Hard-drive constantly writing

Posted on 2004-11-06
Last Modified: 2008-02-07
My hard disk is constantly writing data to disk at intervals of about 1.5 seconds. I cant figure out why its doing this.
Steps I have taken thus far:

1. Boot into safe mode. disk still writes data
2. Run Diskmon to confirm disk is writing. This was confirmed, Dismon shows writing activity every 1.5 seconds or so.
3. Run Filemon to determine what process is access\wiriting to what file. Filemon does not detect any activity. It stays blank unless I perform an action.
4. Perform a virus check in safe mode (the latest definition is installed)
5. Run ProcessExplorer to determine if any processes seem to be involved. I dont see any process who's activity seem to corrolate with the HD writing activity.
6. Confirmed that drive does not write when not in windows, ie, pause during boot, or boot into dos.

any ideas would be awesome! I'm just about ready to nuke my install.

Current system:
Via chipset (KT400)
Windows XP Pro
2 Hitachis 80gb ATA100 each in RAID 0 configuration
Question by:330pilot
    LVL 3

    Expert Comment

    Press Ctrl Alt and delete key at the same time. Select task manager if it does not come up automatically.
    Select process. Look at the CPU column and see if there are any process that is using a large amount of cpou resources. This would then most likely be the software responsibile for the disk writing.
    Notes under idle operations the System Idle process will be around 97-99. This is normal. However if there is another process using lot try determine what it is.

    PS: is your machine slower than normal. If constantly writing I suspect it would be.,
    LVL 3

    Expert Comment

    Definitely DEFRAGMENT your HDD, as there is a large chance of fragmentation causing your problems.
    LVL 91

    Expert Comment

    and run all of this :

         Spybot :
         adaware :
         STINGER  :                                           online scan for trojans            CWshredder                           download                            check the log
    LVL 14

    Expert Comment

    Turn off indexing.

    Control Panel->Administrative Tools->Services->Disable Indexing Services.
    LVL 87

    Expert Comment

    How big is your RAM? Windows XP needs at least 256 MB to work smoothly. If it is less, it'll constantly swap out to disk, causing your disk activity. Look at your eventviewer (Administrative Tools). There you should see any problems your PC has. If it does have problems, those will be logged and cause writing to disk, so try to eliminate those problems or try to keep them from getting logged (You can change Log Settings via Policy Editor).

    Author Comment

    RAM = 1024mb PC3200
    Computer is fast enough: AMD XP 2200+
    Indexing = Turned it off a while ago, did not resolve (still off)
    No process is utilizing any CPU

    Though, I completely forgot about defrag. The volume has a total of 16% fragmentation, let me try this and get back to you.

    Accepted Solution

    Try deleting the page file and creating a new one:

    Control Panel > System > Advanced > Advanced Tab > Change (under Virtual Memory) > No Paging File > Set > reboot computer

    after computer has rebooted:

    Control Panel > System > Advanced > Advanced Tab > Change (under Virtual Memory) >System managed size > Set > reboot computer
    LVL 87

    Expert Comment

    With 1 Giga Ram you can consider turning off your paging file completely. Try that and, if you don't often get a message that your running out of memory you can leave it that way. Also, if you do need the paging file, make a separate partition specifically for it and set it to be of a certain size (initial size and maximum size have the same value).

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