[PLUG] What happened to my disk?

Elliott Mitchell ehem at m5p.com
Mon Jan 23 15:37:05 PST 2006

>From: Kevin Cosgrove <kevinc at doink.com>
> I guess I should add that smartd dumped this into /var/log/syslog:
>  Device: /dev/hda, 2 Currently unreadable (pending) sectors 
>  Device: /dev/hda, 2 Offline uncorrectable sectors 
>  Device: /dev/hda, ATA error count increased from 0 to 7 
>  Device: /dev/hda, ATA error count increased from 7 to 15 
> The first two lines seem especially dubious.  But, smartctl said that 
> the drive was all fine.

Bad, but perhaps not immediately fatal, sign. Trying Seagate's
diagnostics still seems like a good idea. If the drive is still under
warrenty, call Seagate and tell them what you're seeing.

Two dead sectors certainly accounts for filesystem trouble, and `fsck`
hanging. Likely if the block(s) get written to the drive should remap
them and return it to usability. `badblocks -n` might do this without
destroying data (see what `smartctl` says afterwords), might give up too
early though and not write to the problematic sectors. If that was to
fail, backup, do `cat /dev/zero > <disk>`, and then restoring should
return it to usability. Using `smartctl` to run full tests on the drive
could also get it to remap the sectors.

The underlying issue though is you're seeing two sectors that were
previously okay suddenly die. Over time this does happen, but on a newish
drive, go for the warrenty. This might not yet be terminal, but it could
become so.

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