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Hard Disk temps on silenced PC's

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
I'm doing some major library copies / changes and I've noticed the HDD temps creeping up to beyond the 50C (52C to be exact) mark on my silenced server. How worried should I be about this? In normal use both drives are at about 48C. Is this a safe temperature? If turn the PC off and get inside, both hard disks are pretty hot.


I'm currently using the Cooler Master Cooldrive housings with the fans removed. I've noticed that the Zalman HeatPipe coolers don't really do a lot so I elected to go for the large aluminium heatsink option of the Cooler Masters. Since there's only the PSU (Tagan) and the Zalman CPU cooler in terms of active cooling, I'm a bit worried.


I had some data corruption on the server, which I think has now been isolated down to a faulty Windows 2000 Server installation CD (Damned M$...). I'm still worried about data loss, especially as in addition to storing media, I'm now using the server as a 'scratch disc' which gets synced with my main server during the night... if it craps out in the evening before it syncs for example I could lose something important.


Any tips? (maintaining silence of course... the whole point of this exercise was that I could use open phones in this room)
post #2 of 19
Add some PC Power and Cooling Silencer fans. 23dB loud and Stereophile Approved.
post #3 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by eric343
Add some PC Power and Cooling Silencer fans. 23dB loud and Stereophile Approved.
Are you sure about the sterophile approved

By the way, check out the forums at silentpcreview.com... the people there are very passionate about silencing their pcs.

52C isn't really too high for hard drives, especially if its not always at that temp. What case are you using?
post #4 of 19
post #5 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by some1x
52C isn't really too high for hard drives, especially if its not always at that temp. What case are you using?
52C is quite high. If the drive is a Western Dig., it is at the upper range of operating limits, according to their environmental, operational specs.

For a server, 52C is insane, especially if you want to *keep* your data, and don't do backups. HDD failure rates are directly proportional to temperature.
post #6 of 19
You have practically zero case air flow (or mostly hot air moving around).

I'm not sure how Cooler Master Cooldrives are constructed internally, but it could be that they also separate the natural heat conduction mechanism of HDs (the sides od drives) from the enclosure you are using.

If this is the case, you have options as already instructed: some additional air flow (towards the hot disks and also from outside fresh air) or better heat conduction from HDs to your case.

In any case, I'd ask at silentpcreview forums. Much more knowledge there.
post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffL
HDD failure rates are directly proportional to temperature.
Sometimes yes...but do you remember the IBM Deathstart drives?

www.SilenX.com

Just pick up a fan or two, slap it on the HDD's and you're ready to roll. These fans are extremely quiet, I'm talking 14dB quiet It seems like you might have a case cooling problem though, which if addressed properly, would take those HDD temps down.

Since you want this server to run quiet, just add exaust fans in the rear/top of the case, and maybe an intake fan blowing on those hard drives. Even without the intake fan, they will have enough fresh air dissapating the heat and flowing out the rear.
post #8 of 19
Modern hard drives are designed to be capable of running with restricted air flow, otherwise we would be seeing a lot more failures from their use in SFF and similiar applications.

Check out some reviews that actually include drive temps. For example, here:
http://www.tomshardware.com/storage/...eagate-07.html
post #9 of 19
I should also mention that the cause of failure of the deathstar drives was not due to temperature. The cause was related to the read/write head while the drive is idling. There was a fix (firmware) about a year ago, it basically periodically moved the heads even while the drive was idling.
post #10 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by some1x
I should also mention that the cause of failure of the deathstar drives was not due to temperature. The cause was related to the read/write head while the drive is idling. There was a fix (firmware) about a year ago, it basically periodically moved the heads even while the drive was idling.
Yeah I was gonna edit my post to say that, since the failures weren't related to heat
post #11 of 19
52 C is hot and probably close to the maximum operational temperature. I would definitely give it cooling. In my experience, all my drives that did not have active cooling failed with a few years. Every single drive I had running with active cooling lasted four or more years.

You usually want to operate your drive close to the temperature the environment the computer is sitting in. Temperature swings may contribute to thermal breakdowns.
post #12 of 19

Thoughts...

Anything above 50c is way too high. Even my nearly fan-less system keeps my 15000rpm SCSI drives below 40! Even though the 75GXP failures weren't directly caused by high temps, prolonged exposure to hot temperatures will reduce a drive's lifespan. Regarding the PCPC fan, while it's quieter then the quietest Pabst fan, I still find the Panaflo 80L1A to be quieter, even at the stock 12v. At 7v and 5v the Panaflo is nearly inaudible.
post #13 of 19
http://www.silentpcreview.com/article63-page1.html

There is a list of some of the post popular quiet fans. I like Panaflos because they are readily available for cheap (~$6 each).





Also, check the specs (look at operating temperature):
http://wdc.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/wdc....ted=1037288235
http://www.maxtor.com/_files/maxtor/...data_sheet.pdf
http://www.seagate.com/support/disc/...00_sata_pm.pdf

Most of the drives are designed to run at 55C ambient temperature. Which should be about 5-10 degrees lower than drive temperature.
post #14 of 19
In my opinion, it is easy and worthwhile to install a quiet fan to cool your case. But you are not in any danger.
post #15 of 19
With 15+ years of this hobby, I definitely disagree and also second additional cooling, if that is real 52C outside surface temp of you drive.

HD failures do rise a lot with increased temps. Some models more so than others.

It's better to be safe than sorry.

Internal temp sensors are mostly bogus and can give you readings that are even up 30C off.

But like I said, go to silentpcreview forums, there's more expertise there.
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