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View Full Version : Disk problem? (event id 51)


stoffe
10-16-2006, 07:52 AM
Nearly every time I start up my PC I get about 6-10 warnings like this added to the System log (loosely translated since I don't have an English version of Windows):

Type: Warning
Source: disk
Event ID: 51

An error was detected on device \Device\Harddisk0\D during a paging operation.

As far as I can see it only happens when the computer starts up, not during normal use and not when waking up from Sleep mode. I haven't noticed any other problems with the computer (yet), but it sounds a bit ominous to get disk errors reported.

Do anyone know what this problem is, what's causing it and if it can be fixed? I looked up Event ID 51 at Microsofts site, but understood just as little about what's going on after reading that page since that info was pretty hardcore. :)

My computer's specs:
AMD Athlon 64 3500+ processor
nVidia nForce 4 Ultra (Asus A8N-E) motherboard
Seagate Barracuda 300 GB (SATA) harddrive
2 GB PC3200 DDR memory
ATI Radeon X1900XT (512 MB) Graphics card
Windows XP Home Edition (SP2 with all patches installed)

TSR
10-16-2006, 08:53 AM
Not too sure, but try defragging the C drive to see if that may solve it. Probably not, but what the hell ;)

Astrotoy7
10-16-2006, 11:23 AM
stoffe- how long has this been happenning ?

ID 51 is generic error message and may be related to a few different scenarios. I wont put you through the pain of asking you to search the logs for error codes... (http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;244780&FR=1&PA=1&SD=HSCH) ;)

You can try these though :)

IMPORTANT!!! Because you are dealing with a potentially failing drive - I STRONGLY URGE you to backup important stuff ! ie.docs, photos, music etc onto a disc or other removeable drive before proceeding. Even if you end up fixing the problem, you still have a backup..... backups are GOOD!

1. check the disk for error - there may be some bad clusters
Go to
>My Computer
>Right click your hard drive >select 'properties'
>Click the 'Tools' Tab
>Press 'check now' under error checking

a box will come up with two check boxes
1. Automatically fix for file system error
2. Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors

CHECK them both and press start - most likely a box will come up saying you cant scan until you restart - click yes to schedule a scan on restart and then restart !

If that hasnt helped :)

2. You can address the virtual memory/pagefile settings directly.
(see pic below)
>Right click 'My Computer' on the desktop, select 'properties'
>click 'advanced' tab
>go to performance settings
>within performance settings click the advanced tab
>go to virtual memory settings

here, you can try one of two things:
*check "system managed" size

press set > OK - exit and restart

if that doesnt help, repeat the above process but select "no paging file"

press set > OK - exit and restart

Let us know how that goes

remember - BACK UP IMPORTANT FILES!!

mtfbwya

stoffe
10-16-2006, 12:16 PM
how long has this been happenning ?


A few months... possibly as long as I've had this computer, since it's a few months old. :) It's been occuring at most startups for as long back as my system log tracks at least, but I didn't notice it until recently since I don't check the logs very often.



ID 51 is generic error message and may be related to a few different scenarios. I wont put you through the pain of asking you to search the logs for error codes... (http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;244780&FR=1&PA=1&SD=HSCH) ;)


That's the page I found, but didn't understand much of it. A bit too much on the hardcore tech talk side for me. :) (I find it slightly curious that they decided to encode the error message hexadecimally in a binary block of data, rather than just list the messages out directly. Scrollable text boxes have been part of the GUI for more than a decade, so it can hardly be a problem to fit them in. But perhaps that wouldn't be sufficiently geeky... :))


IMPORTANT!!! Because you are dealing with a potentially failing drive - I STRONGLY URGE you to backup important stuff ! ie.docs, photos, music etc onto a disc or other removeable drive before proceeding. Even if you end up fixing the problem, you still have a backup..... backups are GOOD!


I'm doing a full backup of all harddrive partitions once per week with Norton Ghost onto an external USB harddrive. Hopefully I won't have reason to use those due to problems though. :) (At least it was a very handy way to transfer the content of the disks from my old computer to the new one when I got it a few months ago.)

I haven't noticed any other problems with the computer or disks though, the warnings only gets logged during system startup, not during use. The system is otherwise very stable so far and has rarely had any "hard" crashes requiring a reset.

