Customer Reviews: (Old Model) WD Green 1TB Desktop Hard Drive: 3.5-inch, SATA 6 Gb/s, IntelliPower, 64MB Cache WD10EZRX
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on June 23, 2012
I bought 2-3TB drives for my Synology NAS Synology DiskStation 2-Bay (Diskless) Network Attached Storage DS212j (White). I've only had the drives on for one day but after reading about all the drives that fail after a few months it seems the problem is the head parking itself every 8 seconds if no disk activity. The only reason it does this is to try to save power. Each park results in a load/unload cycle. Most modern drives are rated around 600,000 cycles. Depending on how your system uses the drive, your drive should only have 10-200 cycles per day, but some these Western Digital drives are reporting 3000-5000 cycles per day. This will surpass the 600,000 cycle limit in a few months. You can get the cycles from S.M.A.R.T. or from third party software. Think of starting your car and turning if off every minute, 24 hours a day. Your starter would only last a month or so and then fail instead of lasting for years.

The first thing I did with my new drives was to run the WDIDLE3.EXE utility on them to disable the 8 second head parking. You can also change the head parking to something like 5 minutes, which would make a lot more sense than 8 seconds. To use this utility, you have to run it from a boot disk at the command line. This means you have make a cd/dvd/floppy that you boot from and get a command line prompt such as A:\. At the A:\ prompt type in WDIDLE3 /r to get the current setting (mine said "Idle3 Timer is enabled and set to 8.000 seconds"). After I ran WDIDLE3 /d to disable the timer it said "Idle3 Timer is disabled." You could also run WDIDLE3 /S300 to set the park time to 5 minutes. I disabled mine because most, if not all, operating systems already have options to shut down hard drives after so many minutes.

Google WDIDLE3 to research for yourself (one site is [...]). I don't think this utility is still supported, so use at your own risk. That said, I haven't read about any cases of this utility damaging hard drives. The hard part is making a boot disk with this utility on it and booting into it. I can't write up how to do this (do your google) but I will say on most machines you do not have to go into the bios and change your boot order. Just continuously press the F8 key (Windows) when booting and you should get a menu of which drive you want to boot from.

In a last, unrelated note, it seems you can run these drives in RAID mode even though WD says you shouldn't and wants you to buy their Enterprise models that cost more. From my research, the TLER setting is only applicable to certain RAID configurations and then only if you have hardware controlling the RAID. Most consumers and small business will have RAID controlled in their software, so TLER should be off (as it is in these drives), but if you do have a hardware RAID controller you may want consider other drives that support TLER. If you want to try experimenting with the TLER settings, there is a WDTLER utility available.

Finally, if anyone has corrections or additional information please leave a comment.

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on August 22, 2011
I have tons of WD drives and they've been around for awhile (including two 2tb 'green' drives), so I decided to give this one a chance even with the half/half ratings it had.

This drive is great! Popped it into my esata dock, turned it on, and windows disk management saw it instantly, as the full ~2.7tb. Initialized it, making sure to pick GPT, and then formatted it. Windows saw the whole partition, no fuss.

To test the drive, I did a low level format, then a disk check. When both came back fine, I copied as many files as I could fit on the drive, and then did another disk check. Came back fine again, so I ran DiskMark to see what speeds I was getting. When the drive was almost full (~3gb free), I was averaging around 30-40MBps. after I reformatted and ran the test again, I averaged ~60MBps. Compare this to a smaller hard drive and you will see that this is considerably slower. (I just ran DiskMark on a full WD 500GB drive that's about 5 years old, and it averaged 80MBps)

However, 30MBps is plenty of speed to stream movies, which is what I'm using it for. This drive won't make the best boot drive, but it makes a great archival one.

As I've only owned it for about a week now, I can't comment on long term reliability, but I will update if anything happens.
For now, I do recommend this drive.

Edit 11.15.11
After owning this drive for a couple of months now without any failures, it is a very attractive option. However, your mileage may vary, since mine seems to be a bit slower than a friend's who bought the same version (I was getting around 60-80MB/s while the drive was pretty full when I was copying files to his). All-in-all it's a good drive.
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on December 25, 2011
I have a total of seven of these drives between 6 on a raid array on one PC and one as a data drive (non raid) in another PC.

