How do I know if the hard drive in my Optiplex 755 is dead?

by on January 25, 2010

Q: I have a Dell Optiplex 755 with Windows professional XP SP2 and a Hitachi Deskstar 250 GB hard drive.

Below are the steps I have taken
1. Start Windows XP Professional in Normal Mode: Blue Screen of Death (BSOD): 0x0000007E (0xC0000005, 0x8AEF2E7A, 0xBA4FF7B8, 0xBA4FF4B4)

2. Restart in safe Mode: computer freezes

3. Boot from diskette: does not find the hard drive
4. Boot from Ubuntu CD: hard drive accessible and looks OK, only 10% used
5. After many attempts, able to get into diagnostic mode. Run extensive tests: no problem found
6. Attempt to reinstall Windows from a Dell disk:
a. Setup loading files
b. Starting Windows: BSOD 0x0000007B (0xF78D2524,0xC0000034,0x00000000,0x00000000)

7. Reset motherboard
Plugging HD on another XP computer via a USB connector
a. Hardware detected as a mass storage device
b. Not seen by Windows Explorer
c. Device Manager lists it under disks without other information

8. Run Hitachi Drive Fitness Test from a diskette
a.It does detect the hard drive but cannot connect to it
b. It suggests that the drive is defective

Disconnect power to HD and boot to BIOS OK: chances are the MOBO is OK?

So I am having conflicting results: diagnostic OK and finds hard drive under Ubuntu. Everything else fails.

If a driver is missing when Windows installation reboots how do I install it considering I cannot access the HD? I have downloaded the SATA drivers,, but what do I do with them?

Is there a way to run a CHKDSK and/or reformat the hard drive in NTSF under Ubuntu (the only way to access the drive)?

4 Responses to “How do I know if the hard drive in my Optiplex 755 is dead?”

      Thanks Mark.

      Your instructions are for an external ahrd drive, I am talking about the internal C:\ drive.

      Any other suggestions?


    burn a copy of the Utimate Boot Cd, boot from it, and use it to format the harddrive:


    Thanks! I will try and let you know.

    What do you make of the fact that uner Windows, the C:\ drive is not detected?