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What makes a hard drive reliable ?? - Page 3

post #31 of 80

What do you guys think of Fuji drives? The one guy back home I trust to take my computer apart swears by them.

post #32 of 80

Quote:
Originally Posted by DougofTheAbaci View Post

What do you guys think of Fuji drives? The one guy back home I trust to take my computer apart swears by them.

 

The only Fujitsu drive I've seen was in a blade server in the Menlo Park, CA datacenter of what was at that time Sun Microsystems. I've heard that they're pretty decent but a quick search shows that they've been bought out by Toshiba. And yes- I remember the most random things sometimes. tongue.gif

 

On the note of Toshiba, I rarely work with laptops so I've only seen a small sample size. Again, my ranking is pretty subjective.

post #33 of 80
I have a pair of WD 2TB greens sitting in two Macally external enclosures for archiving/backup and I only turn them on if I'm writing/reading from them (typically an hour a week). I've changed the idle settings already, and at this rate I expect them to last quite a while.
post #34 of 80

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cyberspyder View Post

I have a pair of WD 2TB greens sitting in two Macally external enclosures for archiving/backup and I only turn them on if I'm writing/reading from them (typically an hour a week). I've changed the idle settings already, and at this rate I expect them to last quite a while.


 

I'd say a decade or more... I have a Samsung and a WD that are sitting on my desk that are attached 24/7. Granted, I only read from them every once and a while but they're idling pretty much all the time. No issues yet.

post #35 of 80

x


Edited by fznicon - 6/18/12 at 11:56pm
post #36 of 80

Speaking of speed... Thunderbolt, man. The only way they could max out the throughput of a Thunderbolt port was with a 5 disk RAID0 array of Intel SSDs. All the benefits of firewire with a few added on top and then throughput that crushes USB 3.0? Yes, please.

 

I have to ask, what do you guys think of the 3 TB WD Green drives? I heard they would die on you at a really scary rate when they first came out but it sounds like they've quieted down? I mean, it has been over a year since the first once hit the market. Is it becoming OK to grab a 3 TB HDD and to not expect it to die instantly?

 

I'm asking because I'm looking at my current storage needs and I either need to get two 2TB drives and RAID0 them or I need a single 3 TB drive and enclosure, which is much, much cheaper. The RAID enclosure would cost as much as a 3 TB HDD, maybe a little more.

 

And I plan on doubling that. So... Yeah...

post #37 of 80

The main thing that makes HDD>SSD for storage IMO is that the data is never truly lost and, for a price, it is possible to get it back in almost all cases, even when it looks like a catastrophic failure. When a SSD dies, everything's gone for good. 

 

Another recommendation is to use single platter drives (eg 1tb is usually made of 2 500gb platters so buying a 500gb drive might be better), but I've seen no proof that it is actually better, just read about it here and there. 

 

From my personnal experience, HDDs can last extremely long if handled with some care (no overheating, no shocks, no overvoltage or power failures etc). My parents have a 11 year old laptop still running strong and it has travelled around the world by plane, boat, car and suffered from some heat, some humidity, some shocks and what not. 

 

Also, HDDs spinning 24/7 seem to last longer than drives being powered on and off all the time (I presume this is because they are mechanical and the "power on phase" is the most stressful one). This is completely the opposite for SSDs since they have limited write cycles. 

And about the brand... well I'd go WD these days. Not a single issue with them, fast, reliable, quiet and not more expensive than the other brands. I have an excellent Hitachi drive too, but they made a lot of dodgy ones from what I gathered. It is a noisy little bugger though, so I'm only using it to back up some not so important stuff. 


I've had a bad experience with Seagate so far. One drive started having bad sectors (after 5 years of constant use though) and another has unreliable performance as well as a buggy firmware which makes the cache unusable for several applications. 

 

Also, external HDDs are just regular HDDs with a special casing and power supply, so they are not more or less reliable than internal drives. 

post #38 of 80

It's true, there is a write-endurance issue with SSDs. In theory, after a certain point they will reach the maximum number of writes for a sector and the sector will fail, making the drive unreliable.

 

However, this will happen LONG after you replace the SSD for something bigger. Even if you only replace your computer once a decade. As it stands, most SSDs are good for between 1,000,000 to 5,000,000 writes. If you do the math out based on a capacity of 64 GB and a sustained write speed of 80 MB/s you get something like 50 years or constant use. That's enough for even the most hard-core server. Tech NEVER lasts that long.

 

I've been asking around a few other places about the latest 3 TB hard drives and the general accepted answer is that they're just as stable as other high-capacity drives now, which is another way of saying they are theoretically more prone to failure than a smaller drive simply because more platters means more possible places for failure, but that's about it.

post #39 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by DougofTheAbaci View Post

Speaking of speed... Thunderbolt, man. The only way they could max out the throughput of a Thunderbolt port was with a 5 disk RAID0 array of Intel SSDs. All the benefits of firewire with a few added on top and then throughput that crushes USB 3.0? Yes, please.