They are slower at RPM speed than some other drives, at 5400 RPM so if you are someone who "needs" a 7200 RPM drive then you do not need this.

They are however the CHEAPEST, MOST RELIABLE CHEAP drive out there. Unlike some brands who will sell you a 5400rpm drive for this, or the various drawbacks from externals, this drive is inexpensive, not annoying in its "green" power management (or needing to have it shut off) and its fast, I get good speed in my 6gb/sec Sata3 port, and overall think its great that for this price, I get a drive with a 3 year warranty, reasonably fast transfer rates despite a lower RPM (RPM is not everything apparently) and its a Western Digital (and not lower on quality) for the price.

Western Digital have been reliable drives for me, for many years. I have some going back as far as 8 years old and still running (that does not mean one has never died) but it's not common. It's more common that the storage size becomes too small for me and gets it shelved than the drive fails.

I am optimistic by the early performance of these Caviar Greens that I will continue to use these for a 3tb drive. For 2tb drives I prefer the Caviar Black (which is not made in 3tb size). I was apprehensive to go to another brand, so chose WD's lower line rather than risk a brand who has not performed well for me for years.

Five stars are for the value, and the fact it delivers. I would like to see a 7200rpm 3tb from WD someday come around, such as a Caviar Black 3tb, but until they do, I am happy to buy these, despite I usually buy the Blacks (I do need bigger than 2tb occasionally) or like for my raid array which runs 6 3tb caviar greens, wanted the array to be bigger then 6 2tb blacks would achieve.

Buy this drive with a clean conscience, it will work for you, and work well. I never have had a DOA from WD, I am sure it happens, but I have 6 pcs, and for that to never have happened, is great.

WD! Caviar! and this time GREEN ain't that bad.
In fact for its price, you cannot beat it.
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on September 6, 2014
I ordered this to replace the 2nd hard drive in my Dell 7010 which I purchased new in 2013. This is a moderately strong desktop: Windows 7 Ultimate, 16GB RAM with Intel i7 processor. This Dell came with 2 - 1 TB hard drives. I was storing my data externally with Seagate 3TB and 4TB external drives, but this doesn't seem to be as smooth and predictable as with a solid 2nd internal drive that the Dell was designed for.

This is my 2nd attempt with a WD (Western Digital) 6 TB hard drive. The first one I ordered a installed several weeks ago erred as I was initializing the hard drive with Windows 7 Disk Management. The error message was: "The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error." I called WD technical support. The tech said it was defective.

Then I ordered this replacement hard drive and had the same identical error! I was puzzled. I didn't think I could get two hard drives in a row that were defective, regardless if WD or Seagate. I concluded it had to be an installation type problem.

I called WD Technical Support again. This time the Tech (a different person) suggested I try to install this on a different computer, so I used a USB 3.0 external adapter to connect this to my HP Pavilion Laptop. It did not error! I was able to initialize the hard drive. However, it did error during the formatting, which I thought was a smaller problem.

I then installed this again in my Dell 7010. This 6TB hard drive as already initialized by my HP Laptop. All I had to do was to attempt the format again, using the GTP (GUID Partition Table). It worked! I am a happy camper.

I am now transferring files to this hard drive. I will update this review in several months.
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on January 25, 2014
Windows XP was 32 bit, Windows 7 made the transition and had 32 bit and 64 bit versions. 32 bit can access 2.19 TB of a single hard disk. Thus a 3 TB or larger cannot be fully used by a 32 bit system. But, it does not end there. You can have Windows 7 or 8 running in 64 bit mode and not use but 2.19 TB if your Bios on your computer is 32 bit. When you install you will be given the option to format the drive for LBA which is 32 bit or GPT which is 64 bit. If you use GPT and your Bios is not been upgraded from 32 bit to 64 bit then your computer will not be able to mount the Hard disk. In which case you will have to start over and select LBA and run 32 bit unless you can upgrade your bios. The disks are good! It is your operating system (such as XP or Win 7 32 bit) or it is your bios that may limit you. Hope this helps.
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on March 11, 2012
For quite a long time I've been WD fan. I put WD drives in any computer I put my hands on. I've sinned, but I know better now...

