In a followup study to the insightful reports on the most reliable hard drive brands and consumer versus enterprise hard drives, Backblaze found some interesting data that could help you choose your next drive. One piece of advice: stay away from 3TB drives.
The backup company evaluated its 41,213 disk drives (most of them consumer ones) for annual failure rates, and recommend 4 TB drives for their value and reliability:
We like every one of the 4TB drives we bought this year. For the price, you get a lot of storage, and the drive failure rates have been really low. The Seagate Desktop HDD.15 has had the best price, and we have a LOT of them. Over 12 thousand of them. The failure rate is a nice low 2.6% per year. Low price and reliability is good for business.
The HGST drives, while priced a little higher, have an even lower failure rate, at 1.4%. It’s not enough of a difference to be a big factor in our purchasing, but when there’s a good price, we grab some. We have over 12 thousand of these drives.
3TB drives, across all the brands, though, aren’t as great:
The HGST Deskstar 5K3000 3TB drives have proven to be very reliable, but expensive relative to other models (including similar 4TB drives by HGST). The Western Digital Red 3TB drives annual failure rate of 7.6% is a bit high but acceptable. The Seagate Barracuda 7200.14 3TB drives are another story. We’ll cover how we handled their failure rates in a future blog post.
Here’s a sneak peek at the Seagate 3TB story, though:
Anyway, if you’re looking to buy a new drive, Backblaze’s experiment could help you get one less likely to crash on you. See the blog post below for the list of drives and their failure rates.
What is the Best Hard Drive? [Backblaze]