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Author Topic: hard drives  (Read 11809 times)
kaelaria
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« Reply #20 on: April 14, 2008, 09:28:43 AM »
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I see nothing of interest on that website.  I just see a couple reviews with a little bit of data on a couple drives the guy likes - nothing comparing any drives against each other, and it's pretty dated material too.

What about it do you see that I'm missing?
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dmerger
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« Reply #21 on: April 14, 2008, 01:00:06 PM »
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Here is a link to a web site that has some info on hard drives, including a reliability survey.  

http://www.storagereview.com/
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Dean Erger
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« Reply #22 on: April 14, 2008, 03:40:35 PM »
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Basically, as said before, it comes down to heat.  Like measuring fan loudness, manufacturers rate their drives based upon having it on a workbench with open air around the drive.  

There are two ways to handle this.

1:Get low heat drives that spin as slowly as possible.  Laptop drives are actually ideal for this and put into a typical desktop machine will never generate enough heat.  They will almost always die when their electronics or bearings go out.

2:Get a fan.  I have 300 gig Maxtors in my old system.  These were the hottest drive ever, or nearly so.  Horrible reliability, yet mine are three years old?   I have my intake on my computer sucking in air over the drives.  I removed the drive bay cover and turned off the intake fan. They get up to maybe 85 F(!).  Put these same drives in a typical tightly closed box or server room and dead in 3-6 months, tops.

Any drive kept to under 100-120 F  will last essentially forever.  It's often cheaper to buy a good fan than special low heat/low power drives.

That said, there are only two companies of note in the drive business any more.  Hitachi and Western Digital.    Western Digital is better overall, IMO, because they use more advanced technology, which means in some cases, single platter drives.  The GP series isn't single-platter, but they spin at 5200rpm and are very quiet and cool.  Blow a little air over them and you'l never have a problem.  Hitachi is a bit better in the laptop area, IMO, though WD doesn't make bad drives, either.  

That said, important stuff should be run in raid 1(redundancy mode).   Drives are cheap enough now that you really are smart to do this.  The chances of both drives dying at once and both being unrecoverable are virtually zero.  Cheap insurance for as little as $60-$80 extra(cost of the second drive).

I just set up a new machine this weekend.  Two 160Gb drives.  Raid 1.  Fast and stable.  $65 each from WD.  

Note - if you want to run Raid, use special drives meant for it.  These often cost as little as $5-$10 more than the consumer models, yet have a longer warranty and extra features.   WD's Raid drives aren't meant to run as single drives, though, and vice-versa.  Their Raid drives are the Raptors and the RE2 currently.  Their consumer drives are their GP series.  I used RE2s for the Raid(system) and a GP for the data drive.   The program and data I can recover or reinstall(it also gets backed up).  The system, if it goes, I'm down for two weeks.  This way I suffer no real downtime.
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jjj
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« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2008, 08:19:05 PM »
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That said, there are only two companies of note in the drive business any more.  Hitachi and Western Digital.   
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=189520\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Ahem, Samsung!
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BenjaminJ
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« Reply #24 on: April 15, 2008, 02:51:05 AM »
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Basically, as said before, it comes down to heat.
Interestingly, that is not what Google's conclusion was in the survey of their datacenters.
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In the lower and middle temperature ranges, higher
temperatures are not associated with higher failure rates. This
is a fairly surprising result, which could indicate that datacenter
or server designers have more freedom than previously thought
when setting operating temperatures for equipment that contains
disk drives. We can conclude that at moderate temperature ranges
it is likely that there are other effects which affect failure rates
much more strongly than temperatures do.
See their publication: Failure Trends in a Large Disk Drive Population

Atricle that summarizes Google's findings: TG Daily - Google doubts hard drives fail because of excessive temperature, usage
« Last Edit: April 15, 2008, 02:59:26 AM by Benjamin Jung » Logged
01af
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« Reply #25 on: April 15, 2008, 06:55:32 AM »
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Basically, as said before, it comes down to heat.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=189520\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Interestingly, that is not what Google's conclusion was in the survey of their datacenters.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=189621\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
If you just cared to actually read Google's survey then you'd see that it is in perfect agreement with Plekto's statements ... takes a bit of reading comprehension tho'. High temperatures kill hard disks.

