is my drive failing?

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Luis Ortega
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Joined: Sep 8 2000

I'm having an unusual problem with my hard drive but I can't tell why.
For about two months now, I sometimes hear a screeching sound (about 1/2 second long, sometimes a couple of short screeches) when the computer boots up while it is recognizing the drives. It takes a while to find them and then after it is up and running the drive is missing from the list of drives in windows explorer.
I have a C drive on the primary controller and a CD rewriter on the slave position of the primary controller. On the secondary controller I have two video drives. It is usually one of the video drives on the secondary controller that fails to get recognized, but sometimes the other video drive on the secondary controller also fails to appear in windows explorer. If I restart the computer, the drives tend to reappear, and most of the time both video drives boot up normally.
I keep thinking that this is either a cable problem or a motherboard controller problem since the problem is not happening every time, and it has been going on for at least two months now. Last year at work, I had a computer that kept reporting an imminent hard drive failure on one of the video drives but it never died, and after I reformatted the whole computer this year, the problem seems to have gone away.
I put this computer together in August, with a new motherboard and used three drives from my previous computer which had never had any problem.
I also wonder if it might be the order that one formats these drives, that it, should they be freshly formatted or is it OK to just let the video drives get installed with their previous formatting. Obviously, I had to reformat the C drive when I did the clean install back in August, but I think that I just stuck the two video drives in with the formatting from their earlier life intact.
I really don't want to reinstall windows and all of my software on the C drive, but can anyone suggest somethings that I could try to check this problem out short of buying a new drive or two?
Could it be a cable problem? Could it be a controller on the motherboard? Could the two video drives benefit from a fresh formatting within my current setup? Is there any software that could give me informationon the real cause?
Thanks a lot for any advice on this.

DV Ed
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Joined: Jun 10 2002

Get a demo of ACTIVE Smart. It will tell you what is going on with your hdd.