A hard disk drive (or HDD) is a non-volatile, random access device for storing digital data.

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What do the different colours of the SATA ports on my motherboard mean?

I've bought a new hard drive for my system, and my motherboard (an ASUS M2A VM HDMI) appears to have two black and two red SATA ports, with the existing hard drive and DVD drive plugged into the red ...
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1answer
570 views

Power Options: Turn off harddrive. Effective or dangerous?

I keep a PC running 24x7 as it handles several light (processor-wise and disk-wise) tasks and acts as a jumping point into my network from outside. I'd like to keep it as energy efficient as possible. ...
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4answers
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How to increase the disk cache of Windows 7

Under Windows 7 (64 bit), I'm reading through 9000 moderately sized files. In total, there is more than 200 MB of data. Using Java (JDK 1.6.21) I'm iterating over the files. The first 1400 or so go ...
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5answers
654 views

is it possible to estimate the death time of a hdd?

is it possible to test a hard disk and predict when it will die on you (roughly)?
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5answers
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How to detect if a USB port is 3.0 or 2.0?

I have a Toshiba Canvio 3.0 external HDD. It has USB 3.0. It flashes blue if you connect it to a USB 3.0 port. If it is a 2.0 port, the light becomes white. Yesterday, I plugged it in and the light ...
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5answers
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How do I mount a HFS+ dd image in OSX?

I had an HFS+ formatted drive that was going bad and wouldn't mount at all on OSX. I created an image using ddrescue on linux, and was able to save most of it. I can mount the drive and see the data ...
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3answers
4k views

Why use multiple partitions on Linux installations?

Does it really perform better than a single partitioned installation? Why?
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4answers
848 views

How does a hard drive retain information after being formatted?

Companies try to zero-fill their hard drives several times when they decommission them, why? Surely one pass of zero-fill would do the job exactly as they need. I understand the reasoning for the ...
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6answers
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Imaging new hard drive in Windows 7 laptop?

I'm upgrading my Windows 7 laptop to a new hard drive. How can I clone or image the old hard drive over to the new hard drive, so that it looks like nothing has changed (other than the new hard ...
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4answers
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What is the safe temperature limit for a consumer SATA hard drive?

Background My personal desktop system at home has 5 SATA drives racked up inside. Recently my system started failing in odd ways like random kernel panics and I eventually traced it to random ...
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7answers
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Firefox writes megabytes of data per minute to disk, why?

iotop -a (accumulated I/O) on Linux shows after about 10 min. of browsing Internet: Total DISK READ: 0.00 B/s | Total DISK WRITE: 0.00 B/s TID PRIO USER DISK READ ...
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3answers
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Should I install my operating system on my SSD or HDD?

I'm currently deciding whether to install my Operating System on my SSD (solid state drive) or HD (hard drive). Will I be having programs on the HDD and the OS on the SSD or vice verca? Which will ...
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How much power does a hard drive use?

This is not as straight forward as it sounds. Specs for a WD 3TB Green Drive: Read/Write 6.00 Watts Idle 5.50 Watts Source: http://www.wdc.com/global/products/specs/?driveID=927&language=1 ...
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5answers
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How can I resolve the error “MediaKit reports partition (map) too small”?

I am unable to expand my Mac's hard disk. diskutility reports this error: MediaKit reports partition (map) too small How can I resolve this?
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5answers
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Will initializing disk make data unrecoverable?

I'm trying to access files from a friend's external hard disk which had stopped showing up in 'My Computer' on his XP machine. I removed the drive (500Gb Seagate SATA drive) and installed it in my ...
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4answers
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How can I determine the sector size on an external hard drive?

Hard drives are transitioning from 512 byte to 4096 byte sector sizes, and it looks like Windows XP won't support these newer drives without additional software (such as WDalign from Western Digital) ...
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7answers
669 views

Do hard drives lie?

In the days of old, I remember getting drive errors, but it seems that modern drives never report errors, but instead make a best effort to return you something. I recently had a hard drive fail, ...
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1answer
5k views

What's the difference between SATA and SATA-II (3.0 GB)?

