About a month ago, I accused my Samsung hard drive of creating my many problems with Gentoo and then Arch Linux. At the time, the errors I received seem to indicate that I was having problems with my SATA hard drive. After reviewing several forums, I decided to buy a new Western Digital SATA drive. I reinstalled Arch and had a nice stable system for nearly a month.
Then this week I got another unusual error with my new SATA drive. When booting up, I kept getting an error message stating it could not find the boot loader, insert a system rescue disk. It was odd, I then used the Arch LiveCD to chroot back into my system and reinstall grub. I could reboot into Arch no problems. I even restarted several times to see if the problem repeated itself. Everything was fine.
Next morning I received the same error. Sometimes even after turning off my desktop for two hours, the problem returned. Each time grub-install fixed the problem but I could not pinpoint what the actual cause was. My friends felt it was something wrong with my Gigabyte motherboard. I thought about updating BIOS. We even thought that my power supply may be bad.
In the end, don’t laugh, it turned out I just needed a new battery for the motherboard. A French Ubuntu user pointed that out immediately after hearing what happened. He asked me to check the clock in BIOS to see if it had the correct time. When he said that, then everything made sense. I remember getting an error during bootup that a block was mounted in the future. I thought I fixed that by syncing my computer with a time server but since Arch boots up in 19 seconds, I missed it the repeating error.
I went to a computer store in Saigon, bought a new battery, inserted it into my motherboard. Everything has been okay since. Turns out that the battery that came with my motherboard was replaced with a cheaper Chinese version. I replaced that with a Maxwell battery but I want my friend to bring me back some higher quality batteries from the US next month.
Now I am back running Arch Linux, my favorite distro for the last two months. I even got my second Samsung SATA drive installed in my computer now. I will use it as backup or possibly install Debian Lenny on it for a project.