16TB spinning rust is here



  • And then.... Seagate. Will wait to see if WD follows suit.



  • @scottalanmiller said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    And then.... Seagate. Will wait to see if WD follows suit.

    WD announced earlier that they are also looking at releasing 16TB drives this year. They use MAMR technology (Microwave Assisted Magnetic Recording) which is also new.

    I found out that Toshiba also have 16TB drives on the market but they are using "traditional" tech and have done it by adding a 9th platter instead of 8.



  • @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.



  • @G-I-Jones said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.

    Most companies buy drives from their vendor so they have no control over what drive they are actually buying. They are buying an HPE or Dell drive - manufactured by Seagate, WD, Toshiba etc. Just like they are buying 256GB of HPE RAM - manufactured by Micron, Samsung, Hynix etc.



  • @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @G-I-Jones said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.

    Most companies buy drives from their vendor so they have no control over what drive they are actually buying. They are buying an HPE or Dell drive - manufactured by Seagate, WD, Toshiba etc. Just like they are buying 256GB of HPE RAM - manufactured by Micron, Samsung, Hynix etc.

    And there is no data that suggests that Seagate drives fails more than others.

    Backblaze have some data that suggests that some Seagate models are more failure prone than other drives on average but they also have data that suggests that other Seagate models have less failure than the average drive.



  • @G-I-Jones said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.

    I think the last set of drive failure data from backblaze showed Seagate as having higher failure rates compared to other brands. Don't have the link handy but you should be able to Google it pretty easily.





  • @G-I-Jones said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.

    Generally avoid them, yes. Big usage shops like BB have had issues with them, and repair shops have advised that they see the failure rates on them in the wild being very high.



  • @scottalanmiller said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @G-I-Jones said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.

    Generally avoid them, yes. Big usage shops like BB have had issues with them, and repair shops have advised that they see the failure rates on them in the wild being very high.

    My buddy the runs his own tiny shop confirms this. He sees more failed seagate than anything else.



  • What would be the best brand/model high capacity (8+ TB) SATA hard drive today?



  • @wrx7m said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    What would be the best brand/model high capacity (8+ TB) SATA hard drive today?

    HGST. Owned by Western Digital, but still running their own production lines. They're a little more expensive, but also more reliable. You have to decide if the extra cost is worth the reliability difference.



  • @travisdh1 said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @wrx7m said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    What would be the best brand/model high capacity (8+ TB) SATA hard drive today?

    HGST. Owned by Western Digital, but still running their own production lines. They're a little more expensive, but also more reliable. You have to decide if the extra cost is worth the reliability difference.

    Ever since those floods several years ago, HDDquality has gone down.



  • @wrx7m said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @travisdh1 said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @wrx7m said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    What would be the best brand/model high capacity (8+ TB) SATA hard drive today?

    HGST. Owned by Western Digital, but still running their own production lines. They're a little more expensive, but also more reliable. You have to decide if the extra cost is worth the reliability difference.

    Ever since those floods several years ago, HDD drive quality has gone down.

    Yeah, and anyone that doesn't believe you just needs to go look at the annual failure rates Backblaze publishes.



  • @travisdh1 said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @wrx7m said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @travisdh1 said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @wrx7m said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    What would be the best brand/model high capacity (8+ TB) SATA hard drive today?

    HGST. Owned by Western Digital, but still running their own production lines. They're a little more expensive, but also more reliable. You have to decide if the extra cost is worth the reliability difference.

    Ever since those floods several years ago, HDD drive quality has gone down.

    Yeah, and anyone that doesn't believe you just needs to go look at the annual failure rates Backblaze publishes.

    Yeah I saw that posted here recently. Man, it is a horror story.



  • @wrx7m said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @travisdh1 said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @wrx7m said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    What would be the best brand/model high capacity (8+ TB) SATA hard drive today?

    HGST. Owned by Western Digital, but still running their own production lines. They're a little more expensive, but also more reliable. You have to decide if the extra cost is worth the reliability difference.

    Ever since those floods several years ago, HDDquality has gone down.

    Losing a factory will do that, especially for a market in decline.



  • @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @G-I-Jones said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.

    Most companies buy drives from their vendor so they have no control over what drive they are actually buying. They are buying an HPE or Dell drive - manufactured by Seagate, WD, Toshiba etc. Just like they are buying 256GB of HPE RAM - manufactured by Micron, Samsung, Hynix etc.

