Model A1311 / Mid 2010 / 3.06 & 3.2 GHz Core i3 or 3.6 GHz Core i5 Processor

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replace the hard drive, how do I connect Hard Drive thermal sensor?

My iMac's (i3 ,WD 500G ) Hard Drive is failure and I replace a new one but I can't connect thermal sensor to new Hard Drive because the connectors are different.

So my Hard Drive Fan will run the full speed after 10 mins when I power on.

I google the solution and someone suggest that I can jump the connector to make the sensor short then it will show 0 C degree.

It works but I afraid the Hard Drive will overheat when I use for a long time.

Do you have any solution to solve this problem?

Thank you.

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

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I met the same problem as described with a 500Gb coming out SAMSUNG instead of WESTERN DIGITAL. with the same connection a block of 8 pins... the fan turning at full speed, no matter i boot from the I.H.D. or an external H.D...

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I did what instructions said and plugged the two pin lead into pins nearest the SATA port and PCB board and no issue with fans running full when done. It did require I push the two pins on new HDD underneath down to fit, used plastic septula and was careful. Works perfect.(WD Green 2TB Desktop Hard Drive: 3.5-inch, WD20EZRX)

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@Tim - Did you fashion your own external sensor? We use this one: OWC In-line Digital Thermal Sensor for iMac 2009-2010 Hard Drive Upgrade its a simple drop in.

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No Dan, Plugged the apple cable directly into WD HDD with 8 pins; into 2 pins closest to Sata port and board on HDD, it did not fit naturally so I pushed 2 pins(on HDD) below out of way for the cable interface to fit, but worked flawlessly and no full time fans.

However if I have an issue in the future I will certainly use one of those cables.

Visual reference of pin out and pins plugged into # shows pins that plugged into.

1234 1234

. . . . . . ##

. . . . . . . .

5678 5678

Shoot it did not maintain formatting for visual...Oh well.

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Hi Tim, This probably feels like a long time ago. But did you get a photo of how you set that up. And its strange Western Digital don't include an adapter :-(. Many thanks James...

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Apple changed to a seven lead temperature sensor and proprietary firmware in their hard drives in late 2009. Their thinking appears to be that no one but Apple or an Authorized Service Provider has the ability to change a hard drive. So you have to go through Apple to get a drive that won't make the fans run at full speed. To date, I have seen no work around on this site or any other to get around this. Thus you are at the mercy of Apple on pricing. I do expect to see a class action law suit on this soon but who knows when and it doesn't help you now. I would contact Apple to see if they will help you at all. Please let us know your results.

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Apple stocks the temperature sensor cable as a separate part for each drive manufacturer. If you have the exact new hard drive say such as WD and you need the matching cable, Apple has the separate part and possibly would sell it to you.

Update - it appears that the port for the sensor cable on the HDD connects to the sensor within the HDD so DARN the whole unit HDD and cable would need to come from Apple!

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tiger, check the date on the OWC report.

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Mayer writes, " I do expect to see a class action law suit on this soon…"

On what grounds?

Apple doesn't advertise or claim compatibility with 3rd-party replacement drives.

There is no law that requires compatibility with after-market hardware.

There is a law (The Magnuson–Moss Warranty Act) that prohibits them from voiding your warranty if you choose to use 3rd party parts. But they aren't doing that.

We might not like it, but I'm not aware of any legal grounds to challenge it. Are you?

In any event, there is a solution: Other World Computing sells a special cable that has an in-line thermal sensor that reports drive temperature to the Mac in the same way the Apple drives do it. So you can use any standard SATA hard drive.

They call it the OWC Hard Drive DIY Kit. I haven't tried it myself, but I've always had good experiences with everything I purchase from them.

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In any event, there is a solution: Other World Computing sells a special cable that has an in-line thermal sensor that reports drive temperature to the Mac in the same way the Apple drives do it. So you can use any standard SATA hard drive.

They call it the OWC Hard Drive DIY Kit. I haven't tried it myself, but I've always had good experiences with everything I purchase from them.

The OWC Hard Drive DIY Kit does't work on iMac 21,5" Mid 2010 (I have bought it and I can't use it!!), so the misfat remain: how solve this fan control issue?

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@Mauro Macniaco: You complained that the OWC kit doesn't work for your 2010 iMac. But their website quite clearly says it's for the 2011 model. Did you not notice that?

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Most Helpful Answer

The best solution, is using a Transistor 2N3904. Just remove the connector (side HD) and solder a 2N3904. Gray wire on E (Transistor) and black wire on BC (transistor).

