Need help, I think I destroyed my hard drive

By tripleione ยท 10 replies
Jan 20, 2006
  1. Well, I made an obvious and stupid mistake when I was trying to fix my friend's computer for him. I was in the process of reinstalling Windows 2000 on the computer and I was fiddling with the side of the case to see where I could put a couple of expansion cards. While I was doing this, the Windows 2000 setup program was reformatting the hard drive for a clean installation. I think I must have been a bit too rough with the computer when I was trying to get the side of the case off and the computer froze at 19% formatted and didn't move at all for an hour. At that point, I decided to just restart the whole thing and reset the computer, not realizing what I was doing. Ever since then, the motherboard will not recognize the hard drive at all. Windows 2000 setup says it cannot continue because no hard drive is installed.

    So now I am pretty sure the hard drive is gone, but I wanted to verify it before I completely give on this situation and give my friend one of my old drives that I have lying around. Is there any way to recover a hard drive from something like restarting during a format? Or should I just go ahead and put the old one in?
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Are you sure it is the drive that died? If you were messing with the computer insides, then it is more likely you just bumped a cable or fried something on the motherboard.

    Put the drive in another computer and see if it recognised there. Look over all the cables etc in the original machine.
  3. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    I'm 98.2% sure you didn't kill the hd. I have killed them by screwing around when they were formatting, but that was only because I was trying to move a drive in an old case, during format, and it slipped and I dropped it. When you kill a hd that way, it makes noise and you immediately know its screwed.

    Check all the cables again, perhaps even replace them. I bet you killed something else, or dislodged it.
  4. leanmoha

    leanmoha TS Rookie


    Got the same problem with potentially dead HD.
    one for desktop one for laptop.

    re Desktop

    went out once leaving my computer on, got back in and the computer had frozen just after the bios loading where the computer searches for a boot devise.

    Anyway took it out put it in another computer it was not detected, tried again in the original pc and same thing. Not sure if its dead or not?

    re Laptop

    was either in the process of running or compiling a java program when the laptop droped to the floor. I tried to reboot but it wouldn't.
    I formated the hd using some dos bootable program (somethig expert can't remember the exact name) reinstalled windows but it came up with some file is corrupt.
    Then tried reformating using the windows setup formating thing, it gets to 13% formated and the blue screen of death comes up after some noise and about 6hrs formating time

    any suggestions?
  5. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Desktop: are you sure you connected the thing right? Cables, jumpers etc. Was the BIOS set to actually auto-detect all IDE devices? If yes, then the drive is probably dead.

    Laptop: The drive is either dead or has way too many bad sectors on it. You want to get a new one.
  6. leanmoha

    leanmoha TS Rookie

    is there software to sort out the bad sectors? at the boot stage
  7. tripleione

    tripleione TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 154

    I'm 100% positive that the cable is not the problem, as I double-checked all the connections to the motherboard and the drive and I also reset the BIOS via the jumper. It still does not detect it. I even changed the cable to a different connection on the motherboard and it still does not see the hard drive.

    I'd try your suggestion but unfortunately this is my friend's computer, and it's a custom-built computer that has hardware way better than mine. I only have two IDE drives (one of them is a 10GB one that I am going to install in it, at least temporarily until my friend can afford a new one. I'm 100% positive it works, because I am using on my own computer right now), and his setup is SATA. I only use my computer to browse the net and do papers, so I haven't upgraded it in a long time... hence the reason I don't have an SATA to test.

    Anyway, thanks for the suggestions everyone. If anyone can offer any more advice it would be much appreciated. I'll update the post after I get the 10GB IDE installed and (hopefully) working.
  8. leanmoha

    leanmoha TS Rookie


    Just plugged the desktop HHD back into the machine and BIOS did in fact detect it {slave to Secondary Master HDD}. The only problem was when it came to windows booting, it just wasn't happening. It just seemed to hang or continuously loop around in the Windows boot screen splash.

    I also tried running the bootable disk formating utility to try and reformat the disk but that started loading and then just seemed to freeze.

    I thought may be it was a power problem because of the 2 tv viewing cards I've got installed on the computer and the fact that windows never seems to detect anything placed in my DVD-rom even though it detect the drive.

    Anyways, when I disconnected my Secondary Master HDD the same thing happened. However when I disconnected the HDD and reconnected the Secondary Master, everything worked as normal.

    Does this mean the HDD is not dead but has something else eating at it? If so have you got any suggestions.

    For sometime just before it stopped working I had been using it as my OS installed HDD and when I had tried to burn DVDs/CDs the burning would always either fail or burn with loads of errors at anything above the slowest write speed the DVD-rewriter can handle.
    And then this started to happen also at the low speed.

    I mean I don't know if its the HDD or old motherboard but now I'm using the Epox and another HDD as my OS drive DVDs/CDs burning is back to its normal self with only one failed burn so far. Well actually it burned to the DVD but if I tried opening anything on the disk it hanged the system.
  9. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    The drive can still be bad even if it manages to report itself to the BIOS. You should download and run the diagnostics tool from the HD manufacturer.
  10. leanmoha

    leanmoha TS Rookie

    Thanks I'm just downloading the MaxBlast tools from Maxtor's website now.

    I did nange to reformat the disk and windows does run and detect it, but just can't install it.

    When I formated it the tool I used reported that it could not read "sector 0" on the disk.

    Do you know what that means?
  11. leanmoha

    leanmoha TS Rookie


    you r right the HDD is dead or at the very least on its last legs. Just finished runing PowerMax on the HDD and it returned an error code I've got to contact Maxtor with. I just hope they're nice people like the guys at Logitech and give me a new one, even though I've lost the reciept and have not idea what shop sold it plus I have not idea how old it is.
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