Strange noise coming from 10TB drives (WD100EFAX)


I am no hardware expert but maybe you or somebody else here:

is there no possibility that something tells the HDDs to do something? A defective controller?
A BIOS? You wrote, our modern NAS are computers, I agree…don´t they have some kind of BIOS?
A defective Software Raid that continues to malfunction when the drive is virtually removed from the NAS?

But again, if this for example is a defective software raid or a software raid incompatible to the HDD-firmware, why do the beeping sounds start in my case after 1-1,5 days and not immediately after starting the NAS?


My last 2 hypotheses for this evening:

  1. it is very unlikely that we all here have bought several same drives with exactly the same error, so I think the hardware of the drives is ok.

  2. If there is a HDD FW issue, then the 10 TB Red Nas drives are in the market for 1,5 years now, am I right? Enough time for WD to present a FW update, or if we can´t update to a new FW, WD had enough time to ship the latest drives like mine (bought one month ago) with a correct FW !!!


Ok so I bought my disks more or less in two batches:

  • first batch about 8 months ago (June 2018)
  • second batch a month ago (Feb 2019).
    All 9 drives show the same make (68LHNPN0), and the same FW (83.H0A83).
    First batch was bought from a local dealer in France, while the second batch was bought directly from the WD online store.

I remember having noticed this sound since July 2018, so I guess it must have started right away when I set the disks in my NAS.
I contact WD support back in October about this noise, and had passed 3 drives through DLG, with a “pass” result.
I’ve passed all my disks through the Extended SMART test on the NAS directly, and they all pass.
I do this regularly (I used to run it monthly, now I set it to once per quarter). The test takes ages though (36-48h on the 10TB, used to be around 18h for the 4TB so it looks consistent to me).
I’ve checked the various SMART counters individually, and didn’t notice any suspicious value.
I didn’t notice any performance drop either, nor heating, etc…

And so far, it seems to me only the disks from the first volume make this weird noise.

The first volume is my “main” volume, and all packages are installed on it. I should also add Docker and VMM in the list BTW.
The second volume is only used for storage : backups, long term archives, etc.

I’ve also noticed the noise isn’t produced on a regular basis : I can hear it one day early in the morning, the day after in the middle of the afternoon, etc… as if it was produced every 18 to 36 hours, randomly.
I didn’t manage to narrow it down to a particular activity.

I also noticed that the noise usually appears when disks are not used to write/read anything. Then, if I initiate some activity on the NAS (writing large file for instance), noise vanishes, until the write is finished.
As if something was waiting for low I/O on disks to run, which would trigger the noise.


this sounds as if it could be the already discussed media scan,


That’s exactly my experience as well.
It might be related to PMR technology, like I mentioned earlier in this thread. It has to do with the drive writing/moving bits into the deeper parts of the platter.
If that process is the source of the sound, it could explain the noise disappearing when stressing the drives by writing/reading data, therefore interrupting the process.


…and once anything written into deeper parts, the beeping finishes? So once I copy my data onto the HDD and the PMR technology takes several hours, and I don´t copy a lot of stuff onto the HDD anymore, the beepig is away forever???

I have never had this noise on any HDD I ever had, why has only this HDD the PMR technology then???


Probably not, I’ve had this problem since I bought the drives, 27 weeks ago.

PMR has been used by WD since 2006, but maybe this sound issue only have become a problem now that the platters used in the drives have much bigger capacity?


I am still confused…but I come more and more to the conclusion that the drives are ok.

There may be a BIOS or LINUX error or incompatibility…

But if not, if anything is alright…



I have re-started my NAS Friday, 8th. So far, the beeping noise hasn´t come again. It is by far the longest time without the beeping noise. I have not done anything else than before. I have only installed and run QSync app so far.


the beeping has come back after 3 days being quiet. It came back for no obvious reason and it went away after a few Hours.

Today, I got News from QNAP: they could not find anything strange or a failure in the log files of my NAS…

they told me to Keep watching when the beeping occurs…….as you can read above, it occurs for no obvious reason, so I am not knowing more than before……


Can confirm that I still hear this sound as well. QNAP NAS, QTS, not able to see/hear/smell anything systematic related to the sound, which seems to appear at random more or less. I have in some ways given up, and I have the NAS in a separated room. Will, however, look into this thread at a regular basis to see if a solution unfolds and please let me know if I can provide any information that would help solve the problem. Thanks for your efforts guys.


the same as me, the same will I do


I had two 12TB Seagate Exos enterprise drives and they were making basically the same noise as these 12TB WD Gold drives are so I believe it must be with these multi platter high capacity drives or something for sure causing this. It is really irritating and driving me mad I am sending drives back and forth for the same noise.


