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Hardware Thread, Seagate HDD failure rates: >25% over 3 years (article) in Technical; Far from conclusive, but from a decent sample size and real-world production data: Hard drive reliability study names names - ...
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    sonofsanta's Avatar
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    Seagate HDD failure rates: >25% over 3 years (article)

    Far from conclusive, but from a decent sample size and real-world production data: Hard drive reliability study names names - The Tech Report

    This is my favourite graph of the (short) article:


    Looks like I'll be avoiding Seagate then! I know this is one study on a small proportion of all the world's shipments on HDDs, but when there's often only pennies separating HDDs, I'll not take the risk, thanks.

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    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    I'll let you have a guess what the drive is in bits from my other thread

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    Somewhat useful, but limited report.

    Its the amount of failures of particular drives in a particular set of circumstances at this particular company. (They mention its a high vibration environment)
    An interesting read nonetheless.

    These drives are designed to be energy-efficient, and spin down aggressively when not in use. In the Backblaze environment, they spin down frequently, and then spin right back up. We think that this causes a lot of wear on the drive
    Also as the quote above, drives being used outside of their operating envelope.

    Seagate Barracuda Green
    (ST1500DL003) 1.5TB 51 0.8 120.0%
    Also, how can a drive have a 120% failure rate?

    What Drives Is Backblaze Buying Now?

    We are focusing on 4TB drives for new pods. For these, our current favorite is the Seagate Desktop HDD.15 (ST4000DM000). We’ll have to keep an eye on them, though. Historically, Seagate drives have performed well at first, and then had higher failure rates later.
    So they slate Seagate and in the next section state they are their favourite drive to buy right now!
    Last edited by CHR1S; 21st January 2014 at 03:25 PM.

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    zag
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    What's even more worrying is even the best hard disks, 1 in 20 are going to die after 24 months!

    *inserts standard SSDs are more reliable comment here*

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    sonofsanta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CHR1S View Post
    Also as the quote above, drives being used outside of their operating envelope.
    To be fair, the line "These drives are designed to be energy-efficient, and spin down aggressively when not in use. In the Backblaze environment, they spin down frequently, and then spin right back up. We think that this causes a lot of wear on the drive." is taken from the section titled Excluded Drives with an opening statement of "Some drives just don’t work in the Backblaze environment. We have not included them in this study. It wouldn’t be fair to call a drive “bad” if it’s just not suited for the environment it’s put into."

    I can't see an explanation for the 120%; all I can think is that they have 51 in production at any one time, and have had to get 60 replaced under warranty i.e. the replacements have needed replacing. Small numbers there, though, so not a representative sample for that model.
    Last edited by sonofsanta; 21st January 2014 at 03:34 PM.

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    And thats what I get for skim reading and cherry picking!

    But I still stand by the point of the comment, this isnt day to day use by any stretch of the imagination.
    Last edited by CHR1S; 21st January 2014 at 03:37 PM.

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    Well, this concerns me greatly:
    Backblaze says the Seagate drives are also more prone to dropping out of RAID arrays prematurely. The company uses consumer-grade drives that aren't designed explicitly for RAID environments, of course
    So, these figures are based on operating drives out of their normal operating parameters?

    What we can conclude then is that the Seagate are the worst at operating out of their normal environments and Hitachi the best.
    I would be more interested in figures showing failure rates of drives in their proper environments.

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    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    I must admit the majority of failures in school are Seagate/Maxtor (same thing, identical drives, different sticker for obvious reasons)

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    Seagate used to offer 3 years as standard on their drives. Now it's only 1, i guess they know their product isn't as good as it used to be.
    Their "reconditioned" drives they send as replacement are also garbage as per the article.

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    if your "forcing consumer based drives" into a different environment then your going to bump the failure rates surely?
    i always assumed this is why you paid more for the enterprise type drives like the WD RE series as these had higher MTBF ratings
    but backblaze is not your standard environment..

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    @CHR1S, I'm guessing the 120% indicates some have failed more than once.

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    Quote Originally Posted by difinity View Post
    @CHR1S, I'm guessing the 120% indicates some have failed more than once.
    That was my thinking too.

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    We are seeing the batch of 8 year old WD 40gb drives beginning to perform the click of death, and deskstar (deathstar) drives expire with no warning what so ever.

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    Thats not much to go by comparative to your own experiences I think, mine tend to show the opposite in terms of reliability, from my work and personal, one batch of stones here from 2009 has good old Hitachi Deathstars in them that are slowly being replaced due to disk deaths and the good old mechanical clanking of death and pretty much any Western Digital disk I have ever had has about 4/5 years of life before suddenly developing read errors and/or going bang, whereas I have yet to have a Seagate go bang on me, only ones replaced here have been lowly 40gb ones in old machines and their still going.

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    What Hard Drive Should I Buy? « Backblaze



    ^ The Seagate drives with the 25.4% failure rate are the infamous 7200.11 HDDs. Backblaze didn't mention this in their blog.

    Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 drives failing « The Inquirer / Barracuda 7200.11 firmware: What we know « Seagate Forums

    Seagate's flagship desktop Barracuda 7200.11 drives, in particular the 1TB (ST31000340AS) units, are failing at an alarming rate and prompting outrage from their faithful customers.

    A new self-bricking feature apparently resides in faulty firmware microcode which will rear its ugly head sometime at boot detection. Essentially the drive will be working as normal for a while, then - out of the blue - it'll brick itself to death. The next time you reboot your computer the drive will simply lock itself up as a failsafe and won't be detected by the BIOS. In other words, there's power, spin-up, but no detection to enable booting.
    Weren't the Barracuda Green drives more or less rebadged 'LP' drives with 4k sectors? It's strange to see such a large difference between the two models in terms of the annual failure rate.
    Last edited by Arthur; 22nd January 2014 at 01:45 AM.

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