    And there is no data that suggests that Seagate drives fails more than others.

    Backblaze have some data that suggests that some Seagate models are more failure prone than other drives on average but they also have data that suggests that other Seagate models have less failure than the average drive.

    Don't they also use primarily consumer grade drives?



  • @Dashrender said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @G-I-Jones said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.

    Most companies buy drives from their vendor so they have no control over what drive they are actually buying. They are buying an HPE or Dell drive - manufactured by Seagate, WD, Toshiba etc. Just like they are buying 256GB of HPE RAM - manufactured by Micron, Samsung, Hynix etc.

    And there is no data that suggests that Seagate drives fails more than others.

    Backblaze have some data that suggests that some Seagate models are more failure prone than other drives on average but they also have data that suggests that other Seagate models have less failure than the average drive.

    Don't they also use primarily consumer grade drives?

    BB only uses consumer AFAIK.



  • @scottalanmiller said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Dashrender said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @G-I-Jones said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.

    Most companies buy drives from their vendor so they have no control over what drive they are actually buying. They are buying an HPE or Dell drive - manufactured by Seagate, WD, Toshiba etc. Just like they are buying 256GB of HPE RAM - manufactured by Micron, Samsung, Hynix etc.

    And there is no data that suggests that Seagate drives fails more than others.

    Backblaze have some data that suggests that some Seagate models are more failure prone than other drives on average but they also have data that suggests that other Seagate models have less failure than the average drive.

    Don't they also use primarily consumer grade drives?

    BB only uses consumer AFAIK.

    I thought that too - but had to leave myself some wiggle room. 😉



  • @Dashrender said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @G-I-Jones said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller what's the general consensus here? Do we not buy Seagate because they fail more? Genuinely curious.

    Most companies buy drives from their vendor so they have no control over what drive they are actually buying. They are buying an HPE or Dell drive - manufactured by Seagate, WD, Toshiba etc. Just like they are buying 256GB of HPE RAM - manufactured by Micron, Samsung, Hynix etc.

    And there is no data that suggests that Seagate drives fails more than others.

    Backblaze have some data that suggests that some Seagate models are more failure prone than other drives on average but they also have data that suggests that other Seagate models have less failure than the average drive.

    Don't they also use primarily consumer grade drives?

    No, it depends. They use more enterprise drives as they have gone to higher capacity drives so they have both.

    In the latest stats, the most reliable drive from all manufacturers that they have in larger numbers (>1000 drives) is the Seagate ST10000NM0086 at 0.33% AFR. That's a Seagate Exos X10 enterprise drive - 2.5M hours MTBF and 5 year warranty.

    Backblaze also says that drive reliability in general has gone up and 2018 has been the year with the lowest failure rate since they started.



  • I think you can divide 3.5" drives into three major categories:

    • Desktop drives - Consumer 8/24 usage, 2y warranty, SATA - WD Desktop, Seagate Desktop etc
    • NAS drives - "Pro/semi-pro" 24/7 usage, 3y warranty, SATA - WD Red, Seagate Iron Wolf etc
    • Enterprise drives - Heavy 24/7 usage, 5y warranty, SATA or SAS - WD Ultrastar, Seagate Exos etc

    I think large desktop drives has become a niche market since that is not what people buy. And if you look at 10TB or more, the NAS drives and the enterprise drives cost almost the same but enterprise drives always have 5 year warranty so...

    Unless trends will change I think you'll see a lot more enterprise drives used by Backblaze. I think in general they will always pick the lowest cost per TB drives they can find in volumes they can buy.

    Assuming everything keeps moving to the cloud, there are going to be huge volumes of hyperscale high capacity drives sold and less of everything else. Considering energy cost and density, hyperscale companies are always looking for the highest capacity drives.



  • @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    I think you can divide 3.5" drives into three major categories:

    • Desktop drives - Consumer 8/24 usage, 2y warranty, SATA - WD Desktop, Seagate Desktop etc
    • NAS drives - "Pro/semi-pro" 24/7 usage, 3y warranty, SATA - WD Red, Seagate Iron Wolf etc
    • Enterprise drives - Heavy 24/7 usage, 5y warranty, SATA or SAS - WD Ultrastar, Seagate Exos etc

    I think large desktop drives has become a niche market since that is not what people buy. And if you look at 10TB or more, the NAS drives and the enterprise drives cost almost the same but enterprise drives always have 5 year warranty so...

