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TOPIC: Surface Scan Fail / crash

Surface Scan Fail / crash 06 Jul 2018 19:13 #9934

I have a 2014 iMac running 10.12.6 and TechTool Pro 10.0.1. My internal 3TB hard drive is not working well. I created an eDrive on an external hard drive and booted from it. Last night I started up the Surface Scan and had it running. It was finding many bad blocks. I left it to run over night. This morning it had Quit (crashed?). There was no Report. It said nothing had been run to report on. Hmm… I started up the Surface Scan again this morning. Again, many bad blocks were being found and listed. I left it running checking on it every few minutes. The last time I checked it had run 3+ hours. It had processed about 1,500,000,000,000 blocks out of the 5,000,000,000,000 or so being checked. I came in the last time and the application had again Quite/Crashed. There is no Report logged. It said no test had been run. I am disappointed that the app could not test my hard drive.

I believe my next step to reformat my 3TB hard drive.

Walt
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Surface Scan Fail / crash 06 Jul 2018 19:24 #9935

Thanks for your clear and detailed report.

The next step is to replace the drive. Please see: Surface Scan.

In the unlikely event that the internal drive is one still under warranty, a screen capture of the Surface Scan test window showing the "errors" will assist in your warranty claim. It is not necessary to have the test run to completion.

I suggest you change your screen name to something other than an email address. These forums are indexed by Google, and you might get a lot of spam. Use the My Account link at the top of the page, and then the Account Information link. Changing your screen name retroactively updates the screen name that appears in all of your postings.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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Surface Scan Fail / crash 06 Jul 2018 23:00 #9938

Thank you Micromattech3. However it would have been nice to have had a report that said "too many bad blocks" or some such. With what happened a user will feel the application failed / crashed and is not up to the task, or has a bug. I am still not sure why it crashed and if I need a new hard drive. This is why I purchased TechTools. Can the bad blocks be marked out or do I need a new hard drive?

I will try to reformat the drive to see if I can block out the bad blocks. Yes, it is a four year old drive and does not have much life in it, but I want to get as much out of it as I can.

Best regards,
Walt
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Surface Scan Fail / crash 06 Jul 2018 23:18 #9939

You are welcome.

The advice that was given in such cases years ago was to reformat the drive with the option to write zeroes to the sectors chosen. If you do that, each time an attempt is made to write to a bad block, the attempt will fail, and the bad block will be remapped to a spare block. If you do that enough times, you run out of spare blocks. With some drives, once the spare blocks have been exhausted, the drive becomes read-only. You should replace the drive.

Usually, TechTool Pro is able to finish the Surface Scan. and you can see just how many bad blocks were detected. In some cases, the program crashes because the data coming back from the drive is something not taken into account by the programmer. If the program crashes, it cannot write the report.

If you run the S.M.A.R.T. test, you will probably see a diagnosis of "failing" or "failure" there.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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Surface Scan Fail / crash 08 Jul 2018 01:17 #9955

Thank you Micromattech3

Indeed my knowledge of computers is quite dated. I hear you saying that the quantity of spare blocks is limited. In the three hours the tool ran I think it listed a shy 200 bad blocks (non of the blocks has files associated with them) and that was after working less than a quarter of the 3TB. I will give your advice to just go for the new hard drive good weight. I am intrigued however with the education I would get by traveling the hard road. Thank you for you help.

Best regards,
Walt
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Surface Scan Fail / crash 08 Jul 2018 01:38 #9959

You are welcome.

200 bad blocks is a sure sign of failing magnetic media in the case of a rotational drive. I had the internal drive in my iMac (mid-2010) fail a few years ago. It had many bad blocks. I reformatted it with the option to write zeroes to the sectors chosen, just to see what would happen. The drive then failed the S.M.A.R.T. test, because there were no longer enough spare blocks.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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Surface Scan Fail / crash 08 Jul 2018 19:34 #9965

Thanks again. Your experience puts me on the path to get a new hard drive.

Walt
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Surface Scan Fail / crash 08 Jul 2018 19:47 #9966

You are welcome, and it is good to see that you will be shopping for a new hard drive.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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