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Windows detected a hard disk problem

computer_problems

Junior Member
Mar 25, 2018
6
0
1
(note: i am running Windows 8.1 Pro on a Lenovo Thinkpad W540)

several days ago i received a blue screen of death and my computer restarted. upon restart my computer acted like a new system (received the “let’s get you started” message, etc.), and though my data and programs were all intact my user settings (background, taskbar settings, MS Office default settings, etc.) were gone. i also received a message which read “Windows detected a hard disk problem.” in the details it says that “SAMSUNG MZ7TE256HMHP-000L7” is reporting failure. some programs are also acting odd – e.g. Microsoft Office programs won’t open unless i right-click and open as administrator, not all fonts render as they should, etc.

i have since done the following:

- backed up important data.

- ran sfc /scannow in command prompt as administrator. was told that “Windows Resource Protection found corrupt files but was unable to fix some of them”

- ran DISM Restorehealth and then ran sfc /scannow again after reboot. continued to receive the same message as above.

- ran “wmic diskdrive get status” in cmd. Received one “Pred Fail” result and four “OK”s.

- ran CHKDSK on C: drive several times. results were inconsistent – was told that errors were found after some checks but that no errors were found after others.

- ran CHKDSK /f /x /r /b C: in boot. continued to receive “Windows detected a hard disk problem” message after reboot.

- used third-party software to check hard drive health. one of these programs indicated that it found no bad sectors. however CrystalDiskInfo is indicating a problem with “Wear Leveling Count,” and “Health Status” is at “Bad 100%”.

i chatted with a number of Microsoft customer service people. one suggested that i do an “in-place upgrade” and said that it would not remove any of my data or programs. another suggested that i do a “refresh your PC,” which would delete my programs but not my files. i would be open to trying the in-place upgrade, particularly if i can be sure that i wouldn’t lose anything, but i tend to question how good Microsoft’s customer service people are.

is this a hardware problem or a software problem? would the in-place upgrade or refresh really fix anything? do i need to replace my hard drive? is there some other fix?

note that my computer is 3.5 years old and has an SSD. i do tax my computer at times but this seems like it would be very early for it to crap out. i've been having some problems with my PC for the last several months too (available hard drive space reads ~10GB at startup but quickly falls below 1GB during use, somewhat frequent blue screens, etc.) but i'm not sure if this is related.
 

nosirrahx

Senior member
Mar 24, 2018
273
57
71
That almost sounds like a service pack installed.

On my wife's laptop she was getting a disk error every reboot after switching from RS1 to RS2 but after upgrading to RS3 it went away and never came back.

Could you check windows update history and see what the last entries are?
 

computer_problems

Junior Member
Mar 25, 2018
6
0
1
That almost sounds like a service pack installed.

On my wife's laptop she was getting a disk error every reboot after switching from RS1 to RS2 but after upgrading to RS3 it went away and never came back.

Could you check windows update history and see what the last entries are?
my last updates were in july 2015. there are some failed updates between then and now but i turned off auto update around that time and i guess i neglected to check for updates on my own. the last entries were for updates to Windows Defender.
 

nosirrahx

Senior member
Mar 24, 2018
273
57
71
As for the in place update it in theory will simply upgrade/refresh the OS and leave all of your installed software as is. If it fails it will also in theory revert back to where you are now.

If you attempt this you should plan for the worst and make sure that all of your data and software licenses are backed up.

It will probably work. I have done this many times and usually it goes off without a hitch, especially if you allow windows to look for updates during the update process (you will get a prompt for this).

The few times it has failed on my the system was able to revert back to before I attempted the in-place upgrade.
 

nosirrahx

Senior member
Mar 24, 2018
273
57
71
As for the full disk issue, I would make sure to hit disk cleanup first and enable the admin options. Windows updates leaves a mountain of backups.

I ran a simple disk cleanup on a system yesterday that reclaimed nearly 10 gigs of space and this was not a system with a lot of use or users.
 

VirtualLarry

Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
49,247
5,476
126
I would do some research, on what the factory-default drive config is. It sounds like it is a newer laptop, with an M.2 PCI-E Samsung SSD, either as the OS primary, or more likely, as a caching SSD drive, with a primary HDD for the majority of the stuff.

If it's a failed cache drive, then possibly your system is now booting directly off of the HDD?

