Wednesday, 8 December 2010

SATA disk beeping

I've never heard a hard drive beep!  Until yesterday.

I just yoinked a free second hand Inspiron 9400 laptop for a media centre, sans disk.  I purchased the cheapest SATA 2.5" disk I could find - 320Gb for about $50.  I started installing MythBuntu and then the drive started clicking and beeping, and the installation froze!  It was the usual crunch of a failing drive with an intermittent "beep" (much like the electrical interference noise you sometimes get in laptops / desktops).  The drive worked fine in a USB caddy.

At a complete loss, I turned to the oracle (Google) and found this.  Strangely, some drives are sensitive to the 5V power supply (it was the cheapest drive I could find).

Up until then I had been working on battery, so I plugged in the power, rebooted, and the drive worked flawlessly.  Hopefully it won't do the same when I loose power...

update: The problem seemed to be getting worse, so I returned the drive under warranty.  With the Christmas break I'll have to wait until they get back to me...
update: The drive was returned, and Seagate replaced it under warranty.  For the same price I purchased a 320Gb Western Digital Caviar Black 2.5".  It is infinitely quieter (I can't hear it with my head pressed to the laptop).

Live and Learn!

1 comment:

Iain said...

It never rains but it pours! I just put a SATA disk from a Dell Precision into a USB enclosure and it started beeping and clicking! Luckily the enclosure came with
a dual-usb socket for extra juice!

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