Tannin

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About Tannin

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    <a href='/patron.html'><b>StorageReview Patron</b></a>

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    http://www.redhill.net.au
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  • Location
    Ballarat, Oz
  • Interests
    Birds, history, planet Earth
  1. This, together with the WD/Hitachi buyout, marks the end of the storage industry as we know it. Toshiba doesn't count - it doesn't have much market share, and what share it does have is in a circumscribed section - so that leaves just two: Seagate and WD. Two vendors is not a market. God I'm going to miss Samsung drives! I'm going to need an extra layer of backup now - i.e., enough storage to keep four copies of everything vital, and three copies of the lower-priority stuff.
  2. Tannin

    Pentium Pro-blems Redux

    Nope. Warranties don't work like that (bar a few exceptional products, such as printers). The usual procedure is that warranty claims (motherboards, HDDs, monitors, whatever) must go back up the distribution chain. You bring it back to me, I send it to the wholesaler, the wholesaler sends it to the importer or manufacturer, and so on. In general, you can't have a product serviced direct unless there are special circumstances. For example, a few years ago one of the major Seagate distributors in Oz went belly up. We had perhaps a thousand of Seagate drives in service and under warranty, all sourced through Agate. So I called Seagate and they said I had two choices: (a): Deal direct with the factory. ( Pay a handling fee for each RMA drive and go through the other distributor (Achieva). Seeing as the Seagate factory is in Singapore and I'm in Australia, it was easier and probably cheaper to pay $22 a drive and RMA them through Achieva. (They send them to Singapore and, eventually, Seagate replace them.) After a while, though, I stopped doing that, as the refurb drives Seagate sends back are complete pox. I haven't calculaed the failure rate of Seagate U Series refurbs, but it is way over 50%. So after a while I just started throwing them away. WD refurbs, BTW, are little better. But in any case, even if that were not the situation, everyone would come back through us anyway. It's a small town, and the way small town people see things, if I sold it, it's my responsibility to get it fixed. In fact, thats the way I see it too.
  3. Tannin

    Question About Wd Warranty

    Nope. Samsung give a full three years from the date of purchase on all the drives they make. I can see no good reason to buy any other ATA drive.
  4. Tannin

    Pentium Pro-blems Redux

    Hi all Nope, it wasn't me, Jonathan. My theory is that it's one of Flagreen's aliases. No longer a 0% failure rate, sgrossklass. Last time I counted them up, it was, over the three year warranty period, a total of 7 drives out of over 2000. Since then another six months or so has gone by and at a guess we have sold another hundred or two. I don't recall any more failures but there may have been one (I'll have to check with Kristi). Up until about then, we used to send vastly more Seagates and WDs away for RMA, but not any more, as we no longer have any significant number of non-Samsung drives in service still under warranty. BTW, I have a great deal of sympathy for the view that brand reliability is more to do with handling by the distribution chain than the actual manufacturer's qualities, but we can comprehensively rule that out as our Samsungs and our WD drives come from the exact same source and always have. Also by the way, I have noticed that the reliability of the refurbished Seagate and WD drives we used to get back is truly terrible. Back in the old days - say in 2GB and 4GB days - refurbs used to be just fine. Not any more. (I can't comment on refurb Samsung drives: weve only had 7 replacements and they were all new drives anyway.) On your memory performance theory, that maks good sense. I just upgraded one of my W2K boxes from an XP 2400 to a 2500 (bigger cache but slower clockspeed). It is clearly faster doing stiuff like load Moz though, which I ascribe to the faster memory clock. If you cast your mind back to the difference between the old Thunderbird A vs Thunderbird C - 100MHz vs 133MHz - it all fits.
  5. Tannin