Same sound here, single 10TB Helium in a Netgear ReadyNAS 104. Only had the drive a couple weeks so far.


I’m having this issue with 4x 8TB WD Red Pro Drives 256 Mb (WD8003FFBX-68B9AN0) in a Synology DS918+ NAS, using SHR-1 and btrfs. See my old thread below and a video clip in it:

Note of particular interest that the green lights on the NAS freeze when the beeping noise occurs. I have no clue if I’m right, but doesn’t it appear like operations momentarily cease?

I contacted Western Digital’s support back in December, and after some conversation with them, they told me that the beeping noise isn’t normal and that I could RMA the drives. However, I became busy with other things and time went. After a while, I realized that the beeping noise had gone away – only to return a few days ago.

It then recurred over the course of maybe 1–2 hours before going away. I still the option of RMAing the drives, but I’m really interested in understanding if this is a problem with a drive or not. I could of course follow WD Support’s suggestion to simply RMA them, but from what I’ve read before sometimes they just tell people to RMA instead of actually being specific on there being a problem or not. I guess that has both positive and negative sides.

Btw, the drives are also doing a few other noises that seem related to the “beeping” sound. Two noises in the clip below, a “rev up” spinning sound in the background, and also a sudden rasping/aggressive sound – both occur at the very start of the clip. This usually occurs when starting a process like backup. However, the sudden raspy/intense sound can happen almost anytime, and pops out compared to normal operation sounds.

Audio clip:


Just curious: is there anyone here who had the beeping noises, who managed to get rid of the noise by RMA’ing and exchanging the drives for new drives?


I have similar experiences and Questions like you…sadly no real answers….

one more Question: if WD would RMA the drives, there should be a Problem with the drives…but if they know About this Problem, why do they still sell those drives with these beeping sounds!!!


I have 4x 8TB WD Red (wd80efzx-68uw8n0) in a Synology DS416j NAS and never heard that noise from my hard drives. I have been using them for over a year, powered and running 24/7 and they never made any strange noises. They are relatively quiet. I don’t know if it is something different with the newer hard drives that causes that noise?

I was planning to buy 4x 10TB WD Red hard drives and now I have to reconsider because of this noise issue. Has anyone had the same noise issue with the WD Purple drives? or the other color drives?
From what I saw on Youtube the Seagate IronWolf drives are very noisy compared to the WD NAS drives so they are out of the question. Any other alternatives? and is the noise really that bad? Does it happen to every one of the WD Red 10TB drives or just some drives?

Reading a review about the WD Red 10TB drive, it mentioned this:

The downside though is its high CPU utilisation. This is not a problem if you intend to use it in a relatively new NAS system, but it may be a problem if you pack more than two of them in an old NAS system with a slow processor. The high CPU utilisation will also be an issue if you intend to use this drive in your desktop PC.
Link to review

Could it be that an old NAS is struggling in terms of CPU power and that is why the drives kind of “pause” as in the video above and make that strange noise while the NAS is trying to catch up?


I have been in contact with WD support over phone. Their support person told me that they had shown my video clips to the engineering department who confirmed that the noises are not normal. Since my videos focused on the “beeping noise”, I’m assuming this is the main erroneous sound here – but I also hear revving noises sometimes which I don’t know is related.

I use a Synology DS918+ and the WD Red Pro 256MB 8TB (WD8003FFBX-68B9AN0) drives which exhibits the “beeping noise”. According to WD support, DS918+ is not verified compatible with this particular drive according to WD’s own listings, but if you look at Synology’s compability listing the drive is verified compatible with DS918+.

The problem may lie with either the WD Drives or the Synology NAS. I should however note that all my 4x drives failed the First Aid test in Mac’s Disk Utility, so it does kind of speak to that the drives are at fault.


Could it be that an old NAS is struggling in terms of CPU power and that is why the drives kind of “pause” as in the video above and make that strange noise while the NAS is trying to catch up?

No idea, but my Synology DS918+ has Quad-core 1.5GHz burst up to 2.3GHz, so if we are speaking of the same issue it may be unlikely that CPU speed is at fault.