having weird sound -- hard drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by adnansiddiqui24, Mar 11, 2009.

  1. adnansiddiqui24 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    #1
    hey guys just wanted some info on this any would be appreciated. so ive had the unibody macbook 13" since dec and its been running smoothly. the other night i shut the lid and put the comp to sleep just like every other night, i put the computer on the floor gently and woke up about 6/7 hours later. when i turned it on, i hear this weird buzzing...purring....ticking? i guess i dont know how to describe it. im sure its not the fan cuz i have istat and it would tlel me if the fans going crazy fast...which it isnt, so yea what do i do...is this a serious problem? can i get this fixed? thanks.

    Adnan
     
  2. adnansiddiqui24 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 9, 2008
    #2
    oh i forgot to mention..the sound is like present anytime the computer is getting power...even if its in screen saver, also when i first open the lid and before ive signed back in after sleep....its just making that sound all the time
     
  3. Jethryn Freyman macrumors 68020

    Jethryn Freyman

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    Australia
    #3
    Could be a failing hard drive.

    If so, back everything up ASAP.
     
  4. adnansiddiqui24 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 9, 2008
    #4
    is there a way to check if its failing? also would i be able to get it replaced?
     
  5. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #5
    No, but there's a way to check if it's not failing. Open Disk Utility, select your hard drive (the one that's not indented) and take a look at the bottom where it says your S.M.A.R.T. status. If it shows an error, your drive is failing. If it shows verified, your drive may still be failing, but just not officially reporting it. See where the reasoning breaks down?

    Absolutely. Your drive is covered by warranty. Your data, however, is not, so back up early and back up often.
     
  6. DELTAsnake macrumors 6502

    DELTAsnake

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    #6
    You could use Spinrite on it to check if it's dieing, but it's as $90 program.
     
  7. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    #7
    It's a $90 product that was last updated in 2004...
     
  8. DELTAsnake macrumors 6502

    DELTAsnake

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    #8
    Wow it's been that long since it was updated, I knew there was a reason why I think that Steve Gibson guy on Leo Leporte's Security Now podcast is full of it. But regardless of the high price or old age of Spinrite it has actually worked for a guy I know.
     
  9. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

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    Location:
    USA
    #9
    That's the noise my MacBook made before the laptop HD failed on me. Definitely start backing up everything if you can. My MacBook was still under warranty at the time to Apple replaced it for free.
     
  10. adnansiddiqui24 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    #10
    thanks a lot for the help guys...few more questions tho

    1) how much time till it does fail (if it does)
    2) what caused this?
    3) is a time machine backup sufficient?

    thanks again!

    -Adnan:apple:
     
  11. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

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    #11
    1. Anywhere between now till maybe a week from now. Too many variables to give an exact. For me, it lasted around an hour or two.
    2. Could be a hardware defect of the HD. Maybe a drop. Maybe another piece of hardware had a bad interface (not overly likely, but ...)
    3. Time Machine likely has enough backed up. I don't use it much so not sure about settings for HD cloning and if you only have certain folders being backed up. Someone else can likely give a more definitive answer on this.
     
  12. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    #12
    Yes. However, a cloned backup is more convenient. If you've got everything backed up in Time Machine, use Carbon Copy Cloner to make a cloned backup. Since Carbon Copy Cloner is very read-intensive, it may cause your drive to fail in the process of making the backup, but if it doesn't, you don't have to fiddle with restoring your Time Machine backup after the fact. It's not terribly hard to do so, but CCC is easier.

    Your drive is almost certainly going to fail at some point in the near future, so it's only a matter of when.
     
  13. Jethryn Freyman macrumors 68020

    Jethryn Freyman

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    #13
    I'd try Data Rescue 2, it has a clone function, and then you can recover files from the clone so it keeps use of the original drive to the minimum necessary.

    Carbon Copy Cloner would probably work, but it might stop because of errors if it comes across damaged sectors, since it's not designed for damaged drives.
     
  14. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    #14
    Yeah, but Data Rescue 2 costs $100. Seeing as the cloning is done only for convenience, I see no reason to pay money.
     
  15. adnansiddiqui24 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 9, 2008
    #15
    is there something that would push the computer over the edge so to speak? like if i use up too many resources itll just go out? what would it be like when it does happen just so i know...cuz im pretty much lost about this.
     
  16. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    #16
    Are you trying to push it over the edge or are you trying not to?

    The drive is wearing out prematurely. All drives will come to behave like that sooner or later, just most considerably later than that. Just using it will destroy it. Heavy use will destroy it faster than light use.

    When the drive fails altogether, you will hear it trying to spin up over and over again. If the computer is running at the time, it will freeze (or possibly kernel panic). When you next go to start it, instead of the Apple logo after the startup chime, you will just see a question mark since it won't be able to find a bootable drive.
     
  17. Jethryn Freyman macrumors 68020

    Jethryn Freyman

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    Australia
    #17
    If you can hear the drive failing, any use at all (usually) will worsen the damage. That's why cloning the drive (with either Data Rescue, Carbon Copy Cloner, or the UNIX dd command) is good, since it copies as much data at possible as quickly as possible.
     

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