This morning, out of the blue, I had a computer that would not boot, simply stopped doing anything after the POST screen.Checked all cables, power etc, and could boot from CD drive/disk, so that meant drive was at fault, either mechanically or software.
Connected drive externally to another computer and could see the drive but not do anything with it .... error message was "F:/ is not accessible. The file or directory is corrupted and unreadable".
Ran Check Disk and it immediately started finding a number of errors and correcting them. When finished, I could access the drive as normal. To be completely 'restored', ran all 5 phases of XP's Error Checking, invoking 'fix file system' and 'recover bad sectors' .... took about three hours.
Reinstalled drive and it's running fine.
Can any body offer reason/s why such a major corruption may have happend in the first place? The drive is 4 years old.