I've got a dying disk, it's an emotional time, but I've managed to either recover or retrieve backups for most of the data. I've got a few questions though.
When the disk first started dying, boot times went through the roof because it wasn't responding properly, at POST and windows splash. It would show up in disk management in Win 7 sporadically, and it seemed too much activity killed it and it disappeared again.
When it was available it would transfer it would transfer at Kb/s rather than Mb/s.
I managed to get Ubuntu 11.10 installed on my portable disk and boot into that, the dying disk was slow at first and ubuntu threw all sorts of tantrums because it wouldn't respond properly. But when it played nice it did it for a long time and speeds where sometimes in the region of 30-50Mb/s. I managed to get all my important stuff off this way (very happy) but booting back into windows and it still can't see it at all, back into ubuntu and there it is, ready to use.
It's a few tiered question:
- What could have gone wrong to the drive for the strange behaviour (no bad sectors, but still dying)
- Does Linux really deal with [insert drive error here] that much better than windows that it was the difference between life and death of my data
- Why does [insert drive error here] seem to deteriorate over time / useage
With all that's gone on I'm thinking more and more mechanical, but mechanical disk errors are commonplace for OSs and are (in my experience) nicely dealt with. Not this farce.
Win 7 Pro x64 on seperate unaffected disk.
Ubuntu 11.10 x64 on portable USB disk.
Dying drive: WD 2TB Caviar Green
Oddness continues, windows now refuses to boot with the dying drive plugged in. I can here a clunk from it every 2 seconds while windows sits at the splash screen, doesn't sound like what I've heard from a dying drive before, but that was a while ago. It sounds like it's trying to start the disk every two seconds and it's refusing. The confusing thing is windows isn't giving up, am I missing something? Shouldn't windows accept defeat and just boot without the drive, or at least show some sort of error, instead of sitting polling it every 2 seconds for 20 mins until I got bored of waiting and killed it?
OK I found something else a little odd last night that makes me not want to give up on this drive just yet. In the Grub prompt at boot (separate issue) even that can read files on the device with next to no lag, and when booting from an Ubuntu live CD that has seemingly good access to the device. Windows however still refuses to boot at all when this device is plugged in. I've seen a few mechanical drive errors before but never inconsistently across OSs.