Transient I/O errors due to a bad disk or controller
On-disk data corruption due to cosmic rays
Driver bugs resulting in data being transferred to or from the wrong location
Another user overwriting portions of the physical device by accident
In some cases, these errors are transient, such as a random I/O error while the controller is having problems. In other cases, the damage is permanent, such as on-disk corruption. Even still, whether the damage is permanent does not necessarily indicate that the error is likely to occur again. For example, if an administrator accidentally overwrites part of a disk, no type of hardware failure has occurred, and the device need not be replaced. Identifying exactly what went wrong with a device is not an easy task and is covered in more detail in a later section.