I'm running a Windows 7, Phenom II X2 545 Dual-Core 3GHz AM3 machine on an ASUS M4A88TD motherboard with 4GB of memory. It has a 300GB internal HDD that is used for the OS, and all applications. It is connected via USB 2 (on the motherboard) to an external Micronet Fantom 1TB HDD. I use this drive for all documents & media (photos, pix, & video). Other users do not have access to administrator-level accounts, but did use the machine throughout the day (but not the external HDD).
I got this computer about 2-months ago, and all has been fine during that time.
This morning, all was working well. I came home from work and installed some Windows updates. I launched a TV program from the drive and the external drive was extremely slow, almost as if Windows Media Player had crashed/frozen.
I tried several other files, but did not succeed. Then decided to restore the system to about 4-days ago, thinking it was the updates, but this has made no difference.
Video files take 10-secs or more to open & begin playing whereas before, they were near instantaneous. Windows Media Player cannot play videos (avi) without stuttering and often behaves as if it has crashed. iTunes also takes a long time to open & play video and music. Music files sound a bit off, but play without stutter.
I can hear 2-3 constant, small movements of HDD actuator arm activity from inside the enclosure, followed by silence, then more movements, then silence, etc...
I noticed my wife had placed some objects behind the computer, hitting some chords. I moved them, unplugged them, plugged them back in, and it has not made a difference. I ran Disk Manager, it sees the disk. I updated the drivers
, but they were already up-to-date.
The manufacturer's website doesn't seem to have any diagnostic utilities available (it looks like they're a Mac vendor--originally what I had purchased the HDD for).
Ideas? Suggestions? Experience?