WD - Red Vs. Blue

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by mattspace, May 4, 2017.

  1. mattspace macrumors 6502a


    Jun 5, 2013

    So thinking about swapping out a 2TB WD Green time machine drive (also have a small external 2TB USB TM drive for redundancy) from one of my sleds for a larger drive, and the easy choice from a budget perspective is the 4TB WD Blue (WD40EZRZ), but for an extra $40 I could stretch to a 4TB Red (WD40EFRX). The Red drives are marketed as NAS specific reliability-focussed drives, but I'm wondering if the whole "optimised for 24/7 operation" thing is actually a disadvantage for a machine which is put to sleep every night.

    Any opinions?
  2. Filin macrumors regular


    Mar 7, 2010
    WD Red is good choice for TM drive. Quiet and cold.
  3. cube macrumors G5

    May 10, 2004
    I think I would just get the X300 instead of the N300.
  4. curmudgeonette macrumors 6502

    Jan 28, 2016
    Apparently the Red drives are shipped with their error retry limit set very low. The idea is that in a RAID you don't want a drive going to heroic measures to read a sector when the same data can be read from an alternate drive.

    Thus, a Red drive isn't a great choice if you don't have redundancy. Black might be a better choice. Or maybe Purple - the security camera drives that are meant to write data 24x7.
  5. Zenithal macrumors 603

    Sep 10, 2009
    Gold drives are better if you can order them as a single unit.
  6. h9826790 macrumors G4


    Apr 3, 2014
    Hong Kong
    For TM, and especailly you have multiple TM drives. I think just get the cheapest is good enough (unless that particular model has a significant higher failure rate). TM is just a background process, virtually transparent to the user. No reason to get a high performance HDD to do this job. I don't think anyone should keep checking the TM backup progress. It require 30min or 45min to complete the backup process doesn't really matter.

    For recovery, yes, faster drive helps a bit, but not much. Because the files are not in sequential order anyway. Also, the real question is, how often do you need to recovery a large amount of data from TM. If less than once a year, why invest more on a faster HDD?
  7. mattspace thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Jun 5, 2013
    Well, I bought the Red to put my time machine on - i figured the longer warranty etc was worth the $40 vs the (rebadged Green) Blue for peace of mind on my data backup. Also picked up a 500GB 850 evo for the 2nd optical bay to use as my boot and user drive (which is only ~350gb at the moment). I'll shift my current 2tb WD Green TM drive to replace the 1tb Green drive I'm using for photos, and keep the 1tb as a transfer / utility spare.

    Now I just have to research how to spoof drive IDs to stop TM doing fresh complete backups when I move stuff between disks.
  8. orph macrumors 65816


    Dec 12, 2005
    hay been ruining a red drive for ages not noticed any problems, but as mentioned error retry limit is set low so if the drive is in raid it wont get seen as bad if it's taking to long to read a sector (or something like that).
    but iv had a 2TB drive for 2-3 years? i gess with no problems and as it's a backup drive it's unlikely to die at the same time as your system drive.

    i think the blue drives are a tad faster? and the black are seen as the best.
    i have 2 blacks and 1 blue + 1 red (sounds like a fight :p black & blue with red coming out)

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