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What, exactly, is it that has failed on this hard disk?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Alex Ethridge, Jul 7, 2006.

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  1. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge Thread Starter

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    I have a Seagate SATA, Barracuda, 160-Gigabyte, Model ST3160023AS, hard disk here that has failed. It spins; but, it is not detected as present by either Windows or the BIOS. When I first got it, it would actually bring up the Windows XP logo as though it would start Windows. Then it would go to a blank, black screen with a blinking cursor in the upper, left corner. It wouldn't get past that. After making several attempts, it finally was no longer detected as present at all. To be clear, it isn't detected in another known-good machine so the drive is toast. I am hoping what has failed is the logic board, as opposed to any other part. If it is the logic board that has failed, recovering the data is as easy as finding a hard disk of the exact model number and swapping the logic board.

    Here's the only clue I have: When I turn on the computer and after a few seconds, I hear a quiet but discernable tick, tick, tick, tick, tick . . ., that goes on for a minute then stops. After a while, it starts the tick-tick again and then quits again after a while. It sounds like the stylus is moving forth and back and tapping the spindle or something.

    Here's the question: What are the chances it is something besides the logic board?
     
  2. pugmug

    pugmug Banned

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    Sounds like the whole h/d has died as in the click of death.
     
  3. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge Thread Starter

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    So, you think maybe it was placed on an avil and hit with a sledge hammer; or maybe dropped from a plane in flight onto concrete?
     
  4. kiwiguy

    kiwiguy

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    Given your description, I would still think it's the logic board.

    If that fault has also caused subsequent head/platter damage is unknown, but replacing the logic board with the exact same make and model would be all you could try.
     
  5. pugmug

    pugmug Banned

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    Alex, per your post #3 of this thread. I have no clue what you may or may not have done to screw up that hard drive but I can tell you what you can do with it. On second thought, you really would not want to know.
     
  6. JohnWill

    JohnWill Retired Moderator

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    The "click of death" normally indicates the drive is attempting to seek track 0 and not finding it. Given that scenario, it could be either the board or the HDA, no way to know until you have a new logic board.
     
  7. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge Thread Starter

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    The "click of death" is a term coined and applied to certain Iomega Zip and Jaz drives, not hard disks. Here's an excerpt from grc.com, an internationally-recognized expert:
    You can see the entire article here:
    http://www.grc.com/tip/codfaq1.htm

    A hard disk has many components, some of which can be replaced or repaired, depending on the type of damage or failure. Judging from your post, it doesn't seem you are aware of that. "The whole drive", as you put it, doesn't fail all at once unless it happens into the middle of an argument between an anvil and sledge hammer, or something similar.

    It is annoying to be called back to the site by e-mail notification to find such a post from someone who 'doesn't have a clue' what they're writing about. It is a waste of my time and attention.

    If you really don't know anything about the subject, don't pollute the thread. And I'm sure I'm not the only one at this site who feels that way about such "help".
     
  8. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge Thread Starter

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    Thanks, kiwiguy and Johnwill.

    A replacement drive of the exact model number is only about $70, including shipping. Seeing this is a business and recreation of digital data from that paper (yes, no backup) is going to take approximately 100- to 200 man-hours, it seems well worth the $70 gamble even if the chance is relatively small that a replacement logic board might fix it.

    I used to save all old broken drives, marking them as to their suspected failures. I once got a logic board from one failed drive that wouldn't spin and put it on a drive with a suspected bad logic board and I had a drive that worked. It was mostly a learning experience and really wasn't worth the time aside from the knowledge gained.

    Thanks for the opinion. I've learned about all I know from actual experience, books and tapes and from the internet--mostly this board. The help here is invaluable.
     
  9. Rumpo-Stiltskin

    Rumpo-Stiltskin

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    As far as you're concerned the only part that can be replaced is the circuit board, so what exactly is the point of this sacred thread anyway?
    If it's just to be incredibly rude to people for no particular reason then you've achieved that goal.

    New drive: RMA it.
    Old drive: Buy a new circuit board / another identical drive and just try it.

    Have you even tried substituting the data cable?
     
  10. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge Thread Starter

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    Rumpo-Stiltskin,

    Just another impertinent post. Dumb questions are rare here; but, dumb replies like yours aren't.

    Working alone here, I don't get to bounce thoughts off co-workers. This forum is for people to post such questions and no one needs to run them by for your approval.

    Due to the misuse by pugmug of the 'click of death' term, my reply to that was as much informative as it was 'insulting' as you put it.

    If you really want to know whether I have tried another data cable, you can find that in the initial post.
     
  11. JEBWrench

    JEBWrench

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    The intial post says nothing about trying other cables.

    And there's really reason to be rude about this all - you started insulting people giving an opinion, which, I believe, is the entire point of a forum like this.

    So, care to give the information you neglected to give in the first place, and then directed us to? :D
     
  12. Rumpo-Stiltskin

    Rumpo-Stiltskin

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    Like I could care less about your drive. :rolleyes:

    I notice that John also used the term "click of death", though you chose to single out Pugmug?

    Perhaps one shouldn't be so pedantic or plain unpleasant when courting assistance at an open forum.

    You aren't smart enough to be able to call anyone dumb.
    This thread is a towering monument to that fact.
     
  13. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge Thread Starter

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    JBWrench,

    Quote from original post:
    It would be pointless moving it to a new system for process-of-elimination diagnostics if old parts go with it.

    Rumpo-Stiltskin,

    Pendantic? I don't think many would consider the recovery of thousands of dollars worth of data at a fraction of the cost, pendantic.

    As for John, he may have (in my opinion) used the click-of-death term incorrectly; but, he also directly addressed the question I asked, which went to seeking other opinions based on experience or reliable documentation on the chances of it being a failure other than the logic board.

    More correctly, I didn't call anyone dumb here. I did, however, state there were some dumb replies.
     
  14. JohnWill

    JohnWill Retired Moderator

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    We've applied it to hard disks too. :) Many times, as I previously described, a hard drive will fail doing just what the ZIP disk did, seeking to track zero and failing. When that happens, you have the drive going Click...click..click...

    BTW, JAZ drives are hard disks. ;)
     
  15. jmeasy

    jmeasy

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    Wow such big words . supercalifragilisticexpialadotious. i recommend u do what u were gonna do in the beginning
     
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