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Paul.Cov
14-09-2010, 12:44 PM
Hi all,

I almost never touch laptops, so I'm a little unfamiliar with their drives.

I've been asked to sort out a laptop which is reporting 'check media' at boot.

The drive itself, once removed, makes a small rattle sound when rotated or flipped over from front to back.

It's a Hitachi Travelstar. Apparently there's a head locking mechanism that can make noise when these are subjeected to angular momentum type forces, but I'd hadly call slowly turning it over an angular shock situation.

Can anybody comment on whether they have noticed rattles during routine, gentle handling?

Thanks.

Alex B
14-09-2010, 01:22 PM
Please don't tell me you are flipping a drive while its plugged in. *face palm*

Chilling_Silence
14-09-2010, 01:54 PM
When unplugged, then no, it shouldn't rattle.

If it's powered on and you're moving it, then that's *bad* as Alex_B hinted as... It shouldn't be moved while it's on.

I've had a few Toshiba HDD's in some older Acer laptops that used to make a rattling sound, it says on the HDD itself though that it's normal and to be expected. We never flipped the HDD while it was powered on though, that's just asking for trouble :(

Paul.Cov
14-09-2010, 02:12 PM
Yeah, sorry, just to clarify, it's unplugged and removed entirely from the cradle, so I get this noise when there is no power to it, and the largest force acting on its parts is gravity.

I'm also very familiar with how delicate the face of the drive can be, so it's not me holding it too tightly that has caused the problems.

Deimos
14-09-2010, 02:30 PM
I had an older Hitachi drive (60GB 2.5" 5400rpm) that would rattle when powered off, so I wouldn't call it unusual.

as far as I can remember it would only rattle when moving the drive horizontally, not vertically (when placed flat, not on edge).

Cellux
14-09-2010, 03:08 PM
Does it rattle at all when powered on?
(Or even spin up, for that matter)

GameJunkie
14-09-2010, 03:13 PM
question: why are you 'flipping' the hard drive around anyway?

forrest44
14-09-2010, 03:21 PM
A lot of drives I've handled (both desktop and laptop) make a gentle clicking sound when turned upside down or back again. At first I thought it might be a problem, but with the number of drives that I've seen that do it, it must be normal...

Paul.Cov
14-09-2010, 08:16 PM
A lot of drives I've handled (both desktop and laptop) make a gentle clicking sound when turned upside down or back again. At first I thought it might be a problem, but with the number of drives that I've seen that do it, it must be normal...

You seem to be correct. I've bought myself another 2.5 to 3.5 inch IDE drive interface (coz I can't find my original one, now that I need it, naturally), and hooked it up to a known good system. It seems to be working well, with just normal drive/head sounds.

XP is reporting some suspect files, and the initial message was of trouble with the boot sector, which hopefully was what was stopping the laptop from booting.

I'm doing a painfully slow disc check, to be followed by Ghosting, then a surface scan... but apart from a question mark over the boot sector, it seems to be fine.

I wanted to place another laptop drive into the faulting machine, but the only other laptop drive I have here is a couple of mm thicker, and won't fit, so until I can attemp repair of the boot sector I will not know if the boot sector was the cause of the startup problem, or if it's another issue.

Thanks for your advise folks. As far as I'm concerned the question is now answered. The problem remains a work in progress.