 

I have to ask, what do you guys think of the 3 TB WD Green drives? I heard they would die on you at a really scary rate when they first came out but it sounds like they've quieted down? I mean, it has been over a year since the first once hit the market. Is it becoming OK to grab a 3 TB HDD and to not expect it to die instantly?


That's a bit of overkill for home users really. As for the 3TB drives, personally, I'm staying away from those, their failing rate is simply too high. For the amount of money it cost to recover a failed hard drive, you're better off just get a few extra drives for backup.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kalston View Post

SThe main thing that makes HDD>SSD for storage IMO is that the data is never truly lost and, for a price, it is possible to get it back in almost all cases, even when it looks like a catastrophic failure. When a SSD dies, everything's gone for good.

 

For the amount those data recovery services charge, you're much better off by getting a couple of extra hard drives for backup.

post #40 of 80

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jenneth View Post


That's a bit of overkill for home users really. As for the 3TB drives, personally, I'm staying away from those, their failing rate is simply too high. For the amount of money it cost to recover a failed hard drive, you're better off just get a few extra drives for backup.


Currently, yes. But we used to think 56 KB was enough for all the data you'd ever need. I'm now considering a 3 TB with the understanding that it's only going to be enough for the next year or two. As for their failure rates, I've been looking into that. They started out with a higher failure rate but at this point if your system is capable of supporting a 3 TB drive then they're pretty safe, especially if you're going to be backing up the data on them.

 

Oh, and as for data-recovery... Totally agree. I had a two-HDD 1 TB RAID array that I was considering getting recovered at one point and the quote was $800 minimum, $4,000 more likely.

 

Multiple backups now. MUCH cheaper.

post #41 of 80

Now this is something I can definitely be a help with!

The failure rates for high density drives (1tb and up) is the result of a mixed bag of misunderstanding HDDs and poor production by some manufacturers (ahem, seagate tongue.gif). I have over 8tb worth of space between my computers at home, and I can tell you first hand that high density drives can be are quite reliable. As density goes up more information is squeezed into smaller spaces on the disc and the likelihood of imperfections in the surface of the drive goes up. Many drives ship from the factory with some bad sectors. But don't freak out, all modern drives has "reserve sectors" which when your HDD detects a bad sector it reallocates one of the reserve sectors at the end of the drive to its place add this is completely transparent to the end user. (these appear under a S.M.A.R.T. test as reallocated sectors). Reallocated are very common on large drives and a somewhat rare to find a drive that doesn't have any. The thing is alot of people see reallocated sectors and don't really understand what that means or think there drive is failing. Now i do know that many of the so called "green" drives by seagate have had a terrible reputation for having uncorrectable sectors, mass numbers of reallocated sectors (which is a problem) and all other kinds of problems that seem to suggest the downward spiral toward HDD death.

 

In regards to SSDs vs HDDs in terms of dependability, the truth is no one knows yet. SSDs major benefit is that they are faster (well techinally the time it takes to read the information is slower the a HDD but they have almost no seek time, which adds up in the end to be faster). One thing to note is that SSD are flash based, and NAND storage can only suffer a limited number of read/write cycles before its toast. Most modern SSD are SLC and not MLC (like your flash drive which only has about 10,000 write cycles), which like Doug said has between 1 mil and 5 mil write cycles depending on the wear leveling and other factors. This was a HUGE issue a few years back when this would mean SSD might only last 3 years before running out of cycles or less when used by powerusers. By comparison HDDs have an unlimited number of read/write cycles and potentially can last something like 34 years if left on constantly for 24 hours every day. Each HDD milage will vary. I've had a HDD thats still running in an old 95 system thats 16 years old now (not that its useful for much anymore though. Technically after a SSD has reached its max number of write cycles that block becomes read only, meaning you can see information on it and open it but its burnt out and you cannot write anything else to, but SSD drives rarely fail due to having come to the end of their read write cycle life and are more plagued by other issues. SSDs are actually more likely to have sectors go bad, but their isn't a performance hit when it reallocates sectors like there is in HDDs because they can read anywhere on the drive nearly instantly whereas when a HDD has a reallocated sector the drive must jump to the end of the drive where the "replaced" sector is and then jump back. Ultimately, even Intel admits that SSD are too young to be able to paint an accurate picture of how dependable they are long term. Personally I prefer a 7200 rpm HDD to a SSD for my computers because I can't justify the price difference for a drive thats likely to be 3 to 4 times smaller. On HDDs are less then a $1 per gb these days. Statements from SSD manufactures stated that they do not expect SSDs to come down in price for another 5 to 10 years. That said I have wanted to get a USB 3.0 external SSD.

