Disk read error

Posted on 2006-05-22
Last Modified: 2010-04-25
Hi, I've got a Dell Dimension with a hard drive problem. When it boots up it comes to a screen that says: "Primary Master Hard Disk S.M.A.R.T. Status Bad - -Error Detected................ F1 to continue.....

Pressing F1 returns:

A disk read error occured
Ctrl Alt Del to restart

I know this is pretty bad but does anyone know of any way to recover some data off this drive?

Note: I tried pulling the drive and making it a slave on another system with no luck.

Question by:timothyking
    LVL 42

    Expert Comment

    if it doesn't work as slave, you can try a bootable OS but i fear you will encounter the same kind of issue.
    bootable OS such as BartPE ... make the BartPE on a good computer and use it to boot up on the bad computer.

    another option is to run DFT, which may give you more information than SMART:
    LVL 69

    Expert Comment

    That is indeed a serious problem - can it be detected in the BIOS?  If so, try GetDataBack from

    Author Comment

    Thanks, I'll check those out. Yes it is detected in the BIOS
    LVL 91

    Expert Comment

    >>   Note: I tried pulling the drive and making it a slave on another system with no luck.   <<<   what happened? errors?
    you can download and burn a knoppix cd, boot from it, and if the hard is good, it will let you access the drive, and copy your data - even usb is supported
    LVL 3

    Accepted Solution


    If the disk is noticed as slave, but you cannot get any data off of it, it is most likely completely dead.

    I am sorry to hear that.  Your options now are quite limited.  You can try putting it in a freezer for a while in a plastic bag and see if it will work.  This worked for me once at work.

    If this doesn't work, you will need to send the drive to OnTrack or another data recovery place.  OnTrack is the best.

    You have few choices.  If the drive isn't recognized or it doesn't show up, you are most likely screwed.  You can try Gibson Research's Spin Rite, but it will only work sometimes and only if the drive is detected.

    If the NTFS volume is simply unmountable due to damage, you can from another xp install run chkdsk g: /f from the command prompt where g: is the drive letter of the slave drive.  Essentially, you have to determine if the drive is physically unreadable/undetectable or if the filesystem is severly damaged.

    If you have very important data that is priceless, don't touch the drive.  Just package it up and send it to OnTrack.  Get a quote.  They can most definitly 99.9 something percent get all your data back.  AT work someone accidentally drilled 4 holes through a hard drive and we sent it to OnTrack.  They recovered eveything, so your drive should be cake considering it can't possibly be as damaged as our drive.

    LVL 91

    Expert Comment

    if you want to look into other ways to recover the data, look here (not guaranteed) :                              replace hdd logic

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