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Drive Clicking with AHCI under OS X


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#1
phnix

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I've had 10.5.1 up and running on a P5K-VM for a bit of time now, the machine is rock solid stable under os x and windows, both I have set up to use AHCI mode for this G33/ICH9 board.

What I've noticed in the past couple of days though is that under OS X (and ONLY OS X, can't get this to happen in windows whether the disk is being thrashed or not), I get this louder-than-normal intermittent clicking noise. Each one of these is associated with the activity light flaring up for a fraction of a second. Seagates SeaTools indicate nothing wrong with the drive under Windows. I can't get smartmontools to talk to the drive in AHCI mode under OS X either, so I can't tell if any of those parameters are changing alot around these events.

The clicks are not repeated, they're just intermittent, seconds go by between each one, and sometimes hours.

Anyone else experiencing something similar under AHCI mode? Also, is there a way to get the generic AHCI drivers to do some acoustic management of the drive. It's freaking loud when it's reading/writing, much quieter under Windows for the most part.

#2
phnix

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I know it's bizarre, and that's precisely why I have no clue why this would be happening...

In another slight twist: Raw Read Error Rates & Hardware ECC correction rates seem to be higher in OS X than in windows. Seek error rate stays somewhat low, but none are ever below threshold.

Could it just be that there's something bizarre going on with the region of the disk that OS X is contained within? It's either that, or drivers I would assume. The latter seems strange since nobody else is having something similar going on with AHCI...

*shrug*

If anyone has suggestions, they'd be much appreciated, otherwise I'll post here if I figure out any more.

Current SMART Data: http://www.hddstatus...cation=FDAD8457

(Using SpeedFan under windows)

#3
phnix

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So, I've somewhat come to the conclusion that this drive should just be replaced. I've tried IDE mode as opposed to AHCI under OS X and that gives me clicking as well (though the drive is much quieter). SeaTools finds no problem with it, and it still doesn't click under windows. The fact that it didn't do this during the first two weeks of usage under OS X, and that it has now started (with no driver changeouts), would suggest that this is hardware.

Any quick suggestions on imaging over to another drive of the same size?

I'm running EFI, so I know I could just use DiskUtility from the DVD to image over to the other drive and then install efi on the fresh drive, but I've also got the hybrid gpt/mbr thing going to allow booting of 32-bit windows. I'd prefer if I could just take everything including the partition map and have that copied. Would a tool like dd do so? ie:

dd if=/dev/disk0 of=/dev/disk1

I've not done this style of copy before with multiple concurrent partition maps :-P

#4
alsheron

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So, I've somewhat come to the conclusion that this drive should just be replaced. I've tried IDE mode as opposed to AHCI under OS X and that gives me clicking as well (though the drive is much quieter). SeaTools finds no problem with it, and it still doesn't click under windows. The fact that it didn't do this during the first two weeks of usage under OS X, and that it has now started (with no driver changeouts), would suggest that this is hardware.

Any quick suggestions on imaging over to another drive of the same size?

I'm running EFI, so I know I could just use DiskUtility from the DVD to image over to the other drive and then install efi on the fresh drive, but I've also got the hybrid gpt/mbr thing going to allow booting of 32-bit windows. I'd prefer if I could just take everything including the partition map and have that copied. Would a tool like dd do so? ie:

dd if=/dev/disk0 of=/dev/disk1

I've not done this style of copy before with multiple concurrent partition maps :-P


I have this exact same problem but I've got 3 hard drives in my computer and OSX is installed on a single drive. I suspect it may be something to do with the ACPI drivers or the SATA drivers but am not sure. It doesn't seem to actually cause a problem, but then it does make me a little Para that my OSX disk is going to suddenly die because it's almost the exact same noise I've heard when a hard drive dies.

Anyone else know something about this? I'm not even sure if it's my OSX drive that clicks!.....

#5
fxtentacle

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leopard 1.5.6 vanilla
ich7 mobo
i also get the clicking noise. but it only started after letting my pc run handbrake encodes for 2 days straight. so i would assume its thermal protection of the drive.
might also relate to your problems since mac os x uses the graphics card more than xp pro.
thus you get more heat in your case from the graphics card activity.
try doing burn-in tests on windows, for example sisoft sandra or 3dmark.

#6
staticwow

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leopard 1.5.6 vanilla
ich7 mobo
i also get the clicking noise. but it only started after letting my pc run handbrake encodes for 2 days straight. so i would assume its thermal protection of the drive.
might also relate to your problems since mac os x uses the graphics card more than xp pro.
thus you get more heat in your case from the graphics card activity.
try doing burn-in tests on windows, for example sisoft sandra or 3dmark.


I was running leopard 10.5.6 using Chameleon's DFE on a Dell Vostro and got the clicking sound ever since OS X was installed. Have been running OS X on it for 2 months now and this is a brand new computer. For a month, OS X saw the internal HD as an external hd/dvd drive did not work at all. Then a few days ago, everything was normal. I now have a 0200 fixed disk failure 0 message on start up.

I was googling when I came across this interesting post:
http://linuxblog.pan...ro-1500-laptop/

After the first 12 - 24 hours using this laptop, I became concerned about the constant hard disk clicking sound. From past experience this is an indication of a drive which is about to fail. After a bit of digging (and a timely post on Slashdot), I found an explanation and a solution. It appears that the power management is causing the hard drive head to load/unload its heads far too often, and as I suspected when I first noticed the noise, this will drastically reduce the life of the drive. The solution is described in Ubuntu launchpad Bug #59695 with more at the Thinkwiki. I implemented the fix from the comments here, here and here, and so far the clicking hasnt returned. For the record, this is a Hitachi HTS722016K9A300 model drive with firmware DCDOC54P. It is still unclear whether this bug is the fault of Ubuntu, Hitachi or someone else; Im just happy that this workaround seems to have fixed the problem.


Does anybody know if OSx86 has a similiar problem and if there is a work around for this?

#7
paratox

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this is no hackintosh problem, it also happens with orgininal macs. i know this problem since ubuntu. there was also a problem with load/unload cycles. modern harddrives should easy go up to 600.000 load/unload cycles and more before they will fail. i`ve heared some reports about 1.000.000 loads/unloads and more. if it is an old harddrive, it`s better to be carefully and maybe replace it before the maximal load/unload cycles. use this utility to check your "Load_Cycle_Count" (look for this line). i also look for a solution and found something that could maybe work: http://mckinlay.net.nz/hdapm/
i`m gonna test it after work and report my results.





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