xSTLx

Need help with 7K250's --- ice horror story

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So I came home from work Friday and turned on my monitor, just coming back to the desktop from the screen saver pegged the hard drive for what seemed an eternity, well I did find it odd but did not think to much of it, but IE and other simple tasks were talking forever to load as well, soon blue screen of death came up. Beginning dump of memory yada yada yada, so after reboot it did this again almost immediately, a report from Microsoft showed I had a hard disk error. So I shut it down and allowed it to sit for a while to cool down, perhaps 15 minutes or so. After restarting it allowed me to work normally for a while before disk reads and writes took forever again eventually blue screening again. So I figured this must be a failing hard drive, took it out and put it in the freezer then put it in a cooler of ice, this seemed to allow the drive to work longer normally then before. This was my boot drive and had nothing of real value on it and I was unable to keep it functioning long enough to get a image or backup so off to CompUSA I went and got a new 7K250. Also all my other drives were functioning normally. I installed this new drive and loaded my operating system (win xp pro) but things are still running very slow, although I am not blue screening. Do you think I got the bad luck of buying new bad drive on top of my old one failing or do you thing the two events are related? If this is another problem what would you start looking at first? If it was a problem other then my drive do you think permanent damage could have been caused by the freezer trick that could cause problems in the future?

The old drive that causes windows to blue screen:

Hitachi 7K250

Manufactured January 2004

Thailand

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: C6CEJGVM

Wont work long enough to get HDtach results.

The new drive that works but slowly:

Hitachi 7K250

Manufactured February 2005

Thailand

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: V44OA30C

Transfer: 1.7 mb/sec

CPU usage: 100%

Access: 13.9 ms

My other 7K250 in the system that if functioning normally at all times:

Hitachi 7K250

Manufactured September 2004

Thailand

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: V36OA6EA

Transfer: 52.9 mb/sec

CPU usage: 10%

Access: 11.7 ms

Any thoughts or help would be greatly appreciated, have to try and get my machine back to normal as soon as possible.

Thanks in advance. :)

iced8du.jpg

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coming back to the desktop from the screen saver pegged the hard drive for what seemed an eternity
By "pegging", do you mean the "buzzzzzzz" sound these drives (as well as 7K400s) make every 10 minutes?
I installed this new drive and loaded my operating system (win xp pro) but things are still running very slow, although I am not blue screening. Do you think I got the bad luck of buying new bad drive on top of my old one failing or do you thing the two events are related?
It could be related. Did you use the same IDE cable with the new drive? Was the other end of the cable attached to the same port on your motherboard? The fact that cooling the drive helps the error stay away longer doesn't support the bad cable/controller theory, though. I would still try it out with some other cable.

Next two things to try would be:

1) Checking the SMART values.

2) Running Hitachi Drive Fitness Test (DFT).

...on both drives, of course.

If Windows will bluescreen with the old drive, maybe using DOS-based analysis software could help to analyse it. Maybe the Windows installation is corrupt. That would explain that it works slow on the new drive. The fact that HDTach shows low transfer rates is worrying, though, and doesn't support the theory.

But, anyway, check the SMART values and run DFT. These two are easy to do, and if they confirm the drive(s) is/are failing, there's no need to speculate. Post the SMART values for us to see. But use some other SMART utility than the ones included in HDD Health (that programs shows only "values" not "raw data"). I, as an owner of one 7K250 and one 7K400, am curious to see the results. No problems with either one of them. (Knock on wood.)

AIDA32 is easy to use and has the option to create a report that you can copy-paste easily. http://www.majorgeeks.com/download181.html

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Very often I have advised people against using the so-called "Freezer Trick" for all HDD problems. Only works like 1% or less most of the time, which also depends on the type of fault. Why do some people still do it? :ph34r:

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Freezer trick should only be the last resort and only if

A) warranty period is over

B) data inside the drive is more valuable than the drive (but not valuable enough for investing big $$$/£££/€€€ for professional data recovery).

If heat is a suspect causing problems, one should measure the temperature of the chips on the HDD's PCB and possibly use cooling spray or a fan pointer right to it, and see if it keeps the drive working for a longer period. Those are much less stressful to the drive than placing them in a freezer. Putting a drive can cause many problems, like condensation for example. Is there is condensed water in liquid or ice form on the media, it's going to crash. It will damage the media irreversibly. Using the drive at subzero conditions might also have problems with lubrication of fluid dynamic bearings. And there's other ways that freezing can kill a drive.

