Hard Drive Issue - What To Do?

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by anamericangod, Mar 11, 2011.

  1. anamericangod

    anamericangod Master Guru

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    I currently have a recently purchased and am currently using a Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB - WD1002FAEX model. It's been in use for a bit more than a week. I don't recall if I noticed it immediately, but lately I have been dealing with a high pitched whine coming from the drive, almost something akin to a dog whistle. There have also been bad sectors and random blue screens which seem to indicate drive issues.

    I purchased this from Amazon and get free 2 day shipping and overnight for a couple bucks more. Should I:

    1. Buy the same drive on Amazon, hope it is problem free, then return this as defective and I break even?

    2. Go straight to Western Digital's RMA.

    3. Get a different drive altogether.

    I am thinking try option 1 first, and if the problem persists, I will look into another SATA3 1TB hard drive.

    On that note, other drives I should consider?

    And what would be the best way to clone the current drive?
     
  2. yleclerc

    yleclerc Master Guru

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    I have installed 2 Caviar Blacks last summer 2010. On Dec 26, 2010, my boot drive flaked out and two "hours" to boot. I was lucky and copied the "partitions" to a different hard drive (it took 16 hours!!) and then processed an RMA. It took 10 days in order to ship out and receive the replacement drive. I receive the replacement drive and have been using it "successfully." However, on March 1, 2011, I received a "notice" that WD had received the defective drive and within 5 - 7 days a replacement drive will be shipped. WTF! I already have the drive.

    Please note: any RMA processed outside of North America can take "months" for the replacement to be processed.
     
  3. anamericangod

    anamericangod Master Guru

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    Thankfully I live in the US and the RMA wouldn't take that long.

    I think I will buy the same drive again and hope it does not have issues. Then clone it, and hopefully be good to go. If something still goes wrong, I'll have to do some serious digging to find a replacement. I've been Western Digital exclusive for years.

    Can't even remember the last time I cloned a drive...Any recs for that or a different 1TB drive?
     
  4. yleclerc

    yleclerc Master Guru

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    I live in Canada and it took 10 days. I am now waiting for the "original" hard drive's warranty period to be "transferred" to the replacement drive. WD Support says after the replacement's hard drive warranty period of 90 days is up, the original period will kick in. I hope!!!

    BTW: I bought also bought a Caviar Green WD10EARS (advanced format) and a third Black drive.

    I had originally Hitachi 1TBs and replaced them with the Caviars. Then, this week I read that WD has agreed to purchase Hitachi GST.

    Also, read several posts, here and elsewhere, the Samsung hard drive seems to have a "loyal" following.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2011

  5. allesclar

    allesclar Ancient Guru

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    i was going to get a couple of 2TB WD's to replace my F1 samsungs, i think for the sake of £10 i will go with the Samsgun F4's instead :(
     
  6. Mufflore

    Mufflore Ancient Guru

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    Copy your data off asap.
    If you need a new drive to do this, dont use the drive in the meantime.
    Buy a drive from a different supplier in case there is a bad batch, you have less chance of getting a drive from the same batch this way.
    Get a refund for the bad drive.
     
  7. anticupidon

    anticupidon Ancient Guru

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    best way to clone the drive
    free
    Clonezilla or dd command in linux terminal

    not free
    Acronis
     
  8. anamericangod

    anamericangod Master Guru

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    If you were going to get 2TB WD Caviar Blacks as your main drives, by all means do that. I have heard great things about them. I'm dealing with a 1TB drive, and would have gotten the 2TB Caviar Black, but it was too pricey for me.

    Already ordered a new one from Amazon again since it is basically free overnight shipping for me and I can figure things out very soon. Hopefully there's no bad batch. Lots of people have these drives and say they're silent, but there are a handful of people who have the issue I have with the noise. There are YouTube videos with show it happening.

    I'm not concerned about data loss, as I have backed up everything already and am continually doing so on an automated schedule. The reason I purchased this drive was actually so I could be more thorough with my backups.

    Thanks for the tips. I actually am using Acronis at the moment for automated backup, as it was included with a drive I had purchased before. And I do see that it can clone the drive. I'll compare the differences. Hopefully the cloning goes off without a hitch, and I'll simply be able to swap drives like nothing ever happened.

    If I do a clone, I don't think the bad blocks, if they do exist, will copy onto the new drive, right? That is a physical problem with the drive, not a data problem, if I remember correctly.

    As for the Samsung F4's, I can't find a 7200 SATA 6GBPS version, and I'm not sure of 2TB at 5400 RPM. I know I'm not at SSD speeds by any means, but the Caviar Blacks have been the best price/size/performance for a while as far as I know.
     
  9. deltatux

    deltatux Ancient Guru

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    You don't need SATA III drives, they don't offer any speed increase since hard drives can't even transfer that fast. SATA II is more than sufficient.

    As for SAMSUNG, mainly geeks are the ones who recommend this, the general public don't even know that SAMSUNG makes hard drives. For some reason businesses only use Western Digital and Seagate. I have a friend who believes that SAMSUNG is some third-rate HDD manufacturer which I highly disagree. I would trust SAMSUNG over WDC and Seagate any day.

