Hard Drive vendors are complaining that 30% of their returns are fully operational drives. About half of the false returns are due to operating system errors. To help combat this problem and to help customers retain their data the HD manufacturers are supplying free utilities to diagnose the drive. Here are some of the offerings: Seagate http://www.seagate.com/support/seatools/index.html Western Digital http://support.wdc.com/download/index.asp#diagutils Maxtor http://www.maxtor.com/portal/site/M...channelpath=/en_us/Support/Software Downloads Hitachi http://www.hitachigst.com/hdd/support/download.htm In addition Hitachi has this nifty little list of symptoms guide: http://www.hitachigst.com/hddt/knowtree.nsf/All+hard+drives?OpenView IBM This one is disappointing. Two choices offered on the link: http://www.storage.ibm.com/hddredirect.html 1). Go to Hitachi if it is an after market IBM drive. 2). If it is a preinstalled in an IBM PC there is a broken link to their PC Doctor download, or you can activate the onboard diagnostics with the F11 key (assuming the PC can boot?). Admin - this might warrant a sticky.