5 months ago I've bought 8 of those drives to exchange 7 1TB drives in my Linux server. The 1TB drives were (and are - I use them still) OK, I just run out of space. Since then I did not have a single week without some kind of failure. 3 drives are failing mechanically (almost 40% failure rate!), I have random intermittent read errors. I rolled up my sleeves and run some tests; this is what I've found:
The read errors coincide with only ONE relevant (Power On Hours is not relevant, for example) changing SMART attribute - Multi-Zone Error Rate. The description of it is a bit misleading and nobody really seems to know, what it is; here: [...] it says something about writing errors, but the writes to the disk were always OK - after a retry or retries the correct data was read. The problems appeared only while reading. And only when this parameter was changing (i.e. - growing).

The real big, bad issue is that the drive does not inform me about problems it had reading data! So far it looks like when the disk hits a problematic sector (so the MZER grows), instead of reporting that, it returns some arbitrary data and pretends everything is rosy - no read error, nothing - just corrupted data! So you might copy a file and find it later corrupted. Or your system will miraculously crash.

I would suggest returning this drive on the very first sight of MZER>0; even better - just avoid it altogether.

As a result, yet another disk has been RMAd to WD; hopefully they will accept it under warranty, as they did before; I really wouldn't like to give them only one star...

Yet they managed. If the drive is RMAed, the replacement has a warranty of... ~100 days. If the original, 3y-warranty drive breaks in first 6 months, the effective warranty will be shorter than 1 year! Oh, well, that's easy, sell crap with '3y warranty', when it breaks, shorten it to 10 months. Well done, WD.

Update 2013-05-11: Yet another drive had is MZER gone up, checksums found another file damaged. I think by now all of my 8 drives have been replaced, and the ONLY improvement is- the error happens less frequently. But when it happens, the result is as devastating as ever. If you value your data - DO NOT BUY.

Update 2013-10-17:
I'm looking for the replacement for my 8 3TB disks. Got to the reviews of Seagate 4TB NAS drives, and was astonished they actually react to the buyers' complaints! Nice! The WD apparently does not believe in reaching out to their customers, it's you who should call them; I did so a week ago. I asked them to buy the drives off me - 2 more drives failed in a week and I have enough. They were surprised I do not want this walking disaster of theirs for a drive any more. All they did since then is to create a support case, that stays on their website, abandoned. Very nice gesture, indeed, even if utterly useless. It seems not only the QA does not work there, PR is also a bit of a problem.
I think I will surprise them once more and share my WD adventures with C't. They might be interested in how good WD customer support and product quality are, even if WD is not.

Update 2013-11-08:
Well, 4 disks failed on me in the last month - two of them had <200 power-on hours (i.e. they were replacements for previously broken drives). Come on, all you brave testers with 3TB of discardable data, unlimited tinker time and money to waste - buy these.

Update 2014-04-04:
The latest development with these drives happened last year; I've been slightly slow on reporting ;). After some fight WD agreed to buy all the 8 drives off of me for 75% purchase price. I coughed-up a few EUR for a 4TB NAS drives of another manufacturer, and returned the Greens. Since then I forgot I have drives. I do not have to check their well-being constantly. I could delete all the recovery data. What a bliss...
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on August 13, 2013
I recently built a computer that was capable of gaming as well as plenty of media storage and streaming, which of course required that I buy a pretty decent hard drive to permanently store all the data my computer would save. After doing plenty of research and shopping around, I found that this drive, the WD Green 2TB 3.5" drive would suit my needs best.

First, I chose a WD drive because I have worked with other WD hard drives (both internal and external) in the past and have never encountered any issues. I suppose it is because of my past experiences that I wanted another WD drive over another brand.

Second, I had to figure out whether I should shop by color or by memory size first. WD makes a number of hard drives of varying color classifications that can at first be confusing, so I'll try to explain briefly...

BLUE drives are your very basic drive. It does just what is needed - storing data - with nothing fancy, no extra bells and whistles. These are often cheaper because of their pretty basic, utilitarian nature. Blue drives come in sizes ranging from 80GB to 1TB. RED drives are meant for small network data storage, such as in a small business environment. They have extra features that make it easier to link multiple hard drives - a great feature if that's your intention, but an unnecessary expense if terms like RAID and NAS are beyond your expertise. Red drives have sizes from 1TB to 3TB. GREEN drives are built to be more quiet and energy efficient, and run at cooler temperatures. These drives are meant to cut down on the environmental impact of storage and computing, even being constructed of some more eco-friendly materials than the typical drive. Green drives range from 320GB to 3TB. Finally, BLACK drives are designed more for enthusiasts who require the fastest hardware. They offer better performance, but of course this comes at a higher price. Unless you know that you need this extra performance boost or need to have top-of-the-line components, the significantly higher price just isn't worth it.