    Personally, I'd use the Linux dd command to image a drive because I know it does a low-level bit-by-bit image of the drive, a lot of forensic tools use dd to do imaging.

    Code:
    dd if=/dev/sda of=/dev/sdb bs=512
    
    That should clone your first drive to your second drive and I'm assuming the block size is the DOS standard of 512B (I heard some are now 4K for some drive).

    deltatux
     
  10. IcE

    IcE Don Snow Staff Member

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    SATA III is in fact useful for SSD's. Support in conventional drives isnt really for any other purpose other than to make it compliant on a SATA 3 port.

    Somehow I haven't ever had a HDD fail on me yet in years of having them....I feel like my Vertex 2 SSD will die before my Samsung or Seagate.
     

  11. deltatux

    deltatux Ancient Guru

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    That's why I said, SATA III is useless for HDD's man lol. SATA III is only useful for SSDs.

    deltatux
     
  12. anamericangod

    anamericangod Master Guru

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    While I did indeed know that Samsung made hard drives, I have not owned one in many, many years. Western Digital has been my go to supplier after the Seagate fiasco a few years ago. I have no opposition to owning a Samsung drive, I'm just trying to find the best balance of performance and silence. If I have issues with the new drive, I will definitely look into them more.

    I have heard different things about SATA 3 on mechanical drives. Do you by chance have a source or any information you can give me as to how useless it really is over SATA 2? The drive I purchased is SATA 3, but it also has newer technology in it as well as a larger cache. I know I am not in SSD territory yet, sadly. Is there any speed performance over SATA 2 at all, or is it just snake oil?

    Last, how can I figure out what my block size is? I have very little experience with Linux, so using a program such as Acronis to clone the drive would be easier, but if the Linux command line offers a greater benefit, I might consider it. Thanks for pointing that out.

    Same question I asked Delta, just out of curiosity since I am not sure of the numbers/speeds, but is SATA 3 for hard drives really a gimmick and I will see no difference compared to an SATA 2 drive? That's what I've been using, same drive basically, the 1TB Caviar Black but SATA 2 and with 32mb cache instead of 64mb.

    Thanks guys. Thankfully this is not a catastrophic data backup situation, and I can actually take the time to learn some stuff. Much appreciated.
     
  13. deltatux

    deltatux Ancient Guru

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    Here's a benchmark conducted by Anandtech:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    They said and I quote:
    http://www.anandtech.com/show/2866/3

    deltatux
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2011
  14. anamericangod

    anamericangod Master Guru

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    Thank you very much for that link.

    If I have any issue at all with the replacement drive, I now have no problem with simply purchasing the Caviar Black 1TB SATA 2 32MB version, which is the one I used as my main drive until I "upgraded" to the SATA 3 version.
     
  15. Year

    Year Ancient Guru

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    the black editions have some reliability issues, if you're lucky it works fine for a long time, most seem to die within 4 month.

    the Green WD drives are ok, but the 64mb versions are much more reliable thanks in part to the new sector format (4096 vs 512) which improves error correction and precision, they seem to last longer than the 32mb versions.

    i'm very loyal to samsung, their harddrives are second to none and are fast, had plenty of samsung drives (at least 10, started with the 80gb ones up to the 1.5tb) and not one had bad sectors, died, clicked or whined, solid drives (or maybe i was just lucky). ;)

    i would highly recommend the samsung drives, unfortunately HDDs are a bit of a lottery, what works for most might not work for you.
     

  16. anamericangod

    anamericangod Master Guru

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    I got another WD Caviar Black 1TB, but it still makes a similar noise. It does not seem as bad or as often, but it's just not "normal" in my opinion. I can't fathom this being widespread and accepted.

    If you were to recommend a 1TB replacement for the WD Caviar Black, what would you suggest? I don't mind the brand, I'd just like something with similar performance that doesn't have a reputation for failing or making banshee like noises. Any ideas?
     
  17. Mufflore

    Mufflore Ancient Guru

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    Return a noisy drive straight away.

    The drive I like the most atm is the Samsung 1TB "SJ" version, cant remember the full name.
    Its 500GB/platter and is pretty damn quick for a hard drive.
     
  18. Sever

    Sever Ancient Guru

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    hd103sj? aka the samsung spinpoint f3? theyre a nice reliable drive.

    in the last two years ive had 2 WD and 1 seagate drive fail on me. the three remaining samsung spinpoints are still going strong and have no issues whatsoever.

    i think i'll wait for the 3tb drives to drop in price before i add any more hdd drives to my PC.
     
  19. Mufflore

    Mufflore Ancient Guru

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    Yeah the 103SJ.
    I built a machine with one and was surprised how fast it booted.
    Sustained transfer rates varied from 144MB/s down to 75MB/s, avg 109MB/s (HD Tune).
     
  20. anamericangod

    anamericangod Master Guru

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    I'm gonna look into this. Thanks for the recommendation. I suppose unless I get a dud, it can't be worse than what I have now.

    The FAEX WD Caviar Black seems to be working fine, but the noise, it's like the tell tale heart or something. It was so obnoxious now I can't even tell if I actually hear the noise, or I'm just thinking about it.
     

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