Carbonite and the Hard Drive?

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Jimmy A

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Just installed my 4th hard drive in my 2003 Dell Dimension 8250 desktop. My Carbonite file back up and storage service has been very useful in restoring my files to these last 2 hard drives.

But here's the question: Whenever I open the Carbonite software window or when it automatically begins to upload a file a significantly loud hard drive read-arm snapping sound is heard. It has done this with every hard drive (3) with which I have used Carbonite's service.

I have Google searched this and have not yet found anything on it, whether or not it is harming my hard drive, or if there is anything I can do to prevent this flipping or snapping of the hard drive read arm. Or perhaps it is harmless and hard drives are designed to occasionally function this way.

I asked Carbonite Support and they seemed to not understand the question.

Anyone else ever had similar experience or know about this?
 

DoubleHelix

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How do you know what sounds a hard drive "read-arm" makes? I've never heard "snapping" sounds from any hard drive.
 

Jimmy A

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Thank you for responding. Besides the spinning discs in a hard drive I think the only other moving part is the arm thingy that moves across the disc surfaces to read the data on the disc inside. On YouTube I saw a fellow showing the insides of a working hard drive and this is what I saw it doing. And if that data reading arm thing were to snap suddenly to the end of its travel arc or radius it might well make an audible sound of metal slapping against metal or plastic. If you can imagine what that might sound like that is just what I am hearing. There is nothing else moving or clicking inside my PC when I am not using a CD or DVD drive or a floppy disc.
 

DoubleHelix

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Carbonite is just backup software. It doesn't do anything special to a hard drive that would cause that type of activity. Since you've had the same problem with 4 different drives on a very old computer, I'd say you have a problem with the drive controller.

In all my years of working with computers, I've never heard a drive make any kind of noise that I would attribute to a "snapping" sound from a hard drive.
 

Jimmy A

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What is the "drive controller?" And can one tinker with it? Not that I am eager to tinker. Just wondering.
 

Jimmy A

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This mystery remains. The simple fact is that when ever Carbonite begins to work to update my backed up files a significant clicking or snapping noise is heard from inside my computer case.

Could it be that the Carbonite software always installs itself at the beginning or the end of the hard drive or the end of a section of it? . . . and creates this sound?

Anyone else ever have or use Carbonite?
 

DoubleHelix

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I've been using Carbonite for years which is why what you're saying makes absolutely no sense.

It's just software. It doesn't do anything unique to a hard drive to cause some bizarre type of physical activity.
 

Snagglegaster

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I agree that I don't see how Carbonite is the cause of the noise issue. I think you are just hearing normal drive activity. Carbonite can take up to 3 hours to back up file changes, so I doubt the noises are related to Carbonite at all. I've never seen it cause the kind of issue you mention. Best advice I could give would be to make a bootable CD from your drive manufacturer's diagnostic utility and run a full test on the drive.
 
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