Why is my portable hard drive skipping?

Antoinette P March 25, 2014
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My portable hard drive is jumping/skipping when I play movie files of all types avi etc. Was working last week I deleted a couple of files and now jumping. Can this be fixed? Any advice is appreciated

  1. Marcus P
    March 27, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    Short answer - Oron's got a good idea there. If you haven't defragged it because your OS has told you you don't need to, then maybe you should tell your computer that you want to defrag the drive regardless.
    Having been in this situation before with a standard external (not Solid State) I can tell you that the root cause of your problem is most likely to be fragmentation. I say this because some OS's (no names mentioned) have a habit of telling you you *don't* need to defrag your external, when in actual fact you most likely *should*. 16% of a 2TB external hard drive - for argument's sake - is still a sizeable wad of data space to be all jumbled up. 16% of even jut a few gig is still something that could cause some slight issues with playback from time to time, depending on what else you've got kicking about on the affected drive.
    If you have a particularly large external the more pronounced the problem is - and I share that same habit as you, as sticking films on a hard drive to watch later, only to find it's skipping. My own problem is that I have several gigs worth of art material for use with Photoshop stashed on the same drive, so when things are removed and added and more stuff is removed to make space for something else (or for whatever reason you choose to get rid of some things on a hard drive), films are going to skip. Defrag that bad boy, and it should fix your problem.
    Another note on mechanical externals is that they do have a tendency to power down after a time despite you being still on the computer to which it is attached. This also doesn't help initially - as it's quite possible the film needs to be buffered before it can play any more of the film beyond a few seconds or minutes. Best place for your films, logically, is your internal hard drive, not your external - but then that's hypocritical of me because I do exactly the same thing as you!
    Defrag. Problem solved. Almost guaranteed. Failing the defrag, it could be a memory problem, or a graphics problem on the part of the media player you use (assuming driver software is up to date - which sounds vaguely familiar from an answer I gave to something else graphics related), however - go with the first possible solution of defragging the external hard drive first, and if that doesn't work, try looking at the media player settings - if that doesn't work, then try the memory.

  2. Oron J
    March 25, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    Is this an mechanical hard drive, or a flash drive? If it's a mechanical one, you could try defragging it.

  3. Hovsep A
    March 25, 2014 at 9:40 am

    are you able to copy paste files normally, play song...
    you can always just remove the hard drive from its external enclosure and plug to the motherboard