hard drive recommendations

D. Hugh Redelmeier hugh at mimosa.com
Tue Mar 11 04:40:30 UTC 2008


| From: Dave Ihnat <dihnat at dminet.com>

|   If you're concerned about
| reliability, vendors have "RAID certified" drives available; they're usually
| only a few bucks more than standard OEM off-the-shelf units.

Are you sure?  The economics make mechanical differentiating of
products expensive.  In other words, the "RAID certified drives" are
very likely physically the same as the desktop drives unless they
charge a lot more (e.g. SCSI drives).

Firmware differences make more sense and are used.  RAID drives seem
to have tighter time-bounds on how long they will try to recover from
errors.  With RAID systems, you'd rather a timely failure than a
faintly increased chance of success.  See the description of TLER and
RAFF here:
  http://www.wdc.com/en/products/Products.asp?DriveID=399

The equivallent desktop drive appears to be:
  http://www.wdc.com/en/products/Products.asp?DriveID=301
It doesn't have MTBF specs (when did that stop being specified?).
Those numbers are not very convincing anyway (remember the
DeathStars?).  The specs on how many times the drive can be started
and stopped are identical.

I have no inside knowledge.  These are just impressions/guesses.




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