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Can a broken harddisk lead to an "operator halt"?

Hello everybody!

I am currently trying to install woody on an AlphaStation 255 and
I am confronted with repeated "blue screen" halts,

halted CPU 0

halt code = 1
operator initiated halt 
PC = 200000c6d7c

They appeared *reproducibly* when I tried to format one
drive with ext2 *and checking for bad blocks* 

Without checking the drive formats fine, but fsck 
detects an error every other time I run it.

Is it possible, that the disk is broken and causes the
halts? Or do you think something else is fishy in addition
to it? Should I buy another disk first, or would it 
be better to check e.g. the memory or something else?

BTW when I exit the monitor with "contiune", the keyboard 
controller is somehow messed up and I can no longer 
shutdown this machine cleanly.

Thanks in advance
/ralph -- yes, this machine is almost 10 years old, and it shows.
          But I want to get it running nevertheless.

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