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

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2 identical PCs - can I swap a single hard drive between and expect Windows 7/XP to work?

I currently work in 2 different locations, traveling between the 2 every few weeks or so. I currently have screens, kb, mouse etc... in both locations, so I just pick up my tower case when I want to ...
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3answers
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How to password protect an external hard drive without encrypting it?

I carry my external hard drive around with me sometimes, and was wondering if there was a way to password protect the entire drive, with no hassles or anything, just a simple password protection...if ...
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2answers
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Trying to remove/diagnose single Current_Pending_Sector in S.M.A.R.T. data

I'm in a process of doing a fresh Linux install and before I went to do that I thought that it is a good time to verify HDD health since I can safely overwrite any data on the HDD if needed. First ...
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2answers
2k views

Does multi-platter hard-drive use all of their heads to read simultaneously?

Suppose we have a harddisk with 2 platters with characteristics below: Rotational rate: 10, 000 RPM Avg sectors/track: 1000 Surfaces: 4 Sector size: 512 bytes I was reading "Computer ...
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2answers
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Making SSD & HDD work together like a hybrid

I have a 90GB SSD but 90GB soon gets filled up. My users folder alone is 26GB. To get round this I use Symlinks (read the How-To Geek article for more). Is there any way to make a separate SSD ...
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1answer
3k views

Write Activity to .vmem file even though the VM is suspended

I have a VMWare VM I have to use for certain tasks at work. For some reason while the VM is running or suspended something is doing massive (in terms of operations, not Bytes/s) I/O on its .vmem file, ...
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3answers
225 views

Swapfile on different drive

Is it worth to spend money on a small capacity HDD (~5-20 GB, very cheap though) to use it as swapping area for the OS? I do believe it will increase the OS performance , or maybe SSD (still ~5-20 ...
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2answers
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Do hard drives need a GUID partition table (GPT) to boot in UEFI mode?

Is EFI booting something hardware specific? I have a desktop motherboard with a UEFI Bios, but I can only boot from USB drives in "UEFI" mode. Both the DVD drive and the HDD's (a RAID 0 array) boot ...
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2answers
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Can a failed Btrfs drive in RAID-1 be replaced live?

I am trying to decide on a filesystem and would like to know if it is possible to replace a failed drive in btrfs RAID without downtime. Suppose I create a new btrfs filesystem using the command ...
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3answers
146 views

How often do drives need to be spun up?

I've got a Frankenputer that is used as a workbench PC to help fix other machines. As such, it's only ever used when something else is broken, so there are often long stretches where it's sitting ...
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2answers
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Is there a clean way to obtain exclusive access to a physical partition under Windows?

I'm trying, under Windows 7, to run a virtual machine with VMWare Player from an OS installed on a physical partition. However, when I boot the virtual machine, VMWare Player says that it couldn't ...
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1answer
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How can I fix the boot process on my HP laptop?

My question is kind of similar to this issue. I installed an SSD in my aging HP DV7t-2000 laptop because the old hard drive was failing. Now, when I boot the laptop, it says on the splash screen ...
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3answers
350 views

How should I image a hard drive in a platform independent and future-proof manner?

What methods of producing hard drive images stand out with regards to being platform independent and standing a good chance of usability in the future. Some considerations: Can the imaging program ...
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1answer
575 views

What “TYPE” of harddrive is in my old 286

I have a very old(1989?) 80286 computer. I can tell it was a very good machine in it's day. It has a harddrive installed. I finally got a PS/2 to AT keyboard plug today and got it to boot. Now I ...
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12answers
5k views

Is RAID 0 as risky as people say it is?

I'm just about to set up my hard drives with RAID 0. Is it really as risky as people say it is?
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7answers
48k views

How to force a remap of sectors reported in S.M.A.R.T C5 (Current Pending Sector Count)?

The S.M.A.R.T C5 value of my Samsung HM640JJ Hard Drive (in an HP Pavilion dv6 laptop) is "yellow status = caution" C5 was 10 yesterday, and it's 21 today. C4 (Reallocation Event Count) = 0 and 05 ...
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730 views

Partitioning a hard drive

Is there a way to split a hard drive into more than 4 primary partitions? I am installing multiple OSs, and it would make life a lot easier if there was a way to do this. My hard drive is 1TB.
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5answers
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What's the difference between “shutting down the computer” vs “shutting down the hard disk”?

