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Is it really worth paying more for a better Hard Drive?

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  • Is it really worth paying more for a better Hard Drive?

    I had a 2TB WD Green that suffered a catastrophic failure, head crash, put in a warranty claim and it was replaced with a WD Black. Good deal eh, but the WD Black has 64MB Cache and so does a WD Green. This happened during the Thailand floods so I imagine they didn't have any Greens to honour warranty claims with. I know that the warranty would be appended to the WD Green drive, which at the time was THREE years, and I have no complaint about that. It is an industry thing, I understand and have zero issues with that.

    Now I usually purchase either a Seagate Barracuda (don't laugh) that had a 3 year warranty because the price was reasonable or a WD Black that had a 5 year warranty and it was substantially more expensive. I thought I would be getting what I paid for but now I have my doubts. I had the Server running the WD Black (the drive was re-tasked to something worthy of it's colour when I received it) suddenly start to lock up. I was going to replace the operating system so now was a good a time as any plus my daughter was no longer using her 10 year old desktop which had a 4TB Seagate SSHD sitting idle in it. New O/S installed, 2012 R2, and thought I might save all the data (ok, some of the data had been backed up but some hadn't so it was easier to backup the whole drive, all 1,800MB) on it before running the diagnostic. The two following images are from a scan using HD Tune Pro v5.5 and it, well surprised the crap out of me.

    As you can see the drive is a tad too red. (Forgot to mention that the drive was replaced in March/April 2013 do it is just under 4 years old.) I have HDDs that are 6 to 8 years old that don't have any of the pretty red after a scan though I gotta admit that I haven't used them continuously for as long as I did the WD Black although it only had 35 power off starts in the 44 months that it was running. The bottom row of the image hasn't been tested because the scan just stopped cold right there. I wonder if it was red all the way to the end from there?


    Click image for larger version

Name:	2TB WD Black FULL Scan 11-December-2016_12-54.png
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ID:	508157


    Ok, the drive is stuffed but HD Tune has this nifty feature called Speed map, so I ran it. This gives a better indication how bad the drive was or was getting. I am glad I was going to change the O/S but I am annoyed at myself for not checking the Event Viewer since there should have been an indication of the impending doom, Event Id 153 has showed up in the new O/S or even running a more frequent check of the drive health but I trusted the WD Black. The following image seems to indicate the drive was not really in good condition. This now explains why it was so slow when I copied data from it. I thought is was slow because of the wireless and the HDD that I have in the receiving machine.

    Click image for larger version

Name:	2TB WD Black - Speed Scan 11-December-2016_12-55.png
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Size:	71.3 KB
ID:	508158

    The last third of the drive was in really bad shape. This is very surprising to me on a WD Black and I would have been extremely unhappy if this had happened on a drive that I had purchased. In fact the whole drive doesn't look to crash hot (or was crash the wrong word to use here ). Remember this is a drive that normally has a 3 year warranty. I would not be expecting a drive to look like this just 8 months out of its' warranty period. Now this may be a one of those drives that didn't quite get the full treatment during the build process and passed the QA desk without being detected. Now wish I has run HD Tune on it when it was first installed. The Server was attached to a UPS so I have discounted the possibility of a spike or surge being a factor in the drive's present condition. Well, I guess I have something to run lots of different tools on to see what else I can discover about it.

    Now back to the thread title, Is it really worth paying more for a better Hard Drive? I would like to answer YES but after seeing the above I will now have to quantify that with, It depends. Three years ago I purchased a Netgear ReadyNAS 314 and I wanted to put 2 x 4TB HDDs in it and then when the 8 or 10TBs finally arrived then I could drop 2 of them in. I have the ReadyNAS setup in a RAID1 configuration since it is a backup and I like the redundancy if 1 of the drives fail. I was going to get 4TB WD Blacks but Seagate had a relatively new 4TB drive that was ideal for the NAS. They had a 3 year or 4,200 hours, which ever came first warranty. The NAS only runs during a backup and after 10 minutes of inactivity it goes to sleep. The Seagate HDDs were a lot cheaper than the WD Blacks so I chose them.

    With the range of colour selections that WD now have it is easier to chose a colour that is correct or as correct as it can be, for you device. Having the colours makes it a LOT easier to be able to choose that right drive and unfortunately for me with Seagate drives it is more difficult to find the right drive as I often get the names mixed up so end up with the drive that wasn't the best selection. This is why I usually don't buy a drive that doesn't have a 3 year warranty but then I use that same philosophy of any IT hardware that I purchase.

    So, to try and keep this thread entertaining please post any HDD disasters or phenomenons that have occurred to you at work, home, watching porn, walking down the street, etc etc.
    1 1 was a racehorse.
    2 2 was 1 2.
    1 1 1 1 race 1 day,
    2 2 1 1 2

  • #2
    When I was discussing my present gaming PC configuration with the company that was going to build it, I said that I wanted to ensure that the system would be able to handle my iTunes music library (nearly 900GB), movie creation and image manipulation and audio creation as well as the hammering the system would get while playing hi-res games. I enquired about installing SSD's all round and the engineer said use a SSD for the system partition, but that I would be better off using a mechanical drive for the music etc. He recommended a WD Black and I have a 3TB WD Black that holds my media data while an older WD or perhaps it's a Seagate holds my games. He recommended the Black based on his personal experience - he had originally gone with Green, but had said that Green was OK for holding data, but the Blacks were better for serving data.

    I've not had any issues. The system is on every evening for about 4 or 5 hours and about 16-18hrs both days of the weekend. I've also recently installed the latest version of Diskeeper in an attempt to ensure the longevity of the drives, especially the SSD.

    I wonder if you got a 'new' Black drive when yours was replaced.
    A recent poll suggests that 6 out of 7 dwarfs are not happy

    Comment


    • #3
      I hope you isn't defragging the SSD to improve it's longevity.

      Suggest you run a tool like HD Tune over the drives occasionally and see if any bad sectors are picked up.
      I wonder if you got a 'new' Black drive when yours was replaced.
      Since it was around the time of the big flood in their factory, I wonder if they had some seconds and passed them off as warranty replacements? After all, it only had to last until the end of the warranty of the previous HDD that I had. I don't think WD would do that because I remember when they had the drives that got shipped with a defective chip and they let everyone know about it fairly quick. It certainly wasn't like when Intel released the Pentium and they pretended nothing was wrong. It was a nice bit of PR by WD. Up until then I didn't by their drives.
      1 1 was a racehorse.
      2 2 was 1 2.
      1 1 1 1 race 1 day,
      2 2 1 1 2

      Comment


      • #4
        I suspect you may have been passed off, intentionally or unintentionally, with a dud.

        Regarding defragging an SSD - Diskeeper intervenes at the OS level, not the physical level. It does not re-arrange the data on the SSD, but instead controls how it is written:

        http://blog.condusiv.com/post/2016/1...5-Minutes.aspx

        A recent poll suggests that 6 out of 7 dwarfs are not happy

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