Noisy notebook drives

Since I’m not using the Inspiron 9100 much any more and eventually plan on selling it, I decided to swap one of the hard drives from the Inspiron into the Toshiba M200.  The drive in the M200 is only 40GB at the moment, and when completely stripped to the essentials, I’m getting by with about 10GB free space on that drive.  I have a 60GB and an 80GB in the Inspiron, so getting either drive into the M200 would be a nice improvement.

I went ahead and chose the 80GB for the swap since it’s bigger.  I spent a good chunk of time just cleaning off the contents of the 80GB to my file server in preparation for the swap.  While that was going on, I cast about looking for drive imaging software so that I could make a proper seamless drive swap in the M200.  Eventually I settled on Acronis True Image.  Norton Ghost is the well known incumbent in this area of software, but as I suspected, various user reviews confirm that it’s turned into difficult to use bloatware over the years.

Acronis True Image pretty much works as advertised.  I have to say it’s a good solid and intuitive piece of software.  Recommended.

Anyway, after all the file moving antics, I eventually got the M200’s 40GB image onto the 80GB drive.  So I physically swapped it into my M200 and turned it on, expecting everything to be over and to now just be able to enjoy a good chunk of extra drive space.

The tablet turns on.  And, oh dear, the drive is making noise. A lot more noise than my other drive was making.

Now you have to understand, the drive while inside the Inspiron wasn’t ever as loud.  I guess the different surrounding materials and mounting helped keep the noise away, but in the M200 I could now hear every click and whirr coming from the drive. Lord, why didn’t I consider this before I went to all that trouble?

It took me approximately 15 minutes of using the M200 to decide this wasn’t going to work for me.  Drats.

So now I’m swapping the 80GB drive with the 60GB drive.  We’ll see if it fares any better in my M200 than the Toshiba MK8025GAS did.  Unlike the Toshiba drive, I believe the Hitachi Travelstar 60GB has acoustic management built in, so there is a good chance it will be able to stay quiet in the M200.  I’m cloning the 60GB to the 80GB and I will make the 80GB drive the primary Inspiron drive.  Then the 60GB will get imaged for the M200 and swapped in to see how it fares.  The first clone is going on overnight and I’m tired, so I’m going to pass out now.  More to come…

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