My macbook pro early 2011 says its drive is failing its S.M.A.R.T. test. It said to repair disk in recovery mode. I've attempted it twice. It doesn't seem to change the situation. Could the recent installation of MacPilot and making changes to settings be causing a problem or causing the appearance of a mock problem?
If a SMART test indicates the drive is failing [& that test is accurate - you could use two independent tools to make sure they agree] then the drive is toast & needs to be backed up if possible & replaced immediately.
SMART is meant to warn you of imminent, potentially catastrophic, drive failure.
It is not a "fixable" problem.
SMART tests are tests that are done at the hard disk level. The hard disk firmware (which is on the board of the disk itself) runs a set of diagnostics on the disk regularly, and if any failures are detected, the results are signalled to the computer using SMART.
The usual recommendation is to back up the disk's contents as soon as possible (if you care about the contents of the disk) and replace the disk before it fails completely. Which it will do very soon.