 

In looking for reliable external HDDs, you cas make your own! You can usually find drives marketed as "internal hard drives" to be cheaper and higher performance then external drives, and you can buy and enclosure on amazon for under $15 and... voila  you just got a 1tb external drive for $70. Drives are cheaper now then they have ever been. On Amazon you can get a 80gb external hdd (in an enclosure already) for $30 from cirago, and 160gb for 35 and a 250 for 40 here: http://www.amazon.com/Cirago-Portable-External-Drive-CST1080/dp/B001CBLN7K/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1304803185&sr=8-1. I have one of these that I have had for about a year now, no problems what so ever, and these are bus powered 2.5 drives so they are portable as well. Cirago basically just takes OEM drives and puts them in and enclosure puts their own warrenty on it and ships it.

 

If you guys are looking for fast HDDs as a external drive then you should get a drive that 7200 rpm as that will make a impressive difference on file transfer speeds. You may also want to check into getting a usb 3.0 external drive (you'll need to buy a expresscard or pci card for your computer if you don't have built in usb 3.0 ports which most people don't). With USB 3.0 and 2 2tb 7200rpm external hard drives each drive could process 120 MBps (thats bytes not bits). AKA, likely faster then your internal SATA drive in your laptop. I personally recommend the Buffalo DriveStation. I have two of them and they utilites they come with are worth it alone. Beside having USB 3.0  makes you the coolest kid on the block :P.

 

The fastest drives on the planet are "RAM disks" which is really software which allows you to take a chunk of your RAM and turn it into a storage medium. Here I got speeds of over 7000MBps (~100 times faster then the typical 5400rpm HDD).  blink.gif Most RAM disks offset your information to the Hard disk when you shut down the computer and put it back on the RAM disk when you start it up again. Obviously the limiting factor is how much RAM you have to spare to turn it into a disk. Now maybe in a few years they'll have "L2 cache disks" wink_face.gif

 

And yes data recovery really is highway robbery, especially when you consider the tools they use to recover your data are only around 1000-2000 bucks. You don't know how many people I have seen go into Bestbuy for HDD recovery on a drive that had nothing wrong with and it was the motherboard that failed or the SATA controllor or worse just a software issue and because they don't know how simple it is to by a $5 enclosure and do it themselves for free end up paying whatever premium price they charge. If you can assemble a chair from Ikea you can take a hard drive out and put it into an enclosure.


Edited by HardDrive - 5/7/11 at 2:53pm
post #42 of 80

1.5 TB WD caviar greens are like my go-to hard drives. I read somewhere that they offered the best storage vs. price and before I picked a couple of them up, I did some calculations at that time and found they were indeed best bang for buck (storage usage). Seagate offered competitive pricing on their greens but many tech-savvy friends told me to stay away from Seagate for some reason...

I dunno what it is, probably perception and word of mouth, but I am really happy with the greens. biggrin.gif

post #43 of 80

Seagate has been crap of late. However... Samsung has been my brand of choice for a while. Which makes me conflicted. Seagate just bought Samsung. They've already announced a new 3TB drive based on three 1TB platters that Samsung was about to release. Now, I'd buy it if it was still Samsung. But because it's now Seagate I'm wondering what, if anything has changed.

 

Did Seagate change Samsung or will Samsung change Seagate?

 

Does anyone remember when Hitatchi was a good brand?

post #44 of 80


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGomdoRi View Post

1.5 TB WD caviar greens are like my go-to hard drives.


Yeah WD is a good company and I haven't heard anything bad about those green drives, just the seagate ones. I was actually doing a google search about failed drives and their were about 5 results on the first page about Seagate greens and them failing. Everything I have bought from WD though is still working today, and above my expectations


 

Quote:

Originally Posted by DougofTheAbaci View Post

 

Did Seagate change Samsung or will Samsung change Seagate?

 

Does anyone remember when Hitatchi was a good brand?


I love(d) Samsung's RAM modules and their HDDs have kept trekking for me after tens of thousands of hours of use. I am hopping Samsung with retain its reputation, but it is a good question. I guess if you do get one keep the receipt. I had also heard that WD is planing to purchase Hitatchi, in this case I hope the buying company takes over. lol, yeah I have had bad experience with Hitachi drives. I pulled a travelstar out of an old toshiba laptop (somewhat ironcially with it had a Hitachi HDD). I took it out and put into an enclosure to use as a backup drive when I came to discover that if the drive is in anything other then the original computer it that it locked the drive with a unknown HDD password, so you would have to send it in to a place that had the software to bypass it as a way to make money on data recovery and the data recovery companies. My first Hitatchi behaved like a dream though, except that it was in another Toshiba. Toshiba at the time was also using some less-then-fair practices to make sure you bought their parts and used their services for repairs. Some of their laptops CD/DVD drive would not work unless it was one of their drives, and some of the old printers would  be set to stop working after so many prints and you would have to send it in and the would set the page printed counter back to 0 to get it back to working again. I understand they have improved their reputation though since then.

 


Edited by HardDrive - 5/7/11 at 3:45pm
post #45 of 80

To the OP:

 

SLC, TRIM and lack of platters.

 

Btw, does anyone know if TRIM will ever support RAID0 or if it can?  

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