I chose the Green drive for a few reasons. First, as this is meant for a home theater/gaming setup, I wanted to get hardware that was as quiet as possible so as not to disrupt the audio of my movies, shows, and games. Not only is the Green drive designed to run quieter, but it also runs cooler. Cooler equipment means the PC's fans don't have to run at high speeds, which in turn means less noise. Second, the Green drive was available at 2TB (I'll come to this next), which was pretty important to me and a good reason not to choose the Blue drive that maxes out at 1TB. Third, while it wasn't my key motivator - though it may be yours - the environmentally friendly aspects of this product are a really great feel-good bonus.

Now, as promised, let's talk about memory. If you're shopping for hard drives, you've probably done some research and some Googling, and you may have seen some warnings about using hard drives over 2TB. If not, Google it and you'll see what I mean. It mostly has to do with the math behind data storage, which I won't get into here. While there are definitely advantages to larger drives, you have to be careful that you know the rest of your computer will work with larger drives, and know which settings to tweak if it won't. I went with the 2TB drive because I knew it would work without having to go to the trouble of checking compatibilities and changing settings, and also because I know my computer case has plenty of extra hard drive slots available if I need more storage in the future. For this reason I would recommend a maximum size of 2TB, unless you have the know-how to make sure larger sizes will work for you.

In the end, I think I've made a good choice in this drive. After about a month of use, it has been doing just fine. It runs well, is very quiet, and stays nice and cool. There are a lot of hard drives to pick from, but I'd pick this one every time. If I need to expand into a second or third hard drive in the future, I would definitely choose the WD Green 2TB drive again.
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on December 28, 2014
I'm using this 3TB WD Green as an external drive with a USB 3.0 SATA docking station and I could not be happier.

My main selling point is that this drive is a great price, and at the time I bought it 3TB was the cheapest price per terabyte. My main concern was heat because my dock doesn't have a fan but I haven't had any issues.

Passively checking Windows Explorer file transfer rates I've seen speeds as high as 400 Mb/s to and from an internal SSD (given this has a lot of limiting components and isn't necessarily a great assessment of the drive itself).

Overall, I would highly recommend this drive to anyone needing some extra storage for a reasonable price.

I still know that I saw the file transfer speeds I specified in my review but here's an actual benchmark. Remember this drive is in a USB 3.0 external SATA dock.
review image
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on December 1, 2011
I purchased this drive to use in a RAID1 configuration off an Adaptec 6805E to build a new VMWare ESXi 5.0 host. This is not an enterprise drive and that created a big headache for me. This is likely due the lack of error correction timeout control and other things about the drive that are not enterprise. I returned it for a WD RE 2TB (WD2003FYYS), an enterprise drive. I have a lot of experience with drives, but thought I would be able short-circuit good practice just this one time to save some money and get SATA 6.0 Gbps. It did not work out, although probably not because of the drive. Just be aware of the limitations when experimenting and save yourself some time. This might work great on an ICH10 or other ICH "host" raid config, but did not do well with the Adaptec. The initial build time of a 2.6TB RAID1 array was 64hours over Thanksgiving. Insanely long. This was done within the Adaptec boot-time configuration utility and not with the system running an OS.

I have had great experience with WD.. having worked at a company where I used thousands of them. Using the right tool for the job is always a good idea and will generally save you money and time.. I wrote this for you folks that might be pondering the same idea. I did this on an older Mukilteo host with PCI Express 1.0 x4 slot.

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on January 11, 2012
I needed two drives for a NAS server. 1 of the 2 original drives I purchased was DOA. After returned the DOA drive I got a second drive that lasted about 2 weeks before it started throwing I/O errors and the system notified me that the drive was failing and needed to be replaced. I am now on drive number 4 which is working...for now.

Interestingly I purchased the NAS drive because I had an external drive fail on me after years of service. All hard drives fail eventually but WD is terrible. When you finally get the right drives I think you will be happy, however:

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