HDD recommendations for external storage

We need to replace 4 HDDs in an external caddy. What HDDs are even reputable these days? We’re looking for 8TB drives. Are folks using WD, Seagate, some other brand?

All suggestions appreciated.

They won’t be under particularly heavy use.

I have four Seagate BarraCuda HDDs that I bought from OWC six years ago. They have been spinning along in my Synology NAS without error or bad segments ever since. Highly reliable. If I update the NAS capacity, it would be Seagate again.

Katie

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Backblaze buys huge numbers of consumer drives for its pods, and on a quarterly basis they post their failure statistics. They’ll be coming out with a new report in a matter of days, but the August report is here and a zip file of the MS Excel spreadsheet data is here: (Also you can check previous quarterly reports, going back to 2015, here.)

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I used to get HGST drives from OWC, but now HGST drives have been folded in to Western Digital’s portfolio, and OWC seems to not be carrying as wide of a stock as in year’s past.

Nowadays, as per the fashion on the “datahorder” subreddit, I have been buying on-sale Western Digital Easystores or WD Elements drives-in-enclosures, and then “shucking” them for the 8TB or 10TB drive inside. Supposedly similar to WD Reds, although typically a 5400 rpm spinner – OK for me, as I prefer a lower power draw when these drives are in multiples in a NAS.

The appeal is price; 8TB can be $130, 10TB as low as $160. The disadvantages include time shucking, lesser warranty and of course the e-waste of the surplus enclosures.

Whatever you select, it’s worth “certifying” the drive before putting it into service … I use SoftRAID’s “certify” feature.

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I put WD Red drives in my NAS, based on good experience with their My Book and Elements drives, and the fact that they own HGST. They’ve only been running since January, but no troubles to date (4 drives). They have a three year warranty.

Edit: I also like that I can login and check the warranty status of my drives (need to add my latest 8T). This may be something everyone has now.

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I tend to use WD blues if I want drives without the enclosure and Seagates for external drives, I know things have long since gotten better, but I won’t touch a WD green with a 10 foot pole, I used to be in pc repairs around 2011 and the failure rate on them was insane.

Depending on who you ask WD reds are just snake oil, and as good as any other drive.

Personally though in 10 years of slamming drives, I have never had a failure, just have a regiment for regular drive replacement, I usually go about 3 years

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FYI Backblaze just posted its latest quarterly hard drive failure stats:

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