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  1. #1
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    CHKDSK vs Seagate diagnostic tools

    My OS is Win 7 32bit.

    I ran the chkdsk C: /r /f command and 4kb in bad sectors were found. However, when I booted from a Seagate Dos Cd and ran their long test no problems were found.

    Should I rely on the chkdsk or Seagate result? (The disk was manufactured by Seagate).

    Advice would be appreciated.

    Thanks and regards,
    Roy

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    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    If you're looking for a product you can trust to test your disk & fix errors get Steve Gibson's SpinRite.
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

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    They are most likely testing different things. If Windows detects bad sectors you should let chkdsk repair them.

    Joe

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    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by royw View Post
    My OS is Win 7 32bit.

    I ran the chkdsk C: /r /f command and 4kb in bad sectors were found. However, when I booted from a Seagate Dos Cd and ran their long test no problems were found.

    Should I rely on the chkdsk or Seagate result? (The disk was manufactured by Seagate).

    Advice would be appreciated.

    Thanks and regards,
    Roy
    When you run chkdsk /r the /f command is redundant and ignored. The /r command tells chkdsk to recover any damaged file segments if possible, and to mark any bad sectors as unusable to the files system.

    The seagate utility would not have found a problem sector or sectors if they had already been marked as unusable.

    Also SpinRite is an excellent utility, but you must be prepared to be very patient. Chkdsk is blazingly fast compared to SpinRite; or at least in my experience. That's just my 2˘.

    I also have Seagate tools and Seagate drives, but I rely on chkdsk.
    Last edited by bbearren; 2011-03-18 at 20:51.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Spinrite is a cool little app written in assembler language by Steve Gibson of GRC.com. But at 89 dollars, the default Windows chkdsk command from a boot environment would be my very first choice over anything else.

    chkdsk /r would imply f but would be more time consuming as a run operation as it scans the entire disk as mentioned by bbearren.

    chkdsk /f ..[Simple]
    chkdsk /r ..[More complex]

    I would work linearly from the least invasive interventions to more invasive interventions when doing troubleshooting or diagnostics/repairs.
    Last edited by CLiNT; 2011-03-19 at 00:19.

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    chkdsk does a completely different task than SeaTools. chkdsk is mainly concerned with the integrity of the file system data structures, whereas SeaTools runs various hardware-specific tests that ensure that the individual disk sectors are usable. So if you suspect a corrupt file or directory, run chkdsk. If you think your disk is going bad, run SeaTools.

    However, if either tool comes across a bad sector, the hardware in the hard drive will automatically move the bad sector to a new location.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cafed00d View Post
    However, if either tool comes across a bad sector, the hardware in the hard drive will automatically move the bad sector to a new location.
    Not quite. A sector is a physical location on the hard drive. Sectors aren't moved. Chkdsk also checks the sectors for usability with the /r switch. It marks a bad sector as unusable and allocates a different, usable sector. If the bad sector contained any data, chkdsk with the /r switch will attempt to recover that data and move it to the newly allocated usable sector.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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    the Seagate/Western Digital drive check diags are checking a different set of parameters than the windows Chkdsk does. I would suggest that you let chkdsk correct the issues it has located since most likely it is seeing something either in the FAT tables or index database that wouldn't necessarily be checked by the Seagate diag program. The good thing is that if the Seagate tool didn't detect anything, then you can feel somewhat comfortable in the fact that your physical hard drive unit doesn't have something wrong with it. This looks like just some indexing of part of the partition is corrupted and let chkdsk try to repair it. But if you have the pocket change around to get Spinrite, then that would be the best thing to run to determine all of the above in many cases.

  9. #9
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    Shortly after I ran chkdsk and the Seagate drive diagnostic tool my D drive became inaccessible, and the file system was changed to RAW.I used Disk Management to delete the volume, after which I recreated it as a Simple NTFS volume, renaming it to Local Disk (D) as it was before. I then used the chkdsk option to scan for and fix file system errors and attempt recovery of bad sectors, and no problems were found.

    I assume the file system was changed to RAW as a result of the chkdsk operation, since the Seagate long diagnostic test found no problem, and I was able to restore the contents of the drive from a backup on a separate internal drive.

    Does anyone have any comments?

    Please advise.

    Regards,Roy
    Last edited by royw; 2011-03-19 at 19:38. Reason: Inserted smiley in error

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    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    When the file system shows up as RAW it means that the file system can't be read correctly by Windows. It's nothing that chkdsk has done.

    Perhaps the MFT became corrupted. Most every experience I've had with a drive losing its formatting was the result of a drive going bad.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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    Thanks for correcting me bbearren.If the MFT gets corrupted what,if anything, can I do about it?

    Please advise.

    Regards,Roy

  12. #12
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    I have had perhaps 4 drives over the years that did what yours is doing now. As I had drive images available, I would just reformat, and restore the image. But sooner or later, the drive would suddenly turn up RAW again.

    The first drive I tried to resurrect several times; the second drive, a couple of times; the third and fourth, I just bought a new drive. On the first drive I ran SpinRite for about 3 days, and SpinRite could never get past about 26%. Also, SpinRite will pause when the drive temperature gets above a certain threshold, and will wait for the user to restart it.

    So, in my experinece, the suddenly RAW issue means time to buy another drive.

    And also a very strong witness for making frequent drive images.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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  14. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbearren View Post
    >>However, if either tool comes across a bad sector, the hardware in the hard drive will automatically move the bad sector to a new location.
    Not quite. A sector is a physical location on the hard drive. Sectors aren't moved. ... It marks a bad sector as unusable and allocates a different, usable sector.
    Which is, of course, what I meant. I apologize for not being technically accurate.

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    Thanks bbearren. For what its worth I ran chkdsk /r again and no problems were found. Would you still recommend changing the drive?

    Please advise.

    Regards,Roy

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    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    I would not trust it with anything of value. You can run it for a while and see if it holds its formatting. But as I said earlier, in my experience it has been a sign of impending drive failure. It's probably not in the mechanical parts, but in the PCB and/or controller chipset on the drive.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
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