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Pc slow, HDD light always blinking, feezes up every 30 seconds

Discussion in 'Windows Vista' started by Roync, Oct 9, 2008.

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  1. Roync

    Roync Thread Starter

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    First of all thank you for trying to help!
    My pc is rather new (3 months) and hasent been causing any problems untill now. In the last couple of days, i've noticed an odd increase in the hdd led activety. after reading up on the web, i figured this was probably due to vista background stuff. However, the problem got worse- to the point where the os couldent start after restarting. (it would start up fine from the cd drive). after a few restarts it managed to start up, and since then the pc is super slow, with hdd led always flashing.
    this happend around the same time i downloaded and installed vista SP1.
    I checked the sata connection to the hdd, but it didnt help.

    i guess my question is this- is it hardware for sure, or could it be software? i can format if it's software, just wondering if i should. maybe the hdd is just dead...

    Thanks in advance for any help :)
     
  2. gurutech

    gurutech

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    Try booting in safe mode (hit F8 a few times after the BIOS screen disappears), and choose Safe Mode w/command prompt.

    When you get to the CMD prompt, type "chkdsk c: /r" and hit enter. If you are prompted to schedule when the pc reboots, say Yes, then restart the computer.

    This will check the HDD when you reboot, for any lost files or bad clusters. If you get too many bad clusters, then I'd suggest replacing the HDD. (If it's still under warranty, the mfgr shuold replace it for free.)
     
  3. Everway9

    Everway9

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    You could also open task manager and check what processes are utilising the most CPU and RAM usage then post back here.
     
  4. Roync

    Roync Thread Starter

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    thanks for the fast replies!

    I checked the task manager and everything seems to be normal, no process is hogging too much memory. (leader of the group is dwm.exe with 50k followed by sidebar with 16k, so it's all pretty light).

    I'll try checking the hdd from safe mode next.

    I'll try to make the problem clearer: sometimes everything works well, while other times things randomly freeze for a few seconds. For instance, i can open a firefox window and have it start up right away, but next try it will freeze up and take 10-15 seconds.

    while gaming, everything works well with good frame rates, and then once every minute or two it will freeze for about 10-15 seconds. this seems to be connected to the hdd led flashing and disk noise.

    The randomness is the strange part... sometimes i can restart with no problem, other times it wont be able to start-up via hd...

    i'm confused :(
     
  5. Everway9

    Everway9

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    Try a general clean up, ie, deleting temp files, running malware scans, defragging etc etc.
     
  6. Roync

    Roync Thread Starter

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    I defraged the drive yesterday, and already erased all temps.
    I didnt think about scanning for malware though... is it even possible for malware to cause this sort of a problem?

    Oh well, i guess the sneaky devils are really capable of anything..

    can you suggest any good scanning software? i've had bad expiriences with those things.

    thanks!

    btw, i'm scanning the disk now (i'm at another pc) so i'll post what is said as soon as it's done.
     
  7. Everway9

    Everway9

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    Adaware, Spybot Search And Destroy, MalwareBytes Anti Malware. A combination of all 3 ususally do the trick. Run them in safe mode.

    P.S Adaware might not run in safe mode.
     
  8. Roync

    Roync Thread Starter

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    thanks, i'll try that next.

    right now i'm in the middle of a "chkdsk c:" scan, and it seems to be frozen in the same line.

    what do i do if the scan gets stuck? is it normal?
     
  9. eugene2k

    eugene2k

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    What's more, you can actually check which programs use the hard drive most, if you press the right button (can't remember what it's called) in the process manager.
     
  10. Roync

    Roync Thread Starter

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    Interesting development...
    After a day of tinkering around, in which the situation just kep getting worse (because of tinkering, perhaps?) i got a message from windows saying "windows has detected a problem with the hard disk drive" and prompting me to back it up before it dies out completley.
    So mystery solved, i guess... unless windows can give out a false warning due to software issues, which i sorta doubt.

    Did anyone have any experience with that warning? could it still be software, or should i just get a new hdd?

    Thanks!
     
  11. Roync

    Roync Thread Starter

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    BTW,
    It's a 3 month old seagate 500gb drive... arent those things supposed to last a bit longer? :)
     
  12. crazlunatic

    crazlunatic

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    hard drives should be able to last several years
    is it clicking?
    you can use your warranty on that for sure to get a new one
     
  13. gurutech

    gurutech

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    I had a problem with a Maxtor drive, and they replaced it under warranty. Had to give my cc# in case I didn't return the old drive, but I did, so they never charged my card.

    They shipped the drive to me (and it was larger than the one I was replacing!), and I was able to copy 90% of my data off (not including OS, apps, etc...), and then I trashed the drive (made sure they couldn't read the data when I returned it...) and sent the bad drive back.
     
  14. Roync

    Roync Thread Starter

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    it makes a clicking noise once at start up, after that sounds pretty normal.
    luckily i still have warranty for it, so it wont be a problem moneywise, just annoying.
    no chance it's a software issue?
     
  15. Everway9

    Everway9

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    Afraid not
     
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