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  1. #1
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    Hard Drive Bad Block?

    I have a Dell laptop that is about 1.5 years old. It is running Win 10.

    I happened to be checking event viewer this morning and saw an entry dated today that the hard drive had a bad block and it did say block not sector. I started running chkdsk /f /r /x but read some stories suggesting this could take hours. Others said you don't need to run chkdsk anymore as the new OSes check the disk during routine maintenance. So, I canceled chkdsk.

    I right clicked the drive, selected tools and clicked check and it said I didn't need to scan the disk. I did anyway and it said no problems found. If it has a bad block I am going to replace it but I would really like to know what I can trust. I do have Seagates disk tools and can run a long generic test which would theoretically look for bad sectors and repair them but again, if there are any I simply want to replace the disk.

    I will throw this into the mix and have no idea if it has anything to do with this issue. Last evening the pc was in sleep mode when I raised the lid I had a blue screen indicating that it encountered a Bad_Pool_Header. Searching that suggested possible memory problem. Ran windows diag memory tool and that indicated no problems.

    Appreciate any help.

  2. #2
    WS Lounge VIP Calimanco's Avatar
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    There are two kinds of bad sectors. The first is a hard bad sector (or block) which is caused by physical damage to the surface if the disk. This cant be repaired and the OS marks it to be ignored. The second type is a soft bad sector which is a cluster of storage on the hard drive that appears to not be working properly. The operating system may have tried to read data on the hard drive from this sector and found that the error-correcting code (ECC) didnít match the contents of the sector, which suggests that something is wrong. Chkdsk scans your hard drives for bad sectors, marking hard ones as bad and repairs soft bad sectors. As it runs automatically, it may have already fixed the problem, which explains why you no longer receive the alert. Leaving aside the occurrence of the hard disk equivalent of a heart attack when it suddenly dies without warning, the time you need to worry about a failing disk is if it starts to rapidly develop multiple bad sectors. Note that either kind of bad sector can cause data loss so having a reliable back up is always important.
    If you want to run an depth check of your hard drive, there are a number of hard disk drive and SSD health inspection tools which are free to download. As some are likely to come with the curse of free software, PUPs, be careful to weed them out when installing.
    Last edited by Calimanco; 2016-06-12 at 21:19.

  3. #3
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    Modern hard disks are self checking and correcting so if your OS reports a bad block then it possibly means your hard disk is in very bad shape. Back up immediately.
    Run the Seagate tools - the short test is all you need.
    If you are still concerned run "chkdsk C: /R" to perform full disk scan. You will need to re-boot the machine and leave it to run.

    I recommend installing a hard disk monitor program like CrystalDiskInfo (free) or HD Sentinel (maybe free).

    cheers, Paul

  4. #4
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    Paul, I ran the the Seagate short test and the long test and both indicated there were no problems.

    I have another question about the actual event message. This is it. "The device, \Device\Harddisk1\DR1, has a bad block."

    There is only one hard drive on this computer. There may have been an SD card plugged in at the time. My wife was working on the computer at the time and at some point she was copying some photos from the card. Is Harddisk1 the main C drive or could it be the card?

  5. #5
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    I suspect you are correct.
    Run this command to see the current disks and their device info.
    1. Open a Command Prompt as admin - right click on the Windows flag > Command Prompt (Admin).
    2. Type / paste: fltmc volumes

    cheers, Paul

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul T View Post
    I suspect you are correct.
    Run this command to see the current disks and their device info.
    1. Open a Command Prompt as admin - right click on the Windows flag > Command Prompt (Admin).
    2. Type / paste: fltmc volumes

    cheers, Paul
    Thanks Paul. However, in an abundance of caution I replaced the hard drive in the laptop yesterday and copied the backup image. I got burned with a failed hard drive and a back up solution that didn't work a couple of years ago and don't want to have that much fun again.

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