WD10EARS is really lagging the system.

My troubles first started when I was getting BSOD when trying to boot to Vista 32. After unplugging all the peripherals and running memcheck/chkdsk I narrowed things down to the hard drive. So I purchased a Western Digital Green WD10EARS. I reinstalled a fresh copy of Vista 64, and the BSOD has gone away. However, the system is SOOOO friggen slow it is almost unusable.

The system:

2x 1gig Ballistix Ram
Sony ATA DVD Drive
LG Sata DVD Drive
XFX 9600 GT
Q6600 Core2 Quad

I have updated the Bios, I have updated the ICH10 controller drivers, and everything else I can think of, but I'm getting no joy from this drive.

Can anyone point me in another direction on how to fix this?


12 answers Last reply
More about wd10ears lagging system
  1. In the bios the drive is currently running in IDE mode, but should I change it to AHCI?
  2. Can you afford another HDD? A 500GB HDD is $50 or so. Seagate 7200.12, WD Caviar Black and Samsung F3 (all come in 500GB versions) are around that price.

    I'm recommending another drive because the WD10EARS is a 'storage' drive. It's a Green drive so runs at 5400rpm speed. It's too slow to have an OS, really. I would buy a 60GB SSD or a 500GB HDD for the OS and use the WD10EARS for data storage. I'd also try to upgrade to Windows 7, too, if you can.
  3. I'll have to admit, I didn't notice the rpm's when I ordered the drive, but even at that, should it be transferring SATA to SATA at ~10 MB/Sec? That seems like a problem.

  4. Some additional info:

    While using the drive it kinda stops responding for 4 or 5 seconds, then works ok for 4 or 5 seconds. I'm also getting lots of program not responding messages. Waiting a 10 or 20 seconds will usual let the computer catch up, and the program will continue working.

  5. Moving lots of small files takes much longer than moving a few large files occupying the same space. But your case does seem a little extreme.

    Having said that, the Greens are terrible boot drives.
  6. EARS are 4KiB-sector drives, but it appears yours is detected as having 512 byte sectors. Did you touch the onboard jumpers? You are using Windows 7? Which program created the partition on the EARS-drive?

    You may have a possible misalignment issue, that causes slow performance on these advanced format drives.
  7. Enable AHCI.
    This drive is terrible in Native IDE mode.
    I'm getting 82MB/s (average) linear reads in hdtune's benchmark with ahci enabled; in native ide mode, it was 40!

    Please do a benchmark (on HDTune's default settings) after enabling ahci; your results should be similar.
    Disable SuperFetch and Indexer before the benchmark, though; they will cause large dips in graph and the average speed will drop to ~72MB/s.
  8. Indeed, it sounds like you have the classic sector misalignment problem on this 4K sector drive. Read this page carefully:,2554-3.html
  9. I bought WD10EARS. Using it under 7 64-bit bit as a storage drive. I was copying data from my OS drive WD5000AAKS to WD10EARS and got fairly 59.3 rate and was increasing.
  10. sub mesa said:
    EARS are 4KiB-sector drives, but it appears yours is detected as having 512 byte sectors.

    The EARS drives lie, which is one of the reasons why they're so problematic: they have 4k sectors but report 512 byte sectors when queried.

    I agree though, it does sound like misaligned sectors; I know Windows 7 is supposed to align partitions correctly but I don't know about Vista.
  11. This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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