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Why does mechanical failure causes HDD being undetectable by bios or OS?

Discussion in 'PC Hardware' started by andy, Sep 3, 2004.

  1. andy

    andy Guest


    Could someone please explain why in the case of *mechanical* failure HD
    becomes sometimes undetected by BIOS and/or the operating system (e.g. win xp
    or linux)?

    If it was an electronic failure then such behaviour would be obious, but why
    the same happens with some mechanical failures? When electronics is working in
    my opinion it still should be detected by bios and/or the system (win xp or
    linux), but often it is not.

    I could recover about 80% of the data from my HDD (which apparently has a
    mechanical failure - plates spin up and down, heads create bad noises) if only
    the disk could be seen by the system all the time. But often during copying of
    the data heads hit with a loud sound so badly that sometimes even the plates
    stop rotating, and the disk then dissapears from the system. It is then very
    difficult to make it detectable by the system again, sometimes the sytem can
    detect it but only after several minutes of copying it freezes and then
    dissapears again.

    Recently, I was unlucky, and even after several dozens of retries it's still
    undetectable by the system.

    Could you please advice what to do to make the disk detectable by the system
    all the time?
    What causes that it is not detectable although the failure is in mechanics not

    BTW, if someone has the same disk model (Quantum Fireball ST64A011), please
    let me know.

    andy, Sep 3, 2004
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  2. andy

    Kenabi Tsuki Guest

    not sure how useful it'll be in the long run, but try putting it in the
    freezer for half an hour before you attempt to try again (makes all the
    components shrink some. including bearings, platters[depending on
    substance they're made of], head arms, etc.) and in cases where it's not
    the circuit board having issues, it can give you a slightly better
    chance of getting the full 100%.

    i should know, i went through this less than a week ago ;)

    Kenabi Tsuki, Sep 3, 2004
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