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Thread: Hard Drive Clicking

  1. #1
    dell101 NNTP User

    Default Hard Drive Clicking

    I've tried various Linux distros including Opensuse, PCLOS, Ubuntu and generally have the same problem with all of them when installed in my Dell laptop.

    Constant hard drive clicking and fan activity.

    I've tried installing systems on ext3,ext2, noatime and various power configurations.

    When I use Windows XP, I don't have those problems. The hard drive is quiet, the fan has minimum activity.

    I would like to use Opensuse, but the noises are hard to accept.

    If anyone has any suggestions to reduce the hard drive activity, I'm willing to try it...

    Thanks.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Hard Drive Clicking

    I had the same issue after installing openSUSE on my MSI Wind. I believe the hard drive clicking is caused by a power saving feature which moves the head to the rest position after a very short interval of non-use. A fix which seems to work is to issue the command:

    sudo /sbin/hdparm -B 254 /dev/sda

    (assuming your hard drive is designated sda) which will keep the hard drive spinning. If this works, I refer you to my post of 25-Sep-2008 called "Installing openSUSE 11.0 on MSI Wind U100 -- Report" for a little script which will let you forget about the issue.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Brazil
    Posts
    2,937

    Default Re: Hard Drive Clicking

    I'm typing from memory, but, IIRC, last time I updated my laptop there was an optional fix for this in the update/11.0 repository.

  4. #4
    dell101 NNTP User

    Default Re: Hard Drive Clicking

    apm04,

    I tried your script. At first, it seemed to fix the problem, but after about 10 minutes, it started to click noticeably again and the fan cycles quite a few times on low speed.

    As I wrote before, these problems rarely happen on Windows.

    Is there anyway that I could prevent the logs from writing and see if that reduces the problem?
    If so, how could I do this?

  5. #5
    _ NNTP User

    Default Re: Hard Drive Clicking

    > If so, how could I do this?

    A month ago there was a person here asking the same kind of question. He was
    obviously a hacker, made a lot of changes and reported back with his findings:

    see: http://forums.opensuse.org/applicati...-activity.html

  6. #6

    Default Re: Hard Drive Clicking

    For greater clarity are you talking about a single click every so often (the "power saving" feature) or hard drive "thrashing" where the drive head moves around a lot for seeks and writes? The command will effectively turn off hard drive power saving features and keep the disk spinning which should eliminate the periodic single click effect but would not affect hard drive thrashing in which case you will need to investigate the logging issues referred to in the previous post.

    Does typing the command into a console eliminate the hard drive clicking for the session while the script in Autostart apparently ceases to work after 10 minutes or so? If the console command works but the Autostart script does not (after 10 min) did you also edit /etc/sudoers so that the user does not need to enter a password to execute the command/script?

  7. #7
    dell101 NNTP User

    Default Re: Hard Drive Clicking

    I went through the various posts. Did not have any lasting results.

    After Googling the problem, seems a lot of people have this problem with various distros.

    I went back to Windows XP, hard drive is quiet, system stays cool. The fan only turns on once per hour at the most. I've got a feeling Linux will wear out my laptop before Windows will.

    I'll try Linux again after a year...

  8. #8
    grumpy NNTP User

    Default Re: Hard Drive Clicking

    > I went back to Windows XP, hard drive is quiet, system stays cool. The
    > fan only turns on once per hour at the most. I've got a feeling Linux
    > will wear out my laptop before Windows will.
    >
    > I'll try Linux again after a year...


    That is right--_fall_ for that collusion between software and hardware
    manufactures to kill Linux. They work together so that hardware temperature and
    active cooling can be controlled rationally. But, then wrap all the control
    hooks into secret, proprietary code that they SELL at inflated prices to folks
    willing to put up with their monopolistic practices.

    Meanwhile, given enough time some good openSource hacker will reverse engineer
    the designs and give us quiet laptops with longer lasting batteries, also.

    The power saving guys have made great advances in the last couple of years--no
    thanks to you, probably. Instead of running back to Bill's Nose Thing (NT) or
    one its siblings, try finding a "tip jar" and drop some change in it to
    encourage the soldiers in this battle to keep hacking!

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