Reading SMART values and running the manufacturer's own diagnostics utility should be the first things to do. It Windows' Event Viewer shows hard disk errors, that doesn't mean it's the device itself. It can be the controller, the cable or the drive. Or maybe just the driver.

If you got all the data of the drive, did you try a clean install, on either of your drives you suspect are failing? Imaging doesn't make a clean install.

Edited by whiic

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The new drive that works but slowly:

Hitachi 7K250

Manufactured February 2005

Thailand

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: V44OA30C

Transfer: 1.7 mb/sec

CPU usage: 100%

Access: 13.9 ms

Was this a fresh install of XP?

I vaguely remember something about windows falling back to PIO mode if there were too many errors on a transfer, and that it won't go back to DMA mode by itself.

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The new drive that works but slowly:

Hitachi 7K250

Manufactured February 2005

Thailand

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: V44OA30C

Transfer: 1.7 mb/sec

CPU usage: 100%

Access: 13.9 ms

Was this a fresh install of XP?

I vaguely remember something about windows falling back to PIO mode if there were too many errors on a transfer, and that it won't go back to DMA mode by itself.

215600[/snapback]

Yes this was a fresh install of windows.

Edited by xSTLx

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whiic, thanks for all the help, I started the advanced dft test on the drive before I left for work so I will have the test results after work. By pegging I mean the hard drive activity light was on constant for a long time. I have tried a different ide cable, I am hoping there is nothing wrong with my motherboard, once again thanks for suggesting the tests and the help I will be listing the results here soon.

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Yup, It's pio-mode. 1.7Mb/s and 100% cpu-load?

Check under device manager for the IDE-channel

215609[/snapback]

Yes my drives on my primary ide channel are in pio mode and were selected to pio only, now I switched it to dma if available. Now it won't switch off of pio mode, how can I get it back into dma mode 4 etc?

Strange thing is my secondary channel is working fine in dma mode 4 and was set to dma if available.

thanks for the help :)

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Is this the smart data you are looking for?

C: [ HDT722525DLAT80 (VD241AT4C0VT6A) ]

01 Raw Read Error Rate 16 98 98 131074 OK: Value is normal

02 Throughput Performance 50 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

03 Spin Up Time 24 129 129 17039640 OK: Value is normal

04 Start/Stop Count 0 100 100 16 OK: Always passing

05 Reallocated Sector Count 5 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

07 Seek Error Rate 67 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

08 Seek Time Performance 20 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

09 Power-On Time Count 0 100 100 41 OK: Always passing

0A Spin Retry Count 60 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

0C Power Cycle Count 0 100 100 16 OK: Always passing

C0 Power-Off Retract Count 50 100 100 17 OK: Value is normal

C1 Load/Unload Cycle Count 50 100 100 17 OK: Value is normal

C2 Temperature 0 148 148 23, 37 OK: Always passing

C4 Reallocation Event Count 0 100 100 0 OK: Always passing

C5 Current Pending Sector Count 0 100 100 0 OK: Always passing

C6 Off-Line Uncorrectable Sector Count 0 100 100 0 OK: Always passing

C7 Ultra ATA CRC Error Rate 0 200 200 0 OK: Always passing

D: [ HDS722525VLAT80 (VN69HMCFDRAM4D) ]

01 Raw Read Error Rate 60 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

02 Throughput Performance 50 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

03 Spin Up Time 24 91 91 27590997 OK: Value is normal

04 Start/Stop Count 0 100 100 235 OK: Always passing

05 Reallocated Sector Count 5 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

07 Seek Error Rate 67 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

08 Seek Time Performance 20 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

09 Power-On Time Count 0 100 100 5503 OK: Always passing

0A Spin Retry Count 60 100 100 0 OK: Value is normal

0C Power Cycle Count 0 100 100 235 OK: Always passing

C0 Power-Off Retract Count 50 100 100 464 OK: Value is normal

C1 Load/Unload Cycle Count 50 100 100 464 OK: Value is normal

C2 Temperature 0 144 144 18, 38 OK: Always passing

C4 Reallocation Event Count 0 100 100 0 OK: Always passing

C5 Current Pending Sector Count 0 100 100 0 OK: Always passing

C6 Off-Line Uncorrectable Sector Count 0 100 100 0 OK: Always passing

C7 Ultra ATA CRC Error Rate 0 200 200 0 OK: Always passing

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Yup, It's pio-mode. 1.7Mb/s and 100% cpu-load?

