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Hardware Thread, Disks for QNAP NAS in Technical; Im getting a QNAP NAS 1279u for backing up user files to and for storing VM backups. It is coming ...
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    fiza's Avatar
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    Disks for QNAP NAS

    Im getting a QNAP NAS 1279u for backing up user files to and for storing VM backups. It is coming as standard with "desktop" drives. Should I be looking at "Enterprise" class drives? Its coming with 12 2TB drives so the cost of Enterprise drives will be higher but is it worth the extra?

    Any thoughts?

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    VeryPC_Tom_M's Avatar
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    I'd certainly look at Enterprise class drives.

    From experience, I know that 'desktop' class drives have a far higher rate of dropping from RAID arrays, etc.

    AFAIK, You're also more likely to get a better warranty period on an Enterprise class HDD, than on an equivalent desktop drive.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fiza View Post
    Its coming with 12 2TB drives so the cost of Enterprise drives will be higher but is it worth the extra?
    We have a QNAP server with 8 WD Caviar Green 2TB drives in that we've had running for a couple of years as an iSCISI target with no real problems. One drive did seem to fail once after a power failure, but was okay again after a reboot - I don't know if QNAP have added any features on top of Linux's mdadm arrays to aid reliability.

    As far as drive lifetime goes, there's been some interesting statistics gathered by large-scale operators such as Google regarding the temperature you can run drives at without affecting lifetime or performance. BackBlaze have an interesting blog where they talk about the design of their 45-drive 4U system - they currently seem to favour the Hitachi HDS5C4040ALE630 4TB drive (about £150 each on Amazon):

    Backblaze Blog

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    fiza's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dhicks View Post
    We have a QNAP server with 8 WD Caviar Green 2TB drives in that we've had running for a couple of years as an iSCISI target with no real problems.
    The one I have been offered has Seagate Barracuda Drives.

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    You *really* shouldn't use 'Green' models in a NAS. Western Digital specifically warns against it (or at least, they did the last time I looked). Any of their other drives are better suited but they recommend either Red, Black or 'VelociRaptor'.

    The reason given is that Green drives have different power management methods which can and do play havoc with NAS systems. We have an 8 bay QNAP which we put some of their Black drives in. It hasn't skipped a beat.

    Green drives have a shorter warranty and lower MTBF, and have slower data access and write speeds than their other counterparts.

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    zag
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    No you don't need "enterprise drives" at all.

    If you check the Qnap forums they have a list of compatible drives. The best ones these days are Western Digital "Red" drives but as long as you avoid the "Green" variant you should be ok. I can't remember the reason but there are lots of scare stories about this type of drive on their forums. There is an explanation somewhere.

    I have 2 x 419p boxes and both have been running 24/7 with the default Hitachi disks (very good) in them when we purchased it. No problems yet.
    Last edited by zag; 18th April 2013 at 03:38 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by zag View Post
    as you avoid the "Green" variant you should be ok. I can't remember the reason but there are lots of scare stories about this type of drive on their forums. There is an explanation somewhere.
    I can't find the thread now, but a couple of years ago we had a similar discussion and VeryPC pointed out that the way that "Green" drives save power is to simply spin down after a certain period of inactivity. Linux's mdadm RAID promptly spins them back up again, resulting in a drive that is constantly stopping and restarting. They might not be ideal, but they seem to be running fine in our QNAP server. Admittedly, this might simply be that they never get a chance to spin down as they are used for VM disk images, so I'm guessing there's always disk activity. I'm hoping to buy some new drives soon - I was rather thinking those 4TB Hitachi drives would be best, if you're going to spend money you might as well get the most drive you can for your money.

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    I've setup QNAP NAS (RAID1) for several customers and in the last 2 years one had a failed Hitachi and one a failed Seagate, both replaced under warranty. The great thing was of course that the NAS just carried on working. I've used 2 of the 1TB WD RED drives in my own NAS for nearly a year and noticed how quiet and cool they run and with very little vibration. As I understand it, the RED drives don't keep trying to correct errors leading to timeouts and dropping out of the arrray.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fiza View Post
    Should I be looking at "Enterprise" class drives?
    Yes. WD Red drives or the new Se / Re HDDs.

    WD Red: www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-771442.pdf
    WD Se: www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-771475.pdf
    WD Re: www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-771444.pdf

    WD recommend the Red drives for NASs with 1-5 drive bays, so you might want to look at the other two models for your 12-bay NAS.

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