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WD Caviar Green 1TB WD10EADS drive noises

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  • Hard Drives
  • Western Digital
  • Caviar
  • Storage
Last response: in Storage
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Anonymous
a b G Storage
June 16, 2009 12:10:22 AM

I just installed a WD Caviar Green 1TB SATA drive as the main boot drive with Win XP on it. In general operation it is quiet, but I am aware that it seems to make random clicks and access noises even when the machine is idle. Now this might be nit picking facilitated by the fact that the rest of my PC is really quiet thanks to a decent PSU and cooler, but the noise bugs me as I can't see why it should be accessing so often, it's like Chinese water torture and I'm thinking of getting a drive muffler (yes, I have firewall and anti-virus software etc..). It does it in Win 7 RC too and with no internet connectivity. The drive activity LED lights up every second regardless. Is this normal? Is it the Mobo (Asus P5-Q Pro) Is there a decent utility (preferably free) I can use to check out the drive?

More about : caviar green 1tb wd10eads drive noises

June 16, 2009 4:51:26 AM

Well, I wouldn't worry too much. A reality with modern OSes is that they do some background work, especially when you're not doing anything.

So long as Windows' chkdsk doesn't reveal anything bad, then again, you don't have to worry about anything :D 
June 16, 2009 5:02:21 PM

Quote:
I just installed a WD Caviar Green 1TB SATA drive as the main boot drive with Win XP on it. In general operation it is quiet, but I am aware that it seems to make random clicks and access noises even when the machine is idle. Now this might be nit picking facilitated by the fact that the rest of my PC is really quiet thanks to a decent PSU and cooler, but the noise bugs me as I can't see why it should be accessing so often, it's like Chinese water torture and I'm thinking of getting a drive muffler (yes, I have firewall and anti-virus software etc..). It does it in Win 7 RC too and with no internet connectivity. The drive activity LED lights up every second regardless. Is this normal? Is it the Mobo (Asus P5-Q Pro) Is there a decent utility (preferably free) I can use to check out the drive?



I'm using the same drive as a primary HDD for Windows 7 but I can't say I get the noises you're reporting. Idle activity seems normal, especially with a live protection antivirus running, but I don't get any more noise than a dull hum.

However, a quick google search shows you're not the only one to report these issues, and other folks seem to be operating OK with it. Make sure the drive is secured in the cage - I recommend screwing in if you just have plastic clips as this may help with extra vibration noise or mechanical sounds being amplified by the case.
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December 14, 2009 9:33:27 PM

I get the same activity when idle noise when the HD is:

1. in a PC and booted to the bios setup screen (so there is no other software running)
2. in an external enclosure that is powered on but the USB is not hooked up (do definitely nothing accessing the drive)
3. in a Drobo used as a RAID drive, but the drobo is not activly doing anything with the drive.

sufficed to say this is some sort of activity initiated by the drive and not the computer.
I just spent 30 minutes on the phone with a WD tech support person and they said that it should not be making that noise but if it is still working and does not have the "click of death" then there is nothing they can do.
January 9, 2011 2:44:04 PM

WD drives are well known for doing that sound.

I have 4 WD Elements (external) drives. 1TB EADS x 2 1TB EAVS x 1 650Gb AAKS x 1

I've been plagued by this noise since DAY 1:

1) It happens when the drives are IDLE 2) It STOPS as soon as the drive is accessed OR put in Standby (with WD Spindown Utility). 3) It seems to affect the MORE EMPTY drives more often!!

Look at WD forums and you will find many complaints. WD just does not CARE or explain WHAT the drives are doing during idle time.

I only use wd hard drives for EXTERNAL purpose, NEVER EVER i will use them for "internal" system drives! NEVER! I will go NUTS!

You should be aware that compared with Seagate, WD drives are much noisier.
January 9, 2011 3:51:29 PM

Investigation:

1) Some or ALL WD drives use PWL

2) Preemptive Wear Leveling (PWL) The drive arm frequently sweeps across the disk to reduce uneven wear on the drive surface common to audio video streaming applications. WD AV SATA and PATA drives are ideal for PVR/DVR, DVD recorders, surveillance video recorders, and other video streaming applications (see: http://products.wdc.com/library/flyer/eng/2278-701024.p...)

3) WD states that WD AV drives are "GREEN drives"... need to say more?

Conclusions:

1) PWL is a firmware supported feature that kicks in when the drive is not BUSY (idle)

2) The fact that the noise if much more noticed on drives that are not full complies with PWL "Static wear leveling" mode (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wear_leveling)

3) ALL WD drives have PWL to protect our data, because there should be NO REASON to remove this feature (it will increase the reliability of the drives, thus, increasing WD reputation)

4) THE ONLY reason WD does not come public with this is because they announce it to be a feature available to specific drives. Is it??? I don't think so. (need to point everyday examples of firmware functionality that gets removed or disabled on capable but "cheaper to the consumer" hardware??? It's only logic!)

Bottom Line: I'm convinced that this is a FRIENDLY healthy noise. NOW... should we start worrying if the noise goes away??? :-))
!