View Full Version : SMART Short Test failure

08-11-2011, 06:17 PM
My computer had been slow to boot up so I had HP Diagnostic Tools test it.

Everything passd except the HDD short test, which failed on several runs.

I understand I now need to replace the HDD, but just what does the short test do?
It passed in all of the other tests applied to it. Just wondering...

Computer is an HP, running Vista Ultimate.

Oh yeah, cannot find the website that compares various computer components, but thats
because I also cannot remember the site's name !!! Thought I had it bookmarked ...

08-11-2011, 08:39 PM
See if you can determine which company manufactured the drive, and download their own disc tools. These typically will allow lots more tests, and may give you some idea of what aspect of the drive is failing.

09-11-2011, 06:55 AM
Thanks for advise paul,cov, pretty sure its a WD 500 gb. Good point re the manufactures disk.

Once I find out whose disk it is I'll grab their software and run it it, just to see what happens. However I do
suspect the disk is faulty, as it can take up to 15-20 minutes to boot in the mornings.

09-11-2011, 07:24 AM
If there is ever a SMART warning, it pays to be safe with your data and back it up immediately, then cease use of the hard drive. Ideally this way you don't have to worry about any form of data loss.

09-11-2011, 08:03 AM
Back everything important up, Download the manufacturers diagnostic software, run the long test, throw the hard drive away.

Sorry pretty much repeating what's been said but drives that fail these tests are seldom worth keeping. Bad timing too with hard drive prices the way they are.
Sometimes (Rarely) doing a Zero fill / low level format or equivalent can fix drives that fail tests, but I would keep an eye on it even if it does.

As an example I had a seagate drive that developed a bad sector after the computer freezing during a download overnight. It seemed like it had been trying to write the same data for hours when I discovered it the next morning and failed both short and long diagnostic tests with seatools. After a Zero fill it still failed the short but not the long, and continued to work fine for several years (actually it may still be going I gave it away a while back). Zero fill goes through the drive and reallocates any bad clusters to a small store of hidded capacity effectivley fixing the drive.

As an interesting note, it would be impossible to manufacturer identical capacity hard drives cheaply so they don't. All hard drives are a little larger than stated with a hidden store of extra capacity. This is what zero fill utitlies use to "fix" bad sectors and it is also used by the factory format for the same purpose to deliver a standardised capacity. Small manufacturing defects are hidden this way.

09-11-2011, 09:31 AM
Short tests read the SMART data and then do a quick random read test over the drive.

Any drive which fails a short test is very likely to be bad.

For more information on what is actually wrong, run a program like Speedfan and read the SMART data results. (The manufacturer utilities never seem to tell you anything useful)

09-11-2011, 10:13 AM
Everything passd except the HDD short test, which failed on several runs.

The HD would usually have to be pretty bad to fail the short test.
Ive seen faulty drives fail the Manufacturers Full/thorough tests

Honestly, dont waste any more time on it.
The more you play , you may be making it harder to get your data off it, if its about
to die.

09-11-2011, 08:39 PM
[QUOTE=dugimodo;1059342]Back everything important up, Download the manufacturers diagnostic software, run the long test, throw the hard drive away.

Very interesting, I knew nothing of this! Still I have made a backup of files and folders and separately a backup of the total HDD. Computer still very slow to boot, but it gets there.

New Sata HDD on order to replace existing , now, piece of junk.

Thanks for info, also you too Chilling Silence

09-11-2011, 08:44 PM
Thanks also Agent_24. Backups done, hope it all goes smoothly when the new drive arrives.