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Bizarre, doesn't really fit into any category

By bobgreen5s
Feb 23, 2007
  1. Hello,
    Recently I have encountered a very strange problem regarding my 4 month old computer. Over the past few days I have noticed a click (which resembles the click you hear when you shutdown your computer). Following this "click" the computer will be slow to respond to keyboard and mouse commands and eventually the system will become unresponsive to any commands and freeze (where I have to physically press the reset button on my computer). Currently I am running various hardware tests and I was wondering if anyone has encountered a similar problem.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    Its your hard drive, back up important data immediately. Then hope you can still RMA your drive, because its toast.
     
  3. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    is there a way to determine which hard drive? (I have 3)
     
  4. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Take your hard drives out to note model and serial numbers, then go to their manufacturer's web sites to download and test the drives with their various drive fitness tests. Most, but not all, drive errors will show up with a thorough run of drive tests.
    I do agree with SNGX1275 that the click sound is most likely a hard drive... and typically a Maxtor... but they all can begin failing with a random click, or a rhythmic clicking... getting progressively worse.
    Save all data when you can, as the drives with that click symptom are often more difficult when time comes to rescue data.
     
  5. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    everything seems fine so far in the benchmarks i'm running, are you sure its the hard drive and not the power supply or something? (the sound that I hear before it freezes is exactly like that sound you hear when you shutdown the computer)
     
  6. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Well, you will know a lot more after you run the drive fitness tests... If nothing is detected after two ore three test runs, you have ruled out one component.
    Clicks from the hard drive are not normal, and are typical of hard drives in a failing state. The other symptoms you describe are also worrisome. It is just important to save any data while you can.
    Of course, it could be anything... but I doubt it would be the motherboard, power supply, etc.
    Be sure to check all cables, and remove, then reseat every component. Take a close look at your cpu fan... and monitor the temperature if yours has that capability.
    Your choices are hard drive; optical drive; sound card; video graphics card; particularly if it has a cooling fan; and power switches. A reduced component set helps you reduce the options you need to study.
    Also, you can try another hard drive in your box, or your hard drive in some other person's machine... but the drive fitness tests are a better choice.
     
  7. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    I have 3 western digital hard drives and ran the western digital extended test (it was the only utility they had) and all the hard drives passed the test. But the good news is that I looked at the event viewer in Computer Management and found an error on \Device\Hardistk1\D before the system froze. Is there a way to find out for sure which hard drive this is?

    Thank you for your continued assistance
     
  8. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    What are you accessing when this happens? Its that drive then. Disconnect everything but your system drive and see if it happens.

    I can't believe it passed the drive fitness test, but I suppose its possible. But a click and a short freeze ARE hard drive failing symptoms, and I'd bet you almost anything that one of your drives is toast.
     
  9. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    right now I have absolutely no idea what causing the problem :(
     
  10. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    I've told you. Your drive is dying. Drives do not click and cause a system freeze like you describe without being dead, and nothing else causes those symptoms.
     
  11. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,000   +15

    Hallmark sign of a dying hard disk drive. Backup and replace ASAP.
     
  12. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    yes, but if it the hard drive was causing the problem, I still would not know which hard drive is causing the freezes also the click is not really a click the best way I can explain it is that its exactly like the sound you hear when you shut off your computer
     
  13. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    Yes, we know what it sounds like. I told you how to figure it out earlier, apparently you just don't want to put any effort into solving YOUR problem.

    \Device\Hardistk1\D looks like your Disk 1 (Disk 0 is usually the drive your Windows is installed to, C)

    There may be another explanation to this....
    What do you have your power saving settings set at? I suppose it could be possible Windows is shutting down one of your drives and then re-spinning up causing the lag. This wouldn't explain why you get errors in event viewer though.
     
  14. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    I'm doing everything I can to solve my own problem. That error in the event viewer appeared only once so it would be nice to have some more conclusive evidence before I remove the hard drive where my operating system resides. Again thank you for your continued help. My power saving settings are at their defaults.
     
  15. foozy

    foozy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    The only absolutely conclusive evidence you're going to get is when you take out your hard drive. If you have three hard drives, take out the two that aren't running the operating system. If the problem stops then you've narrowed it down to one of your two other drives. Test one and you can find the culprit.
     
    1 person likes this.
  16. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    \Device\Hardistk1\D is what you saw in device manager right? I can't say with 100% certainty because I'm not entirely sure that device manager labels the same way Disk Management does. But I checked on my work computer which has 2 physical hard drives of 1 partition each. The C drive is Disk0 and the D drive is Disk1. Now that matches up with \Device\Hardistk1\D being your D drive. So I'd start from there.

    You could also set your power settings to NEVER turn off the hard drives, that way it eliminates the possibility of windows shutting them down.

    While we are grasping for straws here and avoiding what I think is the real issue. You should check the power cords going into all the drives, to make sure one isn't loose and periodically dropping power to the drive.
     
  17. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    OK, I guess I'll just remove the hard drive and see if the problem goes away,

    Thank you for your help :)
     
  18. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    I was finally able to record the sound I keep referring to and I was hoping that someone could confirm that it the hard drive was making this sound (I couldn't find this sound on any other website iwth common hard drive malfunction sounds)

    http://www.box.net/public/4g64saxgoe
     
  19. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    Yep, its dead. You are running on borrowed time with that.
     
  20. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    ok thanks at least i know for certain its one of my hard drives
     
  21. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    Keep periodically testing with the diagnostic tool, eventually it will give you an error code. You really need to find out what drive it is so you can get everything backed up and send that drive in for a replacement.
     
  22. bobgreen5s

    bobgreen5s TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 42

    Don't know if anyone will see this but I figure it's worth a try :). So its about 7 months later and none of the hard drives have failed :( The mysterious hard drive clicking took about a 5 month hiatus and reappeared about a month ago. Since then I have removed each individual hard drive and gave each one a rigorous testing regiment from various drive fitness tests. All the hard drives have passed the tests so I'm beginning to think that this is some kind of freak compatibility error (between hard drives and mobo). I suppose I'll proceed to selling the hard drives on ebay and buying a single large hard drive if no one can provide any kind of unique insight.

    EDIT: I've searched for this problem for a while now and have found one topic where the user has a pretty much identical issue. Sadly the thread is about 3 years old and is unresolved :(

    http://72.14.205.104/search?q=cache...ick&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=6&gl=us&client=firefox-a
     
  23. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    I'm very suprised, I've never heard a drive click that continues to operate AND pass SMART testing.
     
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