I was wondering: What's the difference between shutting down the computer and shutting down the hard disk? Aren't they the same thing? That is: I can't use the computer if the hard disk is shut ...
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3answers
877 views

SSD Perfomance - Internal vs External?

I got a SSD for Christmas and it came with the option to have it installed internally or externally. I'm wondering if I have it setup as an external hard drive, will there be any major performance ...
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5answers
2k views

What can I do with a large Hard Drive?

So I'm looking into the world of external Hard Drives bigger than I can easily comprehend (1-2TB sort of sizes. A few years ago I thought 100GB was big. Blimey), and just wondering what possible uses ...
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4answers
27k views

BIOS Hard Drive Password Security?

I have a Dell Latitude E6400 and I would like to know how secure setting a BIOS HDD Password is? Does this apply some form of encryption to the contents of the drive or is it just some simple lock on ...
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5answers
2k views

How useful is hard drive encryption?

So, let's say you have a notebook, and you encrypt the entire hard drive. Whenever you boot it's gonna ask for a password, meaning nobody can access your data without the password. On the other hand, ...
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2answers
400 views

Storing hard drive near electric wire

Can storing a hard drive near an electric wire (220V) damage the hard drive? I have no clue about such things so I thought I'd ask here. It's just that I found a suitable storage place for one of my ...
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3answers
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How many times can I format a hard disk? [duplicate]

Is there a limit to the number of times I can format a hard disk? I tried to find this information on Wikipedia, but I didn't find an answer.
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Is my hard drive failing?

I'm beginning to worry about my ~3yr old WD Green drive. In the last few days i've noticed that my media player is acting weird, it won't move to the next track after a song has finished and also ...
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1answer
25k views

Disable “Turn off hard disk after” in windows 7

How can I disable this feature? In the power options apparently I can only choose the minutes and I don't see a "Off" option. If I set it to 0 minutes, it sets itself to 1. For now I set it to ...
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2answers
10k views

Why is Windows constantly spinning up my secondary HDD?

I'm having a problem with windows constantly spinning up my secondary HDD. My main OS is on the C: partition of my SSD and on my HDD I have a D: partition for storage and an E: partition for recovery. ...
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2answers
314 views

Why is there a lot of disk usage after laptop starts up from hibernation?

When I turn my laptop on after it hibernated and even when I’m at the point where I’m at my desktop and I can… well, use my computer… there is still a lot of (constant) disk writing going on for about ...
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2answers
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How to add a 2.5" drive to a desktop computer case?

I'm changing my computer case to the Fractal Design Define R3. It looks like a nice case, and it seems to have great reviews. I've got a 2.5" SSD drive that's kind of wedged in above my CD drive at ...
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4answers
5k views

Mean Time to Failure (MTTF): When disk manufacturers post this, how should you interpret their numbers?

Mean Time to Failure (MTTF) is usually given in terms of hours, and by doing some calculations, it seems that a disk should fail only after a good number of years have gone by. It seems that disks ...
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1answer
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How do I retrieve a product key from another hard drive?

My friend's laptop motherboard died and he needs his Windows 7 product key from the hard drive (which is still working). I connected the old drive as a secondary drive to my own computer and tried ...
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How can I make two hard drives act as one in Windows 7?

Is there any way to configure Windows 7 to make two hard drives act as one (without using RAID), so hard drive 1 and hard drive 2 would share a single drive letter? Can this be achieved natively in ...
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Hard drive issues - SpinRite vs. S.M.A.R.T

The Toshiba hard drive in a Sony VAIO laptop went bad. I put in a Western Digital drive (WD1600BEVS-60RST0, firmware v4.01G04) from an HP laptop. I ran SpinRite at level 2 and found some bad sectors, ...
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What is causing hard drive grinding?

My windows (XP) hard drive grinds a lot and it negatively affects the performance of other applications. I have plenty of RAM and have already verified that this hard drive activity is not page file ...
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Is it a good idea to have the operating system on a solid state drive?

