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Tech Helproom


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Why does CHKDSK run on every bootup?


SB23
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I'm running XP SP3, and for the past few days the pc, at times, has been very unresponsive. The system freezes for no reason, everything seems to be in order via Windows Task Manager, and the cpu usage doesn't go above 20%. The thing that is a little concerning to me though, is that whenever it does freeze, and I manage to do a reboot, the system does a CHKDSK. I've checked to see if the boxes on the error checking tab are ticked, they're not, so does anyone know whats going on, or is this a warning that the HD is having problems?

Thanks

Steve

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Terry Brown

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I think what your systemis trying to tell you is that a problem is in the early stage, and while your harddrive may last a while longer, it is on the way out and should be replaced.

Harddrives are quite cheap- How much is your data worth?.

Terry

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Les28

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May need to reset the dirty bit, have you had a look at results in winlogon in event viewer for check disk, may tell you if the dirty bit is set

enter link description here

Otherwise check whether the dirty bit is set, perhaps following a crash shutdown, explained well here

enter link description here

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Zeppelyn

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The flag to run Chkdsk at boot is set in the registry. The registry key to look at is:-

HKEYLOCALMACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\BootExecute

When set to run at startup BootExecute should show

autocheck autochk /p \??\C:

Normally after running it would be

autocheck autochk *

What does yours say?

You can amend it to autocheck autochk * to stop it running.

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SB23

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I've changed the registry (BootExecute) to show autocheck autochk *, and it does seem to have stopped it running at bootup. But I'm still unsure as to whether the problem was being caused by me forcing a shutdown on Sunday, or is the Hdd showing signs of failing. I've read alot on the internet and people all seem to have differing ideas. As suggested by Les28, the "Dirty Bit" does seem to be quite likely because of the forced shutdown, but again, a failing hdd, a power cut, can all cause chkdsk to run, and as I've read, yes you can prevent chkdsk from running, but you ideally still need to find the cause.

Thanks so far.

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Les28

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Whether it's a one off event caused by an incorrect shutdown, or is a sign of impending hard drive failure as the SMART fail could indicate (unless it's a false positive from SMART), everyone needs to back up their data somewhere off the drive(s) it's on.

So in that sense you're no different than any other pc user, the worst could happen to any of us at any time.

Have you read any of the winlogon disk error checker results in event viewer and had a look for any other errors about the time of the freeze ups that might show in event viewer?

You've chosen to edit the registry and stop autocheck running at boot time and are now wondering if you are just masking an underlying problem, you might have been better to check the dirty bit and try and reset it instead of editing the registry, if it hadn't reset properly might have given some clue to a long term problem, whereas if it had reset OK you could have perhaps assumed a one off event caused by a bad shutdown, now you're not sure.

Have you scheduled a disk error scan and seen the results yet?

Are you still having system freezes? Les.

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rdave13

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I'd certainly buy a new hard drive pronto. Will give you a chance to clone, hopefully, as you might find there'll be nothing there one boot-up day.

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SB23

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Hi Les, I did try to reset the dirty bit, but none of the command prompts would work. All I kept getting was that "chkdsk was not recognised as an internal or external command". I checked the event viewer. The scans were all logged, but no issues found. I really believe that my forcing a shutdown has caused this, but as I said originally, I've been having little niggles for nearly a week, which was the main reason for the shutdown on Sunday, as it sat unresponsive for over 2 hours. Tonight all error scans are clear, and the pc, (touch wood, lol!) seems ok.

Even though, as rdave13 says, a new Hdd will on the top of my weeks shopping list.

Steve

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onthelimit1

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If you buy a new one, the Seagate tools will allow you to clone the old one to the new, to make a seamless transition to the new drive. I've done it several times, and it's a doddle (as long as you do it before the old drive dies completely!)

seagate tools

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Zeppelyn

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That registry edit I gave is the normal condition and would stop it running once, if Windows decided it needed to check it it would so seems to me the flag was stuck there for some reason. Me, I would carry on as normal and have a new spare hard disk handy anyways.

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SB23

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Just an update, despite my trying to get around the issue without having to spend any money, lol, I fitted a new hd yesterday. A fresh new Xp install, and here I am again. I am surprised as to how few IDE drives are available, but then I suppose my machine is getting on abit. Thanks to all who replied, but I am now sorted.

Steve

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