By Alexandre Larangeira

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Alexandre solution worked perfectly for me! Thanks for an easy and elegant fix.

Sergio

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Sorry, alexadre, that last post was meant for you? Really interested to find out how to do the transistor thing on an 2009 imac upgrading the hitachi drive to a larger capacity hitachi drive?

Fitting like for like drive didn't cure the slowly speeding up fans! Appreciate any feed back on this transistor solution?

Sy

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Sorry to be replying to a 2 year-old thread, but I was just hoping for a little clarity. On the transistor, you say "black wire to BC." So I should connect the base and collector on the transistor together, then connect the black wire to that? (And the gray wire to the transistor's emitter) Should I then tape the transistor to the hard drive so it will act as a thermal sensor, or just let it hang in the open air?

Thanks for this elegant solution; I just wanted to be certain I'm doing it correctly.

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Interesting, the 2N3904 was already used as thermal sensor in the iMac 2007 (EMC 2133) and the part was glued to the HDD. The same circuit was also used for the ODD sensor. See this image: https://d3nevzfk7ii3be.cloudfront.net/ig...

There you can confirm that BC are tied together...

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The 2N3904 is also used as the LCD thermal sensor in the late 2009 21.5" iMac. Just used Alexandre's solution in that iMac and took a look at the LCD thermal sensor, which is hidden behind some foam on the back of the lcd.

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I have used the sensors from earlier iMacs as well as from Macbook Pros. The Macbook Pro aluminum models are the ones I usually use. There are several of them, I usually use the ones that are under each fan. They have 2 leads just like the iMac which I extend to reach the drive. Then i attach the sensor with double-sided tape (same stuff we use to adhere glass on iPads and unibody MacBooks).

The sensors from earlier iMacs (if they are the 2 lead type) also work. Some splicing is usually required.

I have done it this way since the very first drive replacement I had to do on one of these iMacs. I don't think that any resistor or jumper is a good idea at all. Temperatures in a computer need to be monitored and the fans adjusted continuously for everything to work at peak efficiency. I don't want to leave fan control up to my clients to monitor. Nor do I want their iMacs running noisily because their fans have to be run at high speed all the time.

I'm perfectly willing to hack and modify things when it makes sense, (my Hackintosh is over- clocked to 4.7GHz, and I install Mt Lion and Mavericks on unsupported Macs all the time) but in this case it doesn't make sense.

Block Image

Macbook Pro A1150 right fan ambient temperature sensor. Splice one of these (black to black and color to color) to your old sensor cable and stick it to the hard drive. The hard drive fan will function just as it did with the original drive.

People have over-thought this problem.

My thinking was:

I can't use the internal sensor so I need an external one.

I have all these other mac parts.

Maybe the sensor from another Mac will work.

Lets try a Macbook Pro sensor.

Splice the wires and try it out.

Works fine, all temps check out.

Simple

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Does this work for 2011 iMacs? I know that they have a temp sensor built-in to the power cable for the HDD.

Also, the splice that you are making... is the new connection going directly from the fan to the temp sensor that you are taping to the hard drive? Are you bypassing the logic board all together then?

Thanks!

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I also would like to know if this works for 2011 iMacs. I have an old 2005 iMac, could I use a temperature sensor from that?

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The '05 iMac G5 temp sensor is the older 4 wire type. If it has Intel processor then it will have a 2 wire sensor that should work.

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Hi Ben, how can I use this temp sensor with mid-2011 27" iMac? The mid 2011 iMac doesn't have a separate temp sensor. How can I attach the transistor temp sensor to the power cable? Thanks.

Ron

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Mid-2010 and earlier iMacs with sensor cables that plugged into the hard drive are what I'm referring to. In spite of what others here are saying I have seen no evidence that there is any special firmware in these hard drives. ALL hard drives report a myriad of self-diagnostic information via SATA and SMART (see the pic on my June 6th post). The OS can rely on this data for fan and temp control. Apple thought it was safer for the HDD temp data to be sent directly to the Logic board to be analyzed by the OS. In 2004 G5 iMacs, 2006 White Intel iMacs, and 2007-2008 Aluminum iMacs, a discrete temp sensor was adhered to the hard drive to read temp independently of the drive's self-reported data. 2009 and 2010 iMacs used an external feed from the HDD's built in temp sensor to send the data to the Logic board. The 2011 models appear to have no separate cable to the Logic board so they must use the drive's built in temp sensor data via SATA. This means the solution should be software-based.