What's the difference between SATA and SATA-II (3.0 GB)? Specifically, if I'm shopping for a new (budget, so not new-new) motherboard, do I need to take into consideration if it supports SATA-II? ...
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2answers
858 views

Do S.M.A.R.T. requests wear off the harddrive?

In a german ubuntu guide for the hddtemp program is claimed that every S.M.A.R.T. request wakes up the drive although no data is read. Because some harddrives that can park their head into a parking ...
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2answers
272 views

The mystery of the Undead HDD. How can this happen?

The short version I had a disk die on me a year ago. It had been a full-on click of death; the system couldn't see anything let alone mount it. A year later, I stumbled across the same disk, ...
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6answers
2k views

How do I prevent disk renumbering on reboot in OS X?

I have 3 physical drives in my Mac Pro with Mac OS X 10.6.4. Occasionally after rebooting the machine, the disk numbering changes such that the /dev/disk# does not reference the same drive as it did ...
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3answers
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Immediately spin down a HDD on Windows

I have 2 non-system SATA HDDs which are not mapped to a dir and normally kept 'offline' on my Windows 7 OS. Even this way they spin up from time to time, including but not limited to windows update ...
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How to fill a hard drive in Linux

I'm doing some testing of a piece of code and I want to fill a hard drive with data. I found that dd can make huge files in an instant, but df disagrees. Here's what I tried: dd if=/dev/zero ...
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4answers
835 views

Can I increase the reliability of my hard drive by using less of its' capacity?

I have a used 3TB SATA hard drive kicking around that I am planning to use as a replacement in a Win 7 box. I don't need all this capacity so was I thinking if I format it to 1TB I would increase ...
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10answers
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Disable or sleep secondary hard drive in Macbook

I've done some quick Googling but didn't find an answer. I've put an SSD in my Macbook, and at the same time moved the original hard drive to the optical drive bay. I'm running the OS and most of my ...
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7answers
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USB vs. FireWire for external hard drives

For external hard drives in this question, I'm referring to traditional HDDs; the kind with spinning metal inside of them (no RAM or flash-based super-high-performance hardware): Is there a ...
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7answers
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How often should I run CHKDSK? [closed]

For as long as I remember, I've been running CHKDSK once a month. However, with the advent of the "modern" operating system (i.e., Windows 7), I wonder if that's still necessary. Could I do it once a ...
10
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1answer
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Resizing partition in Windows 7: how long does it take?

Okay, maybe this is me worrying about nothing, but... I have a 500 Gb. external drive where I want to create a second partition. I plug it into my Windows 7 box, use Disk Manager and pick the "Shrink ...
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8answers
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Is it possible to copy all Windows 7 files from one HD to another and boot from the new HD?

Well, the hard-drive on my laptop died (it was displaying "SMART failure prediction -- Hard-disk Drive dailure might be imminant). So I took it out and hooked it up to an external enclosure and ...
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2answers
1k views

What is TRIM exactly?

From the Wikipedia page of TRIM I get the impression that TRIM was introduced to lower the writes to a SSD, but letter the file system taking case of which blocks are unused. If that is correct, does ...
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2answers
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How to correct 512-byte sector MBR on a 4096-byte sector disk?

Final update: I already knew what I needed to do to fix this problem; I just didn't know how to do it. I was hoping there would be some ready-made tool to do that automatically - but couldn't find ...
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Disk operations freeze Debian

I have just installed Debian testing on my new desktop and I am not very happy with performance - when I perform a disk intensive operation, e.g. upgrade packages in the system, everything seems to ...
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Recover harddrive data

I have a dell laptop that recently "died" (It would get the blue screen of death upon starting) and the hard drive would make a weird cyclic clicking noises. I wanted to see if I could use some tools ...
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1answer
513 views

Where is the software RAID information actually written?

Like title says, where is the actual information which specifies which disks are being used, what order, etc...? I noticed while installing a linux distro that it was detecting a RAID array without a ...
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5answers
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Can storing my HDDs airtight damage them in anyway?

