While researching the matter further, I came across the following article from here.
[quote]WD spokesman Paul Wooding said:
We have identified a small, isolated population of HGST Ultrastar disk drives demonstrating higher than expected failure rates when used in specific situations and use cases.
WD added: “While the Ultrastar product is meeting our expected field performance overall, we are addressing this specific issue, and working with applicable customers to identify and replace potentially affected drives. Western Digital is focused on delivering high quality products and supporting the needs of our customers.”[/quote]
Previously, I speculated that WD Gold hard drives appeared to be rebadged HGST Deskstar drives, which happen to be virtually identical to HGST Ultrastar drives.
The article mentions “higher than expected failure rates” but does not mention any specifics. This is far to vague to be meaningful, but the fact that a public statement was made about failing drives is pretty significant by itself.
Since a number of rebadged HGST drives have shown unusual symptoms, namely the aforementioned strange idle sounds, it stands to reason that there is much more to this story than meets the eye. Who are “applicable customers”? What is an “isolated population”? For that matter, what was wrong with the drives?
Something definitely smells fishy. In other words… Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.