Hard Drive Starts and Stops Spinning every 3-4 Seconds

hi everyone..

I am using three SATA internal hard drives for my system. They are:

1. ST3320620SV FW. 3.ACH

2. ST3500418AS FW. CC34 (7200.12)

3. ST3500320SV FW. SV16

The problem is with the second drive (ST3500418AS - 7200.12) which i noticed when suddenly after running the system or 2-3 hrs, hardware interrupts started taking 50% of CPU. I knew this would be because one of my drives has reverted to PIO. When I checked it was this (7200.12) drive which had reverted to PIO. On the next reboot win XP didnt show any of its (7200.12's) partitions while others worked fine. And then when I checked the cpu cabinet to see if the disk was running, i noticed the typical high frequency sound which comes from HDDs when they are powered up and start spinning. Then after few seconds it made that same sound again and continued to do so at regular intervals of 3-4 seconds. I can only conclude (btw i am sure) that it stopped and started spinning every 3-4 seconds.

Panicking that this would cause my hard drive to die if it isnt dead already, i powered-off the system and back on, but the same continuous start-stop started happening again..

Finally at third reboot, this time me waiting 5 mins before doing so, the system powered up and the drive is working fine (though still in PIO mode).

Btw, this same whole thing has happened a couple of times before as well. And after all the drama, the drive is always back to normal. But i am afraid this would one day cause my drive to die. So, finally i decided to post the problem here.. Hope some one would be able to help in pointing out where the problem is and what should be done to solve it.
3 answers Last reply
More about hard drive starts stops spinning seconds
  1. Run Seatools diagnostics.

    Hard drive sounds

  2. Ooh, sorry, I should have mentioned this in my previous post: I tried Seatools after that third reboot and the drive passes Short DST and SMART tests (havn't tried Long DST or any other tests though.)

    I tried hard-drive-sounds link and my case doesn't matches with any of those sounds there under seagate section. But i am sure it is the normal sound that every hdd makes when they start to spin but this one does every 3-4 seconds.

    Apart from this problem, my first hard drive ST3320620SV has a small clicking sounds problem as well. I figured this to be a problem and should post it here after listening to the sounds from your link. It makes sounds very similar to the 'degrading heads' sound that is there in that link under Seagate section. I think I should create a new thread about this newly discovered problem..
  3. I have got the same problem as you do unfortunately, and it seems that my HDD(19,5GB one) where only the windows for the computer is seems to go off and on and sometimes not even come up as if it was there whilst trying to turn the computer on.
    Also perhaps related to that, whilst turning the computer on it seems that when it finds 1 keyboard and 1 mouse it stops there meaning the computer is not getting turned on. After a lot of restarts or a long shut down(2min) i need to click the power button for up to 5 seconds and then it mostly turns on.
    If it is the power problem, what could it exactly be? The PSU or .. ?
    I'm not a computer genius so i can't really tell and the problem is similar to archeopetrix's

    The power supply seems to be MAX420, 240 V and 5A
    Windows 7, 64-bit operatin system
    Proccesor: intel core duo cpu e4500 @2.20ghz
    3GB RAM
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