SATA problem?

By norris
Sep 8, 2011
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  1. First of all, hi all i'm norris and i'm new here.

    Since a few weeks i got a very annoying problem.

    My system:

    asrock p67 extreme 4
    i5 2500k
    8gb ram
    radeon 6850
    c300 64gb ssd
    samsung 1TB

    Ok, this system has run without any problem since januari this year.
    The problem started out of the in august. I came back home to find my system locked up. A reset did the trick.
    These 'idle' lockups happened a few more times after that.

    Then i started to have freezes while working on the pc. These are random freezes that happened while i was surfing, gaming or listening to music.
    When i listen to music for example, the song keeps playing until the end, but everything else where i click hangs up, until the point the pc freezes totaly.
    I have to reset it but then i won't boot anymore. 'No startup devices found'
    So i check my bios to find my ssd has vanished. I swicthed to sata cable from the ssd to another port and i could boot normally again.
    I thought this problem was ssd related so i updated its firmware.
    Problem stays.
    When i game, suddenly i'm missing some sounds and after a few seconds everything hangs. => reset=>no boot, ssd missing.
    Switched to another port again and startup normally.
    I updated bios firmware a few days ago, but also that didn't helped.
    Sometimes the system runs fine for a few days, sometimes it hangs multiple times a day.
    So now i wanted to do a memtest and started to burn a bootable memtest cd.
    Failed, i can't seem to burn any cd's or dvd's anymore. This seemed to happen after i updated the bios firmware.
    Now yesterday suddenly my samsung drive went unresponsible too.
    Reboot, went in bios and found all my drives including cdr missing.
    Swapped all sata cables => startup normally.

    So now i think maybe my sata controller is dying?
  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,233   +234

    Sounds like you have a malware infection. Since SSD's are relatively new, they can be prone to have problems. Try reinstalling Windows 7 (if that's your operating system) but back up important data if you can. When you update bios, you always have to go back in and check that your boot drive is proper and that other settings are as they should be. I really doubt if the SATA controller is going bad. Go into the bios and check the SATA controller settings. In your case, I suspect that the controller should be set to IDE, not ACHI (Advanced Controller Host Interface) or RAID
  3. AtK SpAdE

    AtK SpAdE TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,495

    Yea I think you are on the right track.

    Do you have a second machine you can slave up the HDs and check?
  4. norris

    norris TS Rookie Topic Starter

    @Tmagic, hmm never thought about a malware infection.
    I ran combofix yesterday and suddenly after that i can burn cd's again.
    So i made a bootable memtest and ran that last night, did 9 passes and found no errors.
    Now i wait to see if i get another freeze, then my next step will be a fresh windows 7 install.
    I checked my bios settings already way too much the last couple of days ;)
    I switched my sata controller to ahci a few weeks ago. Before that it was on ide, but i already had trouble with the freezes before that. Is there any particular reason why it better should be on ide?

    @Spade, no unfortunatly i don't have a second machine to do some testing.
    I don't think its the hard drives, because when i plug them into another sata port they appear again. Also it would be strange that all of my drives, including cd drive, would go dead on me at the same time.
    So i'm thinking or a faulty sata controller (btw the motherboard is a first generation, i believe i read something a while back about a problem with the chipset), or a software fault.

    I didn't had to wait long for another error. I came back from being away for half an hour to find the pc booted itself back up, hanging at the boot screen.
    I check the bios, ssd (startup hd) vanished again. Instead of swapping ports again i just turned off the pc and unplugged the power cord for 5 minutes.
    I try to start up and it works again....
    Its always the ssd that dissapears, so now i think it must be the ssd itself and not the sata?
    I'm getting a bit crazy here :)
  5. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,233   +234

    Okay norris,
    maybe it's time to ditch the SSD and just go with a "normal" HDD for a while to see if the computer becomes more stable. Have you always been using a SSD in this computer from the beginning? That ASRock p67 extreme 4 motherboard might be the real issue here now though. ASRock is way down on my list of acceptable motherboard manufacturers

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