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CrazyElf

What is the difference between Western Digital's Black and RE line

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Between the 2 hard drives, what is the difference between the Western Digital Black series and the RE series? Obviously 1 is enterprise and 1 is meant for consumer.

Say we were to take 2 drives:

WD4000FYYZ (Enterprise RE drive)
WD4003FZEX (Consumer based drive)

What are the differences? Is the hardware the same? They are both 4tb drives with 5x 800 GB platters.

The only difference that I see is that the Enterprise drive has TLER support.

Is firmware the only difference then?

Edited by CrazyElf

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RE`s are certified to work in a raid environment with their timeout settings etc... Blacks are not, but more often than not work just fine... There is some hardware that they dont play well with, but I dont remember what anymore.. Google is your friend.. :)

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The RE drives are far, far better built. Them and the Se drives are good units, and have very little similarities to the consumer drives.

I think when I replace my NAS drives, I'll most likely either go for Re/Se or just cheap out and buy 6TB Greens.

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The RE drives are far, far better built.

What do you mean "better built"? What is the difference in physical hardware?

Like are the actuators and internals of higher quality?

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In some cases, it's completely different hardware. In other cases, it's the same hardware, but cherry-picked parts for RE. This is in addition to the firmware differences and burn-in/testing differences during production.

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What do you mean "better built"? What is the difference in physical hardware?

Like are the actuators and internals of higher quality?

I assume so, because the RE weighs a lot more than a Black. It's obvious the RE is a far better constructed drive just by looking at it.

It's like the difference between a Kia and a BMW. I don't know how, but I know it is.

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The better construction is reflected in the probability of unrecoverable errors: <1 in 10^15 for the RE vs <1 in 10^14 for the Black. For large RAID arrays, that is a significant difference in the likelihood of delays from error recovery, failed stripes or lost data.

RAID drives are often packed close together, and the vibration can have a disastrous effect on the speed. The SE's and RE's have extra vibration sensors and the ability to compensate for vibration when positioning the read/write heads.

Another major difference is in the firmware and controller. RAID controllers on a server may be trying to service multiple and completely unrelated read/write operations all over the array, and so the drives have to handle streams of read/write commands that involve operations all over the disk. Enterprise drives are optimized to complete these instructions as efficiently as possible. (In contrast, a single-user desktop drive is more often trying to read or write one sequential file at a time).

Edited by dietrc70

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