    Unless trends will change I think you'll see a lot more enterprise drives used by Backblaze. I think in general they will always pick the lowest cost per TB drives they can find in volumes they can buy.

    Assuming everything keeps moving to the cloud, there are going to be huge volumes of hyperscale high capacity drives sold and less of everything else. Considering energy cost and density, hyperscale companies are always looking for the highest capacity drives.

    WD Blue 3/year warranty
    WD Black 5/year warranty

    Both are non-Enterprise drives, and labeled as Desktop drives.

    The fact that Backblaze used 34,737 Seagate st4000dm000 desktop consumer level drives that had a failure rate of 2.13% is by no means surprising. Most of the drives they use are not enterprise drives.

    They must do it like that because they must think it's cheaper to deal with failed hard drives for the bulk of that tier of data.

    However, looking at the HGST Enterprise grade drives they used almost 10,000 of (hms5c4040ble640)... those had a significantly lower failure rate.

    Perhaps it's cheaper to go with Desktop drives for certain tiers of data, dealing with the failure rate, and for other data tiers, they choose Enterprise drives with much lower failure rates.



  • @Obsolesce said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    I think you can divide 3.5" drives into three major categories:

    • Desktop drives - Consumer 8/24 usage, 2y warranty, SATA - WD Desktop, Seagate Desktop etc
    • NAS drives - "Pro/semi-pro" 24/7 usage, 3y warranty, SATA - WD Red, Seagate Iron Wolf etc
    • Enterprise drives - Heavy 24/7 usage, 5y warranty, SATA or SAS - WD Ultrastar, Seagate Exos etc

    I think large desktop drives has become a niche market since that is not what people buy. And if you look at 10TB or more, the NAS drives and the enterprise drives cost almost the same but enterprise drives always have 5 year warranty so...

    Unless trends will change I think you'll see a lot more enterprise drives used by Backblaze. I think in general they will always pick the lowest cost per TB drives they can find in volumes they can buy.

    Assuming everything keeps moving to the cloud, there are going to be huge volumes of hyperscale high capacity drives sold and less of everything else. Considering energy cost and density, hyperscale companies are always looking for the highest capacity drives.

    WD Blue 3/year warranty
    WD Black 5/year warranty

    Both are non-Enterprise drives, and labeled as Desktop drives.

    The fact that Backblaze used 34,737 Seagate st4000dm000 desktop consumer level drives that had a failure rate of 2.13% is by no means surprising. Most of the drives they use are not enterprise drives.

    They must do it like that because they must think it's cheaper to deal with failed hard drives for the bulk of that tier of data.

    However, looking at the HGST Enterprise grade drives they used almost 10,000 of (hms5c4040ble640)... those had a significantly lower failure rate.

    Perhaps it's cheaper to go with Desktop drives for certain tiers of data, dealing with the failure rate, and for other data tiers, they choose Enterprise drives with much lower failure rates.

    WD Blue for HDDs only has 2y warranty and is not made in large capacities. https://documents.westerndigital.com/content/dam/doc-library/en_us/assets/public/western-digital/product/internal-drives/wd-blue-hdd/data-sheet-wd-blue-pc-hard-drives-2879-771436.pdf

    Regardless of that Backblaze have in the past said they pick the cheapest drives because the lower drive replacement cost doesn't offset the higher cost for better drives. Maybe they do pick different drives for different uses but I can't see why they should really. They have enough redundancy regardless.

    But as I said, just looking at the trend last 12 months or so, I think you will see more enterprise drives in their lineup because prices are basically the same. Looking at our own prices I see that we pay only 2% more for the WD Ultrastar 10TB compared to the WD Red 10TB.



  • @Pete-S right, they don’t tier anything like that. Just jack it all into pods.



  • @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Obsolesce said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    I think you can divide 3.5" drives into three major categories:

    • Desktop drives - Consumer 8/24 usage, 2y warranty, SATA - WD Desktop, Seagate Desktop etc
    • NAS drives - "Pro/semi-pro" 24/7 usage, 3y warranty, SATA - WD Red, Seagate Iron Wolf etc
    • Enterprise drives - Heavy 24/7 usage, 5y warranty, SATA or SAS - WD Ultrastar, Seagate Exos etc

    I think large desktop drives has become a niche market since that is not what people buy. And if you look at 10TB or more, the NAS drives and the enterprise drives cost almost the same but enterprise drives always have 5 year warranty so...

