Skip to comments.What Hard Drive Should I Buy?
Posted on 01/22/2014 8:49:17 PM PST by Utilizer
Because Backblaze has a history of openness, many readers expected more details in my previous posts. They asked what drive models work best and which last the longest. Given our experience with over 25,000 drives, they asked which ones are good enough that we would buy them again. In this post, Ill answer those questions.
At the end of 2013, we had 27,134 consumer-grade drives spinning in Backblaze Storage Pods.
Why do we have the drives we have? Basically, we buy the least expensive drives that will work. When a new drive comes on the market that looks like it would work, and the price is good, we test a pod full and see how they perform. The new drives go through initial setup tests, a stress test, and then a couple weeks in production. (A couple of weeks is enough to fill the pod with data.) If things still look good, that drive goes on the buy list. When the price is right, we buy it.
We are willing to spend a little bit more on drives that are reliable, because it costs money to replace a drive. We are not willing to spend a lot more, though.
(Excerpt) Read more at blog.backblaze.com ...
Lots more data and graphs included of the results at the link.
I am already wondering about that one Seagate backup drive I purchased recently...
If a drive is refurb, it means it has had a failure at least once.
I would not use a refurb driv.
My first Windows 95 computer had a hard drive with two thirds of a gigabyte. Despite that, it had several video clips built in.
I just bought two sandisk memory vaults which they say will store memory for a hundred years without deteriorating.
I paid less than $30 for both.
I paid around $800 for that first computer and now I can get one with 1 terabyte hard drive for about the same price. I also remember when one megabyte of RAM cost $100.
Seagate isn’t a quality HD to put it mildly.
Or did not pass Final QA Test before certification (I used to work in Production -and Customer Service). Refurbs are Factory Recertified (rebuilt and retested) and usually tested to more hands-on standards before certifying as good.
*laugh* Sounds like one of the drives I purchased some years ago that came with a few videos as well. Really couldn't complain however. *grin*
I have had many hard drives fail over the years. Thus far not one Seagate has failed. I have at least one Seagate that is ten years old. IBM, WD and others failed long before the expiration of the warranty.
I dunno. I am a pretty regular computer user and never noticed which particular brands failed over the years, granted they were few and far between. Then again, I am not a hardcore gamer or raid storage user. Good to know which drives seem the most reliable, since I have lost some irreplaceable data over the years.
Depends on when it is. Many referbs don’t come from consumer sources, but from event sources. For example, this Superbowl will likely generate nearly a thousand referb drives. The Olympics in Sochi will likely generate close to 50,000 referb drives, and the average DNC or RNC convention will generate upwards of 10,000 referb drives.
There are post consumer drives out there, don’t get me wrong. But quite a number of them come from temporary use at major events, and then at the end of the event they do a minor wipe and out the go the door again. In the case of convention drives, maybe one in ten will actually exit the wrapper. In the case of the olympics, almost all will exit the wrapper, but few will have much more than a basic system format done to them.
The nature of the beast is that it is cheaper for a logistics company to order 50,000 hard drive than to have a couple hundred expressed delivery, and since most major drive manufacturers are willing to supply drives with returning privileges (for a minor restocking fee), it is a great boon to the home user right after those events.
Right now, you couldn’t pay me to take a referb drive. Next month, I’d take one no problem, two months from now, I’ll likely be in the market to buy multiple referb drives.
Great little article. I sell drives, mostly Seagate HDD14 and 15. But also Enterprise Seagate, WD Black and Red and used to sell a lot of Hitachi. I am unwilling to allow my customers to test whether a Hitachi transitioned to Western Digital manufacture is of as good a quality as those that were made by Hitachi GST. So I am waiting on them to see.
The current crop of Seagate desktop drives have been very good for our customers. They are fast and reliable. We recommend they leave them spinning 24/7, and at a stable temperature. Which will go a long ways towards extending their longevity.
Thanks for the article. Useful stuff.
I want a 2.5” laptop drive at preferably 1.5-2TB. I’ve been using WD blacks lately, but they only go up to 1TB. Does everyone feel the reliability/warranty of the blacks are enough better than the blues that it justifies living with the 1TB limit?
I’ve been lucky all my life with external hard drives. My latest one is the Seagate 4 TB back Up Plus. Even my old Maxtor 2 TB external Passport drive from 2006 is still working. 2nd to that is my 3 TB WD external drive. 3 years in and still working. Judging by the Amazon reviews for both WD and Seagate, I’m lucky. But I do miss those old Maxtor drives.
All my Maxtor drives even from 2004 are still working. The external drives for me I guess I can account to luck. I’ve had many tell me their Seagate drives just go dead and same with WD. I’ve had both and even the Hitachi ones.
Ping. Your experiences match this, mate?
Yeah, Maxtor was my standard since the early 90’s. Almost never used anything else and had very good luck. Since their demise I’m not really sure what to use. Have mostly been using WD blacks, but had a 2TB 3.5” die in under 3 tears, so I’m not sure what to do. Certainly don’t want to use anything LESS reliable than that.
It's been some time since I last evaluated purchasing flash drives and SSDs, but I was always informed that they had FAR fewer write cycles than pretty much all HDDs. Has that been determined to have changed recently?
I’ve had both Seagate and WD drives fail.
The worst in my experience, and I have many drives, were the WD MyBook externals. I had two catastrophically fail on me, costing a lot of data and hassle. (It was backed up, but there is no good way to really back up a terrabyte.)
Any drive will fail eventually, just remember the 3,2,1 philosophy. Three copies on two different types of media, one stored off site.