New hdd slow 4k writes?

pcnthuziast

TS Evangelist
Just got a new hdd. Seagate BarraCuda 4TB (ST4000DM004}
Before I installed it internally, I formatted it in a usb dock and ran crystaldisk mark to test the empty drive.
Annotation 2019-07-09 054603.png

Then I started to fill the drive and after filling it a tiny bit wanted to test again.
Annotation 2019-07-09 171449.png
As you can see the 4k writes decreased exponentially.

I decided to try again internally so I could see if sata vs usb would change things and it did not.
Annotation 2019-07-09 175259.png

Haven't bought a new hdd in many years and have nothing to equally compare it to so I am unsure if this is normal. If not, any idea what is to blame? A setting somewhere or perhaps a defective/failing drive?
 

neeyik

TS Evangelist
Staff member
https://hdd.userbenchmark.com/SpeedTest/243570/ST4000DM004-2CV104

The average results for 4K writes is substantially higher than what you're getting, so it might be worth trying the HDD UserBenchmark tool:

https://hdd.userbenchmark.com/Software

Edit: Just tried a WD Green 2TB in my system, and got :

4K Read 1
4K Write 2.4
4K Mixed 0.9

If one assumes CrystalDisk results can be compared to HDD UserBenchmark results, it would definitely suggest something is amiss. Check the SATA settings in the motherboard BIOS - ideally it should be in AHCI mode, hot swapping switched off, but I'm not the best person to offer advice in this area (I just whack as many drives into the system as it can take, and hope for the best)
 
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pcnthuziast

TS Evangelist
AHCI mode is enabled and hot swapping is off. Seagates Sea tools software passes all checks and everything else seems normal, but these speeds are deffo off. Not sure what the deal is, but I'm definitely returning this drive.
 

neeyik

TS Evangelist
Staff member
Straight HDDs are no longer by choice of backup drives anymore - SSD for boot, apps, etc but I've been using hybrid HDD for some time now, and they're just so much better. I appreciate that the NAND flash is likely to die far sooner the spinning drive ever will but I'll take the extra write performance every time.
 

jobeard

TS Ambassador
I appreciate that the NAND flash is likely to die far sooner the spinning drive ever will but I'll take the extra write performance every time.
and I'll opt for reliability and longevity of the media every time.