Disk failure rates by Vendor from Backblaze May 2016

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by HDFan, May 18, 2016.

  1. HDFan macrumors 65816

    Jun 30, 2007
    This is a repost of a reply which I made in another thread. Since I suspect a number of people might use hard disks thought seeing vendor failure rates would be useful.

    Backblaze's most recent report of drive failure rates over a billion hour time usage period and 61,590 drives was just updated yesterday.


    See the first graph below for the 2016 results.

    They reported the lowest annual failure rate they have experienced at 1.84%.

    Seagate and Western Digital have the highest cumulative (since 2013) failure rates. HGST has the lowest, Toshiba is in the middle. For 2016 their failure rates have been (10.68%), (6.55%), (1.03%), and (3.06%) respectively.

    Larger drives (6 and 8 TB) are getting closer in price (per TB) to the 4 TB drives they generally use.

    The second graph comes from Ross Lazarus, "a self-described grumpy computational biologist". He analyzed the data using Kaplan-Meier statistics and plots. Data is through 2015 only. (http://bioinformare.blogspot.com.au/2016/02/survival-analysis-of-hard-disk-drive.html).

    Attached Files:

  2. shaunp macrumors 68000

    Nov 5, 2010
  3. brewmonkey macrumors regular

    Feb 17, 2016
    Hmm...Does Backblaze get kickbacks from HGST? Hehe...I kid. Interesting info.
  4. bradl macrumors 68040


    Jun 16, 2008
    The only thing that is skewed on this is that their summary is based on brands on the whole, not the type of drives being used.

    With that said, they are concentrating more on the normal consumer/desktop drive, with very little emphasis on any other type of drive. In fact, out of the drives they sampled (22), only 7 are non-desktop grade. Every WD drive is a NAS drive, with 2 Toshibas and one HGST being a non-desktop variant.

    They should be doing a true apples-to-apples comparison here; desktop drives to desktop drives, NAS to NAS, surveillance to surveillance. Otherwise, one would never get a true gauge for the stats for failed drives.

    For the record, I have of the WD drives (both WD30EFRX); 3TB NAS drives in my Synology DS213j , and out of the 3+ years they have been spinning, not a single problem.

  5. HDFan thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jun 30, 2007
    Good point. What is interesting is that BackBlaze actually avoids enterprise drives in favor of consumer drives!

    Posted under another thread:

    I asked the BackBlaze folks about Enterprise drives and they actually avoid them due to drive stability. In a RAID configuration they seem to give up on a read as they assume there is another drive in the RAID that will pick up the slack. Consumer drives tend not to do this as they think that they are the only drives so they keep trying. Their environment is configured for drive failures so they don't care if a drive fails. The extra expense isn't worth it given the thousands of drives they purchase each month.

    So if you've got a RAID 6 environment and you can have 2 drives fail without a problem, why spend money for a more expensive drive?

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4 May 18, 2016