There is something I don't quite understand. I know a SSD helps with OS load times, but I'm not sure if all this boost is only noticeable/interesting when booting, or gives an all around considerably ...
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Spin down secondary HDD on Windows 7 HP Notebook

I have an HPdv6t quad notebook with Windows 7 and Ubuntu 11.04 dual booted, both OSes installed on a partitioned Crucial 128 GB SSD. I replaced my optical drive with the HDD that came with the ...
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Why some recovery tools are still able to find deleted files after I purge Recycle Bin, defrag the disk and zero-fill free space?

As far as I understand, when I delete (without using Recycle Bin) a file, its record is removed from the file system table of contents (FAT/MFT/etc...) but the values of the disk sectors which were ...
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Hard drive disappears when the computer resumes from sleep

I have a Windows 7 x64 machine, which has 4 drives in it. One of the drives disappears when the computer resumes from sleep. It is consistently the same drive. It disappears from my computer, and ...
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521 views

Where is S.M.A.R.T. data stored on a HDD?

The S.M.A.R.T. attributes are attributes that a HDD keeps about its health and performance. I know that the MBR is stored at C,H,S (0,0,1) which leaves no free disc space for the drive to function. ...
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1answer
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Linux: What is the best way to copy from a damaged HD?

I get I/O errors from my storage HD when i try to copy files. These are large raw video files, so I can tolerate errors. cp stops on the first read error and scp/rsync complains and deletes the copy. ...
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Seagate Momentus XT corrupting files (Linux and Mac)

My Seagate Momentus XT hybrid hard drive is corrupting files on Linux. I would appreciate help from anyone, but I'd particularly like to know if other Momentus XT users are able to reproduce this ...
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3answers
255 views

Is a computer's DRAM size not as important once we get a Solid State Drive?

I am thinking of getting a Dell X11 netbook, and it can go up to 8GB of DRAM, together with a 256GB Solid State Drive. So in that case, it can handle quite a bit of Virtual PC running Linux, and Win ...
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6answers
383 views

Is it a big performance gain to run a VM from a second drive?

Dell offers a laptop with either a 500GB drive or two 320GB drives (both 7200rpm and no options for SSD). I will be running VMs for development and will also have several TrueCrypt mounts. I ...
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952 views

Should I store my code/projects on my SSD or my secondary drive?

I just got a new box. It has an SSD for the primary drive, and a 1TB SATA for the secondary drive. I'm going to run windows and my binaries on the SSD and keep all my downloads/documents/music/etc ...
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What's the difference between 8 MB and 16 MB Cache on a hard drive?

I'm looking to replace a dead hard drive in an older notebook. The current (bad) hard drive is a Toshiba 60 GB 5400 RPM HDD with 16 MB cache. It's very difficult to find replacement ATA-100 notebook ...
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Why is my disk at 99% usage here?

I have a similar issue as this user. You can pretty much take his screen shot and apply it to my issue: Windows 8.1, 99% disk usage or in that vicinity for a longer period of time (minutes). Yet the ...
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346 views

Is it better to turn off computer or power continuously to keep ancient 1990 harddrive alive (MSDOS 6.22 )

I want to extend the life of this harddrive as much as possible because I found it nearly impossible to clone. It is running MSDOS 6.22. 110mb harddrive from 1990. The computer is only utilized 1 ...
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2answers
2k views

Unable to Write Zeros to Bad Sectors/Hard Disk Not Counting Reallocated Sectors

I have a drive that is reporting that the current pending sectors is "45". I have used badblocks to identify the sectors and I have been trying to write zeros to them with dd. From what I understand, ...
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6answers
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Windows XP changes its theme every time after reboot

I have an ASUS Eee netbook with Windows XP installed on it. Ever since I switched to an SSD drive, Windows XP has been doing something strange; Almost every time I reboot my computer, it changes my ...
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Does the order of partitions matter?

I see that most people tend to make /boot, swap, Windows System partition, etc first. And some say that it'll be faster to do so, while others say 'outer tracks' faster. Could you tell me which one ...