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 I experience a delay or freeze when loading a song from an external hard drive

If you experience a delay when trying to access an external hard drive and/or load a song from it then this may be caused by the external drive going to sleep due to lack of activity. On some computers this can also occur for songs loaded from the internal drive too, if this has been configured to sleep in your computer's power management settings.

Most songs are loaded fully into memory in VirtualDJ, resulting in no further disk activity, so the time between loading one song and the next may be enough for the drive to enter saving mode.

When you next try to load a file from the drive, it will cause a delay and the user interface (Skin) will freeze until the hard drive 'wakes up' and spins back to up to normal speed. The time this takes will depend on the drive and its manufacturer.

Unfortunately this feature is often 'hard coded' into most external drives and cannot normally be turned off. However, for some drives, a utility from the manufacturer may be available to adjust the time before it goes to sleep. For further details, please contact the manufacturer or visit their website.

If you experience long delays (More than a few seconds), then this may be due to a poorly designed drive or a 'green' drive not really intended for performance use. You should consider replacing it with a better drive that is able to wake from sleep faster.

Another option is some utility software that regularly writes a small file to the drive to keep it alive, but this will increase wear and tear on the drive, reducing its lifespan - Search Google for: prevent external hard disk from going to sleep

Delays when accessing and/or loading songs can also indicate a failing hard drive. If a disk that was previously working with no problems starts experiencing delays then this is an indication of possible impending failure. You should back up the files on it immediately and then use tools such as scan disk, etc. to verify the drive's health. Always ensure that you have a full back up of your music collection and your VirtualDJ database.

NOTE: Depending on the performance of the disk drive, you can also experience a momentary freeze in the user interface when loading a large file such as a video and/or you have a very large database of songs. This is because the user interface is busy waiting to initially access the file from the disk. It's normal and nothing to worry about unless you also get sound break-up (If this is the case, please check that your computer is optimised for DJ performance.) A better performance disk can help minimise the delay.




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