However Google's survey also suggests that too low temperatures aren't healthy either. There seems to be a sweet spot around 30 - 35 C, or 85 - 95 F.

-- Olaf
« Last Edit: April 15, 2008, 07:13:25 AM by 01af » Logged
BenjaminJ
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« Reply #26 on: April 15, 2008, 07:37:15 AM »
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If you just cared to actually read Google's survey then you'd see that it is in perfect agreement with Plekto's statements ...

High temperatures kill hard disks.
I wouldn't say that it's ALL down to heat. From the results you can conclude that if your drive fails within 2 years (a usual warranty period, except for Seagate?) it most probably wasn't due to excessive heat. Excessive heat will shorten the lifespan of any hard drive though.
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01af
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« Reply #27 on: April 15, 2008, 09:12:37 AM »
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From [Google's] results you can conclude that if your drive fails within two years (a usual warranty period, except for Seagate?) it most probably wasn't due to excessive heat.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=189652\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
No, you cannot.

Instead, from Google's results you can conclude that if your hard disk drive was running at a temperature below 45 C (110 F) and failed within two years then it most probably wasn't due to excessive heat.


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Excessive heat will shorten the lifespan of any hard drive though.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=189652\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Exactly. And that also is what Plekto said. So why do you think Google came to another conclusion?

-- Olaf
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Jack Varney
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« Reply #28 on: April 16, 2008, 08:03:08 PM »
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To set the record straight, in an earlier post here I stated that my Maxtor had failed. Wrong. I since have discovered that due to an arcane cableing arrangement the drives were incorrectly reported in the Event Log. It was not the Maxtor but an older Hitachi that failed.

Heat was not the cause as the drives are in a case with three fans and no drives  are ever more than warm. One event that, outside of six years of use, may have contributed was a series of power outages.

I use a power strip to turn on the system so that it restarts after power returns. One evening two years ago we had six or seven power on/off events in a period of about 15 seconds. One drive was lost that evening, likely by a series of "contact enents" (a.k.a. crashes), but the Hitachi survived, at least for a couple of years.

If you use a power strip and the BIOS is set to turn on the system when powered you had better use an uninterruptable power supply to protect the system or be there whenever it is running to protect it.
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Jack Varney
kaelaria
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« Reply #29 on: April 16, 2008, 08:45:17 PM »
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Everything electronic worth over $100 is on a APC in my home.  That's pretty much a given!!  Power strips are nothing as far as protection.  Going direct to your home wiring is asking for trouble.
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jjj
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« Reply #30 on: April 16, 2008, 08:48:09 PM »
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To set the record straight, in an earlier post here I stated that my Maxtor had failed. Wrong. I since have discovered that due to an arcane cableing arrangement the drives were incorrectly reported in the Event Log. It was not the Maxtor but an older Hitachi that failed.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=190057\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
I had no end of problems with a computer a few years back and eventually discovered it was a intermitently flaky IDE cable.
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pprdigital
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« Reply #31 on: April 16, 2008, 08:49:18 PM »
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I've bought 5 LaCie drives the 250GB porcsche drives and 2 have outright died on me, 1 is dying and the rest... it's only a matter of time.  I bought them because they were cheap and I have been burned.  They have experienced very light use under optimal conditions.  Attempting to retrieve data has been an expensive and time consuming nightmare.  Needless to say, I tell everyone to avoid Lacie drives like the plague.  The quality control is horrific with less durability than dixie cups.

I've had good experiences with Seagate, Western Digital and Hitachi.  Knock on wood.  Now I have everything triple backed up on different manufacturers' drives.
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

The LaCie Porsche drives fell into the category of the prosumer, designer end of their product line. They were always the least reliable of the line. The D2's were more reliable. Recently, we've seen a rise in LaCie quality control and rate of failures. In addition, LaCie has expanded the warranty coverage on most of their drives across the board.

We have sold quite a few of the LaCie Quadra RAID Box's and so far - dating back to last summer - have experienced one drive failure out of about 80 - 100 drives.
[a href=\"http://www.lacie.com/us/products/product.htm?pid=10950]http://www.lacie.com/us/products/product.htm?pid=10950[/url]
This particular product is an example of a sophisticated, reliable, and well thought out product from a mainstream supplier.

Steve Hendrix
www.ppratlanta.com/digital.php
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Steve Hendrix
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