Start of a HDD Failure?

yesterday when i turned on my PC, it only got to as far as the bios screen & stayed there, even after a few restarts, i then went into the bios and confirmed that the HDD was the first boot and then saved it and restarted and it loaded up windows.

is this it telling me that it’s starting to fail? are there any software to check the disk, i’ve tried error checking in the tools section but it came up with nothing.

Maxtor 120GB IDE


Try Advance SmartChec 2.1 at


thanks, ill give it a try


i take it,it’s overheating? but it was switched on from cold :frowning:

run diags I am sure your mfg has some, also check for ATAPI errors on device 0 or whatever HDD this is in sequence starting from zero and see if any read\write errors were generated in the control panel-admin tools-event viewer


Check the battery also.


:o , how do you do that :o


Yes indeed, every drive manufacturer has a standalone (DOS) diagnostic you boot from floppy or CD. The diagnostics will work on other brands of drive also.

There are two diagnostics that will run under XP or Win2k and can test just about any drive. I run one or the other every couple of weeks. I have had three drives get sick over the last three years but each time I was warned in advance by the diagnostic.

Seagate’s online diag:

Western Digitals downloadable diag:

just sounds like some random glitch to me, could have been caused by anything, reset the cmos and carry on, check out the smart monitor readings (everest will allow you to do this) it will tell you if something is going south with your HDD, but tbh there is no real reason to believe it was the HDD, in any case backup regularly drives can die at any time for no apparent reason.

this is the result from the seagate test

Run: 28/07/2006 18:22:04

Primary IDE Channel : Maxtor 6Y120P0
Model: Maxtor 6Y120P0
Serial Number: Y41FYK6E
Capacity: 122.94 GB
Test result: Self-test routine completed without error.

so, Mr B, you could be right, thanks to everybody for your help


I guess you also checked the S.M.A.R.T. status while you were there. I think it’s a good idea and it only takes a second.

S.M.A.R.T. was invented specifically to attempt to give a warning about imminent drive failures well before any symptoms occur.

I have a Maxtor too. Actually I had two just alike but the second one had big problems and I replaced it with the Samsung.

Run: 7/29/2006 11:46:16 AM

Primary IDE Channel : SAMSUNG SP1614N
Model: SAMSUNG SP1614N
Serial Number: S016J10Y228301
Capacity: 160.04 GB
Status: No S.M.A.R.T. thresholds exceeded.

Primary IDE Channel : Maxtor 6Y160P0
Model: Maxtor 6Y160P0
Serial Number: Y60WRASE
Capacity: 163.92 GB
Status: No S.M.A.R.T. thresholds exceeded.


Some time ago my computer presented the same problem as you have described.

I’ve done all the checks and everything was OK, except the clock which was delayed.

I replaced the battery (which powers the CMOS were the bios is installed) of the motherboard and my computer is OK since then.


Maxtor has a diagnostic utility called PowerMax

Good Luck

Have you recently changed hard drives or your internal setup ? This sounds like a BIOS setting to me - So you set your boot sequence and it worked right ? When you restart now does it work as always or does the problem appear from time to time ?

According to your screenshot your S.M.A.R.T. attributes look fine to me.there is nothing to worry about. I would recommend SpeedFAN, it has a very comprehensive SMART analysis tool and provides even more attribute names than any other program I tried. Just a little detail, the smart check program you are using is not showing the RAW value - your spin retry attribute’s worst is 252, which suggests to me that your drive maybe has 1 retry counts (I would have known this by the RAW count which would be 1 perhaps) No concerns for now but keep an eye on this value from time to time and each time you power down your system and on again.

While SMART is a good way for early failure detection, it is good for about 60-70% of failures which are gradual in nature - It will NOT protect you against sudden failure caused by sudden electronic failure (surge), shock, mechanical problems (sudden HD crash), at least not on your maxtor. Keep an eye on the spinup time, seek performance, spin retry count, write errors and temperatures.

thanks for all the imput, but i’m away to my work just now and won’t be home for a couple of weeks to check all the things mentioned.

i’ve not changed anything internal for about 3 months (benq 1650)

Look for a flat battery that looks kind of like a big watch battery on your motherboard. You should be able to get a replacment at any computer or office supply store or even walmart for that matter for a few dollars.

sorry, i must have sounded a wee bit dumb there :o , i knew what it looked like, but i wasn’t sure if there was a setting someplace to check to see if it was OK


used powermax and everything was ok, must have been a glitch someplace.
i have reinstalled windows now and it looks to be ok.

thanks for all the imput