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post #1 of 17 Old 05-23-2012, 04:46 AM - Thread Starter
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All,
I have a weird problem. Our main media center PC has a 120 GB system drive, 3 x 1 TB WD green drives and 1 x 2TB WD green drive. The backup system in the computer room is similar but it has a WD 1TB "black" drive for the system drive.
I level the drives manually by switcing the "recorder storage" drive from E, F, to G, to H as needed when a drive gets too close to full.
On the main MC PC, I recently switched to drive H (the 2 TB drive) and noticed if it was recording even one program, both live TV and recorded TV would stop, skip, and stutter every few seconds. Audio would break up.
Later the recordings were checked and they were fine but they could not be viewed while a recoding was in process on that drive. A file from a different drive would play OK.
I switched back to a 1TB drive and had no problem. I could record 4 HD programs while watching any one of them or while watching a different program on the drive.
I then did the same experiment on the backup system. Recording 4 HD programs to the 2TB drive while watching one of them or a different file on the same 2TB drive and everything was fine. No issues.
I ran the WD diagnostics on the "bad" 2TB drive in the main system and it reported no problems.
I defrag the drives weekly and checked the bad 2TB drive just after defragging. Just as bad. All recorded TV drives are formated for 64K clusters.
Lastly all 8 of the RTV drives in the two systems are WD GP drives but they are not all the exact same model. EARS, EADS, etc.
The backup PC is a bit more powerful but since the main mc pc works as well on the 1TB drives, I don't think it's a CPU problem.
Do I have a bad drive? It would be a bit of hassle but I could swap the two 2TB drives and see if the problem stays with the drive or with the system.
Any other suggestions? Better drive diagnostic software, for example?
Thanks,
Terry
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post #2 of 17 Old 05-23-2012, 09:04 AM
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Is the drive in question an advance format drive? Is it aligned on a 4k boundary? If it was partitioned and formatted on a AF aware OS, then it shouldn't be an issue. But if the drive was formatted on an older OS (e.g. W2k3 WHS) or possibly in a NAS or external enclosure then your poor performance could be a result of the drive having to read up to twice as many sectors for each sector's worth of data, and writes having to read then write two sectors.
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post #3 of 17 Old 05-23-2012, 09:20 AM
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I recently had a 1tb green drive give me all kinds of issues and the long and short test from WD passed. The drive would read perfectly but writes were so slow a 1gig file would take about 4 hours to transfer to the drive. It was out of warranty so I just tossed it. I was able to run the Seatools on the WD drives, maybe you could try them and see what they show.
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post #4 of 17 Old 05-23-2012, 09:46 AM
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I just had my 2TB WD Green drive fail on Monday. Currently waiting on a replacement. That's 3 failed WD drives in the past 2 years for me.

What does the SMART data on your WD drive show?

I'm confused too.

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post #5 of 17 Old 05-23-2012, 07:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdru View Post

Is the drive in question an advance format drive? Is it aligned on a 4k boundary? If it was partitioned and formatted on a AF aware OS, then it shouldn't be an issue. But if the drive was formatted on an older OS (e.g. W2k3 WHS) or possibly in a NAS or external enclosure then your poor performance could be a result of the drive having to read up to twice as many sectors for each sector's worth of data, and writes having to read then write two sectors.

It is possible that this drive was formatted in my old WHS V1 system (since updated to 2011). I will look into it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Quiring View Post

I recently had a 1tb green drive give me all kinds of issues and the long and short test from WD passed. The drive would read perfectly but writes were so slow a 1gig file would take about 4 hours to transfer to the drive. It was out of warranty so I just tossed it. I was able to run the Seatools on the WD drives, maybe you could try them and see what they show.

I'll try a large file copy and see how that goes. And Seatools for that matter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by djearl81 View Post

I just had my 2TB WD Green drive fail on Monday. Currently waiting on a replacement. That's 3 failed WD drives in the past 2 years for me.

What does the SMART data on your WD drive show?

Says all is well. I haven't studied the results but everything shows green.

Good ideas guys. Thanks for the comments. I'll report any findings.
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post #6 of 17 Old 05-23-2012, 08:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Transfering a 4GB .WTV file from a good 1TB drive to a different good 1TB drive ran at 65MBytes/sec. Pretty typical for green drives. Same speed from a good 1 TB drive to the bad 2TB drive. I'll try Seatools as soon as I get a chance. Then I may just swap the two 2TB drives. They have the same recorded tv files on them.
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post #7 of 17 Old 05-24-2012, 05:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Seatools says the drive is good. Did not run long tests yet since it warns it may hose the data.
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post #8 of 17 Old 05-24-2012, 10:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by terryj47 View Post

Seatools says the drive is good. Did not run long tests yet since it warns it may hose the data.

FWIW, I just had a WD 1T blue act up. No SMART indications, just started to drop off the explorer screen when doing large data transfers. Slowly transfered off important forders, then reformated, ran Errorchecker, and copied over 600G +. I'll be watching in over the next few weeks.
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post #9 of 17 Old 05-24-2012, 03:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Tomandbeth,
Anything is worth something!
What Errorchecker program are you using? Chkdsk/Windows-Properties-Error checking? I've run these. Along with WD and Seagate diagnostics.
Thanks, Terry
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post #10 of 17 Old 05-24-2012, 03:51 PM
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Yes. right click the drive-> properties-> tools -> check drive

Sounds like you got to the same tool using another route. Looks like you'll be doing a warranty if none of these are fixing the disk.
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post #11 of 17 Old 05-24-2012, 07:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomandbeth View Post

Yes. right click the drive-> properties-> tools -> check drive

Sounds like you got to the same tool using another route. Looks like you'll be doing a warranty if none of these are fixing the disk.

