet takeoff from a cold boot, that doesn't happen unless the computer is shut off. When it reboots from a crash but the system is still up, that problem doesn't happen so I would think that would rule out sleep mode, would it not?



#10 Captain_Chicken

Captain_Chicken

  • BC Advisor
  • 1,369 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:05:00 AM

Posted 20 March 2016 - 08:23 PM

You have a hard drive. An ssd is basically a large fast flash drive that boots and opens programs faster than a standard hard drive.

Computer Collection:

Spoiler

Spoiler

Spoiler

Spoiler

#11 dc3

dc3

    Bleeping Treehugger


  • Members
  • 30,756 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Sierra Foothills of Northern Ca.
  • Local time:02:00 AM

Posted 21 March 2016 - 07:48 AM

Two things: 1) pardon my ignorance but I don't know what SSD means. 2) regarding the intermittent jet takeoff from a cold boot, that doesn't happen unless the computer is shut off. When it reboots from a crash but the system is still up, that problem doesn't happen so I would think that would rule out sleep mode, would it not?

1.  A HDD is an electromechanical device which utilizes a hard disc to store data.  This disc spins and a mechanical arm with a read/write head accesses the data.  A SSD is a solid state device which stores data on microchips.  One of the big differences between the two is the HDD will eventually wear out or the platter (disc) can be physically damaged, or its circuitry will fail.  The SSD is much more robust by comparison.  It has no moving parts and will last much longer than a HDD.

 

2.  I've run across this type of noise in the past.  This is usually the CPU fan spinning much faster than it normally does during normal operation.  What I found was that the fan speed isn't under control until the BIOS starts.  Once the BIOS is running the fan speed should return to a normal speed.  Does yours?


Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#12 CyberSec_ET

CyberSec_ET

  • Members
  • 151 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Forestville California
  • Local time:03:00 AM

Posted 21 March 2016 - 07:50 AM

DELETE


Edited by CyberSec_ET, 21 March 2016 - 07:50 AM.


#13 godzilla1347

godzilla1347
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 347 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Long Island, NY
  • Local time:06:00 AM

Posted 21 March 2016 - 12:12 PM

I have to get my taxes out and finish some projects on this system while it's working and will be setting up the new computer this week. I do want to investigate what's going on with this computer, however. The fan speed issue makes sense. Interestingly, the computer has not crashed for serveral days. The "runaway train" seems to only happen when starting from a cold boot so your fan speed comment makes sense. I will do all the troubleshooting advised here within 10 days when I have more time and will get back to this thread with my results.

 

The crazy thing is that the system appears fine now. I'm sure that's a false positive so it pays to investigate. It's like when you get sick and make an appointment to see the doctor and by the time you get there, you aren't sick anymore. In this case, however, even if the system is working now, unless it's a question of bad code that a windows update has fixed (and I don't think it is that because it appears to be a hardware issue), I suspect the crashes will continue again so it pays to get to the bottom of this issue. I want to get my new system up, transfer all the data files, set up all the software and connect to the network printers (I have never done that before and will probably screw it up but there was advice in this thread that I'll follow. This system is hardwired and I was told at Best Buy that to have two systems working off one printer I can't wire both but have to set them up as network printers), before I fool around with this system because I want to make sure one is working so my businesses don't run into challenges.  But I definitely will do the troubleshooting suggested. I also might reinstall windows to clean this system up as well. I find that all kind of garbage find a way into the system and I don't know if it's garbage or not.

 

You got me thinking about the fan speed though. If the system works normally once it boots, then the fan seems to be working fine once the system is up. Are you saying that the BIOS might not be engaging the fan properly? Once the system is running, there are no fan speed problems so maybe the BIOS is the culprit. Not sure what you do with a faulty BIOS.



#14 mjd420nova

mjd420nova

  • Members
  • 1,885 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:02:00 AM

Posted 21 March 2016 - 02:29 PM

I have had a couple units that exhibited the full speed fan on power up, but it was short  and went silent from then on.  Only the CPU fan, the GPU is just a powered fan, not controlled.  It "jets off" at the start.  A number of clients noticed the same on their units but nothing was amiss.  As mentioned, there are a number of ways the fan speed is set, and can be corrupted too.  Registry changes and BIOS options besides programs to control or monitor the fan operation are not always compatible with every system and option.



#15 godzilla1347

godzilla1347
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 347 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Long Island, NY
  • Local time:06:00 AM

Posted 23 March 2016 - 01:50 PM

I may have to address this issue sooner than I had thought because the system is crashing and rebooting with a blue screen error message intermittently, usually when navigating online.  I will first set up the new computer so I have something stable before I start fooling around with this but something came up from some of the questions above.

 

That blue screen error message mentioned the BIOS and it was also listed about that the BIOS could affect the fan to make it accelerate. I have had this computer since 2007 and had never updated the BIOS. Could the problem be a corruption in the BIOS. There was an infection at the time all this had started and McAfee had quarentined it but I don't know if such things can affect the BIOS. If so, would updating the BIOS be a good starting approach?






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users