How to Fix DELL Diagnostic Error 2000-0142

When you hard drive is dying, you will get obvious symptoms like constant data corruption, freezing when copying or saving data, long start-up times, and constant repair screens during boot. However, you cannot tell for sure if the problem resides with the HDD unless you do a Pre-boot System Analysis (PSA). Dell computers allow a comprehensive PSA, also known as ePSA, which tests all the hardware on the system. These include memory tests, drive tests, fan tests, input devices tests and HDD tests among others. To run ePSA on dell, restart your PC and press F12 to get into the boot menu, and then select ‘diagnostics’. Following the mentioned symptoms, it is very alarming when users get a diagnostics error indicating a disk failure. This error bares the following information.

Error Code 0142

MSG: Error Code 2000-0142

MSG: Hard Drive 1 – Self Test Unsuccessful  Status 79 or Msg: Hard Drive 0 – S/N WX51E43XWS20, short self test unsuccessful

The given code and message can be used by Dell Technical Support to help diagnose the problem. Do you want to continue testing?

This error will throw your PC into an endless loop on startup repair. So what does this error mean? And what are the solutions to it? This article will address this problem and give attempts to solving it.

Error 2000-0142

To put it simply, this error means that the ePSA could not successfully read information from the hard drive. By extension, your computer will not start, or will have trouble starting because retrieving information from the disk is not reliable. Windows will however attempt a system startup repair to no avail. Here are a few of the varied reasons that you might be bringing up this error message on your Dell computer:

  • Faulty or misaligned cabling in your computer’s case, connecting your hard drive to the motherboard.
  • Corrupted data or MBR (Master Boot Record) on the hard disk, causing the device to crash.
  • Device failure, in the form of mechanical damage to the hard drive. Overheating and mechanical knocks can lead to warped platters, broken reader heads and broken spindles. This means that your data cannot be read correctly hence the problem.

If you get this error, it means your drive is dead, or it is dying and failure is imminent. It is paramount that you back-up your data pending complete failure. You can attempt reviving the disk with the first 2 methods below so that you can pull any important data off it. Remember that if the method works, you will need a hard drive replacement because 95% of the time, these hard drives cannot last beyond a week after this error.

Method 1: Perform a disk check in command prompt using a windows installation disk

The Master Boot Record holds information on the location of your OS, and kernel. This tells your computer from where to load the OS. In the case of a corrupt MBR, this method will attempt to recover any corrupt data. If it works for you, we recommend backing up your data to a new disk since the error you experienced indicates imminent disk failure. You will need a Windows disk (Win 7) for this method. You can find our guide on making a Windows 10 disk or a Windows 7 disk

  1. Put the Windows 7 installation disc in the disc drive, and then start the computer.
  2. Press a key when you are prompted (or press F8 on startup and choose DVD drive from the boot menu).
  3. Select a language, a time, a currency, a keyboard or an input method, and then click Next.
  4. Click Repair your computer.
  5. Click the operating system that you want to repair, and then click Next.
  6. In the System Recovery Options dialog box, click Command Prompt.
  7. Type Chkdsk /f /r or command and press enter to fix bad sectors and repair corrupt data.

Method 2: Reinstall Windows

This method will also correct any corrupt windows files, or any corrupt or missing MBR data. Go for a guide on how to clean install Windows 10. If you prefer, you can install Windows 8 or Windows 7. In case this works for you, we recommend backing up your data since the error you experienced indicates imminent disk failure.

Method 3: Replace your Hard Drive Disk

If method 1 and 2 did not work in any way, then your disk has experienced permanent failure and will need replacement. Look into the SSD (Solid State Drives) instead of the HDD (Hard Disk Drive), to avoid this disappointment in the future. Since HDDs use spinning platters and moving heads, they are more prone to failure. This usually happens after 3 – 5 years of use.

If the system is under warranty, contact Dell support with the error and they’ll replace the drive. Your manufacturer warranty usually covers a failed HDD.

Method 4: Slave the erroneous hard disk and try to recover data

You can still try recovering your data if your disk failed method 1 and 2. There is no guarantee. You will need an external USB HDD converter for a few dollars (10$). You can also connect it as a secondary drive (not the primary that has the OS) to another computer. Desktop PCs usually provide extra cables for connecting another SATA drive. Use either method to try to read your disk. If it is only your MBR sector or Windows files that was corrupt, you will find that you can still be able to read your HDD and access your data.

Data experts can be able to retrieve your information by changing the read heads or taking your platter onto functioning read heads. Either way, this is a precision process that will cost you a lot of money, so make sure the data you are saving is worth the money.


Kevin Arrows

Kevin Arrows is a highly experienced and knowledgeable technology specialist with over a decade of industry experience. He holds a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification and has a deep passion for staying up-to-date on the latest tech developments. Kevin has written extensively on a wide range of tech-related topics, showcasing his expertise and knowledge in areas such as software development, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. His contributions to the tech field have been widely recognized and respected by his peers, and he is highly regarded for his ability to explain complex technical concepts in a clear and concise manner.