External HDD dying?


my question is a tad different from all the other ones I read here on the forums.

I've had some HDDs die on me (internal ones) and they normally die after making clicking noises for a bit.

Well, I've had this HP 1TB external hard drive for some years now and it still works like a charm.
But today, out of sheer curiosity, I pressed my ear against the HDD, to hear whether or not it was making a "healthy noise".

It turns out it's actually making a MILD, MILD, MILD (and I repeat MILD) scratching sound. It's so mild and quiet I cannot hear it unless I put my ear against the HDD. No clicking whatsoever.
The thing that bothers me though is the fact that this noise appears when the HDD is copying files, and fades out almost totally when the HDD is "idle" (=connected but not copying), so I'm afraid it's something that may be fatal.

My pc still recognizes the HDD as soon as I plug it in, and that scratching sound is very VERY quiet.

Should I be worried?
Thanks in advance.
3 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about external hdd dying
  1. All hard drives have some "scratching" sound when active. Your hard drive is no different - the scratching noise is the HDD working and writing data when it's active.

    Nothing to worry about.
  2. Thanks a lot! What a relief :D
  3. Best answer
    Hey there, hugemetalfan!

    The best way to keep your peace of mind is to always keep backups of your data stored on more than one HDD. This is how you'd be able to avoid any data loss headaches in the future. Better safe than sorry, right? :) Another recommendation from would be to download your HDD manufacturer's diagnostic tool and run the tests from it every once and then, just to keep an eye on the SMART status and the HDD health overall. If you can't find such a tool, you can refer to this thread from the community for some good third-party testing tools:

    Hope this was helpful. Best of luck! :D
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