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04:17 pm, 19 Mar 05

disk problems

SMART confirms that my disk is failing.

If I get intermittent DMA errors while trying to read a disk, what are my options? FreeBSD's giving me messages like ad4: FAILURE - READ_DMA status=51<READY,DSC,ERROR> error=84 ... before kernel panics.

I don't really understand disk failure modes. My question is primarily: do those happen randomly, in such a way that I can just repeatedly try to copy more data off of the disk and reboot after each panic? Or are they tied to certain sectors, which means I lose some of the data but not all and I just need to be careful which directories to copy? Or am I totally screwed?