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Windows 7: Problem with many/large HDDs

23 May 2011   #1

Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit
Problem with many/large HDDs

Windows 7 Professional.
Mounted in the case is 1 80MB and 1 300MB drive. SATA.
I have SATA power and datacables hanging out the back of the case.
I also have an (open) external USB 2 drive.
I have a number of data drives (with backup copies of each drive) which I usually plug into the USB box when I need them. These are 1TB and 2TB (partitioned into 1TB).

Usually, using the USB box is succesful. I get 28MB/s transfer speed writing to the drives. Although sometimes I can see the drive in "Safely remove hardware", the drive does not appear in Windows Explorer until I run Partition Wizard. I don't have to do anything, just run it and then exit.

However, plugging in a SATA drive (after powering down) firstly makes Windows take ages to boot.

Then when trying to transfer data it starts off fine and then grinds almost to a standstill, saying it will take 3 hours to transfer 4MB of data.

Needless to say, the same happens if the drive is mounted in the case. It was this problem that prompted me to make them "external" drives.

I can't see any difference in the problem if the drives are Samsung, Seagate or Western Digital.

The problem can occur using Windows Explorer and Microsoft SyncToy.

Sometimes problem does not occur.

I need to have 2 drives plugged in when making a copy as a backup.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 May 2011   #2

7 Ultimate x64

What do you mean by, "sata cables hanging out the back of the case? You're using them or not?

You may have bad data cables, a bad hard drive (or two) or you may be in PIO mode? To fix the latter:

How old are the drives?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2011   #3

Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit

BTW the above link no longer works.

All drives in DMA mode.

The drives vary from 3 months to 3 days old.

I usually use the USB box when accessing my "external" drives because they can be mounted and dismounted without shutting down. But when I want to backup one of these drives, I plug the backup drive in to the SATA cables hanging out the back of the box. They hang out so I don't have to open the case each time.

Bad cables: I have 2 sets of SATA cables. I will mark them and deliberately alternate, to see if that makes a difference.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 May 2011   #4

7 Ultimate x64

Sounds very similar to this thread: Startup Extremely Slow When External Hard Drive Attached

The pio thread: Make PIO Go! | Overclockers Not sure what's going on?

Are the drives uniquely named?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2011   #5

Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit

re Similar thread, I also boot and then switch on the USB external drive. If plugged into SATA port, I just live with the longer boot time.

All the drives have unique drive letters, I allocate drive letters when I set up the drives with Partition Wizard. Don't have enough to run out of drive letters yet.

The link to overclockers is workinh now, but all the drives are in DMA mode anyway.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2011   #6

7 Ultimate x64

Maybe it's time to upgrade? I didn't want to say anything at first, but boy has it been a long time since I've even heard the term, "single core", let alone been fortunate enough to meet an actual owner of one! And you're running 1 big phat GB of RAM... it's like Christmas!

... just teasing you, no ill will meant.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2011   #7

Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit

Time to upgrade my profile!! Running 2.7GHz dual-core with 2GB RAM (and flashdrive ReadyBoost).

Update Eventually found out that the PSU just couldn't handle that many drives. Upgraded PSU and problem solved
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Problem with many/large HDDs

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