I'd have to look up the model number you posted. If that's the model number of a 2.5" HDD, then I may be off on my assumptions, but I thought that Samsung got out of the mechanical HDD biz some time before three years ago.

Edit: Does the BIOS / UEFI have non-destructive drive testing, including SMART testing? If not, then try booting a Linux LiveUSB distro, and use the "Disks" tool to check the SMART data on each of the drives, if you can.
 

computer_problems

Junior Member
Mar 25, 2018
6
0
1
As for the in place update it in theory will simply upgrade/refresh the OS and leave all of your installed software as is. If it fails it will also in theory revert back to where you are now.

If you attempt this you should plan for the worst and make sure that all of your data and software licenses are backed up.

It will probably work. I have done this many times and usually it goes off without a hitch, especially if you allow windows to look for updates during the update process (you will get a prompt for this).

The few times it has failed on my the system was able to revert back to before I attempted the in-place upgrade.
thanks. do you have a good source for instructions on how to do this for Windows 8.1? I've found what i think are good instructions but it would be good to double check from someone who's done it successfully.

the concern is that, if it is in fact a hardware problem, 1) my SSD might be on its last legs, and stressing it by performing an in-place update could kill it, and 2) there's a chance that the in-place update will fail and erase data/programs in the process.

i've backed up all important information, but, if this is a hardware problem, i would prefer to keep my old SSD around just in case i've forgotten to transfer over any important data. so if there's a high probability that this is a hardware problem, i'm not sure that it's worth doing the in-place update if i'm risking data loss, whether due to SSD failure or due to the in-place update failing.
 

computer_problems

Junior Member
Mar 25, 2018
6
0
1
I would do some research, on what the factory-default drive config is. It sounds like it is a newer laptop, with an M.2 PCI-E Samsung SSD, either as the OS primary, or more likely, as a caching SSD drive, with a primary HDD for the majority of the stuff.

If it's a failed cache drive, then possibly your system is now booting directly off of the HDD?

I'd have to look up the model number you posted. If that's the model number of a 2.5" HDD, then I may be off on my assumptions, but I thought that Samsung got out of the mechanical HDD biz some time before three years ago.

Edit: Does the BIOS / UEFI have non-destructive drive testing, including SMART testing? If not, then try booting a Linux LiveUSB distro, and use the "Disks" tool to check the SMART data on each of the drives, if you can.
it's the one SSD in the laptop.

i thought the CrystalDiskInfo test is a SMART test. it reported back bad "wear leveling count," current = 1, worst = 1, threshold = 5. got same results after running HD Tune.
 

nosirrahx

Senior member
Mar 24, 2018
273
57
71
Kind of feels like considering a new SSD and a fresh OS install might be the best option.

I really am not a fan of doing much of anything on a flaky drive.

SAMSUNG MZ7TE256HMHP-000L7 seems to be a SATA 600 256GB SSD.

The 860 EVO 512GB is cheaper, better and twice the size. The 256GB 860 EVO is under 90$ currently if keeping the same size is what you want.
 

computer_problems

Junior Member
Mar 25, 2018
6
0
1
Kind of feels like considering a new SSD and a fresh OS install might be the best option.

I really am not a fan of doing much of anything on a flaky drive.

SAMSUNG MZ7TE256HMHP-000L7 seems to be a SATA 600 256GB SSD.

The 860 EVO 512GB is cheaper, better and twice the size. The 256GB 860 EVO is under 90$ currently if keeping the same size is what you want.

i have a new 860 EVO 512GB sitting on my desk ready to be installed - ran out and got it right after my current SSD started to fail. just wanted to be sure that i wasn't neglecting any other fixes before taking it out of the box.

but ultimately it's not a massive expense and i don't really want to have to jump through hoops to try to conduct an in-place upgrade or some other software fix which might fail anyways, especially if this is more than likely a hardware issue. i'm just not savvy enough to be able to diagnose this as a hardware issue with certainty.
 

nosirrahx

Senior member
Mar 24, 2018
273
57
71
A fresh install (especially if you move to windows 10) might make this system feel brand new anyway.

With the new drive on hand you might as well just do the install anyway since you could at any time just stick the old drive back in and be right back to where you are now.

The easiest way to install 10 is to build a boot flash drive with this:

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10
 

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