Yep. Thanks. I'll probably swap the drives in the two systems this weekend. The backup PC is easy to get at but the main MC PC is in a Lian-Li case and it is little more trouble to get at. But I would like resolve this. At least as to what component is bad. Later.
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post #12 of 17 Old 05-26-2012, 11:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Almost has to be a bad drive. I rechecked and it still has the problem so it didn't mysteriously go away. The 6th drive in the system is a WD 2.5TB Elements 2.5TB drive. I can record and play back to it at least recording one program to it and watching one program on it. And this is a USB drive.
Can anyone confirm the the 2TB WD Elements drive if cracked open has a normal WD green drive it it? These do go on sale from time to time. Seems like the drive company supply side has opened up a little but most of the drives are going to the manufacturers. 2TB drives at Fry's and Newegg are still going for like $120. And for media, I would prefer a green drive from WD or the other mfgrs.
Thanks
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post #13 of 17 Old 05-26-2012, 11:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by terryj47 View Post

Almost has to be a bad drive. I rechecked and it still has the problem so it didn't mysteriously go away. The 6th drive in the system is a WD 2.5TB Elements 2.5TB drive. I can record and play back to it at least recording one program to it and watching one program on it. And this is a USB drive.
Can anyone confirm the the 2TB WD Elements drive if cracked open has a normal WD green drive it it? These do go on sale from time to time. Seems like the drive company supply side has opened up a little but most of the drives are going to the manufacturers. 2TB drives at Fry's and Newegg are still going for like $120. And for media, I would prefer a green drive from WD or the other mfgrs.
Thanks

I still prefer the Samsung drives. I had enough BS with WD over the years. Never ever did a RMA with Samsung. NewEgg had the 2TB's Samsungs for $99 last week. Check Techbargains.com for the deals.
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post #14 of 17 Old 05-30-2012, 05:53 AM - Thread Starter
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I've copied all of the recorded tv programs on the "bad" WD 2 TB drive to a backup drive. The bad 2TB drive in the main mc PC is a WD EARS. It shows up as an IDE drive in the WD diagnostics. It obviously is a SATA. The other 1TB WD drives show as SATA.
I suspect a AF drive issue. This drive could have been set up in my old WHS V1 system. Can anyone advise whether the jumper should be in or out? I plan to delete the partition and repartition and format with 64KB clusters. The 2TB drive in the backup PC is an EADS drive.
BTW, I have an old Maxtor 1TB drive and connected up with a USB-SATA adapter dongle and it supports recording four HD programs while watching a recorded program already on the drive. No issues. And this is a slow drive!
Any advise on this issue appreciated.
Thanks,
Terry
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post #15 of 17 Old 05-30-2012, 05:58 AM
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Its possible that your bios is configured to handle some of the SATA ports as IDE ports for compat with some older systems. It may be possible that your 4 other drives are on "normal" ports, and the new drive is on one of those compat ports.

You can usually turn that compat mode off in the bios, i would go and check.

If you suspect its an AF issue, you should *not* use the Jumper, instead you should just format it on a system thats AF-aware.
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post #16 of 17 Old 05-30-2012, 01:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nevcairiel View Post

Its possible that your bios is configured to handle some of the SATA ports as IDE ports for compat with some older systems. It may be possible that your 4 other drives are on "normal" ports, and the new drive is on one of those compat ports.

You can usually turn that compat mode off in the bios, i would go and check.

If you suspect its an AF issue, you should *not* use the Jumper, instead you should just format it on a system thats AF-aware.

Thanks. I didn't think of that. I have seen this settings in some of my systems. I will check that first then tear it down and check for the jumper. Bit of a pain since the drives are housed in a 3-drive cage in the Lian-Li case.
If nothing shows up as wrong, I'll repartition and format in the W7 MC system this weekend and see if the problem persists.
If this drive was set up in my WHS V1 system, I don't trust a quick format. Full format will take some time.
Take care.
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post #17 of 17 Old 06-02-2012, 12:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, turns out the bios in this system does not have an IDE mode setting for the drives. All drives are set the same. Basically auto everything. Yesterday I tore into it and there was no AF jumper on the drive either. But-- I must have formatted this drive in an XP (using a USB dongle) or my WHS-V1 (at that time) server.

I deleted the partition, recreated it and did a full format using 64K clusters. My guess is that the system I used to format it in used 512 byte sectors rather than 4K. I though it needed the jumper but maybe that is only for systems that ARE AF aware.

I tested it this morning and was recording 3 HD channels while watching a recorded program. No stutter. No sound dropouts. I also tried watching one of the recordings a few "skips back" from "live TV" time. Again no problem.

The drive has always worked but I guess we just never watched a program on it while it was recording to it.

Thanks for all of the suggestions. I hope this info helps someone else.

Edit: Oh yeah. The WD diagnostics still report it as an IDE drive.
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