Not Entirely Sure am I Losing my Sanity. HDD's Swapping Around


Well-known Member
Right I'm not sure how sane this is going to sound but here goes.....

I have 7 HDD's in my media/file server. 1 x 1TB (C drive (OS), D drive (non-media files)), 4 x 2TB and 2 x 3TB. 2TB's and 3TB's are for media.

I had the machine set up and was trying out Windows 8.1 and storage spaces. I had the 2 3TB's and 1 of the 2TB's just as normal drives with media files on them. The remaining 3 x 2TB's were set up using storage spaces for backups of the other drives.

One of my 2TB drives started to make a funny sound (like the machine was trying to access the drive every 10 seconds. Sounded something like "eeerrrrrrrup"). One Windows boot up the motherboard logo would display for ages (a few minutes) and when that passed the Starting Windows logo would display for ages (anywhere from a few minutes to 10's of minutes).

I could put my finders on the drive and feel the vibrations when it was making this noise.

So I decided to rebuild the machine back to Windows 7 and use FlexRAID (RAID-F). Just to see if that made a difference with the HDD. This noise was not present when installed in my N40L Microserver using Windows 7. So rebuilt and the sound was still there. I disconnected the drive and now Windows was booting up in seconds.

I installed FlexRAID and between that and re-introducing the drives that had been in the Windows 8.1 Storage Spaces something really weird happened. One of my other 2TB's drives (same brand and model as the dodgy one above) swapped it's letter and drive name to the dodgy one. Now this other HDD started making that funny sound and Windows is again taking an age to boot up.

The initial dodgy drive seems to be working fine in a SATA to USB adaptor and I was able to copy all the data off.

I've never heard of HDD's swapping letters etc like that before and it sounds to me like the actual HDD's are not dodgy but something else is happening. Maybe in the BIOs.

Any ideas?


Distinguished Member
SATA controller maybe? If you've got two of them (either a second one on the motherboard or a separate card) you may want to shift the problematic drives over and see if they still misbehave.


Well-known Member
That could be the culprit. I have 6 x SATA on the motherboard and a SATA card that gives me a further 1 SATA port. I'll try removing the card and see does it make a difference. The initial dodgy drive may have been connected to the SATA card.

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