questionswhich hard drive manufacturer is more reliable to…


As for me, I like buying Western Digital drives.

I have bought so many different brand hard drives throughout the years and even though WD drives still fail, I at least like their warranty. Be careful because the warranty ranges from 1 year to 5 depending on what drive you get. Surprisingly, an OEM in a non retail box can have a better warranty. It's easy to do RMAs with Western Digital too.

I will never buy a Seagate product again. I call them cease-gate because every single drive I've ever bought from them has failed. Never had one last longer than a year. I do put my drives through high usage keeping them on continuously 24 hours a day but that shouldn't matter. Other brands can survive that same rigor so I would expect Seagate to do it too but they happened to be the worst for me.

So far I have never had an SSD fail -- just traditional mechanical HD failures so far. Haven't had SSD installed more than 3 years yet so don't know the long-term failure rate.


When I upgraded my RAID at home, I gave up on both WD and Seagate and got Toshiba drives. Each individual drive was 3TB. WD drives are intentionally crippled against RAID, and the Seagate drive I found had some serious reliability problems (but there were some great fire sales on them).


@omnichad: I wouldn't say that WD drives are intentionally crippled for Raid systems but they can drop out of the array because they go into a low-power mode and shut down until they are accessed again. If you get the Raid specific RE versions of the drive, you will not have that shut-down problem.


In SSD Samsung has the clear lead in reliability. It's the only drive brand I use anymore and the only ones I install in any of my supported machines these days. Few hundred put into service over the last four years and not one failure yet. Also, one of the only storage product lines on newegg that has a full 5 egg rating from hundreds of reviewers (even good products usually average out to 4 eggs over time)


@cengland0: Well of course their RAID models work. And all other drives are crippled in a way to force you into buying those higher-priced drives. Other manufacturers only recommend their high-performance models - they don't force the issue.

While WD green is the worst, and you can't adjust the power savings settings, most of their drives are like this.

The WD Red is probably the same drive as the Green except without the shutdown issue.


I was going to recommend the WD Red drives as that is what I just loaded into my Home NAS after lots of research.. Price wasn't overly High for the 3TB version, especially since the lowest price belongs to Seagate which seems to have the worst reliability....
For SSDs I own Kingston 120GB (2 installs) and Samsung 240GB (1 Install).... No issues to date (1 year +) and the machines Boot really fast... I planning to convert a couple more machines...


I, just like cengland said above, will never buy a Seagate drive again. I've had two fail on me. One was used only occasionally to do system backups. It died in less than a year.

I've personally had great luck with the Western Digital black drives. I have two of them installed in my comp right now along with one WD green drive. All three have been rock solid for the past 4 or 5 years that I have had them.


Personally, every WD hard drive I have ever had has failed within 1-2 months of going out from under warranty. I have never had a failure with Seagate/Maxtor or Hitachi drives and now these are all I use. As for SSD, they are new enough that the jury is still out.


I love Hitachi drives. They are built like a tank, but can be noisy. Expect to hear them making a tic-tic noise as they run.


if that linked thread above is the one i think it is, I'll be repeating myself, but, I will ONLY buy WD drives. it's the ONLY brand that has never failed on me. the last 3 I've bought have been the Green power models, and never had a complaint about them.
2 separate 1 TB units, replaced in latest build with a 3TB

having said that, the Boot Drive i recently replaced with an ssd, was a 320GB hitachi, that still runs like a champ after 7 years(Jan2007 build date) and 3 PC builds.

the SSD is a Kingston 120GB "hyper X", and it's been great. It was a replacement for the SSD my Brother gave me Christmas before last that was giving me lots of filesystem errors after 24 hrs of a fresh install of Win 7 (120GB Monster Digital Daytona series)

every Seagate Drive i've ever had, has failed. 2 of them within a year of new, one had the "click of death" straight out of the box.


@earlyre: The Posted Link goes to my question..
Having reviewed the responses I proceeded to read Good and Bad reviews for the HDDs that I was interested in... All Drives have some bad reviews but the current Seagate drive releases have a disproportionate number of DOA (dead on arrival) and DSAI (dead soon after installation) postings... I actually own 2 Seagate 1TB drives from about 4 years ago that I've been using for Clone Back-ups that have no issues, but they are drives manufactured prior to the Cyclones that damaged HDD factories in the far East a few years ago... I have had good luck with Seagate drives in the past but considering the current feedback I opted to go with WD.. As stated above I ended up purchasing two 3TB WD Red drives which I installed into a Lenovo IX2 NAS Housing...
Hitachi drives were the highest rated drives available not long ago... I believe WD purchased Hitachi not that long ago... Go figure..


@cengland0 @omnichad: I've heard the WD Green complaint often. I've often wondered why nobody has hacked the firmware yet to resolve that issue. I wasn't planning to buy one myself but it certainly seems that there are plenty out there in the wild...

