Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Anyone have a guess as to why a HDD, formatted to EXT3, failed showing a bad block, and when wiped and reformatted (just to test) gave errors in gparted for every file type except NTFS?

The drive gave me input/output errors. I had all the data backed up anyway, so I decided to just play with it, running scans, checks, repairs of every sort just to get some practice. I fired up gparted, and attempted to format it to every type down the list, and suddenly NTFS took to it without issue.

I even tried to reformat it again, every type, and got an error every time again except with NTFS. Is it safe to use that way? Does NTFS work around bad blocks and sectors?

Before I turn the drive into slag or an art project, I would like to figure out this mystery.

share|improve this question

Because a freshly formatted NTFS happens to not use that bad sector. Thus it wasn't written to, and so the error was not noticed.

share|improve this answer

NTFS probably re-maps bad sectors and works around them. Bad sectors that aren't handled internally by the drive mean that it's on it's way to impeding failure. Would you rather know about this or have these events silently logged in Window's system log? I personaly would rather know at the time of formatting.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.