KHB: Real-world disk failure rates: surprises, surprises, and more surprises
Posted Jun 15, 2007 4:13 UTC (Fri) by njs
In reply to: KHB: Real-world disk failure rates: surprises, surprises, and more surprises
Parent article: KHB: Real-world disk failure rates: surprises, surprises, and more surprises
It's a funny thing about us humans, if you put us in a data vacuum, we find some way to fill it, whether it makes sense or not. Most of us have no useful statistics at all on what hard drive brands or models will be reliable; heck, as the article points out, the people *making* the drives don't even know this.
But this ignorance makes us so *uncomfortable* that everyone finds some random fact to base their decisions on, like an anecdote about that time they bought a *** brand drive they and it died after a week and so they never buy *** anymore, or how they heard the new *** brand drives use a fancier production process, or the warranty labels on the side of the box.
Warranties aren't a measure of how proud some engineers somewhere are, they're a measure of some sales/accounting decision about how the cost of providing that warranty will compare to the extra sales they get by putting it on the box. (5 years ago we were using what, 40 GB drives? If that died today, assuming you even still had it online, would you figure out how to ship it back for a new 40 GB under the warranty, or just pick up 400 GB at the local mall? Whenever it's the latter, the warranty costs Seagate nothing, and Seagate knows how many people fall into each camp.)
Hard drives are a commodity. Any given model has some greater-than-zero failure rate; people who care about their data make backups and the failure rate doesn't matter, people who don't care about their data worry and fret over exactly what the best lottery ticket to buy is. Me, I figure hard drives are all close enough in speed I'm never going to notice, but I have the thing sitting right next to me all day long, so I buy drives by checking Silent PC Review's recommended list, and picking the top-rated drive I can find on sale.
to post comments)