I transferred my large music collection to new MBL and files have become corrupted...help please

Hi all,

A few days ago I purchased and set-up MBL 3 terabyte edition.  Everything seemed to be working well.

I transferred my large music library (175 gigs of lossless WMA files) over to the public music folder.  The transfer took about five and a half hours.

Once the copied files had been set-up in my media center (another three hour process) I fired my Hi-Fi up and listened.  It became quickly apparent that there had been some kind of corruption to the music files.  About twenty percent of my tracks had between one and four seconds of  horribly loud, screeching distortion added.  Seriously loud enough to blow tweeters at moderate listening levels.

I checked my original files and found them to be in perfect shape.

So, I investigated and actually repeated the whole process two more times to help weed out any possible cause(s).  The only constant in the whole thing (I changed all cables, router, and used a backup copy of the original files) is the new MBL drive.

Can anybody think of a reason the drive would alter the WMA files before, during, or after the copying.  The music is unplayable and I have to find out why before I attempt a fourth time.

I may try one more time by bypassing the router and hooking my computer up directly to the MBL drive.  

If it helps I cannot update past version: 02.11.09-053 of the firmware.  I get the whole 10% before it fails thing going.  

Finally, as an aside, I too have read a great number of posts regarding the reliability and firmware problems of this product.  My only contribution to the discussion would be to express my hope that Western Digial will post a web page detailing what is happening and, more importantly, what realistically can be done.  I don’t fault them for having issues, I just want to know what’s going on.



It is EXTREMELY unlikely that files are corrupted without the user being told immediately.   There are so many checks and balances in network transfers that I’d stop just short of calling it impossible… and I’ve been in IT / Networking for two decades.

Sure, there are conditions that could yield corrupted files (network breakdown during a file transfer or file update for example) – but the user would be immediately told this by the host computer that something went wrong.  If there are, indeed, problems that the user is NOT informed of, well, that’s a whole other issue.

And for a simple file copy, no – just not at all likely for a file to look like it’s been copied but not actually survive the process.

Now I’ll take one pass here.  I know NOTHING about how WebDAV works (and you can read the WebDAV FAQ:


… to see if that’s even an issue)

The only way to check to see if that’s actually happening is:

1> Copy the file to the MBL.

2> Copy the file BACK to the PC using a different name.

Use a “Checksum” program to see if the checksums are different.


Thanks for the quick reply.

Early this morning I set up a FTP connection across my local network and resent the files.   Perhaps using the copy command through Windows 7 on so many files is causing the issue.

I have not entered the new music folder into my music software (J RIver Media Center) yet so as not to tag the files.  After listening to a few tracks (many more to listen to) I have not found an issue.  I plan on copying the entire folder on the hard drive to one with a new name.  Then, if I find any corrupted files after tagging, I can compare it (them) to the original copy on the MBL drive.

Is there an easy, fast way to copy the entire music folder (175 gigabytes) into another folder on the MBL external drive?  The traditional copy/paste from Windows 7 states that it will take over 17 hours.

Also, thanks for the link to the checksum tool.  I am wondering if it can check multiple files simultaneously, or if it is limited to one at a time.  It would be great to be able to check if entire folders (albums) are identical.



The volume of files you’re copying should be irrelevent.   I’ve copied terrabytes in one shot and never had corruption… 

If you’re familiar with Linux command line, you can go into the MBL via SSH and copy the files around that way…  

Checksum tool can do multiple files if you wildcard the command

md5sums *.mp3  or whatever.

Well, for anybody interested.

I hooked up my computer directly to the MBL with a direct ethernet cable (thereby taking my home network completely out of the equation) and copied the music (all 175 gigabytes) again.

Now, here’s where I did something different.  I immediately copied all of my new music (‘Music Folder One’) into a second folder (‘Music Folder Two’).  

Leaving ‘Music Folder One’ untouched I then imported ‘Music Folder Two’ into my music software (J River Media Center).  After the import, with all tagging done, I began to listen.  Once again there are a bunch of corrupt music files scattered about.

I noted the instances and then played the same indivual tracks from  ‘Music Folder One’.  The ‘Music Folder One’ tracks exhibit the exact same corruption/distortion as ‘Music Folder Two’.  Consequently, I am confident that my music software is not corrupting the files.  

My only conclusion can be that the MLB drive is not copying the files faithfully.  I don’t know why, and I cannot afford to take any more time to try to figure it out.  It’s too bad, I really could use its feature set and I’ve been a big fan of Western Digital for a lot of years.

So, in the end I will return the unit and pick up another type of hard drive.


Well, my opinion is that, unless you “get to the bottom” of the problem, you may wind up having the same problem with ANY device you use.

Have you tried doing a diagnostic test on the drive to see if the internal HD is failing?

I haven’t run a diagnostic on my internal hard drive (although it’s probably a good idea in any case). 

I am fairly confident it isn’t a bad internal hard drive because, on my first two attempts, I copied the music files from my existing 500 gigabye music external drive.  The internal drive contains a backup I made a year ago.  Both sources don’t exhibit any corruption/distortion of the files.

It is only after the transfer (from either source) that the files are damaged.

Of course, you’re right that I can’t pinpoint the exact cause.  I have only narrowed it down (and if I’ve missed something I’d love to learn what) to the MBL.

Thank you for following along Tony.  The advice is very much appreciated.


Sorry, I think I wasn’t clear – I mean running a diagnostic on the MBL’s internal drive via the MBL menu.

I ran a quick one yesterday.  Today, I’ll run a full one and let you know what happens.


Been running the Full Scan for a little over 3 hours now and it’s now at 40% done.  They wern’t kidding when they said it would take awhile.

Anyhow, I’ve been thinking that, if there are errors on the MLB hard drive, and those error can be corrected, should I keep the drive.  I have some concerns about a brand new hard disk drive that ships from the factory with problems.

I am intrested to see the Full Scan results.


Did you try the checksum tool on the two file sets you mentioned above?

Hey, check this…


read post 16 in that thread.  Sound familiar?

That’s an interesting link.  I discounted that J River was the cause after ‘Music Folder One’ exhibited the problem.  I will look further into the J River / NAS link. 

I occurs to me that, each time I’ve heard the white noise initially, it was playing through the J River software.  It is only afterwards that I’ve heard the same distortion through another media player (Windows Media Center). 

My assumption was that the transfer caused the problem when the problem may be related to playing anything through the J River software (because, even if you listen to a single track outside the media library it may be tagging the file automatically).

After the scan finishes on the MBL I will have to scout out a few more corrupted tracks.  Once done, I can play them from ‘Music Folder One’ without J River and find out if it is J River causing this after all.



Well, that was anticlimactic.  The MBL passed the diagnostic with a very simple message, something along the lines of ‘passed’.

Anyhow, I am going to now test the theory that J River is causing the corruption by first playing a song through J River until I hear some distortion (Music Folder Two).  Then I will play the same song (Music Folder One, which has never seen J River before) through Windows media player.  If ‘Music Folder One’ has no corruption then I know its not the drive but the J River software. 

Wish me luck.