It does seem to me that one might be able to get around this by putting all your log files on the Green drive; if your system writes as many log entries as my server at home the drive would stay consistently busy and never go down (for that matter the power up / power down would be a log entry, which might also do the trick...).


@hobbitss: I can tell you that back in time I used to be a big fan of Seagate drives. The first drive I ever purchased was a 130mb (yes, MB) drive. I believe I picked it up at one of those traveling tech sales for what was then an incredibly low price of $219. This was an IDE drive back when IDE controllers were ISA expansion cards that you installed on your motherboard.

More to the point, that drive lasted a really, really, long time. Eventually it outlived its useful life and was replaced with a much larger (560mb!) drive from a different manufacturer whose name I can't recall. Later there was a Micropolis drive as well. Then even later there was a Seagate Cheetah (U2W SCSI) that was ridiculously fast for my application but sounded like a small airplane landing in my backyard. That drive was also great and lasted as long as I could tolerate the sound level.

Every Seagate drive I've bought since then has been awful, and their phone support as well.


@lparsons42: My previous RAID5 array had 2 WD Green drives. It didn't run well - drives kept dropping out of the array. There is a firmware utility I was able to use to change the sleep time from 8 SECONDS to something closer to 3 minutes. That was on a WD10EARS and a WD10EARX. It's that ridiculous 8 second sleep time that makes it terrible for RAID.

The WDIDLE3 utility (requires DOS) is what I used to update it.

I don't know that this works with newer drives and could damage them.

With a RAID, you can't really tell it what data to put on which drive. But all writes to the drive usually affect all drives in the array. In my case, it was an upgrade to an existing system, so the OS was on yet another drive - not part of the array.


Just found this updated article on WD Green, so it must still be effective on some drives:
Form Post

Must copy and paste the above - apparently Woot hates question marks in URLs.


@omnichad: Interesting points, there. How did you do a RAID5 array with only two drives though? I was under the impression (although it has been a while and I always set up RAID1 if I truly need fault tolerance) that RAID5 requires at least 3 drives of identical size (or did you have a third drive that was the same size but different model?).

Indeed, you cannot specify - particularly in RAID0, RAID5, or anything derived from either - which drive gets which file. However in RAID1, everything goes to both drives. My usual approach when setting up a server or other system that needs fault tolerance and high uptime is to have the OS boot from a single drive and then have all the data on a RAID1 array. In the case of the traffic my servers face, writing log data to the RAID1 array should be more than sufficient to keep the drives awake :)


@lparsons42: You're right. To keep from having two drives fail at once, I made sure I had drives from different batches by ordering 3 different models of drive from two manufacturers. The other drive was a Samsung Spinpoint that time around.

Just logged into my old server. One of the WD Green drives logged 2,719,704 for the Load Cycle Count in the SMART data. I read somewhere that the specs for this drive have a lifetime max of 300,000. And I am fairly sure I disabled this feature within the first year of ownership.

Now that I have larger drives, I had to move from RAID5 to RAID10 for safety and speed.


@lparsons42: I remember those days... First add-on HDD was a 200MB for $225.. Can't remember which machine it was going in just that it was a big deal since it was many times larger than the drive in the machine..
I have only had one machine experience a bad HDD and it was a DEC purchased from CompUSA & still under warranty.. The HDD failed as did the 2 replacement drives which it turned out were part of a bad lot, fortunately I had all of my data backed up on another drive. Eventually I had to return it to it's original state before taking it in for a motherboard repair, I had added RAM and switched it from a P75 to a P133.. New MB installed free, I re-upgraded it and used it for years before getting another new machine...


As a long time tech (15+ years), I have seen loads of drives from all manufacturers. I've seen new ones go out in a month and others still running 20 years later. After dealing with thousands over the past few years, and mostly speaking of drives in the past few years, I would say Seagate is the worst and WD the least problematic. Seagate used to be great but once drives started going over 500GB, most of their lines started seeing serious reliability issues.
For SSDs, some of the older first gens are dying prematurely. It overall I have yet to see too many go bad, even the cheaper Adata brands.


Anecdotal evidence is useless. if you've been dealing with computers for years then you'll know that all brands have drives that die. Some brands get better, some get worse. Some that are normally a better brand will occasionally have a bad product. I have a Quantum Bigfoot which ran for over a decade and it was regarded as possibly the worst drive in the history of all things that spin. There's also a bias where a higher volume manufacturer will simply have a higher number of drives out there and therefore more customers to complain.

Google for "hard drive failure rate graph" and you'll find a number of surveys of large numbers of drives and how long they held on for. The summary is, Hitachi is currently reliable, so is Western Digital. Avoid Seagate.

The helium filled WD and Hitachi drives sound particularly promising for longevity.


For those looking... MicroCenter has a sales going on..
WD mainstream 3TB HDD (I think they are calling these Orange Drives) for $99.99
If you don't have a MicroCenter near you, use the price to Arm Twist your Favorite supplier into price matching..


I swear by my Seagates. They never let me down.