Bad blocks? Need advice please!

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by PieMac, Jan 9, 2005.

  1. PieMac macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2002
    #1
    I've noticed lately that my PB (bought it this past August) has been a little buggy acting. It quit going into "sleep" mode automatically (I've done all the checks on software installs, peripherals, etc. and can't find the cause), sometimes applications won't launch and I'll have to restart-these are the two main things I've noticed.

    I've run disk utility several times-repaired permissions, etc. It's found no problems with the hard drive at all and SMART is verified. Last night I ran TechTool Pro's surface scan test and it found 10 bad blocks and thus advised me to "to reinitialize the drive with the option to zero all data".

    I'm not sure which utility to trust...should I really worry about it if Disk Utility says everything is ok? Also, would Disk Warrior help any? Would an archive and install help the situation any?

    Thanks for any and all help!
     
  2. diamond geezer macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2004
    #2
    Disk Warrior wont help.

    Take it back to Apple and get a replacement HD under warranty.
     
  3. maya macrumors 68040

    maya

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    somewhere between here and there.
  4. PieMac thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2002
    #4
    It's my understanding that it's normal for there to be a few bad blocks on any hard drive...? I spoke with Apple Tech support and they confirmed this and told me to reinitialize the drive and zero the data...that this should fix the issue. I was just hoping that I could avoid a reformat of this nature...I'm trying to hold out for the release of Tiger and do all of this then (which I hope isn't too far away).

    I was hoping that there might be alternatives to all of this!
     
  5. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #5
    Better do what they say eventually but...

    Your sleep problems: if in OS10.3 make sure the padlock is NOT locked in the sleep settings, leave it unlocked... it's a bug.

    Your app problems: may be preference problems with the app. Take one of the apps, find the specific prefs file for it in your home folder>library>preferences. Drag it to the desktop, restart the application, see what happpens... if it's fine, then fine. If not, drag it back. Reinstall the app...
     
  6. PieMac thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2002
    #6
    I'm currently running the latest version of Panther (10.3.7) and I'm wondering if the sleep issue has anything to do with the update...? I always leave the sleep pref unlocked (didn't know there was an issue with that though).

    As far as the apps go, it's not just one app that won't launch...none of them will. This has happened a couple of times in the last 2 weeks or so. Not sure what the deal is...I need to write down the error message next time it happens. A restart always solves the problem, though.

    Apple tech didn't seem to indicate that it was a huge deal with the bad block situation, so I'm not majorly concerned at this point-I told them I was trying to avoid reformatting until Tiger came out and they didn't really blame me. I'm definitely going to be keeping up with my backups in the meantime!
     
  7. point665 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2004
    #7
    The apps not launching sounds like a Corrupted font problem... Especially Safari and iChat and those.
     
  8. aswitcher macrumors 603

    aswitcher

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2003
    Location:
    Canberra OZ
    #8

    I had some data back problems today and surface scan stuck on what they are saying is a bad sector.

    I am in the same boat it seems re having to reformat my hard drive.

    Anyone got any advice on what the best way to make sure all my critical data is backed up to my LaCie because Silverkeeper falls over now 3.4 way through due to this bad sector so I can't be sure everything I need is indeed backed up.

    Help... :confused:
     
  9. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #9
    Disk Utility is a simple program (at best). DiskWarrior and TechToolPro are far more in depth and professional. The reason it's telling you to reinitialize is becuase bad sectors will be mapped out automatically when you reformat. If the drive starts to seriously fail, replace it, otherwise, just back it up, reformat it, and clone the back up back on..
     
  10. aswitcher macrumors 603

    aswitcher

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2003
    Location:
    Canberra OZ
    #10
    Thanks.

    TechToolPro found the bad sector but didn;t allow me to do anythign about it.

    I really dont want to reformat at all, but guess with Tiger its worth the effort.

    Whats the best way to move my 3 user accounts to my external HDD so that they can be bought back across after hdd reformat and Tiger installation?

    Also, will Tiger installation allow reformat or must this be done prior to loading Tiger?
     
  11. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #11
    I am unsure what the Tiger model will be for installation, but I have to assume it will be the same as the previous versions of the OS. You will probably have the "upgrade" option, which I wouldn't suggest doing. An Archive and Install (NOT preserving users) would be the best idea, minimum. Since you have bad sectors (not mapped out) on your disk, you're begging for problems down the road. I heartily suggest that you reformat at the very least. Replacing it is your best bet, however.
     
  12. Wyvernspirit macrumors 6502a

    Wyvernspirit

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #12
    Most HD do have bad blocks, but they are usualy mapped out, either at the factory if preformatted or whan you format it yourself. I have found that anytime your drives starts to experience bad blocks, eventually everything on it will end up toast. Getting a new drive IS the best solution. Reformatting is a temp fix at best. If you do reformat, make sure you select the zero all data feature so the reformat can map out the bad blocks.
     
  13. aswitcher macrumors 603

    aswitcher

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2003
    Location:
    Canberra OZ
    #13

    I deleted a few things (large files) and started to investigate some more. I did the install disk twice and got no negative hits. I then ran TechTool Deluxe and after a few hours it said my surface was fine...

    Are there any other tests I can do to find bad sectors/blocks?
    Maybe it was a software problem not a harddisk one?
     
  14. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #14
    Unlikely. The bad blocks are probably masqurading as freespace now, so it's possible that they aren't easily detectable. Just make sure you back up often. That disk WILL fail on you, probably when you need it most.
     
  15. Wyvernspirit macrumors 6502a

    Wyvernspirit

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #15
    If they were there before and you didn't do a complete reformat, they are still there "hiding," though don't know why techtool didn't pick them up. After a reformat they will be "mapped-out" and you should have a clean slate, at least till it breaks down again.
     

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