download and run the powermax diagnostic software from maxtor's web site. Its a drive diagnostic software specifically designed for maxtor drives.
If your drive is bad it will even give you an error code for maxtor that you can put on a form and rma it with them for another drive (i had to do this with a 17.2 gb one and thye gave me a brand new 20gb one)
Personally although it might mean something is bad i tend to want to run the manufacturers drive diagnostic rather than a default one like ibm
Powermax (maxtor's) is good for Maxtors and Quantum hard drives
Seatools (seagate) is good for Seagate (obviously)
WDdiag (western digitial diagnostics) is goood for most western digitals (although their newer diagnostic software doesnt' support some of their older drives
Dont remember one for Toshiba hard drives though