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Can I trust a hard drive that has had to reallocate sectors?

I just ran CrystalDiskInfo and found that the hard drive has one reallocated sector:

One reallocated sector as reported by CrystalDiskInfo

Should I worry about this? Is one or a few reallocated sectors okay in normal operation? Should I be concerned? (Note that I maintain weekly system image backups using Windows Backup and Restore Center on an external hard drive, and I've successfully restored a backup before.)

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marked as duplicate by Shinrai, Hello71, rob, bwDraco, Darth Android Jun 21 '11 at 3:01

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

I would just add that I wouldn't worry about 1, period. Unless it's a brand new drive I probably wouldn't even worry about 100 unless it's acting funny in some other manner. – Shinrai Jun 21 '11 at 0:31
I've read this question. This question involves one reallocated sector, not several dozen or hundreds. I would not have posted this question if the circumstances are more similar. – bwDraco Jun 21 '11 at 0:32
Okay, I'm voting to close on my own question. Thanks, Shinrai, for the advice on the drive. – bwDraco Jun 21 '11 at 0:54
I'd argue that the essence of the two questions are both "When should I worry about reallocated sectors?" What if I had a question about 30? 65? >.< I'm not trying to be closehappy, just tidy. I think those answers are perfectly valid for your question as well (at least with a little thought) or I'd never have voted to close. – Shinrai Jun 21 '11 at 2:40
Well, it looks like not everyone wanted to close this question, so I'll try to have it reopened. – bwDraco Jun 21 '11 at 11:01
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Whether it's a single bad sector or dozens, you're still playing with a ticking timebomb.

If in doubt, ask the hard disk manufacturer if they will warranty a drive with one bad sector. In my experience, they have, so I always take even a single reallocated sector seriously. If the manufacturer won't warranty the disk for you (assuming the warranty period hasn't expired), then they must be reasonably confident that you won't lose your data.

One more thing to keep in mind is that you'll incur a performance hit every time you try to read or write a bad sector--this is why you can sometimes notice your computer getting slower and slower (as more sectors are reallocated) until the hard drive catastrophically dies.

P.S. Sorry, I voted to close but later gave it some more thought. I think a lot of people who vote to close questions must make the same mistake, whether they're willing to admit it or not. It looks like there's not any way for me to take away my vote.

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My system is made by HP, so I would need to contact them to get a replacement. Failure does not appear to be imminent, but I'll continue to monitor the drive. If the value is stable for several weeks, I won't seek a replacement. – bwDraco Jun 21 '11 at 1:25
If you do hold off on replacing it, another thing to keep in mind is that some companies will extend your warranty by 30-90 days if you happen to submit a warranty claim toward the end of your warranty period...just in case the replacement part ends up being defective, too. – rob Jun 21 '11 at 1:34
The HP warranty says 90 days after the repair if this exceeds the remaining warranty period. – bwDraco Jun 21 '11 at 1:38
Good to know; thanks! – rob Jun 21 '11 at 20:51

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