OS 13.1: strange errors when typing commands: bash: /usr/bin/... : Input/output error

one of our work/server pcs (opensuse 13.1 installed) suddenly shows strange behavior. When typing in commands, like: df, smartctl or su it gives the error message:
bash: /usr/sbin/smartctl: Input/output error
(or /usr/sbin/su /usr/sbin/df depending of the command called)

Could there be a hardware problem? Is there anything i can check or do?

“/usr/sbin/” ???
Except for ‘smartctl’ the others are usually in “/usr/bin/”.
Have ‘stdin’ and/or ‘stdout’ been redirected?
What does ‘showconsole’ reveal (root only)?

Yes you are right, but the problem occurs for sbin and bin commands, thats why neither sudo or su work most of the time.
But it is probably the OS/root hard disc because after another restart (hard reset because shutdown also did not work)
the output is flooded with errors related to: ata1 and that the root fs is not found and such, i will try to replace the hard disc and do a

Do you have the 13.1 ‘smartmontools’ package installed and if so was ‘smartd’ running.
[HR][/HR]@sabo007: *Not necessarily information for you but, rather general information for the Forum:*Given 13.1 and ‘syslog’ (‘syslog-ng’?) try and examine the system logs on the “dead” disk from a running system.
If smartd is running then, it normally logs the S.M.A.R.T. information which can possibly indicate a “dying” disk and help to plan corrective action before the catastrophe actually occurs.