HardDrive Filter: WinXP Super-Allergic to my drive?
August 16, 2005 5:11 PM   Subscribe

HardDrive Allergy?: My (non-primary) SATA drive one day suddenly made my PC reboot...

Now, with it unplugged, the PC will boot up fine on my IDE HD (WinXP Pro). But by simply plugging it in, windows will consistently only start to load, then bring up a blue screen with errors (for .00001 of a second or so), and reboot itself.

1) Safe mode (same result)
2) SATA on someone else's PC (did the exact same thing to their PC!?)
3) Knoppix and Bart's Ultimate Boot CD (the SATA would not show up at all when booting those - maybe because I did not get the SATA drivers going right - though Lord knows I tried)
4) Hot-swapping after Windows loaded (drive showed up, but then when trying to open it Windows rebooted).

Can WinXP be so "allergic" to a non-primary HD?

I just want to get data off of there, and I have come to terms with the fact that I may have lost it all (though I only bought the Maxtor drive recently). I just found this all strange. I also don't have the budget to send it to data recovery, nor would I want my credit card/personal info, etc. taking that route.

Could WinXP be that super-allergic to my drive? Can I get windows or some sort of software to somehow read it – or so I can see if anything is salvageable?
posted by parma to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
There is a worm going around that is hitting early versions of XP and 2000. According to CNN "Symptoms include the repeated shutdown and rebooting of a computer."

Check Microsoft website for patch.

You should try Knoppix to retrieve your files.
posted by nimsey lou at 5:35 PM on August 16, 2005

Or your power supply might be dying, and simply unable to power both devices at once. I have seen this cause the symptoms you describe.
posted by Gamecat at 7:40 PM on August 16, 2005

Some Maxtor SATA drives are being recalled for having faulty firmware. I believe they are recalling model numbers beginning with 6Y (e.g. 6Y080 for an 80-gigger). In my case the drive just died without any warning, but it's worth a look.
posted by breath at 7:58 PM on August 16, 2005

I should amend that to be more precise -- the problem isn't with faulty firmware, it's with a flaky controller. It's reminiscent of the Fujitsu disaster of a few years back.

You can try two things to restore your data:

- Freeze your drive in order to get it to work again for a short period of time. The procedure is:
Put the drive in a plastic bag trying to get as much air as possible out of it, then place it in the freezer. Let it get good and cold and then rush it to your comp, connect it and recover what you can from it. Remembering this is the last time it will ever work.
(from here)

- Acquire an identical Maxtor that isn't yet faulty, and swap the controller card from the good drive to your drive. Chances are the platters and heads are still good, you just need some electronics to manipulate them. Of course, if this works, you will want to replace your frankenMaxtor with a Seagate or something more reliable.

If you know anyone from Maxtor, kick 'em in the balls for me. I've had two drives replaced because of this one issue (fault also goes to the fool who replaced my first defective drive with another defective drive). Do not buy Maxtors in the near future.
posted by breath at 8:55 PM on August 16, 2005

I bet these guys are making some cash off this particular problem.
posted by breath at 8:58 PM on August 16, 2005

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