vertical or horizontal mounted harddrive?

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Squallscloud

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I have a 2TB seagate 5800 RPM drive that is not a month old. At first it ran fine, then started loading extremely slow and started making clicking noises. Then failed altogether and would not appear in windows at all.
Then i attempted taking the drive and and booted while the drive was horizontal (it was vertical the entire time before) and it boots and runs exactly as it should while it is horizontal but if its is moved vertical it will not appear in windows in any way I've tried.

I can't seem to ignore this, as odd as it seems. Any input?
 

sergeikuzmin

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Just saw this thread.

Here is the link to Google paper:
http://labs.google.com/papers/disk_failures.pdf
(Failure Trends in a Large Disk Drive Population - Google Labs)

Unfortunately it says nothing about orientation, though there are interesting things about overestimating temperature dependency and some more.

Comments on that from engadget:
http://www.engadget.com/2007/02/18/massive-google-hard-drive-survey-turns-up-very-interesting-thing/
 

killtheradio

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I don't know much about all of this stuff except that it seems that when a hard drive starts crapping out, it starts working much better again after you mount it the opposite way (ie. changing it from horizontal to vertical or vice versa). I have had this experience with multiple hard drives. I think they do wear too much in one position for a length of time. When you change it's orientation, the previous friction wear is no longer an issue as the gravity is now pulling from another direction. Just my two cents on the matter.
 

rupertdarnall

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This is directly from Western Digital's web site



2.Mount the drive in the system


•Desktop Drives: The drive can be mounted in a standard 3.5"device bay. The drive can be mounted sideways, on end, or even upside down as long as the mounting screws are used properly. Use either the four bottom screws or four of the side mounting screws to support the drive. This will prevent vibration and provide additional electrical grounding.


http://wdc.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/981/p/227%2C291/session/L2F2LzEvc25vLzEvdGltZS8xMzA1NzMxNzgzL3NpZC9SalNuemd1aw%3D%3D


 

FxDx

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I remember google made another study on cooled and not cooled HDD, and it came out it's better NOT to cool your HDD. I don't know if they used individual HDD fans or rack cooking.

From my experience I can tell you that most components are design to work best in an 25°C enviroment. If you have 3 or more HDDs in the same place the middle one might get overheated and break faster. Aslo all components in a small box might heat one another, so a simple airflow might do wonders.
Apple G5 has the best airflow ( http://news.cnet.com/i/ne/p/photo/052805_g5b_500x397.jpg ). My case has just two 120mm @ 1200 RPM fans, one in front and one in back and I'm mostly satisfied. I keep my computer on 24/7, and HDDs don't stop and cool over night, so the temperature is constant all the time. I never had an HDD fail at random, yet.

Horizontal / vertical placement is based entirely on HDDs manufacturer specifications and build quality (and probably luck). I have two Segate Free Agents (external) HDDs (500Gb + 1500Gb) and the 1500Gb makes strange noice if placed verticaly (first month out of the box), while the other one works perfectly in any position, althow it's shape dose not permit horizontal placement, I had it in both positions over an year. Bigger HDDs might be more sensitive to this, since head positioning needs to be more and more precise.

Althow it shouldn't matter, I think horizontal is the safer option, based on the fact that most old computer cases have horizontal mounts for HDDs, and simply because this is the way HDD manufacturers think or thinked. Or maybe they just never bother to consider this small detail in the main HDD design, resulting in some lower quality HDDs that might make noices when used verticaly, exactly like mine dose.
 

kevin_76

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Hi all, i have 256 MB RAM and 2.4 GHz cpu and running win xp pro sp3, having seagate 160GB hdd IDE ..so my PC gets frequently low on virtual memory, it then starts using space from the hard disk as virtual memory..My hard disk was horizontally mounted with a cooling fan next to it..temperature did not exceed 40 degrees celcius..however at some time in use when i was installing a software for my camera: PMB..for sony cybershot..then the screen froze(virtual memory was low) and i had to reset the pc, unfortunately it froze after everytime it booted.

it froze even when i went on to reinstall windows..when i pressed enter..to install( on the blue screen).it froze..when i pressed R(to repair) it again froze)

the orange led for the hard disk remained constantly bright when the pc froze..and i heard a small mechanical sound like "tak" just before the system froze..so i turned th pc off, removed the ide cables,power cable(for the hdd) and ram..and re plugged them back in..but alas..the system again froze when the pc booted..so next i removed the hard disk and placed it vertically..and booted..and everything worked...but i had to reinstall windows(and could) because some files got corrupted when i did reset the pc several times..now its still in vertical position and working at 35-37 degrees celcius..hope this can help.

ps..when windows had installed hard disk sentinel reported 1 weak sector and 95 read/write errors.i will repair the weak sector with spinrite.
 

Searchin4truth

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>I believe that it does make a difference in mounting. As I understand that with the disc rotating at 7200 rpm it creates a small but powerful wind about this disc which provides a certain amount of lift to the disc. This makes for less contact of the two components to each other which in turn prolongs the lifespan of the hard drive. IF you remember turntables in the stereo world of the past. The turntables were made in such a way that the operator of this device could adjust the weight of the stylus that ran across the records.The goal was to have the least amount of weight riding on the record yet getting as much of the music off the record as possible without it skipping across the album. Since a hard disk has a very thin outer coating and this is what the data is recorded onto. The least amount of friction between these two parts means a longer life for the hard drive. Another bit of information I would be safe to say is that the hard drive was designed to be installed with one side being up so they could calculate the gravitational effects into it and it would be consistent in use..Another point is Western Digital's hard drive's instructions ask that you not stand the hard drive on end.Whether that is only for the time before it actually is installed and the warranty time starts ticking down I can't say. The ultimate for a manufacturer would be for the hard drives to function for the length of time that the warranty is in effect and soon after the end of warranty it would be financially advantageous if their product was to fail which would initiate the sale of an upgraded component to take the place of the dearly departed.
 

Searchin4truth

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It appears to me that with that particular install of the hard drive in the Dell it ended in failure.Then with the next one WD by this time had found out that they do fail when stood on end and dont want to be replacing any more than necessary if the expense is going to come out of their pockets. But if a buyer wants to install it into a home project and wants to install it at a 45 degree angle they probably don't care as long as he is buying. I would gladly install it horizontal if it means not having to have it go bad on me and lose time and money. It appears to me that some of the research and development is done by using the product that was sold yesterday, recording the performance of, while it is getting run through the mill by the public, refining it as we move forward and then replacing it with something new and shiny with hidden flaws and start the cycle all over again..
 
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