EDITED - Updated to be more specific

I think a may have a faulty HDD, but I'm not sure - I'm getting some interesting symptoms. I need help identifying and diagnosing the source of the problems. I'll give some background information which may help.

The machine has an SSD (c) and 2 HDDs (e,f).

  • C: Samsung 830 SSD 256GB (OS)
  • E,F: 2 x Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB (Data & Backup)

I think F may be faulty - it often takes an hour or two to mount after Windows has started (see screenshot 1). When it mounts, it is almost as if Windows is mounting it as an external harddrive, because the "select action" dialog comes up.

However, I don't see why a faulty data HDD would cause the following symptoms:

  • System boot is extremely slow (minutes when it used to be seconds)
  • System tools are slow to load (e.g.: msconfig, regedit, backup)
  • Windows explorer often becomes unresponsive and needs to be restarted.

May be my imagination, but the system seems to be more responsive after F has mounted.

I have antivirus software (ESET), which is fully up to date. I have also run Malwarebytes and taken the actions that it suggested.

I ran AS SSD Benchmark and the results, while unspectacular, are OK - I think. see screenshot 2.

Screenshot 1 - Drive F failure to mount properly Screenshot 2 - SSD benchmark

EDIT - test results

Ran SMART tools against F as suggested. Went with HDTune. The results show that F is indeed faulty:

HD Tune Pro: WDC WD1002FAEX-00Y9A Error Scan

Scanned data   : 31 gB
Damaged Blocks : 0.2 %
Elapsed Time   : 5:22
1  Error at 3200 MB (LBA 6553600)
2  Error at 3200 MB (LBA 6553728)
3  Error at 3200 MB (LBA 6553984)
4  Error at 3203 MB (LBA 6560896)
5  Error at 3203 MB (LBA 6561024)

HD Tune Pro: WDC WD1002FAEX-00Y9A Health

ID                              Current  Worst    ThresholdData     Status   
(01) Raw Read Error Rate        197      197      51       39218    ok       
(03) Spin Up Time               172      172      21       4375     ok       
(04) Start/Stop Count           98       98       0        2572     ok       
(05) Reallocated Sector Count   200      200      140      0        ok       
(07) Seek Error Rate            100      253      0        0        ok       
(09) Power On Hours Count       83       83       0        12641    ok       
(0A) Spin Retry Count           100      100      0        0        ok       
(0B) Calibration Retry Count    100      100      0        0        ok       
(0C) Power Cycle Count          98       98       0        2572     ok       
(C0) Unsafe Shutdown Count      200      200      0        85       ok       
(C1) Load Cycle Count           200      200      0        2486     ok       
(C2) Temperature                111      100      0        36       ok       
(C4) Reallocated Event Count    200      200      0        0        ok       
(C5) Current Pending Sector     200      200      0        26       warning  
(C6) Offline Uncorrectable      200      200      0        5        ok       
(C7) Interface CRC Error Count  200      200      0        0        ok       
(C8) Write Error Rate           200      200      0        86       ok       

Health Status         : warning
Number of unstable sectors: 26

I shut down and disconnected F. When I booted up again the boot time returned to the 6-7 seconds that I used to get. Just to eliminate everything I shut down again and reconnected F with a new SATA cable. Boot was slow again. So I'm pretty sure that F is faulty.

I still don't understand why a fault in F would cause the OS to boot slowly. I'll try some of the suggestions in this thread on slow ssd boot times. Failing that I'll get a replacement (it's still under warranty).

migrated from serverfault.com Nov 29 '16 at 10:23

This question came from our site for system and network administrators.

  • 3
    Reinstall Windows. – Daniel Nov 29 '16 at 10:18
  • The slower speed of the SSD is due to the free amount of space left on the SSD, which causes TRIM to not perform optimally. But your biggest problem is, as pointed out by @Daniel something related to windows itself. You should consider reinstalling Windows. – LPChip Nov 29 '16 at 10:36
  • My comment was valid while this was on serverfault. As an end user, I would first try to find a fix first, before bothering with reinstalling Windows. However, I am still convinced that this is not a good question for a Stackexchange site, as the variety of possible problems is just too big to have a concise answer for his problem. – Daniel Nov 29 '16 at 10:39
  • Agreed. The solution to the problem is simply too broad, and a reinstall is the best option still, given that there are more than one problems listed here. – LPChip Nov 29 '16 at 10:50
  • 1
    Possible hard disk failure of drive f:. Check your hard drives for SMART errors How can I read my hard drive's SMART status in Windows 7?, and What is the easiest method of checking SMART status for your hard drive?. Report back with the results. – DavidPostill Nov 29 '16 at 13:43

The results show that F is indeed faulty

ID                              Current  Worst    ThresholdData     Status   


(C5) Current Pending Sector     200      200      0        26       warning

Indeed. Your disk could fail at any time. Backup and replace.

S.M.A.R.T. Attribute: Current Pending Sector Count

Current Pending Sector Count S.M.A.R.T. parameter is a critical parameter and indicates the current count of unstable sectors (waiting for remapping). The raw value of this attribute indicates the total number of sectors waiting for remapping. Later, when some of these sectors are read successfully, the value is decreased. If errors still occur when reading some sector, the hard drive will try to restore the data, transfer it to the reserved disk area (spare area) and mark this sector as remapped.


This is a critical parameter. Degradation of this parameter may indicate imminent drive failure. Urgent data backup and hardware replacement is recommended.

Source S.M.A.R.T. Attribute: Current Pending Sector Count

  • Thanks for your help. I didn't know about smart before. – Kev Nov 29 '16 at 22:11
  • Spinrite could fix your problem grc.com/sr/spinrite.htm the only downside is that its not free but well worth it. – firephil Nov 29 '16 at 22:35
  • Unless you don't care about the data on the drive, don't rely on a failed disk that has been "fixed" by software. In many cases this only masks the problem by resetting counters or remapping bad blocks. Ultimately the disk is still failing. You may even end with more damage in the long run in the form of corrupted data. If you can afford it, replace the drive. Source: 20+ years of professional IT experience. – Jens Ehrich Dec 2 '16 at 15:07

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