    Pentium Pro-blems Redux

    What a cool thread! OK, it ain't exactly Storage Review, but WTF? It's a lot of fun. Hey? Where is the problem? Was it your $700 Gigahurtz? Yes? Then you are entitled to spend it any damn way you want. Let's play a game of 20 questions, shall we? Which is more stupid? 1: (a) Dropping $700 on a game of poker? ( Spending $700 on a Pentium Pro? 2: (a) Spending $700 on large, brightly-coloured aerodynamic aids for your car that (i) probably goes faster without them, and (ii) never gets out of the city traffic anyway? ( Spending $700 on a Pentium Pro? 3: (a) Spending $700 on a hand-tailored suit? ( Spending $700 on a Pentium Pro? 4: (a) Donating $700 to the Republican Party? ( Spending $700 on a Pentium Pro? 5: (a) Spending about $700 per year on an internet connection so that I can read tupid threads about spending $700 on a Pentium Pro? ( Spending $700 on a Pentium Pro? WTF? I said "20 questions" but those 5 will do, I suppose. I guess my answers are (in order) a, a, a, a, and b - but your mileage may vary. Was it stupid? Hell yeah. But you are allowed to be stupid with your own money. If that was my own particular form of stupidity I'm not sure that I'd be brave enough to discuss it in public, but there you go. Hey - I know a guy that just spent more than (US) seven thousand dollars on an old car of no known performance, practicality, historical or resale value. Is he ten times crazier? Probably. But it's his money, so good luck to him. PS: If you actually want to extract some performance from your PPro system, Gigahertz, then you better get real about your storage system though. That 7200 RPM ATA drive ain't got nothing like the horsepower you'll get from a half-decent 15K SCSI drive, even an old second-hand one. But then I guess performance isn't really the object of the exercise anyway. PPS: Hi to all my old friends here: Frank, Honold, Your Majesty, and co. Tannin PPPS: Has anyone seen Tea lately? If you run into her, ask her to give me a call please. She seems to have gone missing somewhere.
  6. Tannin

    K6-2 Or Pii?

    Taken alone, the K6-2 will cream the P-II so comprehensively you won't even see the dust. Alas, the SiS Socket 7 boards were ... well, I suppose the word "dreadful" gets overused a fair bit, but it seems to fit here. Some of the SiS-based Super 7 boards were OK (just OK, no better than that), and others were crudsville. The SiS, remember, was the cheapest chipset on the market, and usually (but not always) ended up going into the cheapest and crappiest motherboards around. If you had a motherboard on a decent chipset for it - i.e., a VIA MVP-3 - the K6-2 would be the hands-down winner. I well remember my most vivid example of this, when I replaced the slug-like BX and P-II/350 combo in the main workshop computer with an MVP-3 and K6-2/300, keeping all other components the same. Despite dropping 50MHz, it was vastly improved. On the SiS boards, though, it's hard to say which chip would go better. Essentially, there are two things you can do (a) If you desire reasonable performance: Stick the SiS board in and hope that it's both stable enough and performs more-or-less as a K-6 ought to. If it crashes, fall back on the old faithful BX. ( If you desire a quiet life: Stick the P-III in and hope that it's not too sluggish for your taste. If it's too slow, replace with the SiS and hope for the best.
  7. Tannin

    Best Hard Drive Reliability?

    When they do, they will lose a lot of customers. I'm sure they are aware of that. Given their present reliability advantage, why should they not turn that into a marketing advantage? It costs Samsung less to offer a three-year warranty than it costs makers with higher average failure rates (e.g., WD, and Seagate too unless they have improved a hell of a lot since I stopped buying them), so it makes good business sense for them to stand by their product. Sooner or later, though, they will let their quality standards slip - everyone does, if you wait long enough - and at that time, I would expect them to lower their warranty cover too. But tell me this: why is it only hard drive makers (Samsung excepted) who are cutting warranties, when makers of all the other parts that go into a computer are offering longer warranties? Motherboards: 2 years, sometimes three. Optical drives: 2 years is standard. Video cards: 3 years is standard. RAM: 5 years or lifetime. Monitors: 3 years is universal. PS: nice to see you Prof!
  8. Tannin

    Defragmentation Programs for NTFS

    How so, Glug? XCOPY copies the files in sensible directory order, so I would not expect this.
  9. Tannin