Check under device manager for the IDE-channel

215609[/snapback]

Yes my drives on my primary ide channel are in pio mode and were selected to pio only, now I switched it to dma if available. Now it won't switch off of pio mode, how can I get it back into dma mode 4 etc?

Strange thing is my secondary channel is working fine in dma mode 4 and was set to dma if available.

thanks for the help :)

215618[/snapback]

Remove the drives (from the device manager) and reboot, "sometimes" that doesn't work and you have to remove the idechannel (the card) too and reboot (maybe a couple of times) to fix.

Edited by Laglorden2

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I will remove the drives and restart a few times, however this problem is with my integrated motherboard channels not a card.

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Nevermind lol, can't remove the boot drive and reboot a few times, it is my boot drive that is stuck in pio mode, how can I change this without rebooting without the drive, please anyone? Thanks :)

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Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/CurrentControlSet/Control/Class/{4D36E96A-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}

under one of the "000x" change the settings to look like this.....

"MasterDeviceTimingMode"=dword:00010010

"MasterDeviceTimingModeAllowed"=dword:ffffffff

This will reset it to Ultra DMA100 Mode 5 but as the original reason XP degraded it to PIO will still be there, it may degrade again.

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Usually removing the respective IDE channel in device manager should fix that. Strange that the transfer mode should already be degraded to PIO on a new XP install on a new drive. (The SMART values for the new one look fine btw. Oh, and it's a T7K250.) I hope it's not the old "pin pushed in" problem.

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On your first message:

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: C6CEJGVM

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: V44OA30C

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: V36OA6EA

The model numbers are all of 7K250s...
C: [ HDT722525DLAT80 (VD241AT4C0VT6A) ]

D: [ HDS722525VLAT80 (VN69HMCFDRAM4D) ]

And now the first seems to be T7K250 (T for "two platters") instead of 7K250 (S for "standard").

Did you make a typo on your first post because it's quite unlikely that the drive would be misrecognized, yet still show up a drive letter? Or were you not aware that the drive you bought was actually T7K250 and not 7K250?

The SMART values for those two drives are OK and if you're really running PIO-mode, there's no reason to suspect that there's any hidden faults on your new drive, despite being awfully slow.

Have you tested the drive was your C: when you got blue screens? Or did you RMA it?

By pegging I mean the hard drive activity light was on constant for a long time.
If the drive was running in PIO-mode, transferin data will take an eternity. Also it requires quite a bit processing power in PIO-mode. Maybe causing the system to become non-responsive.

But what's the cause for entering PIO-mode? The cheapest solution would be to try a new cable and do that registry hack bfg9000 suggested. 80-conductor IDE-cables have only attach to a normal 40-pin connector. Every other conductor is grounded to reduce interference between signal line. But if make the IDE-cable round, does the ground wires eliminate the interference? Many people use rounded cables so I guess it's normally not a big deal. But since people occasionally have problems even with flat cables, I would not trust a rounded one do the job any better.

Edited by whiic

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"Have you tested the drive was your C: when you got blue screens?"

= Have you tested the drive that was your C: when you got blue screens?

"80-conductor IDE-cables have only attach to a normal 40-pin connector."

= 80-conductor IDE-cables attach to a normal 40-pin connector.

Seems like I wasn't the only one to notice one of the drives being T7K250.

If you really did a clean install (from a CD) to your new T7K250 and it's again entered PIO-mode, it's likely (but not certain) that the problem is not and was not your HDD.

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Wow I had no idea I had bought a T7K250, fine by me. :)

Thanks for all the help everyone SR is great. :)

Ok fixed the problem, here is what happened, although I am unsure why I always get the crazy near impossible odds series of events but I do, or perhaps we all just feel that way sometimes, anyway here is the outline, comments or questions are always welcome. :)

My boot 7K250 died but it had been working fine the insides of the computer had not been tampered with for some time.

I went and bought a new 7K250 (turned out to be a T7K250).

Installed the new drive in the same location and to the same ide position and the same cable as the old drive, installed windows, the drive was running in pio for no apparent reason.

I then switched the cable out for an identical cable (my error) and tried other things the great people here at SR suggested, nothing would get it back into dma.

I took the cable out yet again and replaced it with a single drive ide cable, EUREKA, the drive worked like a champ in dma mode 5, seems the type of very long dual drive cables were just to long for the new drive to like. So do T7K250’s just have a thing about long cables, the 7K250 worked fine on it for a long time before it died of course. Speeds now at 86 mb/sec and I am very pleased.

Also yes my old drive is still dead I retested it on the single cable, I plan to rma it.