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Just to be clear here both HD's are Western Digital and are the same series and size that you are exchanging out correct?

If so, the fact you still can't get it to work correctly leads me to believe the issue is also within the HD's firmware and/or this given HD does not have an active thermal sensor that meets Apples spec.

FYI - Did you contact Apple to see if the HD was covered under warranty? They had a bad batch of HD's in some systems and these systems have an extended warranty (call them with your systems S/N). If it was not covered by Apple you could also go directly to WD as they have a warranty program for there drives even if it was an OEM drive, that might get you a free replacement HD (http://support.wdc.com/warranty/index_en...)

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I see this thread has been going for some time and it is the best one I found on the Internet so far. I purchased a new SSD drive for my late 2009 27" iMac and before I dismantle everything, I would like to be prepared for all operations in advance. This includes replacing the HDD by a SSD but also deal with the Thermal sensor issue.

I find replace the hard drive, how do I connect Hard Drive thermal sensor? answer to use a 2N3904 transistor simple and interesting and would like to know a little more about it, so please allow me to ask a few questions:

1. Has this solution been tested and validated by anyone?

2. If so, does this setup provide a temperature reading when using a tool such as MacsFanControl or iStat Pro?

3. Does the reported temperature (and variation) make sense?

4. Does this solution allow HDD Fan to behave normally - without any additional software control (ie. not spin at max speed at startup and increase speed reasonably if temperature goes up)?

If this solution has not proven to work, I will most certainly just jump the connector, but will then have a zero reading for that sensor :-(

Thanks in advance

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Marc66,

1 - Already applied my solution in over 50 iMacs

2 - yes, this transistor acts as a temperature sensor

3 - normal

4 - Yes, it works the same way as the original hd

5 - works perfectly

Att

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Thank you Alexandre, I'll give it a try when I replace my HD

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I performed the HDD replacement yesterday. Everything is working like a charm and thanks to Alexandre's solution for the Thermal Sensor replacement, I don't need any additional software to control my fan. It works just like before and shows a temperature around 40°C which is what I had with my HDD before.

You can find some pictures:

- Before: http://cjoint.com/?CLCppQ6dZOo

- After: http://cjoint.com/?CLCpqxAJmtP

- Thermal sensor detail: http://cjoint.com/?CLCprr2tXtd

- SSD detail: http://cjoint.com/?CLCpsly2bRK

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Marc66, does it matter which pins on the transistor? Is it possible to solder the grey & black wires directly on to the transistor pins? I'm assuming it matters which colour lead goes to which pin, correct me if I'm wrong?

I am experiencing issues with a Hitachi drive and found this thread, very curious how this works as my sensor connector only has two pins?

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I'll try the transistor solution whenver I get a chance I guess.

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My iMac original HD has 8 pin, same as the new one I bought.

Please see the image below, the new one does not come from apple. (The cost of new HD is USD 80 but Apple charge $200 to replace the same one)

Block Image

Note: I broke the top area off on the new drive I bought, as the Apple drive has a keyway and the new one doesn't so the cable won't fit.

But even I connect the thermal sensor to the new one, the HD fan will also run at full speed after 10 mins.

So I jump the third and the seventh pin to short the thermal feedback, so it will show 0C degree and the fan will always run at lowest speed.

OOXO

OOXO

( I jumped the Pin X)

Then I download the software 'iMac Fan control' to control HD Fan.

Block Image

Maybe it's not the best way but it works well.

The only thing I concerned is that I don't know the temperature of HD so I would know what time should I increase the HD fan speed.

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You can download and install istat pro to see the temps at your hard drive.It takes the info iside the hard drive directly(smart)

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Put inside the old thermal connector (in case you will put again your old seagate hd) 2 cables with connectors like these they use in windows pc's for microphone on motherboards, put the black color on the first pin of WD hard disk closest to SATA connector

In the lower (looking disc from above and connectors facing you) and the white colored cable next to black. Install fan control daemon and your finished.

I played a lot with this and I find this is the best solution. Don't worry about hard disc, its running at most 37c without cooling.

You can go then to fan settings and make them run as you wish. I have them in 2000 RPM on all.

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http://www.derman.com/iMac-Fan-Control

this is the best for Imac's fan's

i have it and i can control all fans to desired speed..

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Thank you very much for the suggestion :) I know about this cable but it does not fit to the disc i have now.. and no cable exists for my disc and there is no need to it because is all time cold..i have the disc outside the case :)

The site you refer is one of the best for mac items.

