Question regarding the FAN used by WD My Cloud EX2


#61

jojan wrote:

Hi,

 

This may not be the correct way, but if you access the ssh shell, there is a utility called fan_control. You can use it to manually set the RPM and then the fan will start

Already been discussed. Have you read this thread’s page 4? ->  http://community.wd.com/t5/WD-My-Cloud-EX2/Question-regarding-the-FAN-used-by-WD-My-Cloud-EX2/m-p/802561#M1442


#62

Sorry I just finished reading the complete thread.

I believe, we can write a python script, which will use the fan_control utility to read the temparature periodically and use the same utility to set fan speed, based on our required temparature limits. This should not be difficult.


#63

I read this whole post shortly after getting my MyCloud EX2 because the fan never came on and it was getting very hot. The drives were at 52 degrees centigrade. I decided to log a ticket with WD just in case something had changed. Nothing had, they had me reset the EX2 as if this were a brand new problem with them. They wanted to pursue the issue but I said they should read this thread and they would see it is an ongoing (most likely design/software) issue. BTW I ran the self test and you could feel the fan come on so it is not like it is broken. I came up with a solution that works for me. Look on amazon for “AC Infinity AI-MPF80A Quiet 80mm USB Fan”. This fan has cushion mounted feet and fits perfectly on top of the unit. You can power it from USB or AC and short of getting right on top of it you cannot hear it. I ran another full back up, beating the drives up for a couple hours and never saw the drives go above 34 degrees centigrade.


#64

I just bought a WD My Cloud EX2 8TB and am having the same temperature issue.

I also logged into SSH and was able to manually turn on and off my fan with the commands provided by others.

I currently have a 7 inch fan blowing on the drive to keep the heat down and just ordered a “AC Infinity AI-MPF80A Quiet 80mm USB Fan” per the previous post.

I really like this drive and the features, but customer service is falling way short on this temperature issue.  

.


#65

Hi all,

Would just be possible that the WD EX2 designers deem a distance (from the max 60C) of about 10C a safe limit?

Could somebody explain why the vent activation above 50C is dangerous if the Red disks are designed to operate up to 70C?

Thanks…


#66

You may be correct that a 10 degree cushion for the drives is acceptable

However the spec sheet in the user’s manual for the box states the operating temperature for the device should be between 5C and 35C.  Maybe that range is referring to the board temperature inside the unit and not the drives themselves.     Maybe the documentation should specify which temperature it is referring to.   Or maybe it is obvious to some that this is the system temperature .vs. drive temperature since several different drives can be inserted into this box each having differenct operating temperature ranges.    Well then there should be a notation  to refer to the specific drive documentation.

However, even if the documented 5C to 35C range was referring to the board temperature, I have just turned off my external fan and within 15 minutes (with little drive activity) the board temperature rose from 28C to 47C.  This is over 35C and the fan didn’t turn on.  Also my Hard drives went from 28C to 37C.   So even an average of all 3 numbers is past the 35C max.

There are many "maybe"s above and throughout this discussion.   The only post I saw from WD said basically the drive is opererating as it should.    I would have hoped for for a better explaination with the seemingly high temperature readings and documentation stating something different.

Maybe some users are fine with “don’t worry about it, it’s fine”,  but others like myself would like a slightly more detailed explaination.     There are 6 speeds to the fan.  It just seems odd that as the temperature increases,   the fan never turns on, not even at the lowest speed.

Again I can manually turn it on using fan_control, so I know it isn’t broke.


#67

JerPa wrote:

 

However the spec sheet in the user’s manual for the box states the operating temperature for the device should be between 5C and 35C.  Maybe that range is referring to the board temperature inside the unit and not the drives themselves.     Maybe the documentation should specify which temperature it is referring to.   Or maybe it is obvious to some that this is the system temperature .vs. drive temperature since several different drives can be inserted into this box each having differenct operating temperature ranges.    Well then there should be a notation  to refer to the specific drive documentation.