    Unless trends will change I think you'll see a lot more enterprise drives used by Backblaze. I think in general they will always pick the lowest cost per TB drives they can find in volumes they can buy.

    Assuming everything keeps moving to the cloud, there are going to be huge volumes of hyperscale high capacity drives sold and less of everything else. Considering energy cost and density, hyperscale companies are always looking for the highest capacity drives.

    WD Blue 3/year warranty
    WD Black 5/year warranty

    Both are non-Enterprise drives, and labeled as Desktop drives.

    The fact that Backblaze used 34,737 Seagate st4000dm000 desktop consumer level drives that had a failure rate of 2.13% is by no means surprising. Most of the drives they use are not enterprise drives.

    They must do it like that because they must think it's cheaper to deal with failed hard drives for the bulk of that tier of data.

    However, looking at the HGST Enterprise grade drives they used almost 10,000 of (hms5c4040ble640)... those had a significantly lower failure rate.

    Perhaps it's cheaper to go with Desktop drives for certain tiers of data, dealing with the failure rate, and for other data tiers, they choose Enterprise drives with much lower failure rates.

    WD Blue for HDDs only has 2y warranty and is not made in large capacities. https://documents.westerndigital.com/content/dam/doc-library/en_us/assets/public/western-digital/product/internal-drives/wd-blue-hdd/data-sheet-wd-blue-pc-hard-drives-2879-771436.pdf

    Regardless of that Backblaze have in the past said they pick the cheapest drives because the lower drive replacement cost doesn't offset the higher cost for better drives. Maybe they do pick different drives for different uses but I can't see why they should really. They have enough redundancy regardless.

    But as I said, just looking at the trend last 12 months or so, I think you will see more enterprise drives in their lineup because prices are basically the same. Looking at our own prices I see that we pay only 2% more for the WD Ultrastar 10TB compared to the WD Red 10TB.

    Yeah, no idea why they buy so many Desktop drives....

    More results broken down:

    5a002d84-9b27-4a65-ade2-23e6269bedde-image.png



  • Because 2% more is a lot.



  • @JaredBusch said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    Because 2% more is a lot.

    Especially at the scale in which they purchase drives.



  • @DustinB3403 said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @JaredBusch said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    Because 2% more is a lot.

    Especially at the scale in which they purchase drives.

    Most of the desktops drives you see in their stats are small drives. They are not buying small drives anymore. Only 8 TB and up. So mostly enterprise drives.

    With their volume they get a good price anyway so who knows if they pay 2% more or not. Also if you get a longer warranty that might offset the price difference a little bit.

    This is how much data they have stored on each type of drive:
    backblaze_2019_report.png



  • @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    With their volume they get a good price anyway so who knows if they pay 2% more or not.

    We have to assume so, as they would get volume discounts on consumer drives, too.



  • @scottalanmiller said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    With their volume they get a good price anyway so who knows if they pay 2% more or not.

    We have to assume so, as they would get volume discounts on consumer drives, too.

    Exactly - sure they get volume discounts.. but the consumer at volume is still likely 2% less than enterprise at volume.. that's cash in their pockets...

    Of course as they drop out from the smaller consumer grade drives, that becomes less and less of an issue.



  • @Dashrender said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    With their volume they get a good price anyway so who knows if they pay 2% more or not.

    We have to assume so, as they would get volume discounts on consumer drives, too.

    Exactly - sure they get volume discounts.. but the consumer at volume is still likely 2% less than enterprise at volume.. that's cash in their pockets...

    Of course as they drop out from the smaller consumer grade drives, that becomes less and less of an issue.

    @Dashrender said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @scottalanmiller said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    @Pete-S said in 16TB spinning rust is here:

    With their volume they get a good price anyway so who knows if they pay 2% more or not.

    We have to assume so, as they would get volume discounts on consumer drives, too.

    Exactly - sure they get volume discounts.. but the consumer at volume is still likely 2% less than enterprise at volume.. that's cash in their pockets...

    Of course as they drop out from the smaller consumer grade drives, that becomes less and less of an issue.

    2% of 100k HDDs has got to be over $200k. The time that goes into replacing them, performance loss, etc can't be overlooked either, which is added costs on top of the drive costs.


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