The only slightly odd thing I've noticed about the harddrive is that it is permanently listed under the "Safe remove" (whatever it's called in English) icon in the system tray where usually only Flash/USB/iPod drives appear.


1. check the disk for error - there may be some bad clusters


I have run checkdisk and it didn't detect any problems on any partitions. I've also defragged all partitions on the disk and that doesn't seem to have changed anything.



2. You can address the virtual memory/pagefile settings directly.


My virtual memory settings were currently set just like in your screenshot (2048 MB / 4096 MB). I'll change it to "system managed" and see if it makes a difference. I wonder if it does have anything to do with virtual memory though, the warning messages mention \Device\Harddisk0\D, but the virtual memory swap file is located on the C: system partition. (Unless I misunderstand the D part of the path in the error message...)

Astrotoy7
10-16-2006, 01:00 PM
All hard/removable drives get listed in the virtual memory settings. As pagefiles are related to communcations between windows virtual memory and a hard/removable disk a pagefle can encompass each of these interactions.

anwyay - give the 'system managed' and 'no page file' options a go. If they dont work, ghost back to a stable image.... now if *that* doesnt work....Id be starting to think in the direction of a bad drive.

let us know how you fare :) I like these open ended conundrums. You learn so much along the way ;)

mtfbwya

stoffe
10-16-2006, 01:18 PM
anwyay - give the 'system managed' and 'no page file' options a go. If they dont work, ghost back to a stable image.... now if *that* doesnt work....Id be starting to think in the direction of a bad drive.

let us know how you fare :) I like these open ended conundrums. You learn so much along the way ;)


I tried changing the virtual memory settings, but that didn't seem to make any difference, the warnings still got logged after a restart.

I think I have found what the problem is, however. Turns out there is a bug in the nVidia nForce SATA drivers that cause such warnings if the "Native Command Queuing" option is enabled under some circumstances. I've turned that option off, shut down the computer and restarted a few times, and the warnings haven't shown up yet.

It might be a bit too early to say if this was the problem for sure since the warnings didn't show up on 100% of the startups before, just the majority of them, but so far it seems promising. :)

I have no idea what "Native Command Queuing" does though, so maybe turning it off might cause other problems. I guess time will tell. :)

Anyway, thanks for the help.

Astrotoy7
10-16-2006, 02:08 PM
NCQ is an innovation featured in SATA drives.

IIRC Seagate (http://www.seagate.com/products/interface/sata/native.html) drives were the first to bring it in.

Seagate/Intel have a great joint whitepaper(in PDF) (http://cache-www.intel.com/cd/00/00/06/60/66002_66002.pdf) they released which is a nifty little overview of the process.

I usually describe NCQ a SATA drives ability to remember and execute multiple commands with greater efficiency as it remembers the position of the drive head and is able to select the next data transfer to minimize seek/rotational latencies.

Indeed, NCQ has a bearing on pagefile as it is an interaction if read/write on the disk. Please note that the event ID that was being generated in this instance is a generic one - indicating that an i/o(in/out) process isnt agreeing with windows virtual memory.

Unless you went exploring into hex error codes it is reallyhard to tell what the *specific* problem was. As NCQ is a modified way of achieving i/o process, it is not unreasonable at all that this could be perhaps causing your problem.

MS has more info on optimising pagefiles (http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;314482) but it seems you have a good grasp on that.

Another really important thing to consider here are transfer rates. SATA can achieve 3gbps. If a 3gpbs drive is being used at 1gbps this event error can also be generated. Most SATA drives come with little jumpers to 'dumb them down' to 1.5gbps if the drive is having trouble talking to the mboard.

In any event, a variety of solutions seem to work for people with different mboards/chipsets - though the A8n seems to be a common thread. I myself have an a8n but have never had a problem...perhaps my components have the most recent firmware in them ?? who knows !!

Still, disabling NCQ has solved the problem for many people, but you need to remembert that the drives capability to perform in its most efficient capacity is being disregarded when you do this....so its not really a 'fix' in a true sense, but a workaround.

Nice work though stoffe ;) Let us now if you have any more probs with this error.

mtfbwya