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Why is my Hard Drive noisy when AC adapter is used.

When OEM 65w adapter is used on my G4 Powerbook 15", the Hard drive makes a heck of a lot of noise. It otherwise operate fine, but it is disconcerting.

Any ideas?

I thought it may be the adapter, as the Hard drive was recently upgraded, and the both the new and old drives suffer the same issue.

Wow, thanks for the quick responses to my query.

Currently I don't have another power adapter but will try to source one from a friend soon.

Have verified disk and permissions, and all is good there.

Tried observing Activity Monitor and no difference there.

Sound is definitely not the fans. I am used to hearing them come on and off when encoding large video files, so can rule that one out.

The noise is like an amplification of the buzz of the hard drive reading and writing. And it comes from the Hard drive itself not the speakers.

Hard Drive is good. When operating on battery it makes all the usual sounds. Only getting grief when adapter is in.

I will try getting my hands on another adapter, and give that a go.

Will update when I have further results.

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

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Spread the Fixmas cheer.


Spread the Fixmas cheer.

2 Answers

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It seems very odd that the hard drive would experience an increase in noise/activity due to being connected to AC. Do you have another AC to test so that you could possibly rule out the AC as the problem?

Is it possible that you're hearing fan noise, and not the hard drive? That might make a little more sense, especially since you've heard the noise with two drives.

I would go into the laptop's power settings and examine the difference between the "on AC power" settings and the "on battery power" settings. You might want to set them both to be exactly the same, and then see if the disk activity still occurs, or if anything changes. You may also want to go into activity monitor and see if it states that the disk activity is actually going up when you pull the AC plug. If it shows the disk activity is unchanged when you pull the plug, this may be evidence that it's actually the fan, etc.

I'd examine what software is on your there anything which could be causing disk activity when certain conditions are met, possibly a de-fragmenting tool?

Lastly, what does the noise sound like? Is it a hard drive-like noise, a knocking sound, a whirring sound, beeping, etc.?

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That's what I was thinking, he might be confusing it with his fan.


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If you are concerned about your hard drive, open Disk Utility and verify your drive, this will tell you if your drive is okay or not.

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Kevin will be eternally grateful.
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