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Cloning a hard drive with errors on it
Will I just duplicate the problems?
MatthewHSE

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 4:53 pm on Feb 13, 2009 (gmt 0)

My hard drive has been going belly-up all this week. I can still work, but I keep getting I/O messages and things that used to take a few seconds are taking a lot longer. The hard drive is about five years old, so it's probably nearing the end of its budget-priced life.

I've got a new Raptor drive coming, but I'm hoping to avoid a full reinstall of Windows and my programs. I have Acronis True Image and have been planning to clone the old drive onto the new one.

But if I do that, is there any danger that I'll simply be cloning the disk errors over to the brand-new drive? I'd hate to replicate the problems onto my shiny new 10K RPM drive! ;)

Thanks in advance for any thoughts or advice,

Matthew

 

The Contractor

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 5:41 pm on Feb 13, 2009 (gmt 0)

Have you checked the drive for errors? Could be your I/O controller. I have not used the product (Acronis True Image), but do use PowerQuest DriveImage that is no longer available. It can create two types: a sector by sector or file based image. It also checks for bad sectors/clusters etcetera by default, but this can be turned of.

MatthewHSE

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 4:28 pm on Feb 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

OK, I've checked the hard drive with a couple different utilities and it's actually coming back with no errors. So I guess that leaves my I/O controller. Is that the driver, the SATA port on my motherboard, or something else, and how can I check it?

kaled

WebmasterWorld Senior Member kaled us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 7:01 pm on Feb 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

I can still work, but I keep getting I/O messages and things that used to take a few seconds are taking a lot longer

What sort of I/O messages? If software utilities are not detecting errors, it sounds like the disk hardware is fine and simply replacing the hard disk would have no useful effect.

Error checking utilities typically work at a lowish-level, whereas applications access files at a highish-level i.e. using caches and buffers, etc. to speed things up. These errors might result from faulty software (caching and buffering) faulty memory or even a faulty motherboard.

Kaled.

MatthewHSE

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 7:12 pm on Feb 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

Come to think of it, only Skype is actually reporting an I/O error (it signs me out, throws the error, and asks me to sign in again). Other programs (particularly FTP and text editors) are drastically slowed from time to time but don't report any problems.

cmendla

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 8:01 pm on Feb 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

If you are running Windows, go to the Control Panel, admin Programs, Event viewer, System. Then page through looking for disk errors. if you see a lot of Disk errors marked with a red icon, then your drive is probably failing rapidly. There can be reasons for yellow disk warnings that aren't as serious.

Some of the HD companies will recover data for you. Unfortunately the cost starts at a grand. They will look at the drive and then let you know what they can recover. You usually only pay if you choose to recover the files.

I would back stuff up ASAP.

Also, I went to one of those Network addressable storage units. Set the 1tb model up for mirroring to give me 1/2tb. That way (1) a single drive failure won't kill me and (2) if my machine fails, the data should still be there. You still have to back up the NAS devices.

MatthewHSE

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 9:05 pm on Feb 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

No disk errors in the Event Viewer. It's looking more and more as if the disk isn't the problem. (Even if it is, all my important data is in a different location, backed up nightly in three different ways.)

So I've bought a hard drive that I don't need and that won't fix the problem.

Considering the Event Viewer isn't showing any problems, what else can I check to troubleshoot this stuff?

kaled

WebmasterWorld Senior Member kaled us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 1:32 am on Feb 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

For anything like this, I always recommend looking at security software first - firewalls, antivirus and anything else you might have such as registry monitors. Disable, one by one and retest (or disable all and retest then enable one by one). However, be aware that disabling a piece of security software may fix the direct problem but the actual cause may be elsewhere - you are simply removing a conflict.

If the system is slow, start with Real-time antivirus scanning - that is often a performance killer. Also, if you are using whole-disk encryption or NTFS compression, these might cause problems.

Kaled.

D_Blackwell

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 2:38 am on Feb 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

If you are running Windows, go to the Control Panel, admin Programs, Event viewer, System. Then page through looking for disk errors. if you see a lot of Disk errors marked with a red icon, then your drive is probably failing rapidly.

I've got an old box with a variety of problems and have been working at fixing it up bit-by-bit here-and-there.

I tried the instructions above. There are a lot, but nothing jumps out as OMG. The biggest problem that this box has is the the System 32 directory opens on startup every time. I have been told that this indicates a corrupt file and acts as a warning, but haven't been able to find a way to identify why and am gun-shy about screwing around with anything in that folder. Have found no source that has been helpful in making progress.

The majority of red errors are labeled 'Source: DCOM', 'Category: None', 'Event: 10010', 'User: My name'. Properties: All seem to indicate The server (long string) did not register with DCOM within the required timeout. That is all of the red errors.

The yellow areas that have occurred in February thus far. Numerous instances of each; Different days.

'Source: ftdisk', 'Category: Disk', 'Event: 57', 'User: N/A Properties: The system failed to flush data to the transaction log. Corruption may occur.

'Source: W32Time', 'Event: 36', 'User: N/A' Properties: The time service has not been able to synchronize the system time for 49152 seconds because none of the time providers has been able to provide a usable time stamp. The system clock is unsynchronized.

'Source: Tcip', 'Event: 4226'. 'User: N/A Properties: TCP/IP has reached the security limit imposed on the number of concurrent TCP connect attempts.

The Contractor

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 5:17 pm on Feb 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

Considering the Event Viewer isn't showing any problems, what else can I check to troubleshoot this stuff?

Who is the manufacturer of the system, model number, and/or motherboard? I would see if anyone else have experienced the same using the same system/motherboard...

MatthewHSE

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 8:25 pm on Feb 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the ideas everyone. All this will be cataloged away for future reference, but kaled wins the silver dollar. ;) My newly-reinstalled AV software was set to scan network drives, which apparently included FTP servers. Whenever I tried to do anything with FTP, my system came to a near-halt and caused all sorts of problems. Disabling that setting fixed the problem and I'm a happy camper again.

On a 10K RPM drive, no less, which does indeed make a difference in one's performance. :)

The Contractor

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 9:03 pm on Feb 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

Wow, care to share which AV program? You may save someone else the same headache...

MatthewHSE

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3848875 posted 9:21 pm on Feb 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

Sorry about that, it was Nod32 2.7. The problems were worst when using WebDrive (which actually maps a network drive to a webserver - a real lifesaver for some projects), although other FTP programs seemed to suffer as well.

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