Yes is annoying when you cant change items from your pc..Actually is my pc especially after one year passed after warranty and i didnt wanted to pay every year apple care if and when something going wrong... :)

After all my skills are enough to change processor or video card or power supply..and this is now out of case with a fan :)

Thank you for replying :)

i just wanted to give an idea here for people having problems with this !&%& disk..

Note that apple have inside a special firmware that even if you change the disc with same but not from Apple does not work..

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You state your HD has a different connector than what the cable supports (Apples or OWC custom cable) can you explain? 3.5" SATA drives all use the same connector, do you have a 2.5" mSATA SSD? That does have a different connector. If so, their are adapters to convert. Also some HD vendors have changed their HD firmware on some of their drives to be compatible with Apple systems that use the internal SMART temp sensor (not all SMART HD's have a sensor). The real issue here is not custom firmware but a hole in the SMART standard on how temp was accessed from within the HD as it was never clearly defined in the standard.

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I dont have the original hd because it crashed..lot of bad sectors....i change it with a 2.5 ssd which is dont have at all jumper connections my friend.. only the smart from the sata connection ..but is not so accurate..yes not all HD have this sensor.. these hd's have a dot

painted below . Yes you absolutely right but i know that they put inside and a firmware for accessing these data and these hd's are specially designed for Apple.

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To jump the connector you must find a small cable in diameter take off the insulation and cut a small piece of the copper and put it one side inside the plug on the gray cable and the other side to black. but you must install and a third party software to control the fans then.... But just to know Apple does not recommend that only in the case that you put an ssd.. I Need to tell at this point that IFix it is a good site for mac and everything you find here (guides are well tested) .thank you.

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jump the connectors works fine after that.

How can I jump the connectors?

Jump the connectors means this:

Block Image

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I have an Independent Apple repair business here in Oregon. This issue is really not an issue. Apple was not trying to prevent anyone from replacing hard drives. Apple was trying to save money by using the built in sensor in the HDD instead of adding their own external one. I have used many other temp sensors from other Macs for this. My reasoning is that if I have to alter the cable I may as well make it easier on the next tech by adding an external Apple temp sensor from another Mac. The temp senders Apple uses are surprisingly standardized. I have checked them with an infrared thermometer and they appear to have similar specs.

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Hi could you please suggest a cable I could use for my 27" mid-2011 iMac to upgrade the main internal drive? I've tried the OWC cable with temp sensor, however, I noticed that the Apple HW test intermittently fails using this. Also with normal operations, the HDD fan goes up to 1100 thru 2500, and back down to 1100 often. I don't see this behavior with the original 1TB drive. Thanks for your suggestions.

-Ron

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Here's what you'll need and more detail on the HD issue: Background Story and the needed part: OWC Complete Hard Drive Upgrade Kit including tools for all iMac 2011 Models. I should point out depending on the drive you get you may not even need this cable. As an example the Seagate SSHD drive can be used (one with the Apple logo on the box).

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SATA is SATA. Apple has no special magic here. SATA is an international standard. SMART is another standard that has always worked by reading hardware data about the drive via the data connection (PATA or SATA). My Asus P8Z77 motherboard shows me a wealth of info about my drives this way:

Block Image

Since I'm an Independent Mac tech I don't typically see many Macs that are still within their Apple care timeframe. I have yet to do anything but software work on the late 2012. My previous comments were directed at the earlier iMac models.

If I owned your iMac I'd simply try a different drive. In OWC's video on RAM upgrades you can clearly see the Hitachi 1TB drive which doesn't have any Apple branding on it at all. My Guess is that you'd be safe with any Hitachi drive as a replacement, but I'd also bet that any drive would work with no special steps needed.

BTW I'm a beta tester for a major hard drive manufacturer and their replacement 2.5" 'Fusion' drive is in beta right now and is performing about midway between spinning HDD and SSD in terms of read/write tests. I think it may be a good solution for an iMac like yours (I have it in my i5 mini).

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Where in Oregon are you or maybe you can't say. The Apple guy I am using (not a Certified Apple Tech) suggested buying an external thermal cable from a 2008 model. I have a Mid 2010 IMac, replaced a WD with a 1TB WD and get that horrible fan noise. Don't trust using an Utility as HDD Fan Control and that costs $35 now. It's going to cost me more to pay this guy to swap out the cables. I damaged the LVDS cable so I am done trying to install anything myself again.

