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Old 11-22-2004, 11:03 PM   #1
Registered: Mar 2003
Posts: 178

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Is my hard drive failing?

I have a 200GB Western Digital. I use a dual boot with WindowsXP and CentOS (a Red Hat Enterprise 3 clone). I've been having some weird problems. First I tried installing Fedora Core 3. Whenever I booted up to where it said starting GRUB my computer would restart. I installed CentOS and put a clean install of WindowsXP on. I was copying my files over and first the computer restarted itself. I then got an error trying to go into Windows. I could initially. I went into the Windows install CD and it's showing the main partition, which was NTFS, as Unknown. I wiped everything and decided to try again, this time while copying files I got a BSOD with a memory dump. After I restarted and the same thing. Also I have a 2.4 Pentium 4 and ever since I built this machine I got messages saying the computer was overheating. I bought 3 or 4 fans and nothing. I even took a room fan and put it against the side case after I took off the cover and nothing seemed to help. After I shut off Intel's heat check (it's an Intel board) I left it go for days if not weeks with no problem. I was told the Intel chips run very hot but they will shut down before any damage is done. Under Mandrake 10.1 Community I got constant overheating messages and have to shut off the emergency message feature. Could it be it's overheating, could it be the hard drive going bad, could it be a bad power supply?
Old 11-23-2004, 01:37 AM   #2
Registered: Jul 2004
Location: The Netherlands
Distribution: Mandrake, Knoppix, Coyote Linux, RedHat
Posts: 354
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I'd sooner think you got one very bad mainboard, but wouldn't rule the disk out. I have one Intel Desktop board at
work and it's giving me plenty of issues while trying to install a clean system onto it. It overheats during boot, has
a flaky Intel Pro network card integrated (and I just started to like Intel Pro cards, they seemed good on other boards)
and the BIOS is near useless.
I don't know what model you have, but it sounded very familiar.
If you want a sure check of the harddisk, get Maxtor's PowerMax and boot off of that to check the disk with
a burn-in test. if the drive starts to tick or produce read/write errors, etc. you got a bad disk...
You may even want to test the disk in a different machine to rule out mainboard issues.
Also you can try switching the memory sticks on your mainboard, or try something like memtest on it. I believe
you can find memtest as a boot option on Mandrake Linux' install disk 1, it will do read/write patterns and other
tests to determine whether or not there are bad spots in your RAM.


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