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New hard drive causing errors - but is it the HD? RRS feed

  • Question

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    My WHS has been running stable for several months, but the hard drive (a Seagate 120GB) was getting rather full, so I picked up a new one - a new 400GB Hitachi Deskstar T7K500 (PATA). It's a computer I built about 4-5 years ago from a Shuttle barebone kit; originally it was used as a media center, then became my main computer, and now it's my server.

     

    After installing the new hard drive, the WHS started locking up frequently - but only when it was sitting idle, not while I was connected to it; every time, I checked and the hard drive activity light was on (solid, not blinking like with real activity), but it was actually locked up; the keyboard didn't do anything and I couldn't connect to it. When I checked the event logs, the only thing in common was an event saying that the previous shutdown was unexpected.

     

    I tested the hard drive out with chkdsk and the Hitachi drive scan program, but they found no errors. So I figured it might be the driver; I was using an nForce2 ATA driver (ver 2.6), so rolled it back to the default "Standard Dual Channel PC IDE Controller".

    Now, every few hours, the drive seems to just go to standby mode or something similar; I get critical messages saying the hard drive has failed, while checking event logs shows this event:

    The device 'Hitachi HDT725040VLAT80' (IDE\DiskHitachi_HDT725040VLAT80_________________V5COA4NA\5&1a186380&0&0.1.0) disappeared from the system without first being prepared for removal.

    The only thing that fixes this is restarting; then the WHS works perfectly again.

     

    Any ideas what to try next? If it's not the hard drive, and it's not the drivers, what else could it be?

    Wednesday, August 13, 2008 10:40 PM

Answers

  • It could be the DVD drive. Disconnect it and swap the HD back to the secondary channel. See if it stays stable.
    Friday, August 15, 2008 12:56 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  •  Krenn wrote:

    Any ideas what to try next? If it's not the hard drive, and it's not the drivers, what else could it be?

    The motherboard? The power supply? Either one's an option, but I would bet on the motherboard. Test by connecting to the other IDE channel.
    Thursday, August 14, 2008 12:58 AM
    Moderator
  •  Krenn wrote:

     

    Any ideas what to try next? If it's not the hard drive, and it's not the drivers, what else could it be?

     

    Did you check the drives documentation for setting the Power up in Standby / autospin feature. Could be the drives jumpersettings cause the drive to spin down. This can cause problems if the controller is unable to handle this?

     

    Theo.

     

    Thursday, August 14, 2008 9:16 PM
    Moderator
  •  Theo van Elsberg wrote:

    Did you check the drives documentation for setting the Power up in Standby / autospin feature. Could be the drives jumpersettings cause the drive to spin down. This can cause problems if the controller is unable to handle this?

     

    I did check that; however, disabling the auto-standby feature (Advanced Power Management) didn't change anything - it still became disconnected. I think that was a problem with the Intel driver, so I went back to using the nForce2 drivers.

     

    I also switched it over to using the Primary ATA channel (which my old hard drive was on and has been stable), and it hasn't locked up in about 12 hours. I'll give it 48 hours - if it's stable for that long, then the problem was definitely the secondary channel. It's strange, since my DVD drive is connected to the secondary channel, and I've never had a problem with it. Maybe it just doesn't handle a high transfer rate well or something.

     

    Krenn

    Thursday, August 14, 2008 11:09 PM
  • It could be the DVD drive. Disconnect it and swap the HD back to the secondary channel. See if it stays stable.
    Friday, August 15, 2008 12:56 AM
    Moderator
  •  Ken Warren wrote:
    It could be the DVD drive. Disconnect it and swap the HD back to the secondary channel. See if it stays stable.

     

    That's what I originally had, actually - the system HD on the primary channel, and the new one by itself on the secondary. I later reinstalled the DVD drive on the secondary channel so I could run diagnostics programs (the Hitachi tools only run from a bootable CD) but that made no difference. Due to the configuration of the Shuttle, I didn't think to put both hard drives on the primary channel until you suggested it. But that seems to be working so far.

    Friday, August 15, 2008 1:06 AM