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Sometimes, my hard drive randomly stops working. The system either crashes with a bsod or freezes up. When I restart it, it won't boot and strange sounds come out of the hard drive (usually the start/spin-up sound repeats over and over). Sometimes the bios won't even recognize it. Usually, if I pull the drive out, shake it a bit and reconnect it, it will start working again. Sometimes I need to do that 5-6 times for it to start working. It can work for a few months or even a year before this happens again, but it does happen eventually.
HD sentinel is showing pretty bad results:

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But it has been like this for 2 years, maybe slightly worse than before.
Also, the event log is filled with this:
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I get hundreds of these every day. All the other HDD tests show perfect results, including the Seagate official software. Also, when scanning for bad sectors with different programs, they always show 0 errors.
There definitely is a problem with the HDD, but is it possible that the problem could be in the cables or the on board sata controller?
Also, is it possible that HDS is giving false results (at least the bad sector count)?

Apart from the rare sudden failures, there are no other problems with the PC. Should I keep using this drive or move to a spare one just in case? I have the data backed up, but still don't want to lose the OS.

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  • Please edit your question and include a screenshot of the SMART tab.
    – DavidPostill
    Feb 19, 2016 at 12:16
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    Your HDD should be replaced. Based on the errors, total failure and complete data loss, is only a matter of time. If you are having to SHAKE a mechanical drive for it to work, YOU HAVE A PROBLEM, that action alone could damage it. Just duplicate the HDD, I suspect, you will find you won't be able to do that though because of the bad sectors. Your system is crashing because, system files are being put on a sector which is then failing, while the system file is in use.
    – Ramhound
    Feb 19, 2016 at 13:35
  • I doubt that HDS is giving a false result. HDS relies on the SMART data the drive reports. As DavidPostill mentioned, a look at the SMART attributes should clear things up. You will probably see a rather high number of "Reallocated Sectors Count", attribute 5.
    – Nassbirne
    Feb 19, 2016 at 16:31
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    "pull the drive out, shake it a bit and reconnect it" A new repair technique, you can learn a lot on SU!
    – Moab
    Feb 19, 2016 at 17:58
  • Back up now! Be safe 😊
    – Dave
    Feb 19, 2016 at 23:04

4 Answers 4

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The behavior is typical for a dying hard disk drive, one with spinning platters. It can sound like repetitive clicking, with a lot of spinning up and down. It's fairly rhythmic.

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Just to give you a life saver idea, find 16 gb usb flash drive and download the proper version of Ubuntu Linux. Then go to Google and search for 'pendrivelinux' go to the first website and download Universal Usb Installer, easy as 1 2 3 ' after downloading, open universal USB installer and copy Ubuntu to your flash drive and don't forget to make at least 4gigd of persistent space. Now boot that USB and you're ready to use your new USB powered Ubuntu OS 😂

P.S

I know that you can't use your PC like that for a long time and I personally do not suggest you to use an USB based OS, this is going to save you about 7 - 10 days (at least)

Some other P.S

If you need any assistance during these steps, feel free to ask me. We're here to help, aren't we 👍

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ALWAYS HAVE A BACK-UP

Also, your HDD is dying, Those sounds are a clear sign that it is going to be a brick in the very near future, Get a new one :)

I myself always use Crystaldisk to scan for bad sectors.

Bad sectors are not healthy, but also not fatal, they are way more common than you might think. Your HDD sees these sectors and labels them faulty. When your HDD gets more and more bad sectors over time, it is a big sign that your HDD is going to die really soon.

I myself always replace my HDD after a few dead sectors, but thats more paranoia than common sense :P

If you are going to make a back-up, please stop using any OS on the drive. To make a back-up with the most success rate, use a live CD/USB with Clonezilla, then select a whole disk clone, this is the least stressfull on your HDD. But make sure that the destination disk is the same or larger size than your source disk

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The only program I trust when I want to troubleshoot a hard drive is Hard Disk Sentinel, so if it says your HDD is dying than you should believe it.

If the system crashes doesn't bother you, go ahead and use it but keep in mind that it can unexpectedly crash any time (maybe in 2 hours, maybe in 2 months) and never start again.

When we talk about HDDs you can never make 100% sure that your data is safe. A Hard Disk can even die in two weeks after buying and installing them. Statistics say that a HDD will most likely die after a short time of usage or a very long time of usage. So after buying a HDD always start with a bit of stress testing

If you want to increase your chances of keeping your data safe, you should use RAID.
RAID 1 would be sufficient for home use and lowers the risk of data loss drastically.

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