WD15EARS Questions

I got a new hard drive recently and apparently these EARS have new advanced formatting or something. I've never done much in the hdd area, so go easy on me.

I've been restoring my files to this new hdd and from the external to internal it'll be about 30mb/s, but if I transfer files from one partition on the internal to another partition on the internal, it starts at like 120mb/s, instantly jumps to 70 then 50mb/s and steadily grinds down to 17mb/s where it sits for the rest of the transfer, making a 13gb move last 2 hours instead of the initial 5 minutes. Again, if I go to or from the external, it'll go at the external's fastest speed(I assume) which is 35mb/s or so.

That's the main problem. Now, I've been reading around a bit and haven't really found anything helpful to my situation, exactly. When I installed Windows 7, that's where I also created and formatted the partitions. Would reformatting them with default "allocation unit size" (or whatever size is fastest) help this situation, you think? I've also seen a few things I just really don't understand at the moment, such as alignment and jumpers, though where I read about them they didn't seem to fix anything.

Another "problem" that I think applies to many Western Digital EARS drives is that they report themselves as 512byte sector size, would that affect my performance?

Ah, a side note while I'm posting...if I go into the device manager and look at my IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers, I used to have ATA Channel 0(x3), ATA Channel 1(x3), ATA Channel 2/3/4/5. And one of each of the 0 and 1 channels would have a yellow mark indicating "Device Cannot Start." However, this has changed to only include channel 0 and 1 with no issues reported after installing some motherboard drivers.

Something I don't understand, but might like to try:
drives such as WD's EARS series are using internal translation to present themselves as 512-byte sector drives, leading to unexpectedly horrible write performance.
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  1. As long as you create *all* of the partitions using Windows 7, you don't have to worry about the fact that it's an advanced format drive.

    It's completely normal for transfer rates to be slow when you copy a file from one place to another on the same physical drive (and two different drive letters on the same actual disk drive count as "same physical drive"). This happens because the head has to move back and forth constantly as it reads one file and writes the other. The transfer rates seem to be very fast at the beginning because Windows is caching the writes in RAM - but when RAM fills it starts having to dump the data to disk and thats when the reported transfer rates start to drop.
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