The operating temperature (5C-35C) as specified in EX2’s spec sheet to me means the obvious - the ambient temperature range in which the device can be safely operated (i.e. the temp of the room in which the EX2 is kept). And that interpretation matches with Bill’s, who’s the chief moderator of this forum ( http://community.wd.com/t5/WD-My-Cloud-EX2/Question-regarding-the-FAN-used-by-WD-My-Cloud-EX2/m-p/799387#M1347 ).

What really matters about understanding the temperature range in which the fan kicks in is by looking at the file (via SSH) where that criteria is stored…which is in /etc/fan_temperature.txt. The contents of that file shows:

TEMPERATURE_STOP = “39”
TEMPERATURE_LOW = “45”
TEMPERATURE_HIGH = “49”

From that I would guess that the fan stops when temp drops to 39C (and stays below 39C)…and that temp to me implies the temp inside the system, as measured by the board’s sensors. Obviously the system temp will be higher than the room’s ambient temp because of the heat generated by the drive and other electronics. I am just not sure how you could tell that the board temp rose to 47C on your EX2 once you turned off your external fan…I see no way to tell the board temp…or even the system temp. I only see it says ‘Normal’ for me in the dashboard’s Diagnostics window. I do have a firmware that’s slightly stale at this point, so it is possible that maybe in the newer firmwares they actually show an actual temp value for the system.

BTW, I am not sure if the fan’s threshold’s can be manipulated by modifying that file…as I don’t have the time to tinker with it…but even if it can be, be aware that on reboot those values will be reset back to the defaults.

Oh, and just to be clear, I do not think there is any issue with the fan control. Yes, that’s my personal opinion but to me it seems the fan operates well within range. The one nice-to-have feature which I talked about almost 11 months ago ( http://community.wd.com/t5/WD-My-Cloud-EX2/Question-regarding-the-FAN-used-by-WD-My-Cloud-EX2/m-p/796021#M1311 ) would have been to give the users control over the fan via EX2’s dashboard…but I think WD doesn’t want to take any chance by ceding that control to some user who may inadvertently damage the unit by choosing sub-optimal range. That’s my guess. I know QNAP lets users have control of their NAS’ fan, but by default it manages the fan - and I personally prefer my fan to be system-managed, rather than me try to second guess WD engineer’s choices. At least on this aspect (there are other aspects where I HAVE decided to override WD design :slight_smile: ).


#68

I agree with Cybernut1’s reasoning as to why users should not have access to the fan.

I am running the latest version of the firmware (1.05.36) and it still only shows “Normal” for the system Temperature.

But go into SSH and run “fan_control -g 0”. It shows 3 temperatures; Current, HD0 and HD1.   If you are not convinced “Current” means “board” temperature there is another command called “temperature_monitor”.  Per the help, -b will get the board temperature and -c 0 or 1 will will get the HD temperatures.  There are no other options.

That is how I knew the exact temperatures when I turned off my external fan.

Cybernut1, does your fan at least turn on when the board temperature reaches 45  or some other higher temp?

From all these posts, I believe everyone is saying that the fan never turns on unless done manually, even when one person pushed the temperatures well into the danger zone.

I think it is a coding bug.   If the fan at least turned on to try to remove some heat, I would agree that WD’s logic may be fine, but why doesn’t the fan ever turn on? 


#69

JerPa - I believe your fears are accurate…that the fan NEVER really turns on. There seems to be some bug, I think now too after testing mine, thanks in large part to the commands you cited.

Here’s what I did first. I have only one hard drive in my EX2 (I run in JBOD) and two USB hard drives connected. I know both the internal and one of the two USB drives, which is a WD drive, always goes into sleep mode after 10 mins, but the other USB drive, a Hitachi one, never falls asleep and so there is always a noise from that drive constantly spinning. So I ran a command to force sleep all 3 (just to be sure)…which is hdparm -y (i.e. hdparm -y /dev/sda, hdparm -y /dev/sdb and hdparm /dev/sdc). After I issue these commands all go into forced sleep (they wake up when you access them).

