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Thread: Hard drive failure or directory issue?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    81

    Default Hard drive failure or directory issue?

    Hi, I was in Safari the other day when all of a sudden, things slowed down and I got the beach ball. After a long pause of this, things normalized and I saw that my second internal drive in my Mac Pro was no longer on the desktop. Uh-oh. It is a 2TB Seagate that is only a year old.

    I removed it from the computer and put it into my Burly, hoping it would reappear as did another drive a while back. But no, it didn't. For the first day, it didn't even register in Disk Utility, Disk Warrior, or TTP 7.04. The next day, in all these apps, it then showed the disk but the first partition's name became Disk4fs or something, but the second partition name was correct. However none of the apps could repair it.

    When I turn on the Burly, I get the message about an unrecognizable disk and do I want to initialize. In Disk Warrior, it said "This hard drive's S.M.A.R.T. diagnostics indicate the drive is functioning normally." But when I try to repair the volume's directory, it says -36, 2747 (cannot be repaired). It also says there is no data when I try to recover any.

    The drive is not making the death ticking sound. But today, only the drive shows and not the partitions, and the drive is listed as a 4.14GB drive in Disk Utility, and 3.86GB in TechTool Pro. (and yes, I do mean GB).

    I have a lot of the stuff backed up (but not all recent, my bad). Does this sound like it can be salvageable, and how? I have a license to TTP, Disk Warrior, Disk Drill, and Data Rescue. The situation is identical to another drive a while back, but in time, that one did mount in the Burly.

    Does this seem like a directory malfunction, where it can be reformatted and usable (like I get in the message), or does this sound like a hardware failure? Thank you!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Grangeville, ID USA
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    9,142

    Default

    Sounds like a dying drive to me.
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    81

    Default

    Thanks Rick. This brings me to the question:

    Does a 3,1 Mac Pro (2008) have any problem with a 2TB (or even 3TB) internal drive? My other drives inside were 1TB, 1TB, and 1TB. I know people are using large drives all the time, but over the 25 years I've had Macs, I only had one drive fail in addition to this one, but it lasted a very long time.

    1) Since this recent one died in just 1 year, I wondered if it could it be due to a power/size/heat issue if this mac can't support anything over 1TB? Or, if they are just built badly these days.

    I know this Mac's specs state 1TB max, but I figured that was because 2TB and above weren't invented yet. I just don't want to make the same mistake of replacing it with another 2 or 3 TB drive if that was the problem to begin with.

    2) While I'm asking, I have one more question: I shut down my computer each night, mainly because of safety (overheating, fire hazard, leaving it unattended). I've always done that. During the day mine can get very warm when touching the sides. Do you guys leave yours on, and are there good reasons for doing so (e.g. less wear and tear) or does that give even more wear / hours on the drives?

    Thanks!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Grangeville, ID USA
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    Default

    Drive size isn't much of a heat issue these days. I don't see an issue with using any and all current big drives in the Macpros.

    I never ever allow any drive to spin down, if at all possible. No sleep and never turned off. Computers, drives, most electronics will last longer the longer they are left at a stable operating temperature.

    I run drives for 3 years and then usually retire those that are in production machines. If I make my living from it it has drives that are 3 years or newer.

    Rick
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    81

    Default

    I guess I need to rethink my ways, thank you.

    I've always shut them off, mostly for peace of mind especially when away. I guess it was because I never had a computer failure that I just continued this habit. Not too long ago, there was a house fire in town due to an unattended computer, so unfortunately that sort of validated my thinking. Because mine gets a little hot, there was concern about having it on 24/7. So when you say stable temperature, how can I assure that to know it's safe? Having them turned off negated any possibility of overheating, so that's the only reason I've been doing it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    1hr N/W of LA LA Land
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    3,320

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    My neighbor has a huge rack of machines in his office that never get shut down unless there is a serious power outage that triggers a shutdown of his multiple UPS. He makes his living writing code, and testing apps/databases. Mine only get shutdown if I'm going to be away for a week or so.

    Between us we see very few drive failures, but they do happen occasionally. So far no fires.

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