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New PC built! ...but 1 HDD (of 4) isn't cooperating with Win10 - *SOLVED!*

PlusThirtyOne

What DOES my username mean...?
Goddamit, i wish i didn't have to keep asking such "noobish" questions...

So, i finally got all the parts for my new desktop yesterday, spent all night getting it built and installed, got all the software, art apps and Wacom ready to go back to work. But then something unexpected happened: One of my hard drives started reading increeeeeedibly slow. Like, double-click-and-then-go-get-a-cup-of-coffee-slow. Luckily it isn't my ART drive (PHEW!), but my media drive. All my music, movies, setups, backups, etc. are trapped in a slow-as-shite puddle of molasses. i made sure all the mobo drivers were installed correctly and the drive seems to be "healthy" according to the drive manager but everything is reading at a snail's pace.

Once i navigate to a particular folder or run a specific file, things seem to read at a normal speed if i ever return. The drive's contents are present but take forever to read the first time around. Even after a system shutdown and reboot, aforementioned, previously viewed files and folders seem to read and run fine. it looks as though the drive's file index is either toast or needs to be rebuilt but i don't know how to do that manually in Windows 10. Google just responds with ads and malware downloads so i don't know where to turn now. i also don't know what risks there are to running a full (multiple hours) disk check and/or defrag and/or disk analysis. The initial analysis shot from 1% to 25% in minutes but seemingly stopped at that spot for half an hour. i chickened out at that point and stopped the analysis, half expecting the whole thing to crash but it didn't. That feels like a good thing but i don't know what the risks are going forward.

Should i attempt to "fix" my drive? is there even a problem with the drive in the first place? Should i make an attempt to back up the important files first and say farewell to the rest? is there any risk associated with trying a defrag? (or will a defrag even half of the drive reads so goddm slow?) is this common with Win10 or newer machines struggling with older disks?

The drive is only 4 or 5 years old. it's a platter sata so it's fraggable. -And it worked just freakin' fine on my last machine with no issues, slowdown or signs of death. Literally a week ago it worked just fine inside a different computer.


Solved! i'm an idiot.
 
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GrowlBurger

Because I CAN!
Some motherboards have weird SATA port set ups, and not all of them are actually running at max efficiency. Based on your symptoms, I really doubt that is the problem here (or at least, it isn't the main problem) since even that shouldn't cause such huge lag times, like you are describing, plus, the issues we were seeing would be more consistent. But figured I'd mention it anyways.

Moving on: Was this a problem from the very moment you started using your new setup? Or did it take some time before this issue cropped up? I do see that you moved this drive around from one computer to another, so its possible that either a) some damage occurred during the transfer, or b) there was already damage, and changing environments caused the damage to surface in terms of apparent symptoms or c) something else entirely :D

The drive index has nothing to do with this. If you're talking about what I think you are, the index only affects file searches, not physical navigation of the directory structure, which should always be instant.

As for running disk repair, no, there is no worry there, though as you may have noticed, it can take a VERY long time, depending on the size of the drive. Also, the progress tracking it provides isn't very useful - It doesn't track percentage based on time left (which is very hard to estimate, hence why it doesn't) but rather just based on the number of tasks it has left. The first few tasks are very quick and easy, which is why it jumps straight to 25%. After that, the remaining tasks require long, block-by-block scanning.

Under no circumstances should you ever run a defragmentation if you have reason to believe your disk is damaged. Defragmentation works in a manner which assumes all data is structured properly, and if that is not the case, it has the potential to stumble over any existing damage or errors and make them worse.

I definitely recommend biting the bullet and running that disk repair, possibly overnight since it can take a few hours. Remember to use the /r option for complete thoroughness. So that is, the full command you should be running is:
chkdsk [drive letter] /r
The "/r" indicates that Windows should scan the free space on the drive too. This will significantly increase the scan and repair time, but there can sometimes be issues which Windows will not detect otherwise.

If you wanted to be particularly zealous, you could use that low-level bootable HDD repair tool I recommended in the last thread you made and scan with that first, to see if your HDD has any physical damage. Having said that, chkdsk has some functionality to detect damaged hard drive sectors and de-allocate them so that Windows stops trying to use them, so in theory, it shouldn't be 100% necessary. Still something to consider.

Once you've done one or both of those things, we can see if the problem has been fixed, and go from there.
 

PlusThirtyOne

What DOES my username mean...?
*Helpful instructions
Aaaaaactually, i just fixed it. There wasn't anything wrong with the drive itself, thankfully!
Turns out the drive just wasn't getting sufficient power. i had a hunch and decided to pop the hood and take a peek. The molex adapter used for said drive was rated for FANS ONLY and was piggybacking off of the fan line. i figured out what was going on because when i played Fallout4 for a few minutes the fans would kick on and off and kill power to the drive in turn. The poor little guy was trying his damnedest to stay powered on but couldn't maintain enough power. Thankfully nothing was being written or read; it's only a media archive after all.
You see, my roomie has some sort of cable management fetish so i let him install everything when i built the PC. He has smaller hands, infinitely more patience than i do with tiny things and unlike myself, he can lean over a desk and tinker with electronics inside a box. My disability keeps me from doing such things... All i had to do was peek inside and i immediately knew what was wrong. i should have known too because the exact same thing happened on my last machine.

if i'd face-palmed any harder, i would've broken my nose.


...now if only i can get my 5.1 speakers to work properly. Realtek's software is absolute shite.
 

GrowlBurger

Because I CAN!
Nice story. I didn't even know they made fan-only molex lines on PSUs. Then again, I haven't used a molex adapter in ages, everything I use these days is SATA power... Good to know for myself too, so thanks for updating us! Also good thing you figured it out, because there's no way in heck anyone could have diagnosed that without checking physically like you did.
 
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