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Windows 7: External HDD Sudden Slow Performance


08 Feb 2011   #1

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit
 
 
External HDD Sudden Slow Performance

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?

Thanks.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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08 Feb 2011   #2

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit
 
 

I just copied a file from the external to the internal. It's taking about 13-mins for a 350MB file. This used to take 45-secs to 1-min, max.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Feb 2011   #3

vista home premium 64 bit sp2
 
 
Hard Drive

Hello can you tell us if the hard drive makes any wierd noise's
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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09 Feb 2011   #4

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by americancritic View Post
Hello can you tell us if the hard drive makes any wierd noise's
No weird noises, no.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Feb 2011   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Try checking the disk for errors through Windows. Go to My Computer, right click the drive, and go to Tools, then Error Checking. If it requires you to restart the computer to do the scan, then do so.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Feb 2011   #6

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit
 
 

It looks like it's the HDD itself. (I was hoping it was a software problem and easily fixed.) I unplugged from my desktop and tried it on my wife's laptop. Laptop fared no better. In fact, I couldn't even get the Error Checking to start inspecting the drive. Oh well. I guess drive's are cheap these days.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Feb 2011   #7

MS Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by mkadam68 View Post
It looks like it's the HDD itself. (I was hoping it was a software problem and easily fixed.) I unplugged from my desktop and tried it on my wife's laptop. Laptop fared no better. In fact, I couldn't even get the Error Checking to start inspecting the drive. Oh well. I guess drive's are cheap these days.
Dear mkadam68,
May i suggest two things, before you trash the external HD?

1) Download Crystal disk info and Acronis Disk Monitor to check the health of the extn. HDD Link : Crystal Dew World

Download data backup and recovery software for Windows/Linux servers, networked desktop PCs and laptops (Acronis)

2) I would suggest you buy a new usb 2.0 cable and use it as a connection to check download speeds! We can never tell how and when these cables give up the ghost! You also mentioned some actuator sounds which were not there before!

Hoping for the best,
Dr.Sreedhav
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Feb 2011   #8

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit
 
 

Thanks, sreedhav, for the links.

I had already used another cable instead of the current one, and nothing changed. The drive itself is ~3 years old or so. So, on one hand, it's surprising it died. On the other, HDD's fail.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 External HDD Sudden Slow Performance




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