Hard drive buying tips

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by slughead, Aug 3, 2004.

  1. slughead macrumors 68030


    Apr 28, 2004
    I used to build PCs for a living.. I see some of you guys making some pretty awful mistakes when buying hard drives with sad consequences.

    8 of my friends who I've known for at least 10 years currently work at a computer salvage warehouse.

    For your off-topic amusement:
    They take obsolete, dusty, and scratched up parts from old Compaq and HP servers and PCs. Since many HP and Compaq business customers HAVE to buy HP and Compaq-certified replacement parts (due to contractual agreements), they make a KILLING off selling these crappy parts to poor OEM-locked-in businesses.

    They also get other 'clones' (non-hp/compaq) and go through their parts to find working components, which can then be tested and 'compaq certified'.
    In this endless pursuit of working parts, they've conducted a poll of hard drives they receive and how many work.

    Here are the hard drives with the best results/unit:

    1. Seagate
    2. Western Digital
    3. IBM/hitachi (apart from the 75GB Deskstars)

    Here are some bad brands:
    1. Maxtor
    2. Quantum (Do they even make hard drives anymore?)

    As some of you may know, it is damn hard to find hard drive failure rates. People have to rely on anecdotal evidence to support or decry a brand.

    I hope this will help you in a future purchase.
  2. Duff-Man macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2002
    Albuquerque, NM
    Duff-Man says....I support a building full of PC's....just out of curiosity I went a had a look at the box of "dead" drives we have here. (when we get enough of them we send them out for proper destruction). At the moment the box has:
    4 Maxtor drives
    3 Seagate drives
    1 Western Digital
    1 IBM (not a 75gb Deskstar)
    Certainly not any kind of scientific sampling....just adding to the thread....oh yeah!
  3. fowler. macrumors 6502a


    Apr 18, 2004
    What about those Raptor 10k rpm disks? Do those have a noticable difference?
  4. cr2sh macrumors 68030


    May 28, 2002
    I used to work in a shop that recycled pc's. We'd wipe drives, dismantle the machines and sell the parts to consumers... the companies got a cut of the sales.

    We'd bring in 200 machines at a time, stock the warehouse and just start tearing through them. IBM's, HP, Compaq, Dell, Gateway.. we saw pretty much every brand.

    I would 100% agree with the statement that Seagates go the distance.

    That said, these were older machines (late 90's) and may not be an adequate representation of today's production.
  5. slughead thread starter macrumors 68030


    Apr 28, 2004
    WD's in general are great, but they are in general, more noisy.

    My friends have never tested a 10k RPM hard drive that wasn't SCSI at their warehouse (businesses must not buy them much).

    I just bought a 75gig 10k raptor, based on the general info I know about WDs.

    I haven't touched it yet, it's going in my new G5 (provided don't cancel my order).
  6. slughead thread starter macrumors 68030


    Apr 28, 2004
    True, it takes a while for even crappy hard drives to die. Thus we wont know the failure rates on new ones for a while.

    My friends mostly work on 2-15 year old parts, and all the polling was done on drives that had under 20,000 service hours (~2.8 years). Rarely do they get a drive with less than 5,000.

    The polling was done by taking the failed drives divided by the total for that brand. Gross doesn't matter, only per cent matters.

    No, they did not account for the service hours. In reality, they should've taken the good drives/service hours.

    Modern HDs are supposed to be good for 100,000 - 500,000 hours (11.4 - 57.0 years).
  7. codycartoon macrumors regular

    Sep 13, 2002
    I feel stupid, I just bought a 200GB Maxtor SATA.

    It holds a lot of important shizal. How long should it last?

  8. Tuned MP5 macrumors newbie

    Tuned MP5

    Jul 26, 2004
    New York City
    My Dell came with a 40gb harddrive and I just added the Seagate 80 gb harddrive. I just paid 90 bucks for the hard drive.

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