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Hardrive "Sick or Dying"??

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  • Hardrive "Sick or Dying"??

    Hi Folks
    Last week when I turned on my computer, I heard a high pitched screetching noise and got the dreaded insert boot disk in drive A:.

    I tried a second time with the same results..The third time it booted up as normal..

    I have left it turned on all week to back-up all of my treasures and have not had any problems..It is a 40gig drive with 30gig used.. I have backed up all photos, actions, plug-ins, doc.files.
    I know I will have to reload programs but am I missing anything that should be backed up..

    There is 6 months left on Dell warranty. So I can probably get a replacement..Can anyone give me some advice as how to proceed. Should I:

    Leave it run till it dies.

    Get a new harddrive and try to transfer files..(is this hard??)

    Has anyone heard this type of sound without the drive dying?

    Any and all suggestions/advice appreciated..

    Thanks in advance

  • #2
    Try this

    1. Run a boot virus scanner

    2. fully defrag the whole drive

    3. check for any bios updates on the dell website

    3.a Backup everything to CD for permenant storage (V.important)

    4. kick it till it does not respond

    5. phone dell and tell them you have a dead computer

    P.S You may want to ignore 4

    If Dell take away your computer they might have to wipe the drive. Have you tried restoring your computer to factory settting with the boot disk that came with the computer?

    A high pitched screaching sound is sometimes caused by a failing fan on your CPU. Try taking the side of the computer while it is running and seeing whether the fan is working and any other fans that are attached to your mother board and graphics card / sound cards.

    while you are in there check that all your cards are snug in there holes - just give them a push and check they are seated properly - you will have to turn it off to do this. To de-static yourself rub the case where there is no paint - ie the back.

    If you go down the road of buying a new drive as a back up this is very easy - shout for details....

    Hope this help and your up and running soon



    • #3
      Having bought one that someone had wiped the harddrive clean and reinstalled the 98 windows..... founded out that the drivers for the modem and sound card were not replaced nor could be found.

      Suggest you find and back up drivers to all devices just in case.
      Good luck


      • #4
        I agree with Chuck: Don't trust the drive!! If it's still under warranty,call Dell. They will run you through some preliminary checks of the hard drive.

        I had a friend go through this with Dell on a brand new computer. Dell took care of the problem.


        • #5
          Running a disk check prog might give you some pointers alas I only have the link for the Maxtor utility so perhaps theres one on the Dell site.


          • #6

            As far as other things to backup:

            Your Favorites folder
            Your e-mail folder (if you like to keep your e-mail like I do)
            Your address book
            Fonts (if you've downloaded any special ones)
            Any financial info (for me that's Quicken and Quickbooks)

            Good luck!



            • #7
              I would get a new drive. You can probably find a 60 gig drive for well under $100 and install it as a slave. The install process should be pretty simple and the new drive should come with software to help make a backup. Once you have a backup on a new drive you will breath much better!


              • #8
                Thanks All for the advice.. I will continue to back-up the things that you all pointed out that I forgot..Will probably call Dell at that point and see what must be done..

                This is my first hard drive problem in 20 years, so I guess I have been lucky..

                Chuck & Greg, I think your idea sounds good also..A full backup would be really nice.. Reloading can be a pain..



                • #9
                  Hi Jerry, sorry to hear about your hard drive problems. But, you are lucky that you received a warning. Lots of times the drives just simply fail without warning and leave you high and dry.

                  Lots of good advice here, I am a believer in multiple drives. When hard drives got so big that traditional backups were not practicle I looked into this alternative. Backups can be a big ugly can or worms. But there are many solutions so I suggest you consider your next move. If it were I, I would let Dell replace the drive you have and then add another drive to help in the backups. I use Power Quest Drive Image to make and store an image of my primary drive on the second drive.

                  I hope everything comes out OK.


                  • #10
                    Thanks Kevin
                    Sounds like good advice..Second drive definately in my future..

                    Right now,,Bracing for a blizzard here 12" to 20" in our area..Oh well...



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