But before I put them to sleep, I ran ‘fan_control -g 0’ and ‘temperature_monitor -b’ and ‘temperature monitor -c 0’ (since I have just one internal drive. And yes, running them validated your point that the Current temp from fan control is indeed the board temp. So I got the value 53C for board temp and 41C for my sole hard drive.

After getting these readings, I then put the drives to sleep, and the noise from around the EX2 came to immediate halt - not the slightest sound of a fan running. Then I took a second reading (with the drives shut asleep) of the teps and I got the same values again - including 53C for board.

So…I know that in the system_init script (the initialization script that runs when EX2 is turned on), the fan control is run based on the  /etc/fan_temperature.txt file. And according to that file, whose contents I already cited, the fan’s start/stop threshold is 39C. Regardless of whether that is the board temp or the hard drive temp, I was getting readings higher than 39C for both but still the fan was not running. Which does seem to confirm your thoughts…that the fan never comes on automatically even when it breaches WD’s threshold.

The thing is though, IF we want WD to formally take this up as an issue, we cannot just discuss it here. Someone needs to either submit a support request or call support and have them open a support request. I am not feeling like it :slight_smile: Will someone else please do the honors - and then point them to this post and the previous post by JerPa. There’s enough material evidence in these two posts to make a case that the fan seems to be just for cosmetic purposes only…it never seems to get triggered. If you, JerPa, wish to open the support case…or someone else willing to volunteer, that’ll be great.


#70

Cybernut1 wrote:


JerPa wrote:

 

However the spec sheet in the user’s manual for the box states the operating temperature for the device should be between 5C and 35C.  Maybe that range is referring to the board temperature inside the unit and not the drives themselves.     Maybe the documentation should specify which temperature it is referring to.   Or maybe it is obvious to some that this is the system temperature .vs. drive temperature since several different drives can be inserted into this box each having differenct operating temperature ranges.    Well then there should be a notation  to refer to the specific drive documentation.


The operating temperature (5C-35C) as specified in EX2’s spec sheet to me means the obvious - the ambient temperature range in which the device can be safely operated (i.e. the temp of the room in which the EX2 is kept). And that interpretation matches with Bill’s, who’s the chief moderator of this forum ( http://community.wd.com/t5/WD-My-Cloud-EX2/Question-regarding-the-FAN-used-by-WD-My-Cloud-EX2/m-p/799387#M1347 ).

 

What really matters about understanding the temperature range in which the fan kicks in is by looking at the file (via SSH) where that criteria is stored…which is in /etc/fan_temperature.txt. The contents of that file shows:

TEMPERATURE_STOP = “39”
TEMPERATURE_LOW = “45”
TEMPERATURE_HIGH = “49”

 

The 5C-35C does indeed refer to the ambient “room” temperature.  [deleted - erroneous]

How are you measuring the temperature of the internal drive?  Because, just so you know, if you’re measuring right at the vents at the top of the drive, then that actually may be the hottest spot, since the heat is being evacuated.  Also, unless you can see for sure down inside the drive, the fan may actually be running on low, but giving off no noise. 

If you are really concerned about it, JerPa, have support help you when they contact you.  If the fan is indeed not running, then we need to look into it.  Furthermore, if the drive isn’t updated with the latest firmware, then they won’t be able to really help you until it is.  But they can walk you through that.


#71

Bought “My Cloud EX2” yesterday. I’m using two different versions of WD20EARS 2TB HDDs I had laying around.

Fan never turned on since the beginning. At temps above 50 (with max of 60) I started googlin and found this thread. “fan_control” command helped. The fan is spinning at ~7000rpm and both HDDs are below 45C for now.

Added the fan_temperatures.txt to etc folder, but I suppose it won’t matter, and I will have to manually enter that command every reboot from now on. Which is obviously WRONG.

So? Are they going to update firmware, so the fan would work?


