I always have Acronis Drive Monitor installed on my system. My hard drive health has never fallen below 100% in the Acronis Drive Monitor. Recently, I started getting warnings on bad sector being found on the hard drive. This came up on every boot. Then suddenly, the health fell from 100% to 68% (below warning level).

I ran chkdsk /r on C: drive and it was scheduled for next startup. Upon the restart, my repair process stuck at 19% for a good hour and a half or so. I read up and realized that the bad sector 'remapping table' installed on the hard drive by the manufacturer had filled up and now the operating system was seeing bad sectors. Consequently, I booted from the Windows 10 installation ISO and opened a prompt by pressing SHIFT + F10. Then:

list disk
select disk 0
list partition
select partition 4 # this corresponded to the C: drive which hung on chkdsk
format fs=ntfs # to perform full format which the partitioning screen does not allow

Windows installed and the first thing I installed was Acronis Drive Monitor. To my surprise, the hard drive health has returned to 100%. Acronis no longer shows the critical events upon boot.

My question is, that is this 100% trustworthy? I've heard that NTFS remembers bad sectors and even a quick format from this point onwards will be sufficient. But what in case of doing a clean all from diskpart? Will the bad sectors return?

Bad sectors starting to show up:

Bad Sectors

Upon clicking event details:

Event Detail

Health bar falling to 68%:

Health Bar

New S.M.A.R.T. Data after format:

Read Error Rate,0,100,50,OK
Throughput Performance,0,100,50,OK
Spin-Up Time,1854,100,2,OK
Start/Stop Count,11645,100,0,OK
Reallocated Sectors Count,0,100,10,OK
Seek Error Rate,0,100,50,OK
Seek Time Performance,0,100,50,OK
Power-On Hours (POH),5197,88,0,OK
Spin Retry Count,0,253,30,OK
Power Cycle Count,3572,100,0,OK
SATA Downshift Error Count,0,100,1,OK
End-to-End error,0,100,97,OK
Head Stability,65535,100,1,OK
Reported Uncorrectable Errors,56,44,0,OK
Command Timeout,4,100,0,OK
High Fly Writes,0,100,1,OK
Airflow Temperature,572522530,66,40,OK
G-sense error rate,46,100,0,OK
Power-off Retract Count,1179666,100,0,OK
Load/Unload Cycle Count,53560,95,0,OK
Reallocation Event Count,0,100,0,OK
Current Pending Sector Count,0,100,0,OK
UltraDMA CRC Error Count,0,200,0,OK

The Reallocation Event Count showed "Degrading" instead of 100 earlier. Any clues?

  • Acronis reading internals from HDD firmware, from SMART, so it isn't acronis but your HDD yelling you that you will loose your data soon. Switch to the tab SMART parameters and compare it with link I provided. If parameters marked red on wikipedia matching with what your drive complaining then my advise - stop using this disk and replace it ASAP – Alex Feb 3 '17 at 7:57
  • Please edit and include the full smart data. – DavidPostill Feb 3 '17 at 12:46
  • I did a full format and health is back to 100%. Please read the entire thing again, I have made significant edits. Even included the new S.M.A.R.T. data for you. – U. Muneeb Feb 3 '17 at 15:30
  • 1
    Drives are now dirt cheap (my first HDD in 1982 was $5000 for 5 MB), and at the first hint of failure, a drive should be replaced. The drive will fail. – Ron Maupin Feb 3 '17 at 16:01
  • ^ I keep most important stuff on Google Drive. I have room for some experimentation :) That is bound to happen, let's wait a while and see what happens :) – U. Muneeb Feb 3 '17 at 16:02

Practically speaking, modern drives are pretty good at 'hiding' errors. They have spare sectors, and the act of formatting causes remapping of sectors.

So, your current pending reallocation count is 0 - the previously pending blocks got shifted, and you're temporarily ok.

I've done this once - with the same result, and ran the drive for a while. That said, I guess the real question is what's the data on the drive worth I used that drive for transient data which I wouldn't mind losing.

In your shoes, you have monitoring. Give it a shot, and see what happens. My old drive failed and came back twice, so there were clearly some utterly odd underlying issues.

  • What would happen if I issued a diskpart's clean? Would the remapping be lost? Will the bad sectors return? – U. Muneeb Feb 3 '17 at 16:00
  • 1
    Nope. But whatver's causing the bad sectors to crop up is still there. I'd try seeing what long and short smart tests would do tho – Journeyman Geek Feb 3 '17 at 16:07
  • Right. But where is this remapping stored then? Who would retain this remapping during clean? – U. Muneeb Feb 3 '17 at 16:08
  • 2
    I believe its stored internally on the drive. Essentially a full format triggers off the processes that reallocate sectors. superuser.com/a/688764/10165 is as good an explaination as any – Journeyman Geek Feb 3 '17 at 16:11

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