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experiment
2nd February 2008, 01:53 PM
Hello everyone,

I have in my hands a used compaq notebook. It doesn't boot from the hd so i boot it up with fedora 8 live cd and this works fine. I want to check if the hd is the problem before buy a new one. Gparted (both boot cd and the utility in fedora) sees no devices. I also tried e2fsck /dev/sda which gave back: "Attempt to read block from file system resulted in short read while trying to open /dev/sda. Could this be a zero length partition?". Is this enough to be sure that the hd is broken and i have to buy a new one? Is there another way to check where the problem is?

Thanks in advanced

rbo83
2nd February 2008, 02:05 PM
Try to use fdisk at the command line

What does it tell you ?

Also, check if lspci lists the controllers and disks properly.

experiment
2nd February 2008, 02:23 PM
thanks rbo for the quick reply,

so, fdisk /dsv/sda gave: Unable to read /dev/sda

lspci gave ,i think, no hd
here is the result

00:00.0 Host bridge: nVidia Corporation nForce3 Host Bridge (rev a4)
00:01.0 ISA bridge: nVidia Corporation nForce3 LPC Bridge (rev a6)
00:01.1 SMBus: nVidia Corporation nForce3 SMBus (rev a4)
00:02.0 USB Controller: nVidia Corporation nForce3 USB 1.1 (rev a5)
00:02.1 USB Controller: nVidia Corporation nForce3 USB 1.1 (rev a5)
00:02.2 USB Controller: nVidia Corporation nForce3 USB 2.0 (rev a2)
00:06.0 Multimedia audio controller: nVidia Corporation nForce3 Audio (rev a2)
00:06.1 Modem: nVidia Corporation nForce3 Audio (rev a2)
00:08.0 IDE interface: nVidia Corporation nForce3 IDE (rev a5)
00:0a.0 PCI bridge: nVidia Corporation nForce3 PCI Bridge (rev a2)
00:0b.0 PCI bridge: nVidia Corporation nForce3 AGP Bridge (rev a4)
00:18.0 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] K8 [Athlon64/Opteron] HyperTransport Technology Configuration
00:18.1 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] K8 [Athlon64/Opteron] Address Map
00:18.2 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] K8 [Athlon64/Opteron] DRAM Controller
00:18.3 Host bridge: Advanced Micro Devices [AMD] K8 [Athlon64/Opteron] Miscellaneous Control
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: nVidia Corporation NV17 [GeForce4 420 Go 32M] (rev a3)
02:01.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL-8139/8139C/8139C+ (rev 10)
02:04.0 CardBus bridge: Texas Instruments PCI1620 PC Card Controller (rev 01)
02:04.1 CardBus bridge: Texas Instruments PCI1620 PC Card Controller (rev 01)
02:04.2 System peripheral: Texas Instruments PCI1620 Firmware Loading Function (rev 01)

sideways
2nd February 2008, 02:41 PM
Is it recognized in the system bios, with the correct size?

see if there are any messages in 'dmesg | grep sda'

experiment
2nd February 2008, 02:49 PM
dmesg dev | sda gave a huge thing.
Here it is


sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sda:<3>ata1.00: exception Emask 0x0 SAct 0x0 SErr 0x0 action 0x0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
Dev sda: unable to read RDB block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Attached SCSI disk
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 1
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 2
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 3
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] 78140160 512-byte hardware sectors (40008 MB)
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write Protect is off
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Mode Sense: 00 3a 00 00
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Write cache: enabled, read cache: enabled, doesn't support DPO or FUA
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Result: hostbyte=DID_OK driverbyte=DRIVER_SENSE,SUGGEST_OK
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Sense Key : Medium Error [current] [descriptor]
sd 0:0:0:0: [sda] Add. Sense: Unrecovered read error - auto reallocate failed
end_request: I/O error, dev sda, sector 0
Buffer I/O error on device sda, logical block 0

sideways
2nd February 2008, 03:00 PM
Hmm, can't even read the first sector. Does 'dd if=/dev/sda | hexdump -Cv' produce any output (run as root)?

experiment
2nd February 2008, 03:04 PM
dd if=/dev/sda gave:

dd: reading `/dev/sda': Input/output error
0+0 records in
0+0 records out
0 bytes (0 B) copied, 67.4482 s, 0.0 kB/s

experiment
2nd February 2008, 03:13 PM
oops sorry

'dd if=/dev/sda | hexdump -Cv' gave the same result:

dd: reading `/dev/sda': Input/output error
0+0 records in
0+0 records out
0 bytes (0 B) copied, 67.3659 s, 0.0 kB/s

experiment
2nd February 2008, 04:11 PM
if course i don't expect a secure answer on that, but would that reasonable to buy a new hd?

sideways
2nd February 2008, 10:47 PM
Does the bios see the disc ok? You could try seeing if the manufacturer has a low-level floppy boot disk to check the hardrive, maybe reformat it. Even try a windows install disc if you have one.

But, if money's not a huge issue, then go for a replacement - although they can be hard to come by for older notebooks.

experiment
2nd February 2008, 11:01 PM
I should have tried this before but, for new linux users like me, doing things in command line is always very attractive. Indeed, bios has its own disk check utility and in my case the test fails. HP sais if this test fail replace the hd.
Anyhow, thank you sideway for your help, i hope i can do the same in the future.