I have a sata WD hdd (WDC WD500) connected to MSI P35 Platinum motherboard.
It goes to sleep and wakes up instantly. I can hear how it starts (spins out) and after a few seconds it goes sleep (no noise). Then after a few seconds the cycle repeats itself. And it's like this all the time.

In addition to this hdd I have 3ware raid controller (AMCC 9650SE-2LP) with to serial ata disks connected. I think the problem is not related to this controller, though.

  • 2
    Did you check the drive solo, without RAID? Does it happen when you're stressing the array (say, with HDTach)? Did you check the SMART on the drive (WD calls it Data Lifeguard Tools)?
    – Dani
    May 24 '09 at 15:39
  • I didn't check the drive without raid because I have system on this raid. Why are you asking to stress the array? It's enough it happens in normal day to day use. SMART is ok (according to DiskCheckup 2.1). What's interesting is Start/Stop count for system drive (made out of two hdds connected to raid controller) is 597 while at the same time it's 5094 for this extra backup drive which is rarely used... That would suggest what I'm observing (hearing) is really the case. May 24 '09 at 20:06
  • Do you have the latest motherboard bios and raid drivers? May 27 '09 at 22:49

What OS is this? Or are you saying this happens before POST completes? For windows, poke the power settings, which are in the power management section of control panel. Linux (and other Unix), take a look at hdparm/sdparm -B (you probably want -B 254).


I've had numerous problems with WD drives when used in raids, hardware and software. They just don't seem to play nice. The drives appear to take too long to complete some commands and this causes problems for the raid controller. Even to the point of the controller flagging the drive as bad.

Check the WD support page for your drive and see if there has been any firmware updates (yes, firmware updates for a hard disk). It wouldn't be the first time WD has patched a firmware flaw that affects drives in raid.


It turns out the problem had nothing to do with neither the RAID controller nor the disk. In advanced power settings I had Turn off hard disk after set to 20 minutes...

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.