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  #1  
Old November 14th, 2020, 01:28 PM
Hordriss Hordriss is offline
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Posts: 32
Does my HDD need replacing?

Recently, my laptop has been excruciatingly slow to do pretty much anything.

Loading up the task manager shows the HDD to be at 100% usage pretty much all the time.

I've tried various things suggested online such as:-
- Temporarily disabling Windows Defender.
- Disabling Superfetch
- Disabling Windows Search

Nothing helped.

I've scanned for Malware using both the Windows Defender antivirus and Malwarebytes - nothing is detected.

I'm running an HP Pavillion Laptop with the following specs:
Ryzen 5 2500U APU
16GB 2400MHz RAM
1TB HDD

I first noticed something was up when recording audio via Cakewalk, as I was getting audio dropouts, with error messages suggesting issues with the HDD not being able to keep up, but as I wasn't getting this recording through Reaper I initially put this down to a Cakewalk update. But, everything else is slowing down and I can't just assume it's the software any more!

Screenshots of task manager below:





I'm thinking this is possibly a sign my HDD is failing and needing to be replaced, but I'd like to have the opinion of others more knowledgeable on this sort of thing before going down that route.

Thanks in advance!
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  #2  
Old November 14th, 2020, 04:49 PM
renegade600's Avatar
renegade600 renegade600 is offline
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don't know if it means harddrive failure or not. You can run hp own hardware test and see if it finds anything. you can also run hddscan to just test the drive

https://hddscan.com/
https://support.hp.com/us-en/document/c03467259
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  #3  
Old November 15th, 2020, 04:33 AM
Ensign Tzap Ensign Tzap is offline
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O/S: Windows 7 64-bit
Posts: 875
Hordriss,

Have you tried to bring up windows in safe mode, and then checking how the HDD is performing?
To Get In to Safe Mode on Windows 10
Quote:
At the sign-in screen, hold the Shift Key down while you select Power > Restart. After your PC restarts to the Choose an Option screen, select Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Startup Settings > Restart. After your PC restarts, a list of options should appear. Select 4 or F4 to start your PC in Safe Mode.
This should load only the bare minimum of drivers for windows to run.
If you see much better performance from the HDD.
Then you have something running in the background that is tying up the HDD.
Quote:
Change which apps run automatically at startup in Windows 10
  • Select the Start button, then select Settings > Apps > Startup. Make sure any app you want to run at startup is turned On.
  • If you don't see the Startup option in Settings, right-click the Start button, select Task Manager, then select the Startup tab. (If you don't see the Startup tab, select More details.)
Also....
Check how much Free Space is on the HDD.
Quote:
How do I check free space on Windows 10?

How to check the amount of free space on your hard disk with Windows 10
  1. Open File Explorer. You can use the keyboard shortcut, Windows key + E or tap the folder icon in the taskbar.
  2. Tap or click This PC from the left pane.
  3. You can see the amount of free space on your hard disk under the Windows (C:\ drive.
Plus....
Check the HDD's fragmentation.
Quote:
Defragment your Windows 10 PC
  1. Select the search bar on the taskbar and enter defrag.
  2. Select Defragment and Optimize Drives.
  3. Select the disk drive you want to optimize.
  4. Select the Optimize button.
If the HDD still is performing slow.
Then consider Cloning the HDD to another 1Tb or Larger capacity HDD.
Because this maybe is a sign of sectors on the platters failing.
And the HDD Self-Repair is trying to move Data away from the damaged areas, while locking those damaged areas off.

Note: When you check the free space on your HDD.
Check it a few times, and see if the amount of free space is slowly shrinking.
That would possibly indicate problems with the HDD.


Signed: Ensign Tzap
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  #4  
Old November 15th, 2020, 04:32 PM
Digerati Digerati is offline
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What version of Windows?

Why is there no page file on that drive? FTR, there is NO reason the page file should be disabled. It can be moved to a secondary and faster drive but even then, one should be left enabled on the boot drive. By far, the best option is to just leave the Windows default settings alone! Even if you have 128GB of RAM installed, you should still have a Page File.

There is no article or white paper anywhere by any virtual memory expert that says it is better to disable to the page file.

How much free disk space do you have?
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  #5  
Old November 15th, 2020, 08:39 PM
Hordriss Hordriss is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Digerati View Post
What version of Windows?

Why is there no page file on that drive? FTR, there is NO reason the page file should be disabled. It can be moved to a secondary and faster drive but even then, one should be left enabled on the boot drive. By far, the best option is to just leave the Windows default settings alone! Even if you have 128GB of RAM installed, you should still have a Page File.

There is no article or white paper anywhere by any virtual memory expert that says it is better to disable to the page file.

How much free disk space do you have?
Windows 10, fully up to date with updates.

One of the suggestions I read online was to disable the page file.... I'll re-enable this now.

I currently have 360GB free (of 930GB). Funnily enough, the HDD has started behaving itself again since posting and running these tests after several weeks of it being constantly 100% and nigh on unusable. But I will keep an eye on it.
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  #6  
Old November 15th, 2020, 08:58 PM
Digerati Digerati is offline
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Quote:
One of the suggestions I read online was to disable the page file.... I'll re-enable this now.
Yeah. Sadly, you will often see this misguided advice. I am glad you are enabling it now. I recommend you just let Windows manage the size.

Quote:
the HDD has started behaving itself again
That's good. I don't know what was happening. W10 is smart. It knows to do indexing, updating, file history, automatic defragging and other housekeeping chores in the background when the system (and user) are idle so it does not impact performance while you are using it. But often, some users immediately shut down their computers when done using it and this prevents the OS from doing those chores. Not sure if that was part of the problem or not but I recommend just letting W10 system go to sleep when done computer, instead of powering them off.

You might try running error checking or open an elevated command prompt (as Administrator) and enter chkdsk /r on the drive. Being a large drive, this could take many hours to complete and even appear to be hung up. Just let it run, it will finish. If it reports errors it cannot fix, you may need to start looking to replace the drive.

Make sure you have a current backup of your data too.
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