Western Digital My Book Essential 3TB External HD making odd noises

I own a Western Digital My Book Essential 3TB External HD.

Yesterday I noticed that this HD began to make a slight clicking/thud type sound while accessing information from the HD AND while sitting idle. (Perhaps clicking isn’t the right word to describe the noise - Perhaps there’s no discernable word for what it sounds like.) but it sounded as if the drive was having to work significantly harder to process information. These sounds were more frequent while the HD was active, but it is not always constant. This has me concerned as It never made these sounds before and always ran quiet while accessing information and in idle mode. I have about 200 GIG of storage space left on the HD. I have not dropped or tipped the HD over. Nothing was spilled on it. I take very good care of my belongings. I’ve rarely even moved it.

I only use this HD on the weekend, so it has not seen high usage.

At this point I’m worried that the HD may be failing. I’d like to know what I should do as I do not wish to lose my data.

I should also note that when I play movies from this HD - after about an hour and a half the media player I use to play the movies from the HD will become very sluggish and unresponsive, prompting a reboot of my computer to fix. I do not know whether this is the result of the HD wearing out and slowly becoming unresponsive, my graphics card drivers or the media player itself. Either way, I thought I should bring it up, as this drive seems to be exhibiting strange behavior and I never had issue with playing audio/video from it before until I noticed these strange noises, so It might be connected.

Anyway, I would like to know what you guys think.


If you’ve been deleting files from the drive and adding new files for a while the drive may have become fragmented.  I use Smart Defrag 2 on my external drives.  It’s a free download and does a good job.

You might also want to run an extended test using WD’s Data Lifeguard Diagnostic.  It should pick up any major problems with the drive.