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Old 2013-09-09, 08:35   Link #1
Renegade334
Exitus Acta Probat
*Graphic Designer
 
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Permanent retirement from raws-hunting
Age: 28
Changes in SMART values for my primary HDD

So...I noticed today that while moving a 1.2 Gb file to a different partition (point of origin and destination are on the same 1Tb Western Digital WD10EARX internal HDD) there was this little noise and the transfer gauge appeared to freeze for a couple seconds. I originally passed this off as a hang-up caused by my security suite taking a closer look at the transfer's legitimacy, but got a bit paranoid...

So I wondered and checked Defraggler (which has its own, basic SMART checking feature), which spat the following readings:

Code:
ID 	Attribute Name 			RV	CR	Worst 	THR 	Raw values

1	Read Error Rate			0	200	200	51	0x000000000000
3	Spin-Up Time			7275 ms	114	108	21	0x000000001C6B
4	Start/Stop Count		1,877	99	99	0	0x000000000755
5	Reallocated Sectors Count	0	200	200	140	0x000000000000
7	Seek Error Rate			0	200	200	0	0x000000000000
9	Power-On Hours (POH)		454d 7h	86	86	0	0x000000002A97
10	Spin Retry Count		0	100	100	0	0x000000000000
11	Recalibration Retries		0	100	100	0	0x000000000000
12	Power Cycle Count		1,871	99	99	0	0x00000000074F
192	Power-off Retract Count		34	200	200	0	0x000000000022
193	Load Cycle Count		52,075	183	183	0	0x00000000CB6B
194	Temperature			32 F	115	106	0	0x000000000020
196	Reallocation Event Count	0	200	200	0	0x000000000000
197	Current Pending Sector Count	3	200	200	0	0x000000000003
198	Uncorrectable Sector Count	3	200	200	0	0x000000000003
199	UltraDMA CRC Error Count	0	200	200	0	0x000000000000
200	Multi-Zone Error Rate		22	200	200	0	0x000000000016

RV = Real Value
CR = Current value
THR = Threshold
Three lines immediately jumped to my eyes:
  • Current Pending Sector Count (3)
  • Uncorrectable Sector Count (3)
  • Muzile Zone Error Rate (AKA Write Error Rate) (22)

Fearing a false alarm, I installed CrystalDiskInfo...and got the same results. Then I launched chkdsk, which, on the other hand, didn't report any bad sectors. I seem to recall that I had some iffy sectors a while ago (between a year and several months) but I don't think the count has risen since. I only gave this a much sharper look today.

I know that large HDDs are far more likely to develop bad sectors, that platters never come 100% perfect right off the factory and that rising SMART counts for CPSC and USC are signs of a deteriorating HDD. However, I only truly noticed this today and can't exactly tell when these three values first changed.

On the good side, however, the reallocation and spin retry gauges (which could indicate growing mechanical issues) are flatlining, which is somewhat encouraging.



So...due to not being much of a hardware guy, especially with HDDs, what would be your take on this? Still within the safe threshold and good to go for some time or should I brace myself for the doom and gloom prophecies inevitably followed by the mandatory ebay/newegg suggestions?
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Last edited by Renegade334; 2013-09-09 at 08:47.
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Old 2013-09-09, 14:20   Link #2
Tiberium Wolf
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Portugal
Age: 34
Other noise besides the usual!? I think it's a bad sign. In my case all HDD died after.
Anyway keep checking regularly those 3 line values. If they increase I suggest u backup everything right away.
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Old 2013-09-09, 15:05   Link #3
Renegade334
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Permanent retirement from raws-hunting
Age: 28
Nope. The only time my HDD gets noisy is when it's doing read/write-intensive operations such as partition defragmenting: that's when the spin rate jumps from its "economic" 5,400rpm mode to its maximum 7,200rpm. And that's just a modest hum - not even a whine or the weird "DRT"-like sound I heard today when I made that 1.2Gb fdile copy-paste. Haven't heard it since.

Now, I do believe I've already noticed the 3 bad sectors a couple months ago, but I told myself it was still relatively good since the count was quite low...but somehow I ended up forgetting all about it, rediscovering it today (the past months have been extremely distracting and stressful, so my mind must've been elsewhere) and wondering whether the two problems weren't linked.



I'm currently looking at replacement HDDs (don't want to have a SSD yet, since I'm trying to save some money and I need a minimum 1Tb internal storage device); will probably get another Caviar Green, either a 1Tb or a 2Tb. Caviar Black is a tad too expensive for me (I can get a 2Tb CG for the price of a 1Tb CB, give or take three Euros).
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Old 2013-09-11, 05:25   Link #4
Renegade334
Exitus Acta Probat
*Graphic Designer
 
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Permanent retirement from raws-hunting
Age: 28
Well, I just swapped the old 1Tb HDD for a new Caviar Green 2Tb. Strange thing is, when I installed Windows 7 (I first tried a fresh install, then got an error message because I was using a SATA->USB adapter, which Windows didn't like, then opted to open the PC case to connect the device with a spare SATA cable) on it, it didn't bother creating a 100Mb "System reserved" partition...though I think it's because the other, defective HDD was still connected to the motherboard (I had to directly transfer the files from one storage device to the other, after all - and using the USB adapter is ultimately very slow) and the BIOS noticed there was already a SRP on those platters.

After getting the error message, I changed my mind and remembered I had, over the past year, made a half-dozen Windows partition images using ShadowProtect (think Acronis/Terabyte Image for Windows/Norton Ghost alternative) and I wasn't really enthused by the prospect of spending an entire day reinstalling, configuring and optimizing software, so I did a bare-metal restore on the new primary partition (some backup/restore programs do allow restoring images to different hardware/partitions) and, using DOS, forced it to build its own boot manager since the SRP (where BOOTMGR is usually stored) was missing and the HDD was therefore non-bootable.
...
...
...And now the POST operation is inexplicably longer by five or six seconds, while the OS startup time remains unchanged. I wonder if it's caused by the motherboard dithering because it can't find a dedicated SRP on any of the HDDs I have, either internally or externally, and has to search each partition (7 in all) for a BOOTMGR file instead. Kind of a bummer, but I can still put up with it.

Performance wise, nothing has changed, except that Microsoft Office noticed the hardware mismatch, thought it was on a different PC...and forced me to reactivate the darn thing. >_<


EDIT: color me stumped. Now POST length is back to normal. I guess it's because Windows sometimes takes a couple shutdowns (not restarts, but actual shutdowns) and power cycles in order to fully cement its relationship with recently-mounted hardware...but I thought this only happened right after the Windows install process was completed, so that the OS can optimize itself and work faster.
...
...Unless the BIOS boasts a similar behavior and, in my case, took its sweet time warming up to my new HDD.
Anyway, I hope it's case closed.
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Last edited by Renegade334; 2013-09-11 at 06:28.
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