Now I have a few more questions I could use guidance on.

Now as I said the drive works in dma mode 5 now on a single drive ide cable.

I had my computer set up in this way and I would like to return to this configuration:

Device 0 = Boot/System disk (T7K250)

Device 1 = DVD R/RW

Device 3 = Data Disk (7K250)

Device 4 = DVD R/RW

Seems simple enough right, just add in some dual connection cables, here is the problem, when I use a dual connection cable no matter what length or type it demotes my T7K250 drive to dma mode 4 and my HDtach and Atto speeds drop from 86 mb/sec with the single drive cable to 60 mb/sec with any dual drive cable, the same thing happens with my 7K250 data drive it drops from 77 mb/sec on the single to 60 mb/sec on the dual. I am not sure what is causing this, the dvd drives are not in use so the hard disks should not be slowed down, also if I put both dvd drive on one channel and both hard drives on the other, making the hard drives devices 0 and 3 it also causes this same strange 60 mb/sec brick wall.

Any Ideas?

Here is my current plan if it seems I must keep the hard drives alone on the integrated channels, my pci slots are full, so if I buy 2 of these : http://www.cooldrives.com/usb20toidead.html : and connect them both to my internal USB connection on my Adaptec USB 2.0 pci card through a 2 port USB 2.0 hub like this one : http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/Se...06726&CatId=392 : then I should be set to go, and I don't think even sucking dual DVD's down from the drives will be bandwidth limited by this setup, plus it would have a clean look. So how does that sound?

Thanks in advance. :)

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Also yes my old drive is still dead I retested it on the single cable, I plan to rma it.
Still working slow + blue screening? Or just blue screening? Or did it not even show up in BIOS anymore? Did you read the SMART values of the failing drive like you did on the other two?

Is the old drive running PIO? Did you do the registry hack to BOTH drives containing Windows?

I would not go into conclusions about the drive being dead if there's no proof. You could use the single drive IDE cable while re-installing Windows to the drive that appears to be failing.

Easier option: you could install the drive as a non-boot drive (replace D: [ HDS722525VLAT80 (VN69HMCFDRAM4D) ] with the possibly failing drive) and read the SMART values. If the SMART values are bad or if something weird (drive letter D disappearing, system crash, BSOD) happens, the drive is probably failing. I really would like to see the values on that drive.

You could try "Erase disk" option in DFT. It will zero-fill every sector and force repair/reallocation on any possible bad sectors. Just be careful with the utility that you don't zero-fill the wrong drive.

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Now the drive will not even boot into windows, I will connect it as a non boot drive and run some tests, I will post the results. :)

Edited by xSTLx

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So, after putting it into the freezer and a cooler full of ice, you're going to RMA the drive because it's bad.... :blink::lol:

You should realize that while some people have gotten results with the "Freezer Trick", you're taking matters into your own hands at that point because that type of treatment is certainly not covered under the warranty!

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On your first message:
Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: C6CEJGVM

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: V44OA30C

Model: HDS722525VLAT80 Serial: V36OA6EA

The model numbers are all of 7K250s...

215654[/snapback]

...but the cereal numbers are in fact the firmware revision output for the latter two. A V44O... drive is a T7K250, here with f/w A30C. (Mine has A40A.) So the model number was clearly wrong, as the SMART output showed later. The 7K250 apparently is to be identified as V36O, this one has A6EA firmware.

BTW: It is recommended to do an online warranty check on new drives to avoid the bad surprise of having no warranty when it would be needed.

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So, after putting it into the freezer and a cooler full of ice, you're going to RMA the drive because it's bad....  :blink::lol:

You should realize that while some people have gotten results with the "Freezer Trick", you're taking matters into your own hands at that point because that type of treatment is certainly not covered under the warranty!

215682[/snapback]

Yes because it was bad before applying cold temperatures, trying to recover the data was more important then the price of the drive to me, if they refuse my rma I could really care less, remember the cold inside the cooler did keep the drive working for a longer period of time so this was a positive thing, I was able to rescue my irreplaceable favorites folder. :)

Since I found out these are T7K250's I am getting for $130 I am going to buy a few more today so really if they refuse to send me my reconditioned 7K250 no big deal to me.

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This was my boot drive and had nothing of real value on it
But now you say that there was a folder that was irreplaceable and worth much more than $130? If you hadn't actually mentioned before that there was NOTHING valuable on the drive, probably there'd been less people around to criticize your actions.

But back to the topic, any new SMART values yet?

Edited by whiic

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