When is it best to get a new external hard drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by kylera, Dec 8, 2012.

  1. kylera macrumors 65816

    kylera

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2010
    Location:
    Seoul
    #1
    I have a 1TB Seagate FreeAgent external hard drive which I purchased back in 2008 (or was it 2009?). It was my media box and archive for old work-related files, until I got a 2TB Western Digital external earlier this year.

    At this point, the Seagate is acting as my Time Machine backup, and until now, it has seen no issues whatsoever. However, soon it will be 3 or 4 years old. Should I look into replacing it, or just use it until it craps out on me?
     
  2. NVRENUF! macrumors regular

    NVRENUF!

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    Location:
    PERTH, Australia
    #2
    instead of investing again in a single external drive, maybe look at a NAS
    and using that drive and getting 1 new drive , small extra outlay

    but will still use the old drive but being raid mirror with a new drive you are protected.

    plus the advantage of having network access to it .
     
  3. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #3
    As long as the smart status is showing no issues, then I'd not worry too much. If peace of mind is important then I'd replace it soon but from the sounds of it the drive is not near death
     
  4. kylera thread starter macrumors 65816

    kylera

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2010
    Location:
    Seoul
    #4
    Thanks for the suggestion, but NAS isn't part of my shopping list, as network access to standalone drives isn't a big priority. Screen Sharing into my iMac with my MBA or file sharing is a suitable workaround for me.

    Unless there's something about an NAS that makes it really worth it that I'm not aware of? I'm not dissing NAS; I just feel they don't fit my workflow effectively enough to make it worth my money, though I'm sure there are countless others who use them to their money's worth.

    Besides, I'm more concerned about the timing than what to get.

    ----------

    I just ran Disk Utility, and clicked on my external hard drive. Under S.M.A.R.T. status, it says "not supported." Is this because I'm using external?
     
  5. NVRENUF! macrumors regular

    NVRENUF!

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    Location:
    PERTH, Australia
    #5
    You can never put a time line on HDD's

    I go through probably 200 HDD a month at my office,

    I have pulled drives off the shelf and they are DOA
    I have put them in the field and 2 weeks they die
    or 2 months, sometimes they last 1 year sometimes they last 10 years.

    you just never know. I nearly learnt a hard lesson my self which is what made me get a nas so i had a constant mirror backup of the drive, And it emails me if it detects a error on the drive. Put new drive in and the nas will repair and fix it.


    So its hard to say how long your drive will last. You could replace it with a brand new one and that one might last you 6 months but your old one could have gone for another 2 years. its just pure luck.

    I still think best solution is a Raid style mirror running backup.

    but thats just my thoughts. As i have seen so many hdd fail.
     
  6. kylera thread starter macrumors 65816

    kylera

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2010
    Location:
    Seoul
    #6
    You're right about the luck part. I have had no issues with Seagate, but a friend of mine hates Seagate because he had bad experiences with it while I'm going fine.

    What kind of NAS do you use?
     
  7. NVRENUF! macrumors regular

    NVRENUF!

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    Location:
    PERTH, Australia
    #7
    just a simple Netgear Readynas, cost me $148 plus drives, though i already had a drive like you do.

    even comes with iphone app so i can access files when away handy.

    always something i need when at the office haha.

    first night it was in, I went out of state, it emailed me saying a drive failed.

    I think just a power glitch, got the wife to reboot it for me.
    it then emailed me saying it's repairing drive, 8 hours later i got email saying repaired. been fine ever since.

    My imacs time machine backup to it also.
    it has builtin support for time machine which was great.

    ----------

    I coudln't tell you what brands better,

    we have had dramas with all brands. We mostly use AV/ 24 hour GRade HDD for our cctv systems, but even the 24 hour grade drives have failed on us.
    So i have no faith in any HDD haha
     

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