Bad sectors and BSOD events

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Hardware' started by grapher, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. grapher

    grapher Senior Member

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    I have for several weeks recently been plagued by BSOD's which randomly attributed the cause to different culprits. Early in the events the graphics driver was fingered and I spent good money on returning my costly graphics card under warranty for checking. It came back with a clean bill of health. Cutting many hours of frustrating searching which included buying new DDR3 RAM, I concluded eventually after reading chkdsk results that the presence of a growing number of hdd bad sectors was an indicator that a 500GB WD hdd may be failing even though it was barely one year old. Two weeks ago I bought and fitted a new 1TB hdd and the BSODs stopped! However, yesterday I ran my Acronis 2011 backup software and the backup of a partition on the new hdd stopped telling me that it had "Failed to read from sector '502,405,961' plus a load of other text I won't bore you with.

    So, I ran chkdsk and lo and behold there was a bad sector reported on my brand new hdd which two weeks ago when installed showed no bad sectors at all. Can anyone tell me why sectors go "bad" and what is known about causes of sectors becoming "bad". I do not want my cost of the earth new 1TB hdd to go the same way as the one it replaced and if there is anything I can do to protect it I want to know what that is please.
     
  2. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    What type of system/motherboard do you have. It could possibility be related to a SATA controller.
     
  3. grapher

    grapher Senior Member

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    With ther exception of the 500Gb WD hdd identified as the "dodgy" hdd and now replaced with an Hit5achi 1TB 32mb cache device, here is the my spec. Oh, I now have 8mb of Crucial DDR3 although I have yet to install Windows 7 64 bit. So my OS is Windows 7 Home Premium

    > Mainboard : Gigabyte H55M-UD2H
    > Chipset : Intel H55
    > Processor : Intel Core i3 540 @ 3066MHz
    > Physical Memory : 4096MB Crucial (2 x 2048 DDR3-SDRAM ) Installed as part of BSOD quest 21/1/2012
    > Video Card : AMD Radeon HD 6800 Series
    > Hard Disk : MAXTOR STM3200820AS (200GB)
    > Hard Disk : SAMSUNG HD103SJ (1000GB)
    > Hard Disk : Western Digital WD5000AAKS-00A7B2 (500GB)
    > DVD-Rom Drive : Toshiba-Samsung CDDVDW SH-S223C
    > Monitor Type : LG Electronics M1917TM - 19 inches
    > Network Card : Realtek Semiconductor RTL8168/8111 PCIe Gigabit Ethernet Adapter
    > Operating System : Windows 7 Home Premium Home Edition Media Center 6.01.7601 Service Pack 1 (32-bit)
    > DirectX : Version 11.00
    > Windows Performance Index : 5.9 on 7.9
     
  4. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    How old is the Maxtor drive?

    Do you still have the 500 G drive installed?

    How often have you run Acronis? Any chance that install is corrupted or needs updating?
     
  5. grapher

    grapher Senior Member

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    The WD 500GB offending drive is no longer in the machine and it was barely a year old.

    As for Acronis, I have very mixed feelings about that software though I have used it for several years. That is because it is generally held to be the best backup app. I bought and installed the 2012 version before these BSOD's started to occur and for a while I thought that Acronis 2012 was part of the problem as the BSOD's coincided with the time at which I upgraded to Acronis 2012. I removed it and reinstalled my 2011 version which on the whole has worked without too many glitches.

    BTW, I have the latest mobo BIOS installed as well as the most recent graphics drivers.
     
  6. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    I was asking about the 200G also, the Maxtor, how old is it?

    If you had a previous Acronis install, a new install may have caused some problems. Were there any recommended uninstall or reinstall instructions for the new software?
     
  7. Drew

    Drew Banned

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    Maybe try just using the Backup that is native to Windows 7 & see if that goes better than Acronis.

    As for getting "Bad Sectors"... it can happen from & during the course of use. That's the beauty of CHK DSK... finds & fixes... does not necessarily mean HDD needs replacing or that such things must be prevented, somehow.

    Drew
     
  8. grapher

    grapher Senior Member

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    I guess the 200GB hdd is 2 years old. My OS is on that right now but this hdd is a very slow, small cached hdd and when I get a day or two to throw away I intend installing Windos 7 64 bit on my new Hitachi 32mb cache 1TB hdd. The 200G hdd will then be retired or re employed as an external backup drive.

    I have installed several Acronis apps as they have upgraded for a number of years. The problem when it stopped was down to a particular file whose path the report gave to me and when I removed that file the backup proceeded normally as it usually has over the years gone by.

    Reading the replies on this topic I reckon I have tried just about everything as I have seen no new angles in the replies. The machine is running satisfactorily for the moment so I'll let sleeping dogs lie I reckon.

    Thanks for support all the same.
     
  9. catilley1092

    catilley1092 Extraordinary Member

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    I've had mixed results with Acronis True Image also. Even the free versions rebranded as "Seagate Disk Wizard" & "Acronis True Image WD Edition" During the time (prior to 2009) when I only had XP/Win 2000, it ran good.

    But on some Windows 7 64 bit installs, it does good, and some, not so good. I cannot explain the reason, as 2 of the installs (the one it works well with & the one it doesn't) are on the same PC. But different HDD's. My main 2 are a 1TB WD Caviar Black & a Samsung HD103SJ, both excellent drives, both have a 32MB cache & runs at 7200rpm. I actually have 2 of the Samsung HD103SJ's, one is for backups. At the time, I got them both for $49.99 each, one from Newegg & one from Amazon. Amazon packages their HDD's better.

    You may want to check to see if that 500GB WD HDD is still under warranty. There are also tools on their site that can help to determine the health of the drive, but if you're having bad sectors that soon, it's best to let them replace it. The HDD that you'll get in return will be a refurbished one. I can vouch for this, because the WD Caviar Black that I described above was originally a 750GB one, when they exchanged it (it was fast), I ended up with a 1TB one. It was months later that I was looking at the label, and needed a magnifying glass to see it, it said "Refurbished" in very small letters. But it still runs good & fast. The original was vibrating badly in my desktop.

    As far as a good backup program goes, Todo Backup 4.0 is really good, it does file & image backups. Plus they have free partitioning software that's as good as any that I've used. Get it here:

    Best free backup software. Hard drive backup and recovery, image and clone freeware - EaseUS Todo Backup Free

    Macrium Reflect is good also, but with the free version, only images can be done.

    Macrium Reflect FREE Edition - Information and download

    Both of these programs are way faster than Windows Backup, and Macrium is faster than Acronis. I've not had any problems with restoring the backups, they ran just as well as they did before the images were taken. The only computer that I now have Acronis on is my ThinkPad that runs XP/Windows 2000.

    Cat
     
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  10. grapher

    grapher Senior Member

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    Thanks for that abundance of useful stuff Cat. I will seriously look at the Easus ToDo backup sxware. Been worth raising this thread for that info alone.
     
  11. catilley1092

    catilley1092 Extraordinary Member

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    One other thing, if you disable your internet connection, then your antivirus, your backups will complete faster. The less other resources running, the faster the backup will be. Just make sure that you re-enable your AV before re-enabling your internet connection.

    Cat
     

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