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Scandisk Completion Message

Posted on 2000-03-05
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Last Modified: 2013-12-28
As of my last scandisk, today, Scandisk is reporting upon completion that "I have 4096 Bytes in bad sectors." What does or could this mean? I was told by one Technician to watch for this type of report as it means trouble. I have read some material on this, but I simply do not know how to address this problem.Could you please give me some possible meanings and solutions. Thanks
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Question by:Spucktello
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7 Comments
 
LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:caramilk
ID: 2585026
What kind of hard drive do you have?
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Author Comment

by:Spucktello
ID: 2585032
where do I get the hard drive info from my PC?
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LVL 5

Expert Comment

by:bchew
ID: 2585060
This likely means that your hard drive is failing.  BACK UP SOON!  Then run diagnostics on the drive.  Consider buying a new drive soon.  If you get one before the old drive fails you may be able to copy all the data from one to the other directly but, still, start taking very regular backups.

Bert
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LVL 15

Accepted Solution

by:
hewittg earned 200 total points
ID: 2585066
Spucktello,
From the net.  Hope it helps.

Glenn

Bad sectors can occur in many different ways, and all drives will have bad sectors at some point in their lives. Modern hard drives typically use less aggressive "sector sparing" (more on this later) than older drives, so you will usually see more bad sectors than on older drives.

Hard drives will try to automatically "map out", or relocate, bad space. This is done completely transparent to the user, so you'll never know it's happening or that bad space is present. When a bad sector is "mapped out", it's data is moved to a "spare". Each region of the drive has a predefined number of spares, referred to as it's "sector sparing scheme". If there is a small concentration of bad space, all of the spares for a given area may be used up. When this happens, the drive is unable to relocate the bad sector and you then see the bad spot marked in Scandisk.

Hard drive media (the actual "discs" inside the drive) is never perfect. There are always small imperfections that will contribute to bad space. Some hard drives are lucky enough to have this bad space evenly distributed around the media, so that the sector sparing scheme of the drive can adequately relocate them, and you never see bad space in Scandisk. Some drives, particularly newer, higher capacity drives, use a limited sector sparing scheme (since lowering sparing increases capacity) and therefore you will "see" more bad space.

There are occasions where an improper write, virus, or errant program can accidentally mark a sector on a hard drive as "bad", when in fact no physical defect is present. These types of bad sectors can be repaired with some programs (Norton Disk Doctor, etc.), or a low-level format. A low-level format will remove all data from the drive. Bad Sectors can also be reported if you have noise in the data from faulty cables or other components. These "bad sectors" will show up on one scan, but move or change on the following. Low-Level formatting will not fix this, but you can try new cables or controllers to troubleshoot this occurrence.
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LVL 14

Expert Comment

by:smeebud
ID: 2585073
As long as you have your scandisk checked for
"Automatically Fix Errors"  you should be ok.

Unless you're having problems I wouldn't worry about it.

Regards,
Bud
http://www.geocities.com/~budallen/
Bud's Win95 Win98 Tips and Troubleshooter
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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:davcefai
ID: 2585306
In the "good/bad old days" we used to consider up to 1% bad sectors as quite normal. (I'm talking about 32MB drives here!) I would suggest running scandisk weekly and watching the bad sectors figure. If it remains stable then there's no need to worry. If it starts to increase regularly then run, don't walk, to the nearest retailer.

Just as an aside, if this is a fast drive, have a look in the case and see if you can reposition it to improve airflow around it. These drives get rather hot.
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Author Comment

by:Spucktello
ID: 2585454
Thanks
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