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Thread: Drive choice

  1. #1
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    Drive choice

    Well, I've got a bootable machine now with Home Server on it.

    E6420, 1Gb, 80Gb Raptor, P5QL-CM board, DVD/RW.

    Just wanna get some data drives for it, to start with I was thinking 1Tb WD drives (WD10EADS/EACS etc)

    Now I'm thinking maybe the Seagate 1.5Tb drives (ST31500341AS) as they seem cheap, thing is do I really want to get 2/3 of these and then find out why there cheap?

    I've got just shy of 2Tb of actual data but with it now being in a HS box there will be other stuff in there like PC backups etc. and I'm thinking as it can its duplication thing I'll be wanting to duplicate certain folders.

    Drives wont need to be hugely fast as there just going to be sat in the server and chucking files in/out for backups and then data streaming etc, RELIABILITY is the main thing and power saving is important (hence me moving to a server instead of 2x2tb terastations that dont ever power the drives down...)

    I've got 4 sata ports left so can go for 3/4 drives as long as there not hugely expensive (budget is basically whatever I can sell the 2x2Tb Terastations for, minus cos of a PSU lol)

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    Re: Drive choice

    The problem is all hard drives are a lottery....it is in the nature of mechanical things to die when you least want them to.

    Despite the scaremongering, I have 4 1TB Samsung Spinpoints in a RAID, all stacked on top of each other in a 3 x 5.25 > 4 x 3.5" bay converter. Been running them that way for about 6 months now without an issue.

    I doubt the Seagate and WD drives you are contemplating would be any more or less reliable.

    Just keep your fingers crossed or pay through the nose for SSDs
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    Re: Drive choice

    Problem is at the moment that the only 24x7 drives are 1TB capacity - I'm going to be doing a similar thing to you in a few months so I've been looking into it. Ideally I would get the Western Digital RE3 drives, but I've heard that the new 1TB WD Caviar Black is virtually the same drive with a different firmware, so it's got all of the reliability, just without some of the RAID-specific functions.

    With Home Server obviously RAID is less of an issue, so I'm going to probably go for the Caviar Blacks (although I might just let it run my desktop F1 drives into the ground first rather than selling them on and replacing them). Obviously the RE3 would be better, but the price difference last time I checked was in the order of £50, quite a lot when you're thinking of getting several drives.

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    Re: Drive choice

    Whats the model number on the new black then, WD1001FALS?
    There just shy of £100 a pop which is do able, 3 of them tho or 2 of the Seagates...
    MMmmmmm..
    Infact if I can get £250 each for the TStations I could get 2 Seagates and an SSD for the main machine...
    Oooo decisions decisions lol

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    Re: Drive choice

    Yeah that's the one, WD1001FALS.

    The reason I'm suggesting that is because I know that Windows Home Server does a lot of hard-drive testing - if one is on its way out, you get advance warning through WHS. The downside of that is that it they undergo quite a lot of intense usage, and obviously even without that they are on 24x7. I heard of quite a few people suffering major disk failures after several months with standard desktop drives on WHS forums, and it was generally attributed to them not being as tough as an enterprise drive.

    One particular guy I remember was saying that he used to work for a company with a massive server system, and the manager for his department decided to save money and buy cheaper desktop drives instead of enterprise versions. After about 6 months they were replacing a failed drive every single day - at which point the manager was sacked

    I've got a bit of a complex about backups, so that's why I would tend to go for caution and spend a little bit more to get the extra 24x7 reliability, but as I said previously from what I've heard, the Blacks have the same technology as the RE3s. If you do some google searches for Black vs RE3/RE2 you'll probably hit on a few of the same things I was reading - I'm only going off what other people say with this so bear that in mind!
    Last edited by jim; 16-04-2009 at 01:06 PM.

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    Re: Drive choice

    If you could dig out the link that'd be nice..
    Failing that I think going for 3x1Tb drives would be better than 2x1.5tb's as the data is spread over 3 physical drives instead of 2, then its just a case od deciding which 1Tb drives to go for...

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    Re: Drive choice

    Note that if you decide to run your drives in RAID, DO NOT USE spin-down feature.
    Every 5-10 spin-downs my RAID5 array gets degraded.
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    Re: Drive choice

    In the Terabyte and beyond sector, I think WD has it pretty much sorted. They haven't had big reliability issues like Seagate (7200.12 firmware) and Samsung (1TB drive control boards), are relatively inexpensive (I believe Tekheads currently have the best deal on Greenpowers with the faster WD10EADS at £76.99), and in the case of the Green drives, are amazingly quiet. The WD1001FALS is mediocre for noise, but very fast, and obviously, there's also the £240 WD20EADS if you really need 2TB per drive bay.

    As someone who's so far (touching wood) only had a drive go down due to a fault with other hardware (a Wd2000JB killed by a ghastly Qtec PSU, and a WD5000AAKS and an SP2504C killed by a faulty Molex splitter that was supplied with a Hiper Type-R) I don't really believe in paying extortionate amounts for the 'enterprise grade' drives. In my mind a truly enterprise grade solution is to get the drives in redundant RAID (i.e. anything other than RAID 0).

