Check to see if the auger is turning when you try to start it.
The only things moving when you use the pull rope are:
Starter recoil assembly, flywheel and engine internals.
If the starter is not fully retracting it could be making noise with the flywheel teeth.
There could be parts of a mouse nest somewhere under the hood.
When a machine does not start you listen more versus one or two pulls and the thing starts so you don’t get familiar with the base sound…..you start to hear more. ?
When you got it started did the sounds increased, decreased, gone?
Since you got it started even with the sounds it did not run for long. So hard starting, and won’t run after starting. Is the gas new, couple of months, or last years? It could be a dirty carb or restricted gas and a number of other things. You could start by taking off the bowl nut and draining the gas in the bowl into a very clean cup and see what you have, particles, blob at the bottom indicating water & etc.
If the gas is stale you could drain the tank through the bowl and fill with new gas.
How did you take care of storage for the last few seasons?