What is the ‘HDD Clock Counter’ and how does it effect the HDD?

Mohammad Hamzani S February 1, 2014
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Recently I used the Flobo Hard Disk Repair it stated my HDD was in bad shape or condition. The symptoms includeed lag and additional CPU usage when reading or writing. So I took the precaution of backing up all data to an external HDD and tried to repair it using the above software. Here my internal HDD info:

  • ATA Device Properties
  • Model ID ST3200820A
  • Serial Number 5QE02ZEF
  • Revision 3.AAC
  • Parameters 387621 cylinders, 16 heads, 63 sectors per track, 512 bytes per sector
  • LBA Sectors 390721968
  • Buffer 8 MB
  • Multiple Sectors 16
  • ECC Bytes 4
  • Max. PIO Transfer Mode PIO 4
  • Max. UDMA Transfer Mode UDMA 5 (ATA-100)
  • Active UDMA Transfer Mode UDMA 5 (ATA-100)
  • Unformatted Capacity 190782 MB

And its clock counter is 17392 hours.

So please help me with these issues and kindly explain what the clock counter related and how it affected my HDD? Does this mean the HDD has an expiration date assigned  by its manufacture or what?

Thank in advance.

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  1. Mohammad Hamzani S
    February 7, 2014 at 3:55 pm

    this comment just to state that my case is solve. please mark as solve.. thank you

  2. Mohammad Hamzani S
    February 7, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    i already back up all the data. it best to assume that the hard disk hacve gail and gave best companion for more then 10 years. so it worth the money.. althought i hope it just can last more to accompany me.. luckily when i got some money back then. i buy external hdd.

    when i used various freeware to smart test the surface, it show many result. but the same is pending reallocated sector count. i tired to search hd sentinel and yes fpund it with trial or limited freeware. so i will download it and try scan it again to compare the result. and when i got money, will try replace the ide cable just in case since all other factor like data in broken or bad sector have been remove and the disk is now blank. it still lagging when i tried surface test with read and write using hdd software.

    if all factor have been eliminate and the condition is still same. it best to turn it to paper weight rather then let it stay and consume power.

    anyway thank for all the answer.. i now know what to do. thank you again

  3. Mohammad Hamzani S
    February 6, 2014 at 10:47 am

    i using many different software that are freeware and flobo trial. it different with each type of software. the hdd expert show it in so bad condition and should backup any data on it while flobo state as bad only and other just show normal stat that show 1 or 2 yellow warning.

    it doest matter if it can or still can be used since what it hard to me now is the write and read hog so many cpu process n make my pc laggig. is that also some kind of warning or just some external issues like ide cable or power supply? anyway thank in advance. i will try to see if the hdd sentinel is freeware or not and tried use it to see how the confition if it have trial period if it shareware

    • Bruce E
      February 6, 2014 at 11:19 am

      Hard Disk Sentinel has a free version that can be used to view SMART status, disk and partition information. They also offer a trial copy of the Standard version which offers the features of the free version as well as physical testing of drives and reporting and alerting options. The Pro version (US $35) offers more extensive testing as well as the ability to try to refresh or reinitialize disk sectors. It also has a portable version, which is why I opted for 2 licenses - one that resides on my primary Windows machine and one that I can carry around and use on any other machines that may require it.

      If disk operations are causing issues with lagging, you really need to make sure everything you need is backed up. It is a sign that something is wrong. In some cases, it is just that data is stored in a bad sector yet for whatever reason it cannot be relocated. Many drives will not attempt to relocate the data in a bad sector unless you try to write to that sector They show up in the SMART data as 'Pending Sector Relocations'. The Pro version of HD Sentinel can fix this. I have used it on drives to refresh or reinitialize them and can continue to use them afterwards. Those drives are still in service today and have not had any other issues..

      If you try HD Sentinel, any SMART parameters that are indicating a potential problem will be shown in red. For all parameters, it will show the current count as well as the manufacturer's theshold count for the parameter (as retrieved from the drive).

  4. Mohammad Hamzani S
    February 3, 2014 at 3:15 am

    actually the disk is more then 10 years in total and plus minus 4 to 5 years fully used 24/7. i have same hdd that come with my first pc that die past 2 years. the 200 gb i bought 2 years after my pc.. that mean if calculate. it will be the same as my 20gb seagate hard disk that die after 10 years. i backup all data already and just currious if it save to still used it or just throw it away. by the way thank for gave an answer. really appreciate it

    • Bruce E
      February 3, 2014 at 6:43 am

      If you aren't getting any other errors reported by SMART in the Flobo software, you should be okay for quite some time yet. This is assuming that the software works in a similar manner to Hard Disk Sentinel (the program I use for HDD monitoring and testing on Windows systems).

  5. Bruce E
    February 2, 2014 at 11:51 am

    If I am reading the manual correctly, the clock is the Power-on Time as reported by SMART. It just boils down to the number of hours the drive is reporting that it has had power applied to it. In your case here, it indicates that this drive has been "on" for almost 2 years. There has not been a hard drive manufactured that I know of that has any sort of "expiration date" assigned by the manufacturer although every drive manufactured will eventually crap out. That is why one should always have a comprehensive backup and recovery plan that is followed and the backups should be tested on a regular basis to make sure that they can be restored (the most important part of the whole process).

  6. Mohammad Hamzani S
    February 2, 2014 at 5:05 am

    i forgot to add, my hard disk policies also being set to optimize for perfomance that mean writing caching on the disk and cant revert back to optimize for quick removal. it stuck to the option and can only uncheck the radio button on enable writing cache on disk. it became so lag when i tried to access or do anything with it and cause me to unable to do anything else since it hog all the cpu process. i wonder if it have some issues or just state that the hard disk is in bad shape and will broken anytime. can i reset the clock counter or do anything with it so it can be used again or it good as dead and should be remove. thank in advance again.

    • Hovsep A
      February 2, 2014 at 4:46 pm

      i don't think that you can reset that, the Time Counter tells you how many hours have your hard drive been running. If you have purchased Flobo Hard Disk Repair then send to their Support your SMART analysis result they should help you.
      the total expected lifetime of a new hard disk is like 5 years (1825 days in 24/7 mode or 43800 hours, running every day and night on all days).

      perhaps you need to go to BIOS in order to turn off hard disk caching, It is also possible that the controller does not support disabling write cache. On any case contact the hardware manufacturer first before disabling write cache.

  7. Hovsep A
    February 1, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    perhaps it is total time that you hard disk worked

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