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    Re: Drive choice

    Quote Originally Posted by sammorris View Post
    In the Terabyte and beyond sector, I think WD has it pretty much sorted. They haven't had big reliability issues like Seagate (7200.12 firmware) and Samsung (1TB drive control boards), are relatively inexpensive (I believe Tekheads currently have the best deal on Greenpowers with the faster WD10EADS at £76.99), and in the case of the Green drives, are amazingly quiet. The WD1001FALS is mediocre for noise, but very fast, and obviously, there's also the £240 WD20EADS if you really need 2TB per drive bay.

    As someone who's so far (touching wood) only had a drive go down due to a fault with other hardware (a Wd2000JB killed by a ghastly Qtec PSU, and a WD5000AAKS and an SP2504C killed by a faulty Molex splitter that was supplied with a Hiper Type-R) I don't really believe in paying extortionate amounts for the 'enterprise grade' drives. In my mind a truly enterprise grade solution is to get the drives in redundant RAID (i.e. anything other than RAID 0).
    I've used both desktop grade and enterprise grade drives for RAID5. The failure rate is pretty much the same and there is no performance difference. I only happened to buy the enterprise drives because they were, at one point, cheaper than desktop drives. I have a failure rate of 6% over 48 drives in the past 4 years. Though i have never lost any data due to drive failures since i started to use RAID5

    I bought two Ecogreen F2 1TB drives with the newest 500GB platters. Depends on if the stock is very new or not, the WD10EADS won't have the 500GB platter. Sequential transfer rate for the F2 is over 100mb/s which is highly competitive, although the seek time is horrible as it is 5400rpm.
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    Re: Drive choice

    I wasn't aware the WD10EADS had gone two-platter yet, I thought they were all still 333x3GB. If they have, perhaps the low price is to clear the old stock. The sequential read rate for the WD10EADS sounds similar to the Ecogreen, but as you mention, the seek time is terrible (Wasn't the EcoGreen 5900rpm instead of 5400, or was that the Seagate?).

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    Re: Drive choice

    Quote Originally Posted by sammorris View Post
    I wasn't aware the WD10EADS had gone two-platter yet, I thought they were all still 333x3GB. If they have, perhaps the low price is to clear the old stock. The sequential read rate for the WD10EADS sounds similar to the Ecogreen, but as you mention, the seek time is terrible (Wasn't the EcoGreen 5900rpm instead of 5400, or was that the Seagate?).
    Just checked the WD Website and Samsung F2EG Spec and you're right on that part.
    WD10EADS = 630g (Looks like still 333G/platter, or short-stroked 375G)
    WD15EADS = 730g(!) (375G/platter)
    WD20EADS = 730g (Definitely 500G/platter)
    HD103SI = 610G (Definitely 500G/platter)
    HD154UI = 650G (Definitely 500G/platter)

    EcoGreen F2 clearly stats 5400RPM on the drive label.
    As far as I know Seagate doesn't make Green drives (yet).

    I see no reason to buy the WD10EADS when the HD102/103SI is the same price and have slightly higher performance at the same power usage.

    Although I have to say WD's warranty have been top notch since day 1.

    I have 6 WD10EACS with 250G/platter and 4 WD1000FYPS (Enterprise version) with 333G/platter. The performance difference is *VERY NOTICEABLE*
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    Re: Drive choice

    WD are a very reliable brand.

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    Re: Drive choice

    Quote Originally Posted by how1 View Post
    WD are a very reliable brand.
    All drives DO fail. I did have an enterprise WD drive failed just 3 weeks ago.
    I'd admit when compared to Seagate (In particular the 7200.11,7200.12) the failure rate is smaller.
    Don't have enough of the other brands' drive to make a conclusion.
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    Re: Drive choice

    Well, i have had various brands over the years and and WD have always been rock solid for me. Probably to do with luck i suppose.

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    Re: Drive choice

    Tbh, prior to 7200.12s I think Seagates fared best, but the latter ones are poor, and the old ones cost more, ran hot, used lots of power and were really noisy.

    Arthur: A WD15EADS? When's that out?

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    Re: Drive choice

    Quote Originally Posted by sammorris View Post
    Tbh, prior to 7200.12s I think Seagates fared best, but the latter ones are poor, and the old ones cost more, ran hot, used lots of power and were really noisy.
    Based on the reviews I've seen have been pretty mixed about the 7200.12 performance wise though power usage as I recall isn't too bad for a 7200 drive.

    The 7200.11 had that infamous firmware issue.

    People's experience with the 7200.10 seem to vary. Some people thought that it was a quiet drive, but for me, it was the noisiest drive I've had including a Raptor! Though perhaps this is what we are seeing again with the 7200.12?

    I seem to remember that the 7200.9 did not have the best reputation for reliability either. Nothing epidemic, but they were pretty quickly replaced by the 7200.10.

    I really liked their Cheetah back when I was using SCSI drives, but I must say that as far as desktop drives are concerned, their moments of glory (if there is one) are relatively short lived. Right now their only appeal to me is the low cost per GB for the 1.5TB drives.

    (My latest purchase is a Samsung EcoGreen F2 - there is a surprisingly lack of reviews but I decided to chances given that low noise is a priority and it's 500GB platter vs 333GB on the WD side - excluding that expensive 2TB drive).

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    By robbiehall in forum Software
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 27-10-2003, 08:55 PM

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