Hard drive 'died'(?), what can I do? (for computer wizards please!)

11
Found 13th Aug 2017Edited by:"hero9989"
I have a media server with 4x3TB drives in it. It holds all of my DVD/Blu Ray rips.

Me being me, I decided not to bother with redundancy and instead just used windows to create 2x6TB spanned drives. One for movies and one for TV shows.

One of the drives in my TV Shows span is failing. It's saying it's at risk but not yet failed. Yet when I try to copy anything off, it always fails - telling me it has actually failed already. I ran crystal disk info and got the following. That seems to me that I still have 1 reserve sector left? So why has it gone so awry?
2764037.jpg
I could really use a way to get the data off it because although I still have all the Blu Rays and DVDs it came off, it takes many many many hours to rip them off and sort through all the extras on the disks, etc.

Also - any recommendations on a replacement drive? I think I'm going to use my 3 remaining drives in a Raid 5 array and buy an 8TB drive to go alongside it (then another 8TB drive when money allows for me and mirror it)


Any ideas would be appreciated!
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I would run CHKDSK /f /x /r[drive letter] (e.g. CHKDSK /f /x /rE:) on each of the partitions. This will force Windows to re-evaluate existing bad blocks/sectors, look for more and try to fix access to files.

WARNING: The above command will take multiple hours to complete, in fact 6TB and known bad blocks are best left to run over night and then some.

1. Cick the Start/Windows button at the bottom left of your screen and type cmd
2. In the search results right-click Command Prompt and then left-click Run As Administartor.
3. type in: CHKDSK /f /x /rE: (replace E with the drive letter for the partition that you would like to check) and press the ENTER key on the keyboard
4. go and do something else for the rest of the day
5. assuming it completed its work and gave you a results table you can now try copying the files/folders in question again. For more info about chkdsk watch a few YouTube videos here.

When copying files/folders to another drive you may want to use a folder sync utility instead of Windows File Explorer (e.g. Pathsync), so you can more easily exclude certain folders that turn out to be unreadable.
Edited by: "SUMMONER" 14th Aug 2017
Original Poster
SUMMONER14 h, 14 m ago

I would run CHKDSK /f /x /r [drive letter] (e.g. CHKDSK /f /x /r E:) on …I would run CHKDSK /f /x /r [drive letter] (e.g. CHKDSK /f /x /r E:) on each of the partitions. This will force Windows to re-evaluate existing bad blocks/sectors, look for more and try to fix access to files.WARNING: The above command will take multiple hours to complete, in fact 6TB and known bad blocks are best left to run over night and then some.1. Cick the Start/Windows button at the bottom left of your screen and type cmd2. In the search results right-click Command Prompt and then left-click Run As Administartor.3. type in: CHKDSK /f /x /r E: (replace E with the drive letter for the partition that you would like to check) and press the ENTER key on the keyboard4. go and do something else for the rest of the day5. assuming it completed its work and gave you a results table you can now try copying the files/folders in question again. For more info about chkdsk watch a few YouTube videos here.When copying files/folders to another drive you may want to use a folder sync utility instead of Windows File Explorer (e.g. Pathsync), so you can more easily exclude certain folders that turn out to be unreadable.


Thanks for this! just started the CheckDisk, will check it this evening to see what's happening with it! Downloaded Pathsync too, hopefully I'll be able to use it and the drive isn't as dead as I feared
If I have a hard drive that's failing I always assume it has a limited life span, so personally wouldn't waste that time with chkdsk and risk the drive failing.

I personally use "File Scavenger" for its simplicity and the fact its never let me down, unfortunately its not free.
Original Poster
I tried chkdsk but it wasn't happening. It did the first 2 steps okay but the 3rd step was on 2% after 12 hours with 3 failures already found... I'll give path sync a try. I did google for file scavenger but $55 seems a bit much. Worst case I'll have to re-rip my TV shows
Sometimes its better to make a raw copy of the drive then recover the copy, with something like HDD Raw Copy Tool or similar.