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Dana - The '10 iMac models use a special cable per the HD vendor drive you are using. If your system had a Seagate drive you'll need to replace it with a Seagate drive etc... With that said, you CAN use a different vendors drive but you'll need to swap-out the thermal sensor cable with the correct one per the drive you are putting in. Why don't you create your own Question so we can review your systems issues to see what is up here as you could have a different problem.

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Dana - Your right to be concerned about software over-rides. That only masks the problem and not addressing the issue will likely shorten your systems lifespan and/or wear out parts needlessly.

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Most upgrades seem to relate to the 27" iMacs, which have enough room for a thermal sensor cable as sold by OWC. Unfortunately there's (as of yet) no way to upgrade the slow 5400rpm HD in a 2012 iMac.

Even after 2 years of searching (on and off) I still haven't found a way to either add a thermal sensor to an after market SSD, nor have I found a way to completely disable the thermal sensor with a hardware solution. The only possible solution so far seems to be to use a piece of software to adjust the HD-fan instead.

@beneshelman; Do you have a link to, or maybe an explanation for us, on how you added the external sensor to solve the fans from spinning like crazy? I'm pretty confident in opening up an iMac (done it plenty of times), but adding cables that weren't there is not something I have experience with :)

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@beneshelman;

Thanks a lot for the explanation! :)

One question though: I've read that the late 2012 iMac (the 21.5" one) uses a custom firmware inside the HD, which is then read via the SATA cable instead. If that's true, how and where do you connect the red/black cable of this thermal sensor if I may ask? I'm not against soldering or connecting a "new" cable to my to-be-upgraded HD, but I'm a little confused on where this cable is connected to :)

And how does that work with the motherboard/EFI? I was always under the impression that the EFI, on new Macs anyway, nééded to read the temperature via the SATA cable directly into the HD's firmware… or is this also nonsense?

Thanks again for the help though!

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Thanks again Beneshelman! :)

Installing that cable is a little above my comfort zone (primarily since I have no idea about the how and where), so I'll just give it a go without it. What's the worst that can happen after all? A fan spinning out of control can, if needed, easily be solved with a little bit of software. And that's the only thing that might happen, so I guess I shouldn't be worried ;)

As far as that HD you're currently testing: I'm not thát much of a heavy user that I absolutely need an SSD… I do use Photoshop and Illustrator pretty extensively, and I play an occasional game, but for me if I open up my iMac anyway, I want the fastest available. Doing that kind of work, which isn't difficult per sé but not my daily routine, I want to get the most out of it in one go, heheh.

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Great thread - very informative! I used an eBay sourced optical drive sensor (transistor type) from a different iMac and taped it to my new hard disk. These seem to be less expensive on eBay than those sold as HDD temp sensors. Worked perfectly with no need for additional software.

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I know this is an older thread, but here's something I've found. If you're replacing a WD drive, you need to rotate the temp sensor connector 180º when connecting it to the new drive, so the dark cable is closest to the drive's PCB.

1 2 3 4
• • D • |DATA||POWER|
• • L •
5 6 7 8

This will fix the issue of the fans spinning up after a few minutes (technically, because the "HDD Proximity" sensor data was out of tolerance).

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Hi! Wich HD model and brand are you using? Tnx!

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The make is Western Digital (WD). Don't have the model info handy, but it's a current model 1TB Blue, iirc. The issue I found must have come from changes WD made to the drive's header pinout.

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Thanks. In a few day I'll perform a similar task, same HD. But I will use the transistor-as-a-temperature-sensor idea.

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There is a program that helps you to control your HDD fan speed.

You get get it here: http://www.hddfancontrol.com/

Update

Another program you may want to try is this: smcFanControl

Google it

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Hi my friend! Of course the drive failed because of the bad construction of cooling in these desktops.I cant understand what Apple thinking when was making these all in one machines..Maybe is only for Antarctica? :) I have seen temps in hard drives more than 50c and continiously..They cant last like that..The most is 37c at continuous operation..Of course Western digital hd's can last longer than any brand( not the blue).

The only solution is to install a third party software to control fans and the only one that is working as i said some months ago is : http://www.derman.com/iMac-Fan-Control

Dont search anything else is not working like this at least for my mac.

then join the two point connector together itsself. The next thing is to put the hard drive outside the aluminium case and put an fan from desktop tower on it with a case for external drive and then your hd will be work at most in 32c.

That's it.

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@Hell7- Actually an iMac that isn't filthy and plugged up with dust keeps it's drives at 29-35c

depending on the drive.

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