Be aware of Western Digital Ultra Star Line Sleep timer

Discussion in 'SSD and HDD storage' started by NAMEk, Jun 4, 2019.

  1. NAMEk

    NAMEk Master Guru

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    Official answer from westerndigital/hgst

    Dear NAMEK,


    Thank you for your reply!

    I do apologize for any trouble you've been having.
    These drives do have an idle timer of 10 minutes. This is built into the drive and unfortunately their is no option to change or disable this.


    For me it's awful. Bought three of these drives only to find out this nonsense.
     
  2. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    and?

    thats higher than most of their other idle timers have ever allowed to be set to.
     
  3. NAMEk

    NAMEk Master Guru

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    What do you mean "and" ? Had I known I wouldn't have bought them. There are people who need timerless drives.
     
  4. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    Why? What kind of usage?
     

  5. NAMEk

    NAMEk Master Guru

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    NAS/SERVER I bought them specially for that, and paid double, I could've bought way cheaper drives, because they mostly have timers and still not all them. I really didn't expect highest end tier drives would have such nonsense.
     
  6. kens30

    kens30 Maha Guru

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    I understand your frustration on this matter paying a higher price and not getting what you wanted.
    I hate hard drives with idle timers as well.
    I only use my 2 WD internal HD drives for desktop use and i always configure power options to never turn them off.
    I hate the delay, lag when they turn back on as i use them quite often.

    Any chance for RMA? for false advertising.
    I just checked the WD site and there is no mention on the specs or the data sheet about an idle timer.
     
  7. NAMEk

    NAMEk Master Guru

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    Sadly no, the place where I bought them won't take them back. I'm stuck. That's why I'm informing people for this. Don't buy HGST/WD ULTRASTAR drives, not worth it.
     
  8. Cyberdyne

    Cyberdyne Ancient Guru

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    If you're running the drives in Windows try this. https://archive.codeplex.com/?p=nosleephd
    This program writes a very small file to the drive in intervals of your choosing. I use this on my "toaster 2 slot external drive" which has sleep built into it, with that program it doesn't take 10 seconds to wake up when I access it. I would set it to maybe 9 minutes just to be sure.
     
  9. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    you don't even need to do that, just run a program which reads smart values every 9 minutes and the drive will never spin down.
     
  10. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    If you have a server usage and server is never idle then disks will never be idle.
    I fail to spot a problem.

    As for a program reading S.M.A.R.T at set interval I can provide it.

    PS Also Windows has power plan settings for disk idle things - are you sure they do not affect all your disks?

    Most of these settings are hidden, but I wrote an app which allows to explore all power plan settings and to edit them.
    https://forums.guru3d.com/threads/windows-power-plan-settings-explorer-utility.416058/

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2019

  11. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    Power profile disk settings don't override the device side power management.
     
  12. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    Question is whether they apply (at all) or not.
     
  13. Cyberdyne

    Cyberdyne Ancient Guru

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    If an auto SMART application was made, there's a chance that Windows can still spin down the drive while preventing the device's firmware from sleeping it. Windows HDD power saving is a lot faster then waiting for the drive to wake up. IDK if reading smart is enough to stop the firmware from sleeping though.
     
  14. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    most of the time, smart data is stored several negative tracks at the very inner circle of the drive, not the firmware, which is why failing drives return garbage data when they are suffering massive raw-read / write failure.

    reading smart data will keep the disk spinning because of this.
     
  15. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    Also it would be nice if you would elaborate and share the source of the info.
     

  16. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    wd's idle timer overrides the host power commands.
     
  17. Cyberdyne

    Cyberdyne Ancient Guru

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    So there wouldn't be any benefit from an auto SMART reading program. The app I posted is actually pretty well done.
     
  18. NAMEk

    NAMEk Master Guru

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    Server gets idle a lot. And no, I'm well aware of windows power policy, is set to not shutdown. Problem is people pay double for things they may not get! I just want people to be aware, because it was the last time I bought WD drives.
     
  19. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    Have you actually witnessed that 10 minutes idle timeout kicks in? Because if you have not then you just assume.
     
  20. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    You mention only one power plan setting - "Turn off hard disk after (The harddisk may power down after the specified time of inactivity is detected)".
    And there are also these settings which can affect transitions into power saving modes (on my Win10 1809):
    1. AHCI Link Power Management - HIPM/DIPM (Configures the LPM state).
    Values:
    - Active (Neither Host or Device initiated allowed)
    - HIPM (Host initiated allowed only)
    - HIPM+DIPM (Both Host and Device initiated allowed)
    - DIPM (Device initiated allowed only)
    - Lowest (HIPM+DIPM+DEVSLP)
    2. Hard disk burst ignore time (Ignore a burst of disk activity up to the specified time when determining if a hard disk is idle).
    Values - seconds.
    3. AHCI Link Power Management - Adaptive (Automatically transit from Partial to Slumber).
    Values - milliseconds.

    If you look into SATA 3.0 specification you will find there parts about "Partial", "Slumber", "Host initiated", "Device initiated":
    These parts make me believe that mentioned Windows power plan settings relate to all that power management stuff. It can be that Windows SATA driver actually can enable and disable transitions into Partial and Slumber modes. May be driver can`t change the idle timeout in your WD HDDs but may be it can disable it.
    You can check whether your HDDs support HIPM and DIPM in any hardware info programs.

    But one problem still remains - you have no means to check whether SATA controller/links/devices switch to Partial and Slumber power modes.
     

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