There's lots of free recovery software out there, Testdisk/Photorec for example is very good but it doesn't have a GUI so there's a bit of a learning curve, although there's plenty of guides out there.
Edited by: "4Real2016" 15th Aug 2017
I second testdisk plus the dev is amazing with queries too. Obviously pull off what you can and as quickly as you can while its limping along. I still have nightmares about that telltale clicking.
Edited by: "chezybezy" 19th Aug 2017
Original Poster
Thanks all - managed to get a fair few files off it. There's mostly just holes where the odd episode is missing from a TV series now - not too much effort to rip a few episodes here and there.

Got my new drive installed now and set up so everything will be cloned onto at least one other drive. I've learnt my lesson! At least I didn't lose any photos, etc
Original Poster
So I copied everything to my new 8TB Seagate Archive drive - intending for that to eventually act as a backup. Including the 5TB of movie rips from my still working 6TB span.

I then formatted the 3x3TB drives (the remaining working one from the TV shows span and the 2 from the movies span) and gave them all separate drive letters. I was getting ready to copy everything back to those 3 drives, restarted the computer and it came back up and is now saying that the new 8TB disk needs to be initialised...

Have I now lost all of my movie rips as well? This is not going well at all
hero99896 h, 30 m ago

So I copied everything to my new 8TB Seagate Archive drive - intending for …So I copied everything to my new 8TB Seagate Archive drive - intending for that to eventually act as a backup. Including the 5TB of movie rips from my still working 6TB span. I then formatted the 3x3TB drives (the remaining working one from the TV shows span and the 2 from the movies span) and gave them all separate drive letters. I was getting ready to copy everything back to those 3 drives, restarted the computer and it came back up and is now saying that the new 8TB disk needs to be initialised...Have I now lost all of my movie rips as well? This is not going well at all


Good lord, man. For future reference, never assume faith in a new drive. Install them, test them, verify them, and once you're happy, copy your data to it. If you need to delete the original data, wait for a week or so, since if a drive's going to fail, it's more likely for it to fail within the first few days than months into its life.

Regarding your data, it's all presumably still recoverable. Google for advice.
Before you do anything else to the new drive, turn the computer off, give all the connectors to it a gentle push, may be use another set of cables to connect it and then turn the computer back on again.

If the drive still has a drive letter assigned to it in Windows File Explorer you can try your luck with a chkdsk /f [drive letter:] (e.g. chkdsk /f e:), to see if chkdsk can make the partition readable again. The /f option on its own is very quick (couple of minutes, rather than hours/days), as it doesn't scan for bad blocks.

Did you do a bad block check on the new drive? If yes, then a corrupt partition 'should' not be a huge problem, just very time consuming. A free data recovery program such as Recuva should do a good job at bringing all the data back on this occasion.
Edited by: "SUMMONER" 20th Aug 2017
Original Poster
SUMMONER11 h, 55 m ago

Before you do anything else to the new drive, turn the computer off, give …Before you do anything else to the new drive, turn the computer off, give all the connectors to it a gentle push, may be use another set of cables to connect it and then turn the computer back on again.If the drive still has a drive letter assigned to it in Windows File Explorer you can try your luck with a chkdsk /f [drive letter:] (e.g. chkdsk /f e:), to see if chkdsk can make the partition readable again. The /f option on its own is very quick (couple of minutes, rather than hours/days), as it doesn't scan for bad blocks.Did you do a bad block check on the new drive? If yes, then a corrupt partition 'should' not be a huge problem, just very time consuming. A free data recovery program such as Recuva should do a good job at bringing all the data back on this occasion.


This! I panicked a bit too prematurely I think. I turned it off and unplugged all the hard drives as recommended and replugged them back in. It's come back on now and doesn't need initialising anymore.

I did check the drive before I put everything on it. So I have no idea what caused it. Any ideas? I've managed to copy all of my data back to the original drives now and the most important stuff is also on an external drive now too! I don't know if I should trust the new drive? Is it likely that it just wasn't fully connected? Or is this something that can happen. I will do a full scan with chkdsk tonight just to make sure but I don't want to be in a position where a 3TB fails alongside this again!
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