I have lost many electronics that I keep unused for a long time before due to the near sea (high humidity area) area that I live in. I learned this the hard way, so in order to protect hard drives ...
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2answers
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Windows page file on multiple hard drives

I cant find any documentation or articles online online for this... how does Windows handle page files on multiple hard drives? Does windows treat them as a concatenation, writing to one till its ...
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6answers
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2.2 TB limit applies even to eSATA drives? 3TB appears as 746 GB

I have an Icy Dock 3.5" external enclosure with USB 2.0 and eSATA. I have an Intel DG45ID motherboard with USB 2.0 and eSATA ports. In the past I had a 2 TB Seagate drive in the enclosure, and it ...
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3answers
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Force spin-down of external hard-drive on linux (raspberry pi)

I'm currently setting up a home-server using a Raspberry Pi with an external hard-disk connected via usb. However, my hard-drive will never spin down when being idle. I tried already the hints ...
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1answer
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Do hard disk drives turn on 512e (512byte emulation of 4k sectors) as-needed depending on host controller?

I have a 4 TB hard disk that has 4k physical sector size (Advanced Format) and I attached it to two SATA host controllers (one internal and one in a USB enclosure). On the (older, about 2010) it comes ...
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2answers
212 views

Why 45MB Unallocated space at the beginning of a Silicon Power Marvel M70 64GB Flash Drive AND Why Drastically different sector counts?

I have a brand new Silicon Power Marvel M70 64GB USB flash drive has 45MB of unallocated space preceding the 58.89GB of available space. I don’t care about having less than 64GB since I know it’s due ...
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10answers
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Can a single OS installation on a SSD be shared between a desktop & a laptop?

Recently purchased a SSD and was wondering if there was an Operating System that allowed you to swap between 2 different machines (multiple hardware profiles? in this case my laptop / desktop) ...
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8answers
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My C drive is 20GB large and almost full, how do I regain space?

I have Windows 7 Ultimate installed on my PC. The C drive has a capacity of 20 GB and I have only a few applications installed. Still, the drive shows as being almost full up to its capacity and keeps ...
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8answers
2k views

Why are hard drives never as large as advertised?

From all the hard drives I have bought, they never seem to be as large as the advertised price; from 320GB down to 290GB, from 500GB down to 450GB, etc. Is there a technical reason for this?
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4answers
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Can hard drives fully utilize SATA III?

My motherboard currently supports both SATA II and III (3 Gb/s and 6Gb/s respectively), but after reading some online, it seems as though connecting a HDD to the 6 Gb/s is pretty much pointless. If ...
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What is the fastest way to securely overwrite an old hard drive? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Securely erasing all data from a hard drive I'm going to give my HDD away, so I'm writing it full of crap so there is no possibility to recover any of my files I had ...
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7answers
3k views

How can I recover a crashed hard drive?

My hard drive from my MacBook crashed and died hard last week. I replaced the drive with a new one, and installed 10.6/Snow Leopard on it. The old drive is now in a usb enclosure, and I really need to ...
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What's the jumper “enable 1.5GB PHY” on a Western Digital hard disk?

I've got a new hard disk. On the label there is a description of the jumper settings: One of them is: Jumpered pins 5 and 6 enables 1.5GB PHY What does PHY stand for?
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Is BIOS considered an OS? [closed]

This question comes to mind when dealing with RAID arrays, but is not necessarily applicable to the subject. How is that the BIOS is able read from a hard drive to effectively load the OS, when ...
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2answers
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Are there any performance benefits to fully formatting a hard drive (vs. a quick format)?

so I have a 1TB HDD, and here's my question: Is it worth doing a hard format? Does it have any performance variance from say, quick formatting? I understand the technical difference between the two: ...
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Bad Sectors on Hard Drive

I run check disk pretty regularly on my hard drive, and lately it's been saying that I have some bad sectores (66, to be exact). I've run smartctl and HD Tune. Both tell me that I have bad sectors and ...