#72

Cybernut1,

   

Actually I received a message from user Hamlet who is a mod and he escalated my post up to WD Support and said I should be hearing from them with 24 to 48 hours.  I will keep this thread posted with what they say / find.     Hopefully since this message was started over a year ago and multiple people are reporting the same issue and results, they will believe us.  But multiple prior users in this message contacted WD Support and reporting getting nowhere.  I am an optimist and hopefully they/we can find a resolution to this issue.   Personally the $10 external USB fan will do the trick, but being a programmer, educator and tecky, I like solving problems and now just want to figure out where the bug in their logic is.   Maybe I’m goofy and  sometimes my wife thinks I  am. :slight_smile:   I probably should spend my free time doing other things, but a good mystery is always fun.   Im starting to look through the code and scripts to try and find where a bug could be. 

Bill_S,

To answer your question “How are you measuring the temperature of the internal drive?”.   I and others in this message are logging into the device through a SSH connection.  Then getting into the operating system and running commands and scripts that I would imagine WD wrote, such as fan_control and temperature_monitor.   So the readings we are reporting should be coming directly off sensors on the board and hard drives.  I would imagine WD is using similar programs to do any temperature checks.

I agree with what you are saying about how the fan logic should work.  My question to you is have you actually seen the fan turn on, on a working NAS?     Nobody in this message can make the fan turn on even when the temperatures surpase 49C.   It isn’t a question of  possibly not  hearing the fan running.  Command “fan_control -g 4” will return the fan’s RPMs.  It always returns 0 even at those high temperatures.    After manually turning on the fan using fan_control, the same check returns the correct RPM value.  Also even at the lowest speed, you can hear the fan if its running and you are listening for it.

The NAS firmware is the lastest version.    Not sure if the WD RED drives themselves have their latest firmware.  I will check, but don’t believe any logic on the hard drives themselves would be causing this fan issue.


#73



 There are different temperatures being monitored.  What are the drive temperatures and what is the current temperature?  


#74

Bill_S,

In my quick test, I saw my Board/Current temperature rise from  28C to 47C.   My drives rose from 28C to 37C.    

Cybernut1 just recently allowed his Board/Current temp to rise to 53C and 41C on his drive.

During both these tests, the fan never came on.

Even though my temperature value is low for this test,  3 days ago when I bought this NAS and was moving over large amounts of data,  my drives were in the high 50’s.    No clue what the board temp was, but would imagine it was above 45 and probably even above 49.   Didn’t know about fan_control, etc. at that point in time.

Seeing those hight temperatures and not hearing the fan turn on, is is why I went searching to see is these high temps were normal and found this message discussion.


#75

We just tested this by driving the temps up on the drives until the fan went on.  The fan finally went on after the drives hit 57C. And that took a minute or so.  In the UI, the system temperature still showed normal.  

I found out that the text file you were referring to isn’t even in the later firmware, and is not a correct depiction of anything. You should know that It is not uncommon for the drive temperatures to get over 50C, especially when writing data.  In SSH you will find three temperatures: the current (system) temperature, and the two drive temperatures.  The drive temperatures also show up in the UI.  They are the only values that I would be concerned with, and at 57C they are still well below their max temp rating.

My assessment: the drive is working within specs.  As long as the drives are NOT going above the 57C, and staying there, then I wouldn’t worry about it.


Performance so far
#76

Bill_S wrote:

We just tested this by driving the temps up on the drives until the fan went on.  The fan finally went on after the drives hit 57C. And that took a minute or so.  In the UI, the system temperature still showed normal.  

 

I found out that the text file you were referring to isn’t even in the later firmware, and is not a correct depiction of anything. You should know that It is not uncommon for the drive temperatures to get over 50C, especially when writing data.  In SSH you will find three temperatures: the current (system) temperature, and the two drive temperatures.  The drive temperatures also show up in the UI.  They are the only values that I would be concerned with, and at 57C they are still well below their max temp rating.

 

My assessment: the drive is working within specs.  As long as the drives are NOT going above the 57C, and staying there, then I wouldn’t worry about it. 

