Slow access with new Ultrastar 7K2 / DC HA210 1W10002 2TB drives


I’m a long-time customer of Hitachi/HGST and WD drives. In one of my PCs I went from DS 7K1000.C over DS 7K3000 to Ultrastar 7K6000. It was time to upgrade to the newer generation, branded WD Ultrastar DC HA210 1W10002, and I already replaced two 7K6000 drives when I noticed strange problems with the new drives and I’m not sure what to do next.

Since I still have the same data in the same directory structure on the old 7K6000 drives I was able to do a comparison test.

The first problem is that, after a cold boot or restart, accessing a folder on the 1W10002 drive introduces a significant delay before its contents are shown, during which the mouse cursor changes to an hourglass. This of course also happens with the 7K6000, but the delay is several seconds longer with the 1W10002 drive. In addition, this problem reappears after a few minutes of inactivity, which does not happen with the 7K6000 drive at all.

The second problem is that, again after a cold boot or restart, if I access a folder on the 1W10002 drive and then click on a small image, it takes up to 7-8 seconds before the image preview is shown in the Windows Preview Pane. Doing the same on the 7K6000 drive, with the same image, the delay is only half a second. Also, as with the first problem, this problem reappears after a few minutes of inactivity, something that the 7K6000 drive doesn’t have a problem with either (image shows instantaneously).

This has all the hallmarks of an excessive sleep timer and an associated clearance of the cache, but I’m no expert. I did verify that the Windows setting to spin down hard drives is still set to “Never” (as it was before), and that the 1W10002’s APM feature is disabled. I have also checked that the Windows Firewall is still disabled as the longer delay is especially noticable via the network.

At first I thought the drive could be bad, but I had the same problems with another 1W10002 drive that I purchased from a different store a week before (the manufacturing dates differ by a few days). This other drive is, among other things, used to host the Windows’ Desktop folder. If I double-click a folder on the desktop, I find that it takes a significant amount of time for the contents to be shown, even if the folder only contains two small TXT files. This didn’t happen with the 7K6000 drive that it replaced.

I’m a bit at a loss now. I can’t use these drives the way they are and I’ve given my last money to them. Could anyone shed some light as to what could be going on, and how I should go forward?

Meanwhile, I have already wiped one of the 1W10002 drives and tested it for bad sectors. It’s no longer connected to a computer.

Thanks for any help.

I had read an Amazon review of someone with a similar problem. It’s a power down mode that the drive has and they had to put a small piece of electrical tape over one of the pins to fix it.

It took me hours to overcome the problem of the Power Disable function. This is NOT advertised as an OEM drive and so the sale is deceptive. The Power Disable Function (PWDIS) is made for off-site servers and is inappropriate for sales to general work- and home-base computer owners. It would be better to buy a retail version of the WD Purple or Red drive (7200 rpm) instead. I hope mine will continue running. (BTW, to disable the PWDIS is fairly simple, see photo). AT THE MINIMUM, THE SELLER SHOULD INCLUDE THE PROPER CABLE TO DISABLE THE PWDIS.