Well it's happened again. I've had a hard drive failure. I've managed
to recover most of the important files from between backups, from the
almost dead drive, and replaced it with two refurbished 2TB Hitachi
Server quality drives. I'm running them in mirrored mode so I have
data redundancy. I really have to do that with the boot drive, but for
now cloned backups will have to do.
Now the rant. I had three 1tb drives in my machine, and one had a smart
failure. I tested it using the long platter test which should IIRC test
the entire disk surface, and it passes after chugging through it for
what seems days, (it's actually hours, but hey). I don't keep anything
important on after all it's S.M.A.R.T. flags have been tripped and it
could fail at any time, except it's been like this for at least three
years. It'll fail eventually but...
IT WASN'T THE DRIVE THAT FAILED!
Nope, it was a much newer drive, that never had a problem and never gave
any warning, until it did.
The mother board keeps carping at me that the drive with the S.M.A.R.T.
flag tripped is going to fail any day now, every time I boot the
computer, and it will, someday, but it was actually useless in warning
me about the impending failure of the other. Sheesh.
Worse there is no way to tell the hardware to ignore the issue.
Somewhere in the middle of post up the firmware finds the smart flags
and stops and asks if I want to continue.
I just use that drive as a scratch drive and to hold temporary objects
that will be deleted anyway.
Then to add insult to injury, in my first attempt at mirroring the
Hitachi drives one of them failed. Yes, the the vendor replaced the
drive promptly, but once again there is no S.M.A.R.T. error. In fact
the bad drive passes all S.M.A.R.T. tests using the latest software from
the manufacturer. It only fails when you try to write to it for
extended periods of time.
In fact I could still plug it into the MB run the smart tests, format
it, and then have it fail at some random time. But it still tests as
good in every way except what counts, storing data.
Now I can only ask, what the hell good is S.M.A.R.T. except to annoy me,
I'm sure it makes someone happy that it does that.
End of Rant.
America wasn't founded so that we could all be better.
America was founded so we could all be anything we damn well please.
- P.J. O'Rourke
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