Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Bollocks bollocks bollocks

My hard drive has failed. I was using it normally, and then most apps froze and then I got a BSOD. I rebooted, but the computer wouldn’t boot, citing an IDE error 🙁

The most annoying thing is that the machine is only 10 months old, and that I went for a Toshiba machine because I expected it to be better than my previous laptop, a Samsung, which at least made it to nearly 18 months before dying one me. Toshiba supposedly make good laptops.

Thankfully, it’s still be under the 12-month manufacturer’s warranty, so the reseller that sold me the machine are going to get an earful once I dig out their number. Still, I’m downloading Knoppix in the hope that I can salvage the more important data as I imagine that the ‘repair’ will merely consist of a new hard drive. In the meantime, I’ve requested a quote from OnTrack data recovery should damage to the drive be severe.

Update: Knoppix can see that there’s an HD in the system but it can’t read anything off it. This isn’t looking good. On the plus side, I do have internet and an office program and I can FTP stuff if I need to save anything.


  1. Just ask a certain Cobaltfish about failed Toshiba laptops, on second thoughts don’t – it’d take all day.
    Let me guess, inaccessable_boot_device? That’s happened so many times recently that we know the answer straight away – lend out a laptop or thin client, boot from our dos floppy and run ntfsdos to copy the (typically) one word document stored in mydocuments, attempt reinstalling windows, attempt our vendor’s diagnostics, email vendor requesting new disk, email vendor requesting new cdrom drive,

  2. Oh don’t worry, I know all about Andy’s problems with his Toshiba laptop.
    Actually the error is ‘IDE Error #0’ and the guy from Toshiba said that it probably meant the drive had failed. It’s FAT32 so Knoppix should have had no problem recovering it had it been working semi-okay.
    It’s going away for repair later this week.

  3. I’m sorry to hear this. The same thing happened to me about a month ago (read about it here: Peter Ericson’s Journal: Hard Disk Failure). I wish hard disks were fail-safe.
    Hopefully you have a backup copy of your important data; if not, I’m sure you will be backing up your valuable data in the future, having learned the hard way. Best of luck in recovering.

  4. I just got back my laptop today from the assistance. A Fujitsu-Siemens with Pentium M 1.4 bought in January. The system started to warn me about a SMART failure and to replace the HD ASAP. Mine was 7 months old.
    In my old Toshiba 600 MHz the HD broke completely after 3 years of (intensive) use.
    Since I have never had any other problem than that, I can say that HDs are the more sensitive computer components nowadays.

  5. ouch. it took about two weeks for my tosh to come back for repair. I hope that you have insurance to pay your ontrack bill cos you’ll need it! Please post the amount they asked for as it will make amusing reading. I take it that you didn’t have a backup if you are going down this route?