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Kevin Anderson

Raptor is noisy. So noisy....

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Hi all. This is my first post here at Storagereview.com, and right away I need help. I've purchased a WD 74G Raptor. It's got a slightly smaller capacity than my old drive (Diamond Max 9), but I'd prefer speed over size, as I really only use the PC for browsing and playing a few games. I knew before I purchased it that it would be noisier than my Maxtor drive. That was a given. However, on installing the Raptor, I was both pleased, and disappointed at the same time. The idle sound is fine. Can't even hear it. The seeks are ok too, no louder (IMO) than my old drive. However, the thing seeks all the time! Sitting idly in Windows (nice fresh install) it clicks away ever few seconds or so, enough to light the HD activity LED. And it's very annoying! I have no background programs running that could be being accessed. The drive was delivered OEM, with no software or cabling. Am I missing something? I have done a search before posting here, and read something about drives doing a self-test for a while when they're new....but I've never heard of this. The drive seems fairly quick, though not earth shatteringly fast. Frankly, I'd be happy to stick with it, but the constant seeks noises are making me think I'd be best returning it and sticking with the Maxtor. Sorry for the long post, but any advice would be greatly appreciated!

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If the HDD activity LED flashes, like you described, I believe you should blame the operating system. If the drive's firmware performs the seeks, the LED would probably not light up.

If you have no programs running on the background are you sure it's not the OS itself doing (for example) some indexing process on the drive?

Edited by whiic

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I actually typed in my original post "are you sure it's not the XP itself" and edited it afterwards to be "OS". I just got the feeling you're running a XP and that feeling happened to be correct.

I believe indexing is there to speed up search operations but I'm not aware how it actually works. It can be turned off though.

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...an even better one is Control Panel -> System -> System Restore and click on "Turn off System Restore." That is guaranteed to make your drive seem fast. Seriously, how often does anyone use System Restore? Probably never. Half the time it doesn't even work and reinstalling is a guaranteed fix.

So I guess Eugene added an "Edit" button, but it doesn't work? Shoot.

(Edit me this...)

...or should I say "work all the time?" ;)

Edited by sleepeeg3

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Thanks for the replies all. However, I've just formatted the Raptor in preparation for sending him back to the retailer on Monday. It's just too much hassle (and noise) for such a little improvement in performance. Oh, and I did try those fixes mentioned, but no luck I'm afraid..still kept accessing like crazy. I'm willing to concede though that it wasn't a bad drive, and that my old drive probably does these constant seeks too (it does, but they're quiet, and not as often). Maybe I'll try an SATA drive when SATA II is around. :)

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Just interested. How much free space did you have on the drive? How much RAM do you have? Because I had a computer that only had 256 meg of ram and a 3.0 gig scsi hard drive with windows xp home installed and that drive ran nonstop all day even sitting on desktop plus it only had 67 megs free space. :D I know I know its bad. After removing some unused stuff and going to 512 meg of ram no more problems no more constant activity.

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Thanks for the replies all.  However, I've just formatted the Raptor in preparation for sending him back to the retailer on Monday.  --- I'm willing to concede though that it wasn't a bad drive

202276[/snapback]

What?! Are you implying that you're going to complain about the drive's behaviour and tell the retailer you got a faulty Raptor? Without any proof? Without even believing youself that there's any fault in the drive?

HDD prices are high enough without egocentric jerks making false RMAs and causing unnecessary expences to involved parties. You bought the Raptor without thinking the matter through, so if there's actually nothing wrong on the drive, be a man and suffer the consequences of your own stupidity. We are not responsible from you actions, neither is the retailer or WD.

Or do you intend to "help" the drive fail? I hope you get caught for causing intentional damage to the drive and they deny any replacement or money back.

Of course IF you can return the drive to the retailer without making them believe there's any fault in the drive, then there's nothing wrong about it. I just wonder ...WHY would they agree to take the drive back on to their shelves?

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Thanks for the replies all.  However, I've just formatted the Raptor in preparation for sending him back to the retailer on Monday.  --- I'm willing to concede though that it wasn't a bad drive

202276[/snapback]

What?! Are you implying that you're going to complain about the drive's behaviour and tell the retailer you got a faulty Raptor? Without any proof? Without even believing youself that there's any fault in the drive?

HDD prices are high enough without egocentric jerks making false RMAs and causing unnecessary expences to involved parties. You bought the Raptor without thinking the matter through, so if there's actually nothing wrong on the drive, be a man and suffer the consequences of your own stupidity. We are not responsible from you actions, neither is the retailer or WD.

Or do you intend to "help" the drive fail? I hope you get caught for causing intentional damage to the drive and they deny any replacement or money back.

Of course IF you can return the drive to the retailer without making them believe there's any fault in the drive, then there's nothing wrong about it. I just wonder ...WHY would they agree to take the drive back on to their shelves?

202302[/snapback]

Lighten up Francis. I don't read that the poster intended to do anything other than ask the retailer for a refund based on the drive being too loud for his taste.

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Thanks Cadmonkey...! Yeah, maybe relax a bit, Whiic, ok? I never said the drive was faulty, and never will. I've told the retailer, whom I've been dealing with for many years, exactly why I'm returning it. They have no problem with it, so why do you? I've even said I'll pay a re-stocking fee, which they don't even charge, as a sign of my appreciation for their great service. I also understand they're not under any obligation to take back a non-faulty drive, but they will, and that's why I've spent thousands of dollars with them over the years, and will continue to do so. Do you feel a little silly about your personal attack/tantrum now whiic? ;)

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I think other members probably nailed part of it "the Indexing in XP and System Restore" where the system is automatically indexing and creating restore points behind the scenes even if the unit is at idle. Another part of it is probably "Thermal Recalibration", something that is quite normal for SCSI high RPM drives and even some high RPM ATA drives. Basically some drives are designed not to keep the head stack positioned in the same area on the platters, they'll move or "seek" every once and a while so air can circulate to those sections of the media as well. Thermal Recalibration can help reduce errors on the media. Wouldn't surprise me if a high RPM drive like the Raptor does this.

Just thought I'd throw that in . . .

Edited by hellyh72

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