SMART - probability of failure?

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moxy

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Joined
Mar 7, 2000
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My Maxtor 120 hard drive started reporting that it failed the SMART test. Delving deeper, it says that my Reallocated Sector Count is running out (Threshold 63, Actual 55). PowerMax's full read test "certifies" everything is fine.

To me, that doesn't seem to be serious enough to warrant replacing the drive. Any opinions? Am I heading to a catastrophe?
 

crjdriver

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Jan 2, 2001
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43,615
I would backup anything important right away. That way if the drive does in fact fail, it is not a problem to replace it and restore data / work files.

Remember data you do not backup is data you do not care about.
 
Joined
Nov 25, 2005
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I've replaced a LOT of harddrives over the years, and I've never known the SMART feature to be wrong yet. If SMART indicates that drive failure is imminent, do you REALLY want to risk losing all of your data in the hopes that the SMART technology is WRONG?

Repairing systems for OEMs is an education in itself; when people waited too long to send their systems in with a SMART warning, we often had to replace the HDD and do a fresh install of the OS from the recovery disks. We simply weren't able to save their data, and NO good technician wants to return a system without including the personal data we were entrusted with. We did everything short of brain-surgery to recover what we could, but more times than not, the data was unrecoverable due to HDD failure.

I URGE you to contact Maxtor to see if the drive is under warranty. There is a page on the website where you can enter the HDD serial number to find out EXACTLY when the warranty expires; I hope your HDD is still covered by the warranty...

Happy New Year; best of luck with this.
 

JohnWill

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Oct 19, 2002
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106,429
I gotta' sing with the chorus here, don't ignore the warning! Truthfully, I've had one hard disk that had a SMART failure for several years, but it was a marginal seek speed that occasionally triggered the SMART warning. Other than that, my experience is that SMART warnings either portended impending drive failure, or it had already failed.
 

Rukee

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Nov 15, 2005
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I had one drive run for awhile with the SMART failure posting, it didn`t last a few years(a couple weeks at most), but it did finally fail at a most inopportune time.
 

moxy

Thread Starter
Joined
Mar 7, 2000
Messages
45
OK, thanks for your input everyone. I'll look into getting a new disk tomorrow. Unfortunately it is out of warranty. <sigh> Four drives bit the dust in '05.
 
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