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Is my hard disk buggered?

By Neodragon ·
I have a Dell Inspiron 8200. I am running XP Pro. I tend to keep my computer on for long periods at a time. This isn't the first time this sort of thing has happened but it is by far the worst looking...

My computer doesn't boot up. I don't think I head any hard drive noise at all - i might be mistaken - it is very quiet compared to how it normally sounds.

Anyway, I get a black screen saying: "A disk read error occurred. Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart" This happens again when I restart. :-/

My Safe Mode doesn't work - ie, nothing happens when I hit F8.

When I get into Recovery Console using my XP Pro cd and use Fixmbr the response is: "Writing new master boot record on physical drive \Device\Harddisk0\Partition0. The new master boot record could not be written. The disk may be damaged" ???

Chkdsk /P gives the response: "4% completed'
It then waits 5 mins and says: "The volume appears to contain one or more unrecoverable problems" :-[

Chkdsk /R gives the same response as Chkdsk /P

When choosing the "Set up Windows option" from the cd i get: "an error occurred while Setup was updating partition information on: 38155 MB Disk 0 at Id 0 on bus 0 on atapi [MBR] Setup cannot continue."

Is my hard disk buggerred???
Do I need to reformat the whole thing?
Can I recover important, personal files etc once I format and reinstall windows?
Where can I get such a program?

Please help...

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by Jennifer.Gardner In reply to Is my hard disk buggered?

It does sound like your hard drive is having serious problems. Dell has a utility that will check a hard disk for errors during boot. I believe you press cntrl-alt-f during the boot process...

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by Monkay01 In reply to Is my hard disk buggered?

Your hard drive does appeared to be damaged most likely beyond use however you may be able to recovery some or all of the data on it by sending the drive to a data recovery center such as CBL http://www.cbldata.com/kanoodle.html. Also the lack of any hard drive noise could be an indicator that the drive is not spinning up to speed or that the read write head is not functioning. I would check all cables in the back of the drive and make sure nothing has come loose just to be safe before sending out the drive.

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by Oz_Media In reply to Is my hard disk buggered?

It sounds like your hard drive is seized. I would buy a new one as they are so cheap now and once it is working. Place your old one in the freee for 30 mins. in a plastic bag(not joking at all here).

Remove the HD and drop it flat on the counter from about 6 inches. This should shrink and free up the bearings and allow the drive to spin up long enough to recover some files. Plug it in and see what you can recover, you should have about 45 minutes if the room and PC aren't too hot,I ususally leave the case off just to keep it cool but this has worked more than once for me.

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by Orpheum In reply to Is my hard disk buggered?

first of all don't freak out. your data is not gone.
second, had the other members bothered to check dell's site, they'd have known that the inspiron line are laptops and therefore leaving the case off is not applicable.
you should run a diagnostic test on your hard drive. i doubt it has gone thru much read write abuse since it is relatively new. http://support.dell.com/FileLib/Format.aspx?c=us&l=en&s=gen&Category=13&OS=NAA&OSL=EN&SvcTag=&SysID=INS_PNT_P4_8200&DeviceID=196&Type=&ReleaseID=R41988
copy this link into your browser and wdld the utility. extract it to a floppy and be sure to follow dell's instr 4 making it bootable.
this diag util should also have a fix sectors without deleting other partitions option.
i seriously hope you didn't store your data on the same partitionas the MBR
-Orpheum

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by bldsm In reply to Is my hard disk buggered?

I agree with answer 4 - had the same experience with a similar notebook and what 4 suggested worked fine for me. Notebooks are funny devices.

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by wlbowers In reply to Is my hard disk buggered?

When I get a laptop like this in for service, we remove the drive and using an adapter install it on a desktop system.

The more you try to get that drive to boot the more you bugger up the chance of getting your data off.

The adapter is $9.00 here at Cables to Go:
http://tinyurl.com/2yq77

Once you get the drive on as a secondary drive you can run backup retrive your data even if you have to use recovery software.

Once your data is safe then you can attempt to save the drive by using the manufacturers diagnostic software.

Good Luck Lee

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