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jasonwestmas
02-01-2010, 03:21 PM
Can a bad hard drive cause a computer not to boot up, cause voltage problems and give blue screens etc.? My HD just died today after not being able to boot up my computer with 4 sticks of ram.
I had to reset my cmos and use only two sticks of ram in order to boot. After messing with that my hard drive dies, kinda strange.

JonW
02-01-2010, 04:27 PM
Could do, but I’m no expert.

Main thing here is to copy all your data to another HD just incase you don’t have a back up, before you do anything else with the computer.

If you even think you have a slim remote chance of a dodgy HD, copy & replace it, while you still have a chance.

Assume the worst & hope for the best!

jasonwestmas
02-01-2010, 04:37 PM
Yeah, the strange thing was that I had no idea that the problem could be hard drive related till today. Just caught me all of a sudden. I guess I should have thought that it was the HD when I couldn't properly shut down, put it to sleep or boot my computer. Just hadn't a clue.

JMCarrigan
02-01-2010, 05:13 PM
Can a bad hard drive cause a computer not to boot up, cause voltage problems and give blue screens etc.? ...

Oh - you bet! Recent experiences after many years of buying instead of building my computers like I used to, taught me that things have really changed - such as the snafu I went through when I discovered that my new mobo's bios needed to be flashed so it would understand more than 3 terrabytes of hard drive space.

And forget about the - now 3 - WD 500 gig Caviars that went t's up. By the 3rd one, only a few days ago, I knew something was up and recovered in no time at all.

I never even considered the hard drives were giving me grief.

jasonwestmas
02-01-2010, 06:39 PM
Oh - you bet! Recent experiences after many years of buying instead of building my computers like I used to, taught me that things have really changed - such as the snafu I went through when I discovered that my new mobo's bios needed to be flashed so it would understand more than 3 terrabytes of hard drive space.

And forget about the - now 3 - WD 500 gig Caviars that went t's up. By the 3rd one, only a few days ago, I knew something was up and recovered in no time at all.

I never even considered the hard drives were giving me grief.

Geeze yeah, you definitely have been there done that, lol. I think I'm going to buy pre-built next time, I just don't have the know how yet. So much hardware to choose from. And the Northbridge, southbridge, timing stuff, updates, incompatabilities etc etc. . . bleh.

morgan_redhawk
02-02-2010, 07:56 AM
Absolutely, JMCarrigan is correct. Usually when a HDD exhibits these symptoms it is because the controller board is going bad. Most commonly due to overheating. I had a computer that I built once that seemed to have a hard drive curse. Killed 5 Maxtors and one Western Digital in one year. I thought it was just Maxtor at first. Then I read about someone with the same problem and as it turned out, the case that I was using had poor ventilation design. I added a fan that blows right across the hard drive bay and haven't had a problem since (I still use that same case, though the guts have undergone several upgrades). If you can, try booting to a different hard drive just to make sure. If the problem still occurs, I would suspect the power supply..it can cause all kind of weird problems if it is getting twitchy. If it does turn out to be the hard drive, and if you have problems recovering the data from it, here is a little trick you can try. Put the drive in the freezer for a couple of hours, then boot your system to your new drive (and OS installation) with your old drive as the slave (just let it dangle outside the case, no need to install it). Sometimes this will resurrect a dead drive or one that is giving a lot of errors when trying to get data back, for a short time only...sometimes it doesn't help...its worth a shot if you have no other alternative. Good luck, dude!

serge
02-02-2010, 08:07 AM
Are you sure the HD is dead? What happens exactly when you boot? Could it have been something else entirely (PSU, bad RAM, GPU, CPU, motherboard, cables, etc.) which caused stability problems, and corrupted your OS?

Tranimatronic
02-02-2010, 08:28 AM
I had to reset my cmos and use only two sticks of ram in order to boot. After messing with that my hard drive dies, kinda strange.

Much more likely the ram is the culprit. Have you added new RAM ? check the voltage settings. Sometimes they are jumper-set on the motherboard

jasonwestmas
02-02-2010, 09:34 AM
Are you sure the HD is dead? What happens exactly when you boot? Could it have been something else entirely (PSU, bad RAM, GPU, CPU, motherboard, cables, etc.) which caused stability problems, and corrupted your OS?

Oh I wish it wasn't but I get clicking sounds and GUI and file transfer slowing/ freezes and I can't install anything. I also get a HD is damaged error from Vista every time I boot the computer.

Tranimatronic
02-02-2010, 09:39 AM
the clicking sound is the worm gears failing. Harddrive RIP :( tell the RAM I'm sorry for doubting it.....

jasonwestmas
02-02-2010, 09:46 AM
Much more likely the ram is the culprit. Have you added new RAM ? check the voltage settings. Sometimes they are jumper-set on the motherboard

Well I set the Northbridge to 1.28 (Instead of AUTO) thinking the 4 sticks of Ram wasn't getting enough juice to start up. I set the Dram voltage to 2.1v (Instead of AUTO) because that's what the Ram requires.

TO ME (I'm not super smart with hardware) it sounds right to think the HD is the culprit because the computer was working fine with this Ram for a year and a half using strickly AUTO voltage settings in the Bios. The problems started whenever I would shut down the comp or put it to sleep. When I did that the computer would not boot up or I would get strange noises coming from the HD. I had to do the "remove the CMOS battery" trick to get the thing to boot up with 2 sticks of Ram.

I did RMA one stick of Ram because all the other ones worked fine in pairs. For a little while I was able to boot my computer with two sticks of ram instead of 4. During that time I was able to work and play games without problems until I shut down the computer. Then all of a sudden my HD failed to even work yesterday. So now I'm just wondering if the HD could cause these boot issues after I replaced the one bad stick of Ram I had.

JMCarrigan
02-02-2010, 10:34 AM
If you were a little closer, I'd pop over. See if I could do one of my computer whisperer routines.:)

jasonwestmas
02-02-2010, 10:52 AM
Me too JM. I'm probably the most knowledgeable in my area and that's not saying much. =)

morgan_redhawk
02-03-2010, 06:25 PM
If you have the Click Of Death, then the controller board is definitely bad. The actuator arm inside the drive is not moved by worm gears anymore, nowadays they use neodymium magnets and a coil. The clicking sound is caused by the actuator arm moving to and from its parked to full swing positions without any control. Get the data while you can...in a case like this, the freezer trick usually buys you about 15 minutes..Let us know how it comes out.

ken_g9
02-03-2010, 11:19 PM
Oh I wish it wasn't but I get clicking sounds and GUI and file transfer slowing/ freezes and I can't install anything. I also get a HD is damaged error from Vista every time I boot the computer.

ahhh, the dreaded click of death...

as what was posted above, it's best to save the data elsewhere while you still can...

jasonwestmas
02-04-2010, 12:17 AM
I just did a clean install onto a much nicer, larger and quieter seagate HD. Everything seems to working great again :) Thanks for the help guys!