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Date:      Fri, 1 Dec 2017 14:13:58 +0000
From:      Arthur Chance <>
To:        "Ronald F. Guilmette" <>,
Subject:   Re: Mount NTFS from "Live" system?
Message-ID:  <>
In-Reply-To: <>
References:  <>

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On 30/11/2017 21:10, Ronald F. Guilmette wrote:
> In message <>, 
> Arthur Chance <> wrote:
>>> I have -never- had any WD "black" drive fail on me, but I don't believe
>>> that I'll be buying any more of the "blue" ones.  (The fact that this one
>>> failed is rather inexplicable, because even though it was 3 years old,
>>> it had less than 1,000 power-on hours on it, and less than 200 power-ups.)
>> As a matter of curiosity, did you note the Start_Stop_Count value and
>> was it far higher than the power cycle count?
> Well, fortunately, I did not actually dismantle the drive or beat it with
> a hammer, as I usually do before I put a "bad" drive in my e-waste pile.
> So I was able to check, just now and get a precise answer to your question:
>     Start/stop count (raw):   709
>     Power Cycle count (raw):  235

Hmm, that's not it. After finding this

I think it was probably the Load_Cycle_Count. Whichever it was, I'd see
the relevant raw figure increasing at a ridiculous rate.

>> I've had WD Blue drives fail on me as well. I think it's because the
>> 2.5" Blue drives are aimed at laptops and their firmware has (or had)
>> the same aggressive power saving/head parking behaviour as the Green
>> drives, which interacts badly with Unix style regular syncs. I got round
>> that by installing smartmontools and using
>> 	-e standby,off
>> in smartd.conf to prevent the disk idling. It may seem paradoxical that
>> making the disk work more stops it failing...
> Wow!  These are all revelations to me!  Thank you!  I knew that the WD green
> drives were designed to idle themselves, and apparently my shiny new 4TB
> WD "My Passport" external USB 3.0 drive was set at the factory to do that
> also... an annoyance which I believe that I have now successfully disabled
> on that drive.
> What I never knew till today was that any of the "blue" drives would self-idle.
> Does that only happen on the 2.5" "laptop" ones?

I think it was only the 2.5" ones. Aggressive power save makes sense for
a laptop but not a desktop.

> Anyway, yea, I can see how this could possibly cause problems in the case of
> *nix systems.  (And it is annoying to me generally when my various tech toys
> start thinking that they are smarter than I am, and making decisions for me,
> especially those that I would not have made myself.)
> I'm gonna try to see if I can disable this "feature" on this specific drive
> and then see If I can maybe get it to complete the self test... which it did
> not do the last time I tried.
> But one would think/hope that even if the drive was set to auto-idle, it would
> at least have enough brains/courtesy not to fall asleep in the middle of a
> built-in firmware self-test.  But maybe not.  And maybe this drive is not
> actually broke after all.
> I'll be checking on that.
>> These days I mainly use SSDs so spin up/down isn't a problem.
> Quite so.
> However if your SSDs ever -do- start to spin, then you've got a real
> problem on your hands. :-)

An astronomer friend insists all SSDs rotate at ~0.0007 rpm. :-)

An amusing coincidence: log2(58) = 5.858 (to 0.0003% accuracy).

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