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Solved: Maxtor SATA hard drive slow all of a sudden

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by hen99, May 18, 2007.

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  1. hen99

    hen99 Thread Starter

    Sep 23, 2006
    I have a maxtor hard drive SATA 200GB as my main drive and a second drive D.
    Very recently when I have noticed that my computer took longer to boot into windows. Applications seem to take a bit longer than usual to load.
    I have XP SP2 installed. I defragment my drive every few weeks so its not a defragment problem however when I try to defrag it now, it takes many times longer to do so.
    Also for a scan disk of C: (chkdsk on boot) it took 6 hours to get to about 25%. So there must be a problem. I can hear the hard drive loading sound for a few seconds and then there is a very long pause maybe about 10-20 minutes. It should only take a few hours the last time i did it maybe about 5 hours. Something is wrong.

    When I transfer a large file like 1gb into my drive D it takes 15 minutes. Which is a bit long for a SATA enabled hard drive. I have had this drive for about 2 years now and it has never gone this slow before.

    I have downloaded the seatools from the maxtor website which diagnoses the drive. The tool ran slow but my hard drive passed the tests.

    Also when I ran that scan disk, it did say there was a mirror copy of something and also some other things. I think it had the word security in it so it deleted somethings. It mentioned indexes and some files.
    I forgot most of it.

    I have checked my D drive and it is running fine and unaffected.
    Also I noticed during bootup that on the windows logo screen, the one with the bar moving from left to right that it freezes for about 5 seconds somewhere near the end of its loading. Then my keyboard lights come on (recognises keyboard). Later after the logo disappears, the screen is black for about 1-2 minutes and the hard drive periodically stops loading then starts loading something. This also happens when the welcome blue background screen comes on which is making boot times slow. Also happens when I shut down. There are some periods of hard disk inactivity.

    Is there anything which could have made my hard drive perform slower than it used to?
  2. pllobell


    Oct 17, 2004
    As a precaution, I would back up all your information on that hard drive ASAP, starting with the most important information down to the least important info last. I've seen that most HD problems are warning signs of failure.
  3. hen99

    hen99 Thread Starter

    Sep 23, 2006
    :eek: :eek: :eek:
    I have used my D: longer than my maxtor and it just went slow unexpected.

    Will doing a full format and reinstalling windows help??
    Im thinking of backing up everything onto DVD (this takes longer than it used to) then starting a fresh copy.
  4. Rich-M


    May 3, 2006
    The drive that boots the OS is under much greater stress, so age really means nothing here.
    I would do online scans here to be certain that the problem is not virus or spyware and then if not, replace the drive.
  5. o()o


    Jul 17, 2007
    The internal hard disk connection has to be refreshed with the motherboard – uninstalled / reinstalled.

    What I actually did to try for an answer with the same problem was move the Sata cable
    from one "Master" motherboard socket to the spare "Master" socket.
    When XP restarted it “Found New Hardware” and refreshed the connection.
    Amazingly everything was back to normal and working fast. (y) :)
    Current transfer rate is 47 x DVD write speed compared to problem performance of 2 x dvd write speed.
    So somewhere within the system something became corrupted somehow.

    Alternatively I am guessing, because I did not do it this way, but you could * "Uninstall" in "Device Manager"
    turn off computer, remove hard disk cable, restart the computer, shutdown again, replug-in cable, restart.
    The computer should auto detect new hardware or maybe you have to go back into device manager and re-install it.
    This would be easy for a problem hard disk with no operating system on it.

    I don't know what would happen if you did this to a hard disk with the operating system on it ?
    Would the bios auto re-install the hard drive at next startup following steps above* ?

    The Symptoms were;

    My computer has 2 Sata NTFS formatted hard disks. 1 master, 1 slave.
    C: XP operating system Western Digital 80Gig hard disk is noticeably very slow lately.
    D: Seagate 120Gig hard disk for extra storage no change in fast performance.

    I noticed when copying a video file from D: hard disk to C: instead of 40 secs it would take 6 minutes and sometimes the times would go back and forth / fluctuate!

    Also disk defragmentation for C: when analyzing it would take 20 seconds longer than in the past. It would gradually reveal blue bars a bit at a time until the full analyzing had been done. In its healthy state the analysing would flash finish in only about 2 or 3 secs when HD was ¾’s full.

    Also HD disk “Error-checking” = My Computer > Manage > Disk Management > right click on blue line of disk > Properties > Tools > Error-checking ; the 4 or 5th part of the checking would take all day and night or longer if I let it.

    Cutting a fews days troubleshooting short with scarce Google solutions and most answers were “your hard disk is going to die” or “your computer has a virus” I downloaded the free version of Harddisk Sentinal at http://www.hdsentinel.com/index.php

    I started it and had the “Disk Performance” tab opened.
    I copied an over 100mb file from D: to C: to get program to measure transfer / write speed.
    For hard drive C: The Estimated Max. Transfer Rate reported only 2 x DVD write speed !!!
    D: report was 37 x DVD write speed !

    All hard disk analysers tried including Western Digital's and "Harddisk Sentinal" said hard disk was perfect and reported no problems.
    So what they didn’t do was ! alarm ! a very low write speed but I did see that Harddisk Sentinal" was the best analyser I tried.

  6. MakoSDV


    Aug 20, 2007
    Had to register on here just to say a big THANK YOU to o()o

    (y) :D THANK YOU!!! :D (y)

    I was experiencing the same problem and your solution worked perfectly for me.
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