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How hard is your drive?

Community Veteran
Posts: 1,112
Registered: 30-07-2007

How hard is your drive?

I recently received the specs for Samsung’s SpinPoint F1 1TB Hard Drive. I was somewhat staggered to see they claim:
MTBF of 600,000 hours which is 68.44 years!
Start / Stop Cycles of 50,000 or 136.89 years if I only start it up once a day!
Clearly this is the drive for me, as I am not in my first flush of youth; provided I don’t get a dodgy one it will outlive me. Perhaps I can persuade them to up rate their 3 year guarantee to a lifetime guarantee.  Roll eyes
How do hardware manufacturers get away with these outrageous claims?
I usually reckon on a drive lasting 3 – 5 years if you are lucky although I have seen the odd 8 - 10 year old one still in service.
What length of service do other folks usually see from their drives?
20 REPLIES
Prod_Man
Grafter
Posts: 286
Registered: 04-08-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

I've never had a Hard Disk 'fail', ever.
Sure there has sometimes been damaged data wise,
but always been down to Software not a hardware issue.
Hard drives I've used recently include..
Samsung SpinPoint- 40GB, 80GB; All still running about 4 years old, not noisy at all.
Maxtor- 40GB, 80GB; All worked queitly for about a year then became noisy. But always worked well.
Western Digital- 250GB; Works well, but if you like the sound of a beeshive when reading or writing at high speeds, this is the Hard Disk for you. At least you will be able to tell when it's broken.

I would pretty much hold Samsung to what they say.
Other than my Previous Samsung MP3 Player, which lasted 14 Months and then gave up.
but with the recent "Eco-friendly" targets, come manufacturing woes.
Example: Reduction of Lead in Soldering. (infact, completely irradicated from soldering 3 years ago).
Lead was put in solder in the 1950's as they found in the 1940's, equipment soldered with pure Tin tended to "splinter" with fine strips 1/2 the thickness of a hair would jutt out.
Point being that, as Technology is getting smaller, the closer the soldered tracks are.
Meaning the tin shards can affect operation of the hardware much much easier,
creating inccorect current flow and no exact trace of the problem.
IBM and Sun Microsystems have blamed some of thier hardware woes down to this exact fault.
Now, we have few options to stop that process, other than using another suitable metal that doesn't have the same effect.
Jim,
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: How hard is your drive?

Quote from: Prod_Man
I've never had a Hard Disk 'fail', ever.

All I can says is that you've been lucky or not seen many drives; I've seen loads, the most recent being earlier this week. Failure was confirmed by the inbuilt (Dell) diagnostics.
Not applicable

Re: How hard is your drive?

I've only ever seen one fail - and that was a SATA drive delivered in one of the PCs last December.
Except for that, I'd had no issues with failing HDDs in the last five years (an your average IT manager see's a *lot* of PCs over a five year period Wink
Also worth noting that I run the IT operations in a manufacturing and warehouse environment, so lots of our kit gets pretty well knocked about the place.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

Ive had two, one Toshiba laptop, in very early life, replaced under warranty,  the other on an IBM think pad, second user, peculiar the shop I got it from had had three, Makes you wonder if the Pallet got dropped, also under warranty,
In the good old day, had a bad head crash on a DEC PDP machine, with interchangable large thingies, had to call in the recovery bods and several disks  NFU  Crazy
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,112
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

Wow...
I seem to have been very unlucky then; I started buying Samsung's regularly because they were one of the first to offer a 3 year warranty. I reckon out of the fifteen or so I have purchased four have failed while still under warranty. I have to say their replacement turnaround time is brilliant and is one of the reasons I still buy them.
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 26,940
Thanks: 1,743
Fixes: 133
Registered: 14-04-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

1 SCSI drive in our server, a system drive Angry Had to do a bare metal restore. Tongue
Apart from that none of the scores of drives I've had to deal with have failed.
I have an old 500MB drive that still boots windows 3.1.

Customer and Forum Moderator.

the_groundsman
Grafter
Posts: 381
Thanks: 2
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

Quote from: pierre_pierre
Ive had two, one Toshiba laptop, in very early life, replaced under warranty,  the other on an IBM think pad,

Spooky! My old Tosh HDD died and my old IBM Think pad. Not surprising that its portables that go with all that moving around and getting knocked as well as being crammed in a small case....
must be time to "Touch Wood"
HighLordPhanty
Grafter
Posts: 54
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

I seem to remember reading that MTBFs for hard drives are based on replacing the drive every 3 years.
It's more to do with data loss than the lifetime of the drive.
Jim
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,576
Thanks: 3
Registered: 13-04-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

I have old mfm 5 1/4 drives 15+ years old and still working fine and lots of old ide drives 12 years +. Its surprising how thing do last I have a tv over 21 years old and still going ad radios over 30 years old
alanb
Grafter
Posts: 459
Registered: 24-05-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

I luuurve Spinpoints!
They are cool running and very quiet. The Seagate Barracuda drives have a reputation for being extremely quiet, and the decibel rating of the Spinpoints is the same as Barracudas. However, I subjectively think that the Spinpoints sound quieter because of the type of sound they make.
I have a couple of home-made servers that contain Spinpoints that have been running virtually non-stop for over three years. I also have a workstation that contains a Spinpoint I purchased five years ago, which is switched on all day from breakfast time until bed time and still happily chugging away.
At home I've had disc drives fail in the past (Western Digital and IBM/Hitachi), but none in the past few years. I've had more CD-ROM and DVD drive failures than hard discs. At work drive failures are a regular occurrance, but that's in a fleet of 120,000 PCs and about 5,000 servers, so not really surprising.
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,383
Thanks: 714
Fixes: 10
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

I've only ever had 2 HDDs fail on me and both of those were heavily used with the VMWare player on a daily basis.
VMWare seems to be a ticking time bomb for the older drives before the days when 100GB became common..
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
jmd
Grafter
Posts: 2,933
Thanks: 2
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

I used to have a Packard Bell Computer and after 2 years the hard drive gave up completely and nothng could be retreived off it.  I was naughty and had forgotten to back up for a while so lost a lot of stuff..................... Cry
Rikaitch
Grafter
Posts: 212
Registered: 08-06-2007

Re: How hard is your drive?

Would anyone like my stash of hard drives that have all died. I have some with bad sectors, some with Smart errors, some that will not boot, and a couple that just don't exist in the BIOS at all.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: How hard is your drive?

Take a sledgehammer to them - satisfying and effective!  Cheesy