File Corruption Problems

By Scern
Mar 9, 2008
  1. Hey guys,

    I'm having file corruption issues. I originally posted in the software thread thinking that it was a virus issue, but I've wiped and rewiped my drives and still seem to be having the problem.

    My original post is here:

    So basically, every time I reinstall windows, I end up getting corrupted system files and/or registry. Chkdsk runs and deletes a bunch of information and restores a bunch of orphaned files (even files that I deleted get restored).

    This has happened to me on two separate Hard of them brand new.

    The OS seems to run OK, with some lagging, but every time I reboot chkdsk runs and does the same thing, and I get a registry message "One of the files containing the system registry had to be recovered by use of a log or alternate copy. The recovery was successful"

    My question is that if it was a virus, it should have been toast from the kill disks and reinstalls, but my problem keeps coming back. I've done a memtest and all three of my RAM chips checked out OK.

    Could it be my motherboard or CPU that is corrupting files due to errors in data processing/transfers? I always thought that hardware failures would be obviously spectacular.

    It is a little expensive to randomly start replacing components (its a home built system, been running just fine for 3 yrs up to this point).
  2. Scern

    Scern TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I thought I'd add that newly installed programs sometimes are immediately corrupted and I end up having to reinstall again before they will work.
  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,160   +599

    the system has hardware issues; memory or the HD.

    get a copy of memtest and run it to verify your ram.

    then perform a lowlevel format on the drive to ensure all bad blocks are remapped.
    or get one from your HD manufacturer.

    verify that your BIOS is setup for DMA transfers and not PIO.
  4. Scern

    Scern TS Rookie Topic Starter

    What is DMA and PIO and how do I verify this?
  5. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,160   +599

    these are settings in the BIOS that control how the data from the HD is read into memory.

    1- BE CAREFUL!!!
    2- the ESC key is usually the means to backup or ignore changes
    3- at the end, you always get a SAVE and quit vs Quit w/o Save; use the latter until
    you get comfortable seeing and changing anything
    4- understand; if you screwup, the system may not start until you get someone who
    can reset it correctly.

    Depending upon your Manufacturer, you get into the Bios Setup with
    the DEL, F1, F2 key (each vendor is different) and it is shown during the boot sequence --
    We call it POST (Power On Self Test).

    if you've never done this, then stick with memtest and the lowlevel formatting.
  6. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,233   +234

    This could be a sign of a hard drive going bad or motherboard issue too
  7. Row1

    Row1 TS Guru Posts: 326   +13

    i bet failing hard drive. backup now.

    i vote for failing hard drive -- at least now in the primary.

    esp if the comp is 4-5 yrs old.

    time to back up.

    for very essential documents, such as current papers you are writing for school, current projects like proposals for work, etc., your list of your swiss bank acct numbers and passwords, and the data files of accounting software, copy them to a cd. take the most current few documents and email them to your self - so they will be sitting out there in cyberspace.

    i just saw in radio shack the 80 gb maxtor 'one touch' backup drive for $59 -- had been $79. a lifesaver.
  8. Acclamator

    Acclamator TS Rookie Posts: 261

    It is most likely that your hard disk if dieing. BTW you have posted this in the wrong forum.
  9. Scern

    Scern TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Not really in the wrong forum.

    I thought it was my hard-drive too, but it is happening on a brand new drive as well. So this makes me rule-out the hard drive.

    So, what I was asking was could it be a motherboard or CPU issue? I always thought problems with those two components would be spectacular system failures, not subtle file corruption problems.

    My question to the board is/was: Could this be a mobo/CPU/memory issue? Has anyone seen this kind of problem that was eventually traced back to the mobo/CPU/memory?

    I've tested my memory with memtest and all three sticks tested out OK.
  10. CCT

    CCT TS Evangelist Posts: 2,653   +6

    Is the install disk OEM or slipstreamed or what?
  11. Scern

    Scern TS Rookie Topic Starter

    The XP install disk was purchased from the store. Original Microsoft CD
  12. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,233   +234

    If this corruption is not caused by memory or bad CMOS/Bios settings, it has to be the motherboard
  13. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,160   +599

    hum; frankly, I've never seen that in 37 years in the industry.
  14. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,233   +234

    Yes Jobeard,
    bad memory or corrupt/bad hard drive... maybe a bad cable is all I've seen that could cause this
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