Correct me if I’m wrong. You are saying, that if WD Red working temperature range is 0-70C, so it’s fine for them to be up to 57C. And because ‘the list of supported HDDs’ does not include drives with lower ‘max temp’, you’re saying it is ok for fan to ‘kick in’ only at 57C or higher.

So, literally, the WD My Cloud EX2 is designed to kill any drive with lower working temperature range than WD Red simply because firmware developers did not include or were forbidden to let user change FAN speed settings via web-interface.


#77

Bill_S,

Thanks.    Actually I just found a PDF version of the specs for the WD Red drives.  It states the operating temp range is 0 to 65C.    Other places on the web site state the top range is 60C.  Whatever the high end,  57 is still below it.

Also I just searched the web for “does hard drive temperature affect performance”  and there have been studies suggesting higher temperatures do not affect failure rates while other say it does.    Others suggest fluctuations in operating temperature and not the temperature itself cause issues.   Some studies on certain types of drives show lower temperatures actually cause more failures than higher temperatures.    As with anything in life, people are on both sides of all these issues.

So I would imagine WD believes being on the higher side of the temperature range is OK and won’t hurt the drives.   Studies from above support that belief. 

I will probably still run my external fan to keep this unit in the middle of the range for now, but who knows after I do some more research into the above studies.   Saving some Watts is good for my wallet and good for the enviornment.

Just a thought.   Maybe the documentation needs to be adjusted since many people (just in this discussion)  were confused by which temperature is what.  Actually “people don’t read”,  so scratch that idea. :)         Also WD may want to inform their customer service team that this is normal.  Just in this discussion,  some people were told to return their units for a replacement and found the replacement’s fan also didn’t turn on.  Now we know it is OK.

Thank you ALL for looking into this, sharing and taking your time to do testing and finding out the answers. 


#78

I am glad i found this site and this thread, because I was originally concerned about the fan not spinning on my unit.  Thanks for all the good info!  I bought this unit to replace my almost 9 year old 500GB My Book World Edition.  That unit was going strong for so long it was hard to turn to another brand.  I had attached a 12v 80mm fan to that and just transplanted that fan to the top of the My Cloud.  I “installed” a switch so it doesn’t run all the time.  When the fan is not running, and my drives is idle the temps of the drives hover around 40-41C.  When I run the fan that goes down to 29-30C.  So far I love the unit, it does what my My Book did and so much more.

 


#79

Shionsan wrote:> Correct me if I’m wrong. You are saying, that if WD Red working temperature range is 0-70C, so it’s fine for them to be up to 57C. And because ‘the list of supported HDDs’ does not include drives with lower ‘max temp’, you’re saying it is ok for fan to ‘kick in’ only at 57C or higher.

So, literally, the WD My Cloud EX2 is designed to kill any drive with lower working temperature range than WD Red simply because firmware developers did not include or were forbidden to let user change FAN speed settings via web-interface.

What I am saying is that if the drive temperature gets up to 57C, then the fan will kick on to cool the drive down.  I’m also saying that it’s not uncommon for drive temperatures to go up when writing large amounts of data.  That would be any drive.  We make some of the best hard drives in the world.  So, if our engineers are confident that the fan doesn’t need to go on until 57C, then I’m fine with it.  Obviously, we built these NAS drives with our drives in mind.  So, they should handle it. 


#80

Just received this response from WD support:

By design, the internal fan of the My Cloud EX2 will remain at 0 RPM until the HDD temp reaches temperatures around 56°C, then there is an algorithm that will turn on the fan and increase/decrease according to the temperature. The HDD device operating max temperature is 65°C. If you see that the EX2 is reaching or surpassing these temperatures and the fan doesn’t come one, please let us know so we can assist you further.

Sincerely, [Deleted]

Western Digital Service and Support

Personal opinion: I do not want my drives running at 56 if I can help it. My little “AC Infinity AI-MPF80A Quiet 80mm USB Fan” from Amazon is still doing the trick and I will keep using it.


Unit overheats, inaccessible, now how to save data?