Fix corrupt hard drive

Hello,

I have a Toshiba 500GB HDD that keeps throwing errors whenever I use it and I’d like to try fixing it, if possible. It originally came out of a Windows 8 laptop, so it had an NTFS filesystem on it before. Gnome-disks says in glowing red text

DISK IS LIKELY TO FAIL SOON

I would like to know if there’s some way to reformat the drive or fix something to make it work like normal again, or if its dead permanently.

I am able to delete partitions on it and access it through Gnome-disks and Gparted, and this is the output of fsck:

code output

[colson@archlabs ~]$ sudo fsck /dev/sda
[sudo] password for colson:
fsck from util-linux 2.35.1
e2fsck 1.45.6 (20-Mar-2020)
ext2fs_open2: Bad magic number in super-block
fsck.ext2: Superblock invalid, trying backup blocks…
fsck.ext2: Bad magic number in super-block while trying to open /dev/sda

The superblock could not be read or does not describe a valid ext2/ext3/ext4
filesystem. If the device is valid and it really contains an ext2/ext3/ext4
filesystem (and not swap or ufs or something else), then the superblock
is corrupt, and you might try running e2fsck with an alternate superblock:
e2fsck -b 8193
or
e2fsck -b 32768

/dev/sda contains `DOS/MBR boot sector; partition 1 : ID=0xee, start-CHS (0x0,0,2), end-CHS (0x3ff,255,63), startsector 1, 976773167 sectors, extended partition table (last)’ data
[colson@archlabs ~]$

e2fsck usually does a decent job of allowing you to “rebuild” the sector that needs to be dealt with.
You could try to format it with the caveat that if the error is being thrown at boot-up (within the BIOS) then the drive WILL fail and there isn’t much you can do about it.

My opinion, I don’t know for certain if the platter is actually failing, but I think it’s the circuit board that is attached to the drive itself. Those drives get damned hot and I’m surprised we (in general) don’t see more failures.

So, if you are getting warning that drive will fail, be proactive and get a new one to save yourself headaches later on.

Yeah, I do get those errors at BIOS bootup, so at this point I can assume it is dying. Thanks for the info though.
This is the output of your command. Its similar to the regular fsck command:

code output

e2fsck 1.45.6 (20-Mar-2020)
ext2fs_open2: Bad magic number in super-block
e2fsck: Superblock invalid, trying backup blocks…
e2fsck: Bad magic number in super-block while trying to open /dev/sda

The superblock could not be read or does not describe a valid ext2/ext3/ext4
filesystem. If the device is valid and it really contains an ext2/ext3/ext4
filesystem (and not swap or ufs or something else), then the superblock
is corrupt, and you might try running e2fsck with an alternate superblock:
e2fsck -b 8193
or
e2fsck -b 32768

/dev/sda contains `DOS/MBR boot sector; partition 1 : ID=0xee, start-CHS (0x0,0,2), end-CHS (0x3ff,255,63), startsector 1, 976773167 sectors, extended partition table (last)’ data