    Defragmentation Programs for NTFS

    Did somebody mention my name? Dave, you are using the high-tech version of my patented low-tech method, which works as follows: XCOPY d:\*.* e:\temp\*.* /e/s FORMAT d: XCOPY e:\temp\*.* /d:\ *.* /e/s No trouble whatever, 100% effective, zero cost, complete reliability. WARNING: doesn't work on Windows, because they stuffed up the file system. Might or might not work on NTFS, I'm not sure, On FAT it buggers up your long file names. But I don't have any FAT32 or NTFS partitions that hold data of significance, so no matter. On Windows systems, you can do the same thing, but you have to drag and drop from the desktop, rather than type in the command line. <insert controversial opinion> In any case, defragging is only for people who can't afford fast hard drives. If you use a real performance drive (i.e., 15K SCSI, accept no imitations, especially not IDE slugs) then fragmentation has to be really really bad before it has any human-noticable effect on performance. I'm talking seriously bad here - i.e., several years of use and reasonably full as well. On my notebook - which is a Toshiba Celeron 2000 with 30GB and 512MB of DDR - fragmentation is much more noticable. But then, by desktop standards, that is a very sluggish hard drive. I'm not sure exactly how slow it is as I'm afraid to run any tests on it. If I did that, I'd wind up spending far too much money on a bigger, faster drive for it, and I don't want to do that. </controversial opinion>
  10. Tannin

    Best Hard Drive Reliability?

    Hi JMK. We've sold somewhere close to 2000 Samsung drives now, maybe a few more more, though I'd have to count back through the purchase orders to be sure. We passed the 1000 mark quite a while back, so if it ain't 2000 yet it must be close. These days, I don't sell anything else if I can help it. For starters, nothing else has an across-the-board three year warranty. I think the warranty cuts introduced by WD, Maxtor, Seagate and IBM/Hitachi demonstrate bad faith, and are evidence that they don't honestly believe that their drives are as reliable as they ought to be - if your product is good, why do you try to get out of giving it a warranty that lasts as long as the standard two to three year warranty you get with any decent brand of CD-ROM drive, DVD, CD burner, motherboard, RAM, or videocard? But you don't want to read my opinions (in any case, you can probably guess them after all these years!) You want the raw numbers. Well, bad news, after a fashion: we have now had a gand total of 7 Samsung drives to RMA. 3 with one or two bad sectors but otherwise OK, 4 with more serious failures. Plus there was one that was semi-DOA - a 20 or 30GB drive that only came up as 8GB beause of something funky with the LBA system. I forget if that is one of the 7 or if it makes 8 in total. (I have notes posted somewhere. Probably at the other place. Must look them up.) But let's be conservative and call it 8 out of 2000. That's ... er ... 0.4%. Not as good as the 0.1% we were sitting on for a long, long time, but still vastly better than any other drive I've ever sold, even the wonderful IBM drives in the 1.08 to 3.2GB class, or the Seagate Medalists from just before they went to those crappy U Series things. We no longer have enough drives of any other brand to provide meaningful comparisons between manufacturers. At a rough guess, 95% of the drives we have out there in service are Samsungs. Even so, that (estimated) 5% makes up 80% or more of our RMA returns - practically all Seagates and Western Digitals in the 10 to 40GB range. (No Maxtors or IBM, but then we have precisely 2 Maxtor drives in service and 0 IBMs - that's counting "sold new by us and within the three year warranty period" as "in service". Performance? Well, a failed drive has an average access time of 6 weeks and a data transfer rate of zero. In my book, that's enough to save me the trouble of looking at performance numbers. Until I have some reason to think that one or other of the short-warranty manufacturers has lifted their game to match Samsung's standards, we won't even consider selling them. The only drives I use in my own systems now (outside of Samsung) are Seagate X15s. I bought another one just today, may pick up a 73GB one in a few weeks time. For all my distaste for their ultra-crappy U Series things, and my "just OK" assessment of the IDE 7200s, Seagate's SCSI drives are all class. Would I do well to consider the WD Raptors? I nearly bought one for myself a while back, but by the time I bought a new motherboard for the SATA, I was most of the way to getting another X15 (and I already had the SCSI controller), so I stayed with the Seagate. One day, I will have a Seagate SCSI drive fail on me. Hasn't happened yet though. Touch wood.
  11. Tannin

    Woah... New Look!

    Thankyou, David. I confess to not paying too much attention to storage these days (it's terribly boring: there is only one manufacturer that I really, really trust anymore, so performance is a non-question - it doesn't matter how fast or slow they go, because in the final analysis, reliability and a proper warranty is always more important) but I'll be popping in from time to time, even if only to the B&G to ay "hi" to all my old friends. No matter. Hi to all.
  12. Tannin

    Woah... New Look!

    Hi Andrew! Indeed it is. Nice to be back, though with one thing and another my time is so short these days that popping in here is something of a rarity. Unusual to be away for this long though.
  13. Tannin

    Woah... New Look!

    Whooah! What happened? Everything is different colours! Lots of the same old names about though. That's nice to see.