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Latest hard drive reliability data reveals it may be best to avoid 3TB drives

By Shawn Knight · 46 replies
Jan 22, 2015
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  1. I've said time and time again that solid state drives are the future but the truth of the matter is, traditional spinning disks still have a place inside a modern PC as a storage / backup drive. The question then becomes,...

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  2. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 2,198   +1,625

    Well I'm glad I have never bought a Seagate HD. I usually buy Western Digital, except my SSD is Samsung.
  3. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,286

    I can easily do without a 3TB drive, my 480 GB SSD and portable 1GB GB HDD coupled with a 32 GB pen drive are more than sufficient for all my storage needs.
    That said I'm not surprised to see Seagate still way out in front, they've held that lead for many a year now and I don't think the competition is all that keen to haul them in.
  4. HaMsTeYr

    HaMsTeYr TS Guru Posts: 378   +7

    Well crap. I have my main data drive as a 3TB seagate =_=
  5. Scshadow

    Scshadow TS Evangelist Posts: 566   +206

    I believe you are misinterpreting the data here. Seagate's failure rate is much higher then the competition and I haven't in any recent years recalled it being any different. WD has always been the brand I've gravitated to for mechanical spinning drives. Seagate is the one that doesn't seem to be keen on reeling in their competition.
    Burty117 and treeski like this.
  6. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 3,160   +1,413

  7. I've had several Seagate drives in my lifetime and they've always had a high failure rate in my experience. Before Seagate bought Samsung HDD line, Samsung's drives were the best in price, performance and reliability. Now I use Hitachi drives for mass storage and they haven't failed yet.
  8. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 4,478   +3,036

    I got 4 drives in my system:

    - Samsung 840 Pro x 2
    - WD 3TB

    After 2 years of usage none ever failed.
  9. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 2,198   +1,625

    my WD is 1TB and I don't remember when I got it but I swear it's 5+years
  10. Jonnaz

    Jonnaz TS Rookie

    One thing I took away from this is Desktop drives are not designed or expected to be used in Enterprise environment.
    If they were using Enterprise drives ie the Seagate Constellation drive they wouldn't have had the same failure rates.

    I have used Desktop drives in Server/Datacenter environments and they are not up to it (regardless of brand) they are not rated for 24/7 operation and they can't take the resonance caused by large multi drive arrays (8+ drives in one chassis).

    The same drives used in the designed environment give very different results...!
  11. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,286

    I never misinterpreted it at all, if you read my remarks again you'll likely notice the sarcasm and cynicism in them.
    Darth Shiv likes this.
  12. TitoBXNY

    TitoBXNY TS Addict Posts: 238   +54

    I purchased a 1TB Seagate drive and it lasted all of one month last year. My WD VelociRaptor 74 and 150 GB drives are still working after all of these years. Happy with my SAMSUNG EVO 840 and 3 WD I TB drives for games and storage.
  13. Now you're implying optimism.
  14. Storage

    Storage TS Rookie

    I looked up the Barracuda 7200.14 3TB - and it clearly states it is a desktop drive. Too often companies live with lower end drives, and then just live with failures as if they are a part for business. Try using a enterprise or NAS rated drives. Investment up front is more, but you reap the benefits later.
  15. This data doesn't mean much. I had a 3 TB drive for about 10 years now. The only differences I added a fan on top of it where the electronics board sits says who the top of the bottom Benz and I install it. All is Elizabeth use that dries performance or temperature about 10° which is sufficient enough to make the drive last a very long so mind you it doesn't matter what kind of manufacture is if you reduce the temperature is it for drive just by 10° can make it last a lot longer
  16. 10 years? 3TB drive not even out that long yet...
    poohbear, SNGX1275 and NightAngel79 like this.
  17. toooooot

    toooooot TS Evangelist Posts: 820   +403

    That checks out. I have had WD, Segate, and Samsung and Segate alway, ALWAYS, died first. That doesnt mean that all their series are bad. But I would only buy Segate hdd if I felt extremely lucky, which I am not.
  18. NightAngel79

    NightAngel79 TS Addict Posts: 205   +58

    Same here. I have nothing against Seagate, but a buddy of mine talked me out of the 3tb seagate with awesome price, and a went with the 4tb WD black.

    Samsung all the way with my SSD's
    stewi0001 likes this.
  19. NightAngel79

    NightAngel79 TS Addict Posts: 205   +58

    Time machines dude, time machines.
    poohbear likes this.
  20. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 2,198   +1,625

    that's why I always add a silly face since it can be hard to pick up on sarcasm on the internet.
    Capaill and Skidmarksdeluxe like this.
  21. EEatGDL

    EEatGDL TS Evangelist Posts: 693   +376

    I had a 1TB Seagate HDD which failed -to the degree of no capacity reported to the BIOS- after 14 months; replaced it with a 3TB Seagate HDD; already expecting a high possibility of failure again, but it was the cheapest by far and it was an emergency buy. A year has passed and everything seems still fine, but now that I'm working I have saved money for immediate replacement for a good one or if it's up and running by then: buy a 6TB HDD by november of this year [that is planned since last year].
  22. EClyde

    EClyde TS Evangelist Posts: 1,833   +678

    Never had a drive fail in 20+ years...IBM, Seagate, WD or Samsung
  23. Scshadow

    Scshadow TS Evangelist Posts: 566   +206

    As much as I like sarcasm and cynicism, its best to remain dedicated to being either serious or sarcastic for a whole post. Unless it was sarcastic that "my 480 GB SSD and portable 1GB GB HDD coupled with a 32 GB pen drive are more than sufficient for all my storage needs." The change in tone from serious does not lend itself to sarcasm. Better yet, capitalization for emphasis on syllables that would vocally be pronounced with an inflection of the voice would also indicate sarcasm. PLEASE treat the art form of sarcasm with a little bit more respect. :p

    IAMTHESTIG TS Evangelist Posts: 1,720   +808

    Hmmm... interesting data. I must say out of the 21 Seagate 3 TB drives I have, I've had 4 failed drives already, 3 of which were JUST out of warranty. Glad to see their 4's are better though.
  25. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,963   +3,999

    Well, I'm not agreeing with or disputing the data, but you have to admit it seems counter intuitive.

    After, what is a Seagate 3TB drive, if not simply 3 1TB platters stacked?

    If you want to speculate what is "logical", the failure rates should escalate for each platter added. After all, with each extra platter comes an extra read/write head. Again, logic says the 4TB drives should suffer the highest failure, since they have the most moving parts, and ostensibly operate at the highest temp.

    Given that I'm still not completely convinced "Back Blaze", is the alpha and omega source for drive reliability stats, they are starting to scare me away from Seagate. When I have my druthers, I buy WD Blacks. But some of the prices you see an Seagate drives are hard to ignore.

    If you go in for checking Newegg reviews for HDDs, it starts to appear that every drive on the market sucks, with the exception of WD Velociraptors, Which I've started using using as the "C:/" drive in my most recent build.

    (But remember kidz, "most recent", probably carries. an entirely different meaning for me, than for y'all).

    FWIW, the WD "Caviar Blue", (160GB SATA 150), that came with my eMachines will be 10 years old in less than a month, and it's still spinning strong.
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2015

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