View Full Version : HDD bad sectors

27-06-2016, 01:30 PM
Wainui, I would appreciate your advice.

I ran chkdsk on my 1TB HDD and it shows I have 120KB in bad sectors. I am running Win7. Can I upgrade to Win10 or should I get the HDD replaced before doing so?.

27-06-2016, 02:16 PM
Replace it, they rarely stop at just a few bad sectors.

If money is tight and you want to take the risk download the manufacturers software and do a long test on the hard drive then a Zero fill or low level format, or whatever other name the call it. That'll remap the bad sectors to the hidden reserve sectors you may not realise you have and make the drive 100% again - until more sectors fail shortly afterwards most likely.

When I've done it in the past to a WD green it would still fail a quick test afterwards but pass the long test. That drive survived for years but it really is the exception, almost always a few bad sectors means more coming and the drive is on it's way out.

Edit: in case it wasn't obvious - the above advice will completely destroy the contents of the drive - back up anything important first.

27-06-2016, 02:23 PM
If the drives showing bad sectors in simple terms its satrting to fail. Always better to bin it, after making a copy of the drive ( if if the cloning softwre allows bad sectors) becasue sooner or later it will fail, and you run the risk of losing everything, or expensive to get your data back.

Upgrading to W10 , may work, but the bad sectors are still there,wont actually fix them and will continue to get worse.

Sometimes its software incorrectly reading, but generally its not.

If you wanted to check where they are, you can download and run the folowing scanner http://macrorit.com/disk-surface-test/disk-surface-test.html

It will show you exactly where the bad sectors are and how many. The larger drives take quite some time to scan. For example heres a customers drive I did a while back. ( you can see the details, time, sizes etc). You can also see that after a while the rest of the drive appears to be OK.

27-06-2016, 02:28 PM
Thanks. No, money is no problem. I just wondered if I could go ahead with the upgrade. I will get a tech' to replace the HDD. Perhaps it might be time to get a clean install of win10

and get rid of some of the rubbish I have accumulated.

27-06-2016, 02:29 PM
Thanks Dugimodo. No, money is no problem. I just wondered if I could go ahead with the upgrade. I will get a tech' to replace the HDD. Perhaps it might be time to get a clean install of win10

and get rid of some of the rubbish I have accumulated.

27-06-2016, 02:33 PM
Thanks Wainui, I really appreciate your advice and I will get it replaced. Cheers.

27-06-2016, 03:55 PM
best option : replace it

other option, run chkdsk with switch to recheck bad sectors : is that still an option now ? /b ?

Back in the day ,used to occasionally get soft bad sectors, sectors marked as bad because of a software glitch or something like that.

27-06-2016, 04:14 PM
Yep, /b still there.

16-07-2016, 08:03 PM
This is largely irrellevant to a post that's been correctly resolved, but I remember (showing my age) in the very early days of HDDs, when capacity was from 5 to 50 MB in total (yes, one millionth the capacity of todays 'routine' drives) bad sectors were routine. New drives would come with a list of the known bad sectors printed on the drives label. Drive maintenance would involve monitoring the original vs the new bad sectors, and they would typically increase in time. Mapping of the issues typically showed they would cluster in a particular part of the disc, or spread in a spiral pattern from the bad spot(s).

It also used to be necessary to park the heads before power off. Failure to do so would see the heads come to rest on the data areas, which would scrub the disc, and contaminate the read/write heads. Modern discs park the heads before all the rotational speed is lost (park meaning to move the heads to a non-data area of the disc). That slight clack sound when a drive loses power is the heads being slapped to the parking spot while there's still sufficient energy left to do so.

Back to that capacity issues of early drives... if we could take an 8TB drive back to the early 80's, it's price per MB would make it worth about $200 million in the 80's! Costs about $400 today.

Edit: But for another sense of perspective, back then your operating system would sit in less than 4KB of RAM, with my first PC having 48KB TOTAL RAM. Now Windows will take up nearer to a GB of disc space and your page file alone might be 4GB.

16-07-2016, 09:57 PM
Ah Paul, such memories. My first hard drive cost me $1000 second hand, was 32MB in size, and was large enough for my colour CRT monitor to sit on top of.
This was for an Atari STFM with 1MB or RAM. I also had to partition it into 3 drives because the ST couldn't address more than 16MB. Then I struggled to find anything to put on it, all the old Atari games ran off a floppy directly and would not load onto a hard drive.

I spent a fortune on that Atari, some of it a total waste in hindsight. Some awesome games for the time though :) Most PC's didn't have sound and a lot didn't have colour graphics back then so the Commodore and Atari machines where